Photographers, hunters, hikers, and others who love the outdoors need protection against snake bites
Landscape photographers often obsess about camera gear, but not necessarily protective gear.
If you have a photography enthusiast in your life, you've already learned that buying the right photo gear can be tricky and confusing. But wildlife and landscape photographers also need gear that helps them cope with the elements, and the environment.
As a landscape photographer, I’ve encountered a lot of snakes along the way. I regularly hike through tall grass, along river banks, and over rocky hillsides, where snakes are likely to be found but are difficult to see. Luckily, I’ve never had a bite, but I realized the importance of protecting myself after a park ranger in New Mexico warned me to beware of rattlesnakes on a rocky hiking trail.
It was on this hike in New Mexico where a park ranger warned me to beware of rattlesnakes on the hiking trail.
What to look for when considering snake boots
I've read that most snake bites in the US occur below the knee, so tall snake boots should help protect against the average snake bite. When choosing my boots, I looked for solid protection with tall uppers, waterproofing, comfort, quality construction, and good tread on the soles. Camouflage wasn't important for me, but there are a lot of camo options for hunters.
Many sources claim that ordinary boots like cowboy boots and military boots will not reliably protect against snakebites, although they may offer some defense against smaller snakes like copperheads. The long fangs of large rattlers can easily penetrate ordinary boots.
Wearing loose, heavy pants over the boots may add an extra level of protection by creating an air gap between the snake's fangs and the skin above the boots.
Gift ideas for people who love the outdoors
For a photographer's spouse, it's not always easy to understand the details of buying camera gear for a loved one, but non-technical gear like protective boots and garments can be very important to the outdoors experience. Snake protection boots may be a perfect gift idea for those who spend time in snake habitats.
Hunter's and wildlife photographers might prefer a camouflage boot, like this LaCrosse boot with 18" uppers
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