Kit Up has learned that the Army has been testing three versions of a new Mountain Combat Boot that builds on the current Danner Talus Combat Hiker issued to troops in Afghanistan (PEO clarified that the Combat Hiker is similar to the Talus, but is made in the US whereas the Talus is made in Asia).
According to PEO Soldier, the new boot is very similar to the current kicks in that it's between 7.5 and 9 inches tall, waterproof, has both leather and abrasion-resistant fabric construction and is designed "for use in rugged, mountainous terrain."
Each also incorporates a durable speed lacing system that incorporates a “lock-lace” to help secure the laces and to allow the user to independently secure the forefoot prior to securing the upper.Kit Up has obtained exclusive pictures of the new boot candidates made by Danner, Wellco and Belleville. Each looks pretty sweet and are tan in color (PEO corrected me and said they're 'olive' though they look tan in the picture) to better comply with uniform regs. We're told the Army is in the final "field evaluation" phase of the Soldier Enhancement Program-initiated Mountain Combat Boot search.
PS -- I owe a huge debt of gratitude to "Mountain Trooper" who tipped me off to this story back in early March when we wrote about the current Mt. Combat Boot. In his comment, MtTrooper said "I was told by a source that a new model is coming out soon and meets the army standards so they can be worn in garrison prior to deployments. They are 8 inches high and the color is tan. I wish they would have issued more of these boots and it would have saved soldiers money from civilian purchases."
I followed up with PEO Soldier that day (March 9) and asked about this initiative and was told by my source they hadn't heard anything. I continued to query on this for two months with no definitive response. It now turns out we were right and should have been able to confirm this story much earlier.
So thanks to our helpful readers. And I just want to encourage readers to submit tips like this and to know we'll run them to the ground until we get the gouge.