Vietnam Jungle Boots, A Cold War Classic

“Goooooooood morning, Vietnam! Hey, this is not a test! This is rock and roll! Time to rock it from the Delta to the D.M.Z.!” – Good Morning Vietnam

Jungles and tropical climates have always presented a unique challenge to any military operations. The humidity and the hot weather found in these climates can make an all leather boot seem unbearable. Thus was born the first leather and canvas combination boots and than subsequently leather and nylon.

The Vietnam War lasted approximately from 1955 to 1975, spanning over 19 years of conflict. The war saw the issuing of hundreds of different types of uniforms and equipment, each year bringing a newer and improved version of the previous model. This consistent development of uniforms and equipment saw five different versions of boots used. The conflict started with American Advisors in the late 50s early 60s wearing a mixture of all leather black boots and a late war WWII Double Buckle Jungle boot.

Around 1965 the military adopted the classic version of the jungle boot for the conflict. The Vietnam Jungle boot is made from nylon and black leather with two small metal drainage/air holes on the inner side of the boot. After the war the boots would continue to be worn by the American military until the adoption of the digital camouflage Army Combat Uniform (ACU), and the nylon/leather desert boots in 2003.

An artist’s depiction of American Soldiers in Vietnam. 1965

Jungle boots being issued before Desert Storm, 1990

Jungle Boots, Vietnam 1960s

U.S. Military Jungle Boots

This nylon/leather combination allows the boots to breath and remain cool in hot weather. Atheistically it also depicts a sharp contrasts between the green nylon and the black leather, which designers have picked up on and used in some of their pieces.

Santoni Heath Boots $1250.00                              Visvim 7-Hole 73 Folk Boots $1288.00







Junya Watanabe Lace-Up Mid Boot $895.00

These boots are so popular that designer Michael Bastian for 2009’s Fashion Week had a majority of his models wear the boots for the show.


Jungle boots are here to stay, and the best thing about these boots is that you can easily find them in any Army/Navy Store and at a reasonable price in a variety of colors. I have included a few links below listing some online retailers, but your best bet is to check out your local Army/Navy Surplus store and seek some Vietnam Jungle Boots out yourself. Who knows, you may see something there that might inspire some of your own military fashion ensembles.

Sports Authority $119.99

Walmart $95.95

Army Surplus for Less $89.99

The Jungle boot served the American Military for over 40 years and the design continues to be used in a Desert varation in the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. A truly remarkable design that has been combat proven and now has taken on a new life as a military fashion item. From the wet jungles of Southest Asia to the deserts of Iraq and now the streets of New York, you can always depend on the American Jungle Boot.


This entry was posted in American Inspired, Boots, Vietnam War Inspired and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Vietnam Jungle Boots, A Cold War Classic

  1. Nick says:

    Well Oki Brand Boots puts out original. So if you have been looking for an original pair of “okinawa boots” and you can wear them-they have them. Also check ebay under jungle boots buy it now.

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