Snake chaps or snake boots?

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by cajun 48, Aug 6, 2009.

  1. cajun 48

    cajun 48 G&G Newbie

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    Will be Deer hunting in south carolina, oak groves, lots of under brush, some swamp even power lines. Still hunting and stalking with 12ga (slugs, sc wma law) and .45acp just in case! Which would be better chaps or boots? aj b:feedback:
  2. LiveToShoot

    LiveToShoot Suspended

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    We use snake chaps over top our favorite hunting/hiking boots...

    ...and that's okay for us, in diamondback rattlesnake country.

    Some say a big snake's fangs can pierce through hunting/hiking boots...

    ...and, the leather on our boots is pretty robust, so we'll hopefully not have to deal with a bite.
  3. nathangdad

    nathangdad G&G Newbie

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    I would go with very well protected boots

    as I feel that would be the greater probability of a bite.
  4. LiveToShoot

    LiveToShoot Suspended

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    The chaps we have only leave a small portion of our boots uncovered...

    ...and the chaps go up to top of calf.
  5. Metronome

    Metronome G&G Newbie

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    I would get snake waders, and perhaps a snake umbrella, I hear they come at you from the trees down there!

    I have almost stepped on snakes before, but I only ever wear snake gaiters, and those are mostly to keep the weeds out of my socks, they are often worse than any reptile.

    p.s. Also if you go with the chaps route, it helps to wear pants with them, from personal experience...
  6. Oxford

    Oxford G&G Enthusiast

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    DANA, a long time member here on G&G is the guru here also for boots. He had a collection of boots bigger than my gun collection. Unfortunately, he had to get rid of them and gave them to a lot of members of g&g, me being one. I love those boots. Wear them every year to the American Royal Rodeo here in Kansas City, too.
  7. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    cajun 48, I'm in the Beaufort area. For about twenty years, I hunted the Westvaco lands just north of the Edisto River and the ACE Basin. I've used chaps and I've used all leather Chippewa snake boots. I think the boots are made only of ballistic nylon these days, but I heard they are lighter and just as good. Both are heavy when they get wet. Truthfully, I used the chaps more for wading through the thickest briar fields while driving hounds during deer hunting drives. They were more for protection from the thick briars than for snakes which usually moved out before our drive got to their location. There is a trade off too. Boots are usually not as hot as chaps which cover your legs from ankles to crotch. However chaps can be taken off back at camp. Over the years, I just wore my snake boots, some old Dickey cotton khakis, long sleeve crew neck pull over shirt for protection against mosquitoes, and a visored khaki ball cap. The only other items beside my 12 gauge and 10-12 rounds of 00 Buck was my Ka-Bar folding knife, ~4 feet of rope to catch dogs or drag a deer, water flask, and hunting license. Back in my truck, I kept an old Army rain coat, brimmed rain hat, the chaps that I mentioned earlier, spare shirt and socks, and lunch. Ultimately, I did start carrying a .45 1911 when carrying sidearms became common, especially if I chose to spend the night at our club house.
  8. chesterwin

    chesterwin Super Moderator

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    cajun 48. Here in North Carolina we sometimes don a pair of chaps when hunting creek and swamp bottomland. They also get considered when driving cutovers when the weather is warm. Don't believe they're total protection though. I once saw a video of a fellow, I think bird hunting in Texas, that got nailed by a rattler just above the chaps on his inner thigh.
  9. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    Agreed. You never really know just where they'll strike. I guess it depends on their size and location in relation to their victims. I'm not as concerned about the rattlers and copperheads as I am the water moccasins that like to lurk on canal banks or the creeks and canals that I have to cross. The first two vipers will usually move on or give some warning as in the case of rattlers, but those damn cotton mouths will go out of their way to attack. Your best defense is to stay alert and watch where you're going. Southern hunters along the southeast coast and Gulf coast with their feet on the ground tend to have their external senses set at long range instead of what is right next to them. Learn to stop and take note of your surroundings. I have never been attacked by a snake, nor do I know of anybody on our club who was in over twenty years or more, probably because of a healthy fear of what is down in those areas.
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2009
  10. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    cajun 48, I should have mentioned too that a SC Department of Natural Resources officer once told us that almost all of the snake bite victims in our area were due to hunters or timber workers who thought that they had killed a snake and were bitten by reflex action when they tried to skin the snake. The only safe vipers are dead vipers in the bellies of vultures and hogs. No snake skin is worth getting bitten over.
  11. Iron_Colonel

    Iron_Colonel G&G Newbie

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    I have seen advertised in the Sportsmansguide before heavy leather gaiters that look like they may fend off a snake going for the ankle or 6 or 8 inches higher.
  12. deadzero

    deadzero G&G Enthusiast Forum Contributor

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    I use to think snake boots were good enough till I saw a rattler as big around as my forearm and was over 4 feet. since then I started wearing chaps. I always carry a big bore revolver (45LC Annaconda) loaded with snake shot (and a handful of extra rounds in speedloaders- 1 extra for snakes and 1 with HP's) when out in warmer weather.
  13. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    I think it is important here not to get over worked about the idea of snakes under every bush or falling out of trees. We'll all end up indoors during hunting season looking for every reason not to go outdoors. Snakes are indeed a reality, but the truth is that snake bites are rare and usually avoidable. Remember, most vipers' first reaction to your presence is their fear of you and their rapid departure from the area. The only exception is the territorial water moccasin and their areas of operation are the water and canal banks.

    As far as boots vs. chaps; I would wear the boots, but keep the chaps in the truck for heavy briar areas. Believe me, when it is 110 degrees and 100% humidity in there, you don’t need to get over heated by being armored down in heavy protective clothing. Heat and mosquitoes have proven to be a hunter’s biggest nemesis in swamps, marshes and timberlands.
  14. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    These are not mine, but this is about as rough as they got before my wife cleaned them up and made them presentable again. They protected me against vines and briars, and possibly snakes. Mine are actually newer and a little thicker in build. [​IMG]
  15. 38 Special

    38 Special G&G Newbie

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    Speaking from experience(got hit by a rattler in the southwest desert on a september dove hunt 25 years ago) boots and some knee high leggings provide me with some good insurance.I used a cutter snake bite kit and drove to wickenburg hospitial. They say now don't use a kit and I don't know if they even sell them anymore.I still have the replacement kit cutter sent me when I used mine. I still got sick and my leg hurt like hell,and learned a valuable lesson cover your legs! Good hunting. 38
  16. chesterwin

    chesterwin Super Moderator

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    38 Special. When hunting, I still carry one of those cutter kits sometimes and at least a sharp pocket knife always. SightandSqeeze is absolutely right about a cottonmouth. They can be extremely aggressive, especially so, when they are mating and just before the arrival of the first cold weather of the season when they are looking for a den.
  17. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    My wife who is a nurse and my physician father-in-law claim the cutter kit is effective, but only if used properly. The idea is to open the wound enough to draw out as much poison as possible -- as "fast" as possible. Then the wound is to be disinfected, compress and bandage applied, and medical care sought before the possibility of shock sets in. The problem is that the same kit that can save a victim can also make matters worse by working in reverse if the suction bulb is squeezed "after" being placed on the wound; that according to medical professionals who observed the results. A panicked victim might not be in the frame of mind to remember the proper steps in using the kit.

    38 special- You are probably an example of someone who managed to stay calm and who took the time to think ahead about emergency procedures. Apparently, there is a sizable percentage of sportsmen out there that don't, and they may have influenced the change in recommended procedure involving snake bites.

    As far as the boots vs. chaps issue, I would still go with a good pair of Chippewa or Red Wing boots which are popular in my area. Chaps are good for use in areas where there are briars and vines and in milder weather, but to wear them “both” is more than most can handle in 100+ degree temperatures and 100% humidity. That is when heat exhaustion and heat stroke become a greater danger and greater possibility than snake bites. Even the boots can get overbearing after a while so they come off and an old pair of unlaced 8” jungle boots go on after I get back to camp or during the drive home.
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2009
  18. cajun 48

    cajun 48 G&G Newbie

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    Thanks for all the input! Going to go with a pair of Dan's chaps. The kicker was a gentleman who shops with me told me and showed the scar from a hit mid hamstring, plus a friend of his got hit about 3 inches above the knee. Both hunt the same WMA's (Hellhole and Santee) ssooooo. . . aj b
  19. jford56

    jford56 G&G Newbie

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    If you talk with foresters and DNR people about snakes - Berkley and Dorchester counties are the worst in the SC. I hunt in Dorchester. I don't go in the woods without boots or chaps. Both work fine. It's very rare to hear of anyone getting hit above the top of either. One thing to remember. Snake boots are hot - snake chaps are waaaaaay hotter. If I did a lot of bird hunting and deer stalking, where you walk a lot and not watching the ground as much I would go for chaps. They are great for briars too. Just going to a deer stand, dragging out a deer, I would go boots or leggins.
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2009
  20. SightNSqueeze

    SightNSqueeze G&G Newbie

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    +1 ^^ I hunted the swamps and timberlands not far from where you described for over 20 years. I almost always wore my all leather Chippewa snake boots but I also kept my chaps in the truck when it was my turn to help move hounds through heavy cover during a drive. Both are hot, but the chaps are indeed “much” hotter. It’s not a bad idea to have both, but wearing both is just too unbearable for me. Even the Chippewa’s would come off of my feet fast when I got back to camp. That’s why I always kept 2-3 pairs of dry socks, and my cool, comfortable, well worn pair of jungle boots in the truck.
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