Day twenty-four of the project continues and still have not tired of wearing the same iconic 501, the same white t-shirt, the same western snap, the same pair of men’s boots.
Packer boots earned their stripes while on the Western frontier, as settlers reached the Rockies while journeying from homes in the East.
Wily men were responsible for the safe and quick transportation of pioneering families once their buggies reached the massive road block that is the Rocky Mountains. Nicknamed ‘Packers’ by the pioneers, these men unpacked family belongings from the buggies and hoisted all the god-knows-what to the backs of mule-ish horses. They didn’t stop until the whole rag-tag parade had been led to flatter terrain.
The Packer boot, with it’s pointed toe and stacked heel, was perfect for sitting in stirrups while a tight lace-up design allowed for ankle stability to more adeptly scramble over craggy rocks. Leather kiltie kept dirt and debris from hitching a ride.
To me, that personally sounds like hell, but a willingness to go through it all was required then. With no Instagram to tell folks the West was cool, enterprising travelers just guessed, hoping there would be something better, wilder and more robust on the other side of that mountain pass.
Haven’t lead the Donner Party out to pasture in these, but they’ll see more miles yet. Onwards!