backpacking/climbing boots

12:06 a.m. on May 24, 2002 (EDT)

I am a 19 year old from Kansas and next summer, I plan to go to mountaineering school in Colorado. I was wondering if there is such a thing as a boot that I can use on long- weekend backpacking trips as well as light glacier travel and low grade snow and ice, and the climbing of some 14'ers in the Rockies. I really did not want to buy different boots for the different activities due to money restraints. Although I am ready to dish out good money for comfy boots. I will be backpacking most of the time which is why this message is here and not in the climbing forum. Any info would be much appreciated, thanks for your time.

6:00 a.m. on May 24, 2002 (EDT)

a.k.a. Mike D, Mike Davis
Lasport Makalu

Sounds like the perfect conditions for the Makalu. Their step in crampon compatible. Stiff enough for low grade ice and you can still hike 15 miles without much problem. But, and this is a big one, they will take at least a year to break in. Until they're broken you can expect heel blisters. Most people just tape their heels for a while.

9:42 a.m. on May 24, 2002 (EDT)

a.k.a. Steve
Lasportiva Glacier

Hello Nick.
Looks like some of us like the Lasportiva's. I've tried the Makalu, but it was a bit stiff for me. I believe they have a full length steel shank, which gives hardly any flex to the boot. I went to the next level down which is the Glacier. It has a 3/4 length steel shank which gives you a killer flex right under the ball of the foot, but the rest of the boot is stiff and has amazing support. Lasportiva claims that this boot was designed for people who want a glacier travel boot, but probably just need a very supportive backpacking boot. They are relatively light too. I wore them to work every day for a week (5 days) before I took them on a steep 13 mile hike in the Adirondacks. 2 pairs of socks and no blister. If these boots ever break down, I'm getting another pair. Very sweet. Check out their website.

11:13 a.m. on May 24, 2002 (EDT)

Vasque Alpine GTX or Apex

See Campmor for Alpine GTX (Goretex). also lists Apex, the non-GTX version of Alpine. I don't recommend the Apex for snow travel, but probably for climbing and hiking in a hot/dry environment.
Do a "find" on this trailspace page and see previous threads on "Vasque". Vasque also make wide-size boots.
Sierra Trading Post sells discounted boots.

If you are going to COBS, they will give you a list of recommended boots, you may be able to email them to get a list in advance. Other schools may have a similar list.
Good luck :-)

11:28 a.m. on May 24, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest) >gear swap> climbing

Try although you'll have to ship it in from Canada.

11:05 a.m. on May 25, 2002 (EDT)
37 reviewer rep
749 forum posts
2nd the Makalus


Sounds like the perfect conditions for the Makalu

Agree. They take some breaking in like all real leather mountain boots, but once broken in they are quite awesome. I used to do rock climbing in this kind of boot and the narrow welt and vibram sole are very solid on tiny rock edges. I prefer to wear them in the high sierras where there's lots of exposure and tiny edges to climb on. I am trying to say that I think of these as rock climbing boots vs just backpacking boots. Get some slick step in crampons and you're redy to go.
Jim S

9:08 p.m. on June 9, 2002 (EDT)

Re: Vasque Alpine GTX or Apex

I've been using my Vasque Apexes here in the northeast all winter with good results. I used them for a weekend backpacking trip in December, some snowshoeing, and climbed Monadnock, Cardigan and Washington, all winter ascents, and Cardigan and Washington were semi technical--ice axes and crampons, including a little bit of solo frontpointing. They climb very well, but they probably wouldn't be excellent on vertical routes or true ice climbs, but very nice on steep gullies. If the goretex is the onlt difference between the Apex and Alpine, I wouldn't recommend paying extra for it, just take good care of the leather and you'll be fine. These boots aren't extremely warm, however, that's the only real drawback, but I've had them in 15 degree temps without too much difficulty. I'd say they're heavier than you'd want for summer backpacking, but hey, you'll survive.


3:41 a.m. on June 30, 2002 (EDT)

Danner Shasta

Feels narrow out of the box until you break them in. (approx 1-2weeks of everyday wear)

All leather w/gortex. They have Awesome ankle support w/heavy backpack loads. Does great for me on the "extra" rocky trails of Utah.

June 21, 2018
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