Boot Advice for North Cascades

4:22 p.m. on April 27, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Going to Mt. Challenger is September. This will involve a long rugged 3 day approach. It doesn't make any sense to haul my plastics for just summit day, so I need a boot I can do the approach hike in. I have a pair of LaSportiva Makalus that I have never been really comfortable in. I've spent the last few years with footbeds, pads etc., and they still give me blisters unless I use tape and moleskin on my heels. Thus, I'm ready sell them and try something else.
A buddy has recommended Asolo 650s as being very comfortable to hike in, and they will take a newmatic(?) crampon. Anyone have any experience with them?

In the store today, I tried on a pair of LaSportiva Lhotses. I figured they would just be an even stiffer version of the Makalus, but to my surprise, they felt fairly comfortable right out of the box. However, there is no getting around the fact that this is a big, heavy, fairly technical (to me) boot. So, question: would I be nuts to take this boot on a trip involving a total of 5 days of hiking?

3:29 p.m. on May 1, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Jim:

Great choice on Challenger! The hiking vs climbing boot is tough question that ultimately only you can answer.
Consider the following:

1) If the boots from one boot maker give you trouble, it is very likely that another model from the same maker will do the same. La Sportiva may base their lasts on a foot structure that is very different from your own.

2) I wouldn't put any faith in some else's experience with a particular brand for reasons similar to the above. (I learned this the hard way.) E.g. I know several people with Maks, some love 'em some hate 'em. Same boot, different feet. This phenomenon is well documented in gear reviews on this site and others.

3) Plastics are overkill for N. Cascades Sept. You need a general leather mntrg boot and the opportunity to put lots of miles on it before Sept.

4) Determine what kind of foot you have - arch type (hi, med, lo), volume (hi, med, lo) and do your homework to find those makes that offer a last that meets your criteria.
You want sturdy boot with a slight amount of flex in it. For what it's worth, I am very happy with my 4 yr old Salomon SM9's currently known as "rock & snow" I think(see item 2.)

5) Avoid large chain stores like REI. The employees generally don't know shucks from shinola. It's worth it to spend a few more $ at an independent or specialty mtnrg shop with salespeople who are factory certified. Might be tough in Atlanta. Bill S knows a guy who is considered the best boot fitter in the USA. I can't remember his name. A trip to see this guy might be worth your while. Boots live for years, 5 days of hiking on sore feet may feel like years.

6)If in doubt, use lighter boots for the hiking and lug your big boots in your pack. You'll carry alot more, which punish your feet also, but it may be worth it in terms of net suffering. Having ltwt boots for camp is luxurious.
I like to wear my mtnrg boots without socks so it feels like a different pair of boots or take down booties for snow camp.

Good luck,

hanimanimal

9:19 a.m. on May 2, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Thanks, Etc.

Thanks for the good advice. I'm currently looking at Scarpa M3 and M4, La Sportiva Glacier and Salomon SM8. I will take approach shoes as a last resort, but I'm trying to avoid the weight and hassle.

 

Quote:

Jim:

Great choice on Challenger! The hiking vs climbing boot is tough question that ultimately only you can answer.
Consider the following:

1) If the boots from one boot maker give you trouble, it is very likely that another model from the same maker will do the same. La Sportiva may base their lasts on a foot structure that is very different from your own.

2) I wouldn't put any faith in some else's experience with a particular brand for reasons similar to the above. (I learned this the hard way.) E.g. I know several people with Maks, some love 'em some hate 'em. Same boot, different feet. This phenomenon is well documented in gear reviews on this site and others.

3) Plastics are overkill for N. Cascades Sept. You need a general leather mntrg boot and the opportunity to put lots of miles on it before Sept.

4) Determine what kind of foot you have - arch type (hi, med, lo), volume (hi, med, lo) and do your homework to find those makes that offer a last that meets your criteria.
You want sturdy boot with a slight amount of flex in it. For what it's worth, I am very happy with my 4 yr old Salomon SM9's currently known as "rock & snow" I think(see item 2.)

5) Avoid large chain stores like REI. The employees generally don't know shucks from shinola. It's worth it to spend a few more $ at an independent or specialty mtnrg shop with salespeople who are factory certified. Might be tough in Atlanta. Bill S knows a guy who is considered the best boot fitter in the USA. I can't remember his name. A trip to see this guy might be worth your while. Boots live for years, 5 days of hiking on sore feet may feel like years.

6)If in doubt, use lighter boots for the hiking and lug your big boots in your pack. You'll carry alot more, which punish your feet also, but it may be worth it in terms of net suffering. Having ltwt boots for camp is luxurious.
I like to wear my mtnrg boots without socks so it feels like a different pair of boots or take down booties for snow camp.

Good luck,

hanimanimal

3:09 a.m. on May 26, 2002 (EDT)
(Guest)

Try also Boreal Super Latok and Technica

These will fit better if you have wider, flatter feet.

M

Quote:

Thanks for the good advice. I'm currently looking at Scarpa M3 and M4, La Sportiva Glacier and Salomon SM8. I will take approach shoes as a last resort, but I'm trying to avoid the weight and hassle.


Quote:

Quote:

Jim:

Great choice on Challenger! The hiking vs climbing boot is tough question that ultimately only you can answer.
Consider the following:

1) If the boots from one boot maker give you trouble, it is very likely that another model from the same maker will do the same. La Sportiva may base their lasts on a foot structure that is very different from your own.

2) I wouldn't put any faith in some else's experience with a particular brand for reasons similar to the above. (I learned this the hard way.) E.g. I know several people with Maks, some love 'em some hate 'em. Same boot, different feet. This phenomenon is well documented in gear reviews on this site and others.

3) Plastics are overkill for N. Cascades Sept. You need a general leather mntrg boot and the opportunity to put lots of miles on it before Sept.

4) Determine what kind of foot you have - arch type (hi, med, lo), volume (hi, med, lo) and do your homework to find those makes that offer a last that meets your criteria.
You want sturdy boot with a slight amount of flex in it. For what it's worth, I am very happy with my 4 yr old Salomon SM9's currently known as "rock & snow" I think(see item 2.)

5) Avoid large chain stores like REI. The employees generally don't know shucks from shinola. It's worth it to spend a few more $ at an independent or specialty mtnrg shop with salespeople who are factory certified. Might be tough in Atlanta. Bill S knows a guy who is considered the best boot fitter in the USA. I can't remember his name. A trip to see this guy might be worth your while. Boots live for years, 5 days of hiking on sore feet may feel like years.

6)If in doubt, use lighter boots for the hiking and lug your big boots in your pack. You'll carry alot more, which punish your feet also, but it may be worth it in terms of net suffering. Having ltwt boots for camp is luxurious.
I like to wear my mtnrg boots without socks so it feels like a different pair of boots or take down booties for snow camp.

Good luck,

hanimanimal

July 25, 2014
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