Materials: Nylon/leather with gore-tex liner
Use: day hiking and camping
Break-in Period: none
Weight: 2-3 lbs?
Price Paid: $89
This is the second pair L.L. Bean Gore-Tex day hikers I've owned - the sole began to separate from the upper on the first pair (low-cut) after a couple of years' use, so I returned them to Bean and got a new pair of regular ankle-high boots free of charge. L.L. Bean has an incredible 100% anytime return guarantee. I use my boots for light hiking in flat country in Maryland, but I imagine they would be great for short backpacking trips in the hills as well. Of course they are 100% waterproof, need (almost) no break-in, weigh very little, require (almost) no care, and are dirt cheap. L.L. Bean might lose $10,000 on me in shoes over my lifetime, but I'll more than make up for it with everything else I'll buy from them because of their quality and service.
Use: Recreational Hiking/Light Backpacking
Break-in Period: None
Weight: 2lbs 11 oz
Price Paid: $89
Been hiking in a pair of Hi-Tec Diablos for five years, but needed something more durable and for stream crossings.
Thought Gore-Tex would be the way to go since the majority of my hiking is 10 mile day hikes and some weekend packing. The Bean boots have met all of my criteria so far...kind of beefy, good ankle support, not too heavy and of course waterproof. At least $30 - $60 less than the nearest competitor and an iron clad guarantee.
First hike was great, even ordered a pair for my wife. Havn't done summer hiking in Georgia, so we'll see how breathable they are. Did great on a nasty uphiller in 80 degree weather.
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