User Review: Van Gorkom Men's Custom Hiking Boots
Use: heavy hiking
Break-in Period: wore daily for weeks before hiking
Weight: a few lbs
Price Paid: $3,000
Last year, I stumbled upon a list online of the year's top luxuries. Skimming through, I noticed Van Gorkom hiking boots. Having had difficulty finding comfortable hiking boots in the past, I considered purchasing them.
Unfortunately, they are $1,600 and take up to a year to be hand made and shipped. For $3,000, they would take a few months but after speaking to Mr. Van Gorkom directly, he assured me they could be ready for me in 6 weeks.
I decided to make the purchase, and was sent a packet containing instructions and materials. Measuring my feet, I was surprised to find that the sizes were a quarter inch different; this must account for my problem finding a comfortable pair of boots.
Measurements taken, I shipped the packet, and in 6 weeks my boots arrived: a lovely brown leather perfectly fitted to my feet. Upon taking my first hike in them, however, I was dismayed to find that they wore away the flesh where the boot bends below the toes quite considerably.
Mr. Van Gorkom had me strip the leather and make a 2nd crease to take pressure off of the first one. I then resealed the boot. This procedure works well for some months, then has to be repeated periodically (a process determined to be needed by the wearing away of my skin again). Other than that, they preform well and are certainly quite waterproof.
For $3,000, however, it is my belief that the shoe should not cause me distress, and I should not have to spend ample time every few weeks fixing them. As such, I am extremely dissatisfied with my purchase and consider it the most foolish purchase I have ever made. Live and learn.