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Old 11-04-2016, 07:23 AM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2016
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WinterBoots Advice

Hi all , this is also my first post,
My name is charlie I'm out here in westernmass been hiking for a couple of years now.

I'm hoping to get some advice for upgrading winter boots. I have 2 boots right now, and have been looking at an upgrade for this winter for awhile but, I would like to see what people have had luck with and not had luck with. I have 2 vasque boots 1 200g and1 400g insulation. Looking for something much more rigid( mountaineering boot? I've heard good things about them. Thank you for all the help you guys can offer.

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Old 11-04-2016, 09:22 AM   #2
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depends on what you're doing, what you're carrying, and what you plan on doing.

Personally, my hunting boots double as my winter backpacking boots. I have a pair of Hanwag Alaskans. They're uninsulated since my feet run hot. If I'm hiking and only sitting for brief periods, I don't need anything more than a good pair of wool socks and liners. If I'm ice fishing or otherwise not moving much I'll wear pac-boots.

I have no experience with mountaineering-specific boots and, for example, the need for crampons.
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Old 11-04-2016, 10:29 AM   #3
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hate vasque
had a pair come apart at the seems the first year, with about 50 miles on them,
got more use from $50 walmart boots
vasque didnt honor the warranty claiming amazon is not an authorized vendor, as resellers sell through amazon
am currently looking into keen boots,
have heard good things about them and some of their boots are made in US,
to help narrow it down, how many miles do you generally hike? , with how much gear?
in what conditions?
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Old 11-04-2016, 11:41 AM   #4
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Currently winter day hiking, but looking to expand into winter overnight..
I'll hike in all winter conditions. I typically do an avg of 20 miles, with winter pack essentials, including, snow shoes, ice axe,crampon, micro spike, and trekking poles.

Thank you to you both who have replied already, I appreciate it.

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Old 11-04-2016, 01:49 PM   #5
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Plastic boots are kind of overkill for 95% of on trail winter pursuits in the High Peaks, but they sure are warm. The removable liners sure are nice for overnight trips as well. It does take some getting used to wearing them also- if feels like you're wearing downhill ski boots due to how rigid they are.

If I'm just going to be snowshoeing, then I wear Pac boots (Sorels and the like). They also have removable liners so they're nice for camping. And they're very comfortable, but they also have pretty much zero ankle support so trying to use crampons with them is kind of sketchy.

Have you looked at Mickeys? They're military paratrooper boots that you can buy in military surplus stores. They're waterproof on the inside in addition to the outside, so you don't have to worry about the boots freezing in any condition.
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Old 11-04-2016, 02:24 PM   #6
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I'd stay away from Rocky's. I have owned 2 pair, gortex / 1000 mg thinsulate and both have leaked badly in the heel area. Read the reviews, my second pair was replacement for the first leakers and they leaked just as bad. I only got a replacement after 2 rounds of arguments and a letter to corporate. The store I bought them and corporate don't like to honor their warranty. I do like the pack boots with a spare set of liners to swap out when they get damp.
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Old 11-04-2016, 04:22 PM   #7
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I never was too enamored with insulated hiking boots.
Even if their frozen in the morning, uninsulated boots boots warmed up within a few miles.
Dry socks are paramount.
I forgot to say that it's a good idea to put your boots in the bottom of your sleeping bag to keep them warm.

Last edited by Hard Scrabble; 11-07-2016 at 05:26 PM..
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Old 11-04-2016, 06:08 PM   #8
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Fit is different for every individual; and how warm or cold your feet run is different too. (For example, I would never get away with starting the day in frozen boots; my feet would be frozen all day and never warm up.) I recommend trying lots of boots on at shops. For a purchase like this, you may have to break down and buy it "bricks and mortar."
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Old 11-05-2016, 12:52 PM   #9
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Thank you all to all of your help guys. I'll probably stop by the mountaineer when i head up for #39 and #40 next weekend. Happy Trails!
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Old 11-05-2016, 04:23 PM   #10
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I have been wearing Asolo 520's for a couple years now. Paired with good socks and a good set of gaiters I am perfectly content.


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Old 11-07-2016, 01:09 PM   #11
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winter Boots

I love my Asolo 520's
but they have limits. I wore them this weekend for the Santanoni range (three peaks 16+ miles) in snow,slop and mud. My feet were soaked after 13 hours. Temps were in the 30's all day and my feet were not cold but I don't plan on doing that on a colder day. I do have LaSportiva Nepal boots that are excellent but very heavy I usually only wear them if I am going to be in full mountaineering crampons for an extended period. I am looking at getting some Vasque Snowburban Ultradry I have lots of good reviews on them.

Also have Koflex Degree (plastic boots)but only wear them If I am hiking Mt Washington or similar.

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Old 11-07-2016, 06:43 PM   #12
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If you plan on just day trips, then anything that is comfortable works. If you plan on overnights, as you mentioned, then your boots have to address moisture and freezing.

You can wear hunting or hiking boots if you create a vapor barrier. Then, all you need is a second pair of socks. A double grocery-store plastic bag is a simple solution to creating that vapor barrier.

Another option is to have a boot that has a removable liner. I'd pack in a second liner for the morning.
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Old 11-07-2016, 07:18 PM   #13
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Not the best for ankle support, but along with warm socks my feet have never been cold or wet in these, even while icefishing with 4-6 inches of water/slush on the ice...
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Old 11-08-2016, 04:33 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Justin View Post
Not the best for ankle support, but along with warm socks my feet have never been cold or wet in these, even while icefishing with 4-6 inches of water/slush on the ice...
A few years back, LL Bean offered a felt lined boot that was a cold weather version of their Maine Hunting Boot.
Great for snow shoeing and general cold weather activities.
Not for hiking.
I always liked Danner boots for hiking, winter or summer.
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Old 11-15-2016, 08:27 PM   #15
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I too love my Muckboots for winter use. I got a half-size too big and carry two sets of pads for extra cushion and insulation that I can switch out if they get damp from sweat. With the right socks, I've never had cold or wet feet and have hiked close to ten miles in them comfortably. They work well in snowshoes too, I've even used gators above them when shoveling snow after a 28'' storm and not had snow get inside.

Here's what not to do: A friend was saying he couldn't join us on a winter trip to Pharaoh because his boots were shot, he didn't have much money for a good pair and he has poor circulation so his feet get cold. I shared a link of a discount supplier and told him to get a good pair of insulated boots. It was also going to be his first time using snowshoes so I told him to make sure he had them adjusted right at home in front of the fire and not on the trail in deep snow. Thinking more is better, he bought a pair of those "moon boots" which of course didn't come close to fitting in the snowshoes. Now he was determined to make the trip and on the way he stopped at Central Tractor and grabbed a pair of cheap winter boots off the shelf before spending the night at a hotel in Glens Falls. Tried again with the snowshoes in the hotel and realized he grabbed two right boots off the shelf. Third pair purchased the next morning worked like a charm.
Think he's still paying that credit card off.
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Old 11-15-2016, 09:16 PM   #16
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I've found these to be a decent compromise between warm "sitting around" boots and snowshoe/hikers. I have an earlier version, but I swear by Meindl.
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Old 11-16-2016, 04:09 AM   #17
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This is my first post/reply too
Life sometimes sucks. Fishing always helps.
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Old 11-20-2016, 04:50 AM   #18
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The ADK Mountaineering School mandates removable liners. I just replaced my -20 bag that I foolishly sold before checking prices on a new and after several years not having a suitable bag I'm almost ready to go.

Just need this is a timely thread.

I have "suitable" pac boots but I can't see myself hiking in them...snowshoeing yeah...hiking 3-5 miles...nope.

Any idea for a hiking style boot w/removable liner?

Merrell used to make some but they are discontinued/
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Old 11-20-2016, 07:01 PM   #19
All Downhill From Here
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My big problem with "hiking boots" is that inevitably the goretex doesn't go all the way around, so after a while, when the sole starts to peel away from the leather (or vice versa), water seeps in. I'm good in hikers down to about 10 degrees, water or no, provided I keep moving.

I have a pair of Sierra down booties for lounging around that are like sticking your feet in ovens.
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