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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2014 4:27 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 2:31 pm
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Real Name: Rory Bouffe
Okay I'm not really going in slippers. And also, this is more of a hiking question than a climbing one, so if I'm in the wrong place can you tell me where to go? Uhhh...thanks 8)
So when I was a kid I changed from hiking in traditional hiking boots to hiking in running takkies/trail shoes, mainly because of the leg-threatening death blisters which haunted me from hour one on every hike (and yes I did wear them in), but also because of the weight. I've never looked back. But now I'm going to Everest Base Camp and, apart from not wanting to be the subject of Sherpa personal jokes, I think it's time for something a little robust.
I've been looking at three boots. 1. Hi-tec V-LITE SPHIKE MID WP (cause they look like happiness for my feet). 2. Hi-Tec ALTITUDE IV WP (suggested by someone who's opinion I trust). 3. Merrell Mattertal GTX (been offered a phenomenal price and they look mental cool!)
My soul is sad, but I've pretty much decided against the SPHIKES because they can't handle cold weather/snow (am I wrong?). Does anyone know enough about the other shoes to advize? Here are my criteria/thoughts (besides the obvious ones):
1. I won't be using crampons so I don't think that is a factor (but should it be for future?).
2. Lightness is obviously very NB. How do these fare and are there better options for this.
3. Budget - both of these boots fit my budget, don't want to spend much more.
4. Hi-Tec are rumoured to be very blistery. True?

Any advice would be much appreciated!


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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2014 5:21 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2009 10:29 pm
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Personally I would not consider using Hi-tec boots at all. Personal experience with them has been very bad in terms of durability. I have shredded a few pairs of Hi-Tec altitudes and V-lites, some of them in record time. Assuming that you will be using the boots for future hikes as well I would recommend the Merrell boots from those you listed.The reason a lot of people find Hi-tec boots to be blistery is because they tend to not be very rigid thus allowing quite a lot of movement of your feet inside the boot.
When buying a hiking boot weight can be an issue but I have found that I adjust to slightly heavier boots quite quickly.

In my opinion, the 3 most important factors for hiking boots are as follows:
1)Shape - does the shape of the boot fit your foot. Do you have wide or narrow feet?
2)Does the boot have a proper toe box - This determines if you will be shredding and blistering your toes on long hikes. If you shove your foot forward in the boot when it is properly laced up your toes should not be touching the front of the boot even if you kick something. In this regard I have found Hi-tec to be quite poor for my feet.
3)How are the seams on the outside orientated and protected - This determines how quickly abrasion from rocks/plants on the boot will cause seams to fail and the boot to fall apart. Boots like the La Sportiva Tibet which has a single piece of leather with only one well protected seam at the back is a good example of something that will last.

The first two factors are subjective to the shape of your feet though.

When you do long hikes and carry heavy packs I would consider a fairly rigid boot due to the added support and stability it provides. Some people like doing the same in normal approach shoes so it is a matter of personal preference I suppose.


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PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2014 5:52 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 2:31 pm
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Real Name: Rory Bouffe
Thanks for the in depth reply Hendriks! Appreciate your time to answer.
What do you think about that hiking saying though, "1kg on your feet equals 3kgs on your back"?
How true is this? The trek I'll be doing is something like 15 days which, I'm sure means you want as light a boot as possible.


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 8:00 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2008 1:21 pm
Posts: 277
Hi

The previous advice was good - Hitech's are not made to last or for any form of real hiking (I have seen many destroyed in the first week of real use). I agree that one gets used to a heavy boot fast, but the current trend is towards lighter boots - often at the expense of durability.

So you need to realise that you will choose between light weight or long life most of the time (just like waterproof jackets).

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Really, its not that bad...I think it's my shoes...


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 8:35 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2006 12:32 pm
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Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Willem Boshoff
my view is go for durability & quality. saw trekkers in patagonia & corsica stranded halfway on 10 & 15-day hikes because their shoes went bust. a friend's brand new light weight boots fell apart after a heavy 10-day hike. in contrast my full leather la sportiva tibets have been going for 8-years and have literally done 1000s of kms. time for a resole now but otherwise they're good for a few more years - unbeatable value.

full leather boots are heavier and you will feel their weight.the 1:3 ratio is probably not true for a reasonably weighted shoe. you will also enjoy more ankle support & protection (scree fields have claimed many a victim on low-cuts or light boots).

blisters is often a sock issue. you can buy the best shoes but if you wear low quality socks you will have problems. i use the bridgedale trekking socks and never had a blister, ever. wool blend is the shizz. they lasted as long as my boots and hand-wash easily.

http://www.trailspace.com/gear/la-sportiva/tibet-gtx/

http://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/ ... boots.html


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 9:18 am 
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Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 2:31 pm
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Real Name: Rory Bouffe
Sheez, thanks guys!
Do any of you know the Merrel Mattertal GTX? Looks like the best option. Has a Vibram sole which I'm guessing will mean light weight but maybe not durability?
Also, where can I get wool inner socks (as mentioned by Mokganjetsi)? I've looked but can't seem to find them at all the typical outdoor stores :(


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 9:42 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2006 12:32 pm
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Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Willem Boshoff
Vibram is simply the rubber - should be durable & high quality. Most boots these days use Vibram rubber.

I do not use inner socks (have friends that swear by it though) - simply wool socks.
These in fact: http://www.capeunionmart.co.za/bridgeda ... -trekker-s

Try high quality socks on their own and see how it goes.....


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 10:35 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2011 5:32 pm
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Real Name: Des Porter
Depending on where you are you could do worse than go to the hiking/climbing shop in Glenwood centre in Durban. I went there before my one month trek and got fitted with a pair of La sportivas. First up i went through various makes and on each one he questioned me about fit, tightness, comfort etc trying to match me to manufacturer, i.e. whose boots best fit my feet. Then we went through different boots for the same manufacturer and comparing sizes until i got the right pair, for me. I walked them in local hikes and a few Drakensberg trips and had not a single problem on the trek. Cost a bit but well worth it. So go to a specialist and allow enough time for the fitting.


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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2014 6:56 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 09, 2014 4:00 pm
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Real Name: Shaun Kroukamp
Well it all depends when you are going and what you are planning to do on your trip.
My wife and I spent a month in Annapurna region two year ago in winter (20 Dec to 18 Jan).
The paths are well established and marked. So it you are going Nov to early Dec,
I would suggest to stick with approach shoe. They are lighter and more comfortable, and you
do not need hiking boots for the Base camp hike.

The later in the season you go, the higher your changes of getting some snow.
We had one snow fall on the ( 7Jan ) and spent the next 5 days in knee deep
snow. So if you are planning to go in Jan, get a decent pair of leather boot and
preferably with Gore-Tex. I've had my La Sportiva Tibets for 15 years, and
they are still going strong.

I've attached two photo's taken 2 days apart at just over 4200m, so you can see
the quality of the paths, and what a nice snow fall can do.

Hope you enjoy your trip


Attachments:
Nepal.jpg
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Nepal 1.jpg
Nepal 1.jpg [ 148.09 KiB | Viewed 1795 times ]
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PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 10:02 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2005 3:49 pm
Posts: 555
Location: Waterval Boven
What is your shoe size? I have some nice mountain boots for sale if you want a "cheaper" option - I bought them here second hand and they were the wrong size.

Cheers

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Roc 'n Rope Adventures
Waterval Boven
013 257 0363
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PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2008 1:21 pm
Posts: 277
Vibram is the sole type & NOT just the rubber! Most good boots have a Vibram sole (with the exception of a few such as Salomon).

The previous writer makes a good point, but if you are carrying a load & planning for the worst then you will be better off with a waterproof boot. You can most likely get goretex lined shoes, which will give the waterproofing but will be costly and then if you step in snow the moisture will go in at the top.

If you are concerned your tootsies will get cold then you will need a boot with a thermal lining. My point is this- determine what you need & then go to professionals in your area. There you should do as the guy above said - try on multiples until you find a boot that fits properly. Then look at it's spec - it it has goretex and a Vibram sole then you are ok. Ask how durable it is if this counts for you. Then ask how warm it is to see if it has a special lining. Then ask for the price. That is the right way to get a pair of boots that work.

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Really, its not that bad...I think it's my shoes...


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PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 4:48 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 1:45 pm
Posts: 601
Location: Aberdeen, Scotland
Never underestimate the usefulness of gaiters for keeping feet dry in wet conditions. Weight nearly nothing in comparison to a boot where your feet might well get wet anyway. Ask anyone who has travelled any distance on foot in Scotland :)


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PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2014 8:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2006 4:28 pm
Posts: 63
For comfort and blister less hiking from day 1 I would recommend A Solo boots.

http://www.asolo.com/prodotti/hiking/ra ... 10-00.html

Slightly more expensive but super durable and have that approach shoe feel to them. I have a pair I am still trying to destroy 10 years later. Paying R500 more for a pair of boots will actually save double or triple that in the long run.


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PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 12:43 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2006 10:16 am
Posts: 96
Merrell and Hi-Tec are brands exclusive to Cape Union Mart.
Many overseas brands aren't available in SA.
The three brands that are available from shops with knowledgeable staff are La Sportiva, Boreal and Zamberlan. (Asolo isn't).

If you are in Cape Town, come to our shop and try on a few pairs. A good fit is the most important part (would love to sell you a pair online, but wouldn't dare do that with hiking boots). If you are in Jozi go to Drifters.

boots we have:
https://www.mountainmailorder.co.za/index.php?_a=viewCat&catId=19

hiking socks:
https://www.mountainmailorder.co.za/index.php?_a=viewProd&productId=2126

a really good review of boots to read (unfortunately most of the brands listed aren't available in SA).
http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/Hiking-Boots-Reviews

- Robert
CityROCK/Mountain Mail Order


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PostPosted: Mon May 19, 2014 2:59 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:52 pm
Posts: 10
Real Name: Pieter Nel
ShaunK wrote:
So it you are going Nov to early Dec,
I would suggest to stick with approach shoe. They are lighter and more comfortable, and you
do not need hiking boots for the Base camp hike.


What ShaunK said. On our expedition (early November- early December) I walked in light La Sportiva Gore-tex hiking boots (similar to what is now the La Sportiva Xplorer) all the way to our basecamps (Island Peak, Lobuche East, Parcharmo - similar altitude to Everest BC and close by). Purely because that's what I owned at the time and used as approach shoes for climbing and light hiking in the Western Cape. Many walked in takkies/approach shoes. Only used the La Sportiva Nepal Evos for summit attempts. I still prefer a little bit of ankle support of a boot though, but certainly wouldn't go full leather for a BC trip. Go for comfort first.

The paths all look like ShaunK's top pic. (ie, it's a highway). The Tibet is a great shoe, but will be unnecessarily tough on your feet for this trip.


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PostPosted: Mon May 19, 2014 8:57 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2008 1:21 pm
Posts: 277
I am not sure I agree with what you imply in that last post. There is nothing particularly harsh, tough or difficult about wearing full leather boots. They may be slightly heavier but if they are correctly fitted they should be comfortable all day long. Sure approach shoes have their place but the reality is that if you are choosing one pair of footwear for everything then a boot is not a mission -as you imply.

Certainly some people wear Tibet's for everything - even hiking in to the local crag. As you say it gives good ankle support, which some people need everywhere they go, but you don't hear people moaning about the torture their boots are putting them through!

So my point is - sure go for an approach shoe if that is what suits you - but don't imply it's a big mission to wear a pair of boots when they are the logical allround choice - that is just plain misleading...

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Really, its not that bad...I think it's my shoes...


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