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Thread: Help Finding New Boots

  1. #1
    Senior Member dave.m's Avatar
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    Help Finding New Boots

    My boots are dying and help identifying candidates for a replacement would be much appreciated. It's super sad that the nearest EMS to me is nearly 50 miles away - something that still stuns me. And it's been over 10 years since I looked at boots in earnest.

    Before I list the must-haves and nice-to-haves, some background... Years of cycling combined with flat feet have left my feet something of a mess. I also wear size 14 boots and have found that designs that are very stiff for people with size 9 boots are flimsy slippers when made in size 13 or 14. Even day hikes in the Whites while wearing light hikers will leave my feet wrecked for days. I really need footwear that is very stiff under foot. Most mid height hikers I've seen fail miserably on this point.

    The purpose of this boot is for 3-season hiking in the Whites with either day hike or light, sub-30 lb backpacking loads. These boots will fill the slot in my boot line up just below my all leather Fabiano Rias (traditional full leather Norwegian welt boots).

    Last comment... the boots that are dying are a pair of EMS Zealand boots, which were make-ups by Zamberlan (iirc). They are incredibly stiff under foot and have worked well but are coming apart. I'm looking into resoling them but am not optimistic.

    MUST HAVE FEATURES
    - Available in US 14. This rules out a bunch of options right off the bat.
    - Stiff midsole. Stiff enough to prevent rock pressure from punching through.
    - Approx 3 lb (in size 9) weight. If I can't save weight, I can just use my Fabianos.

    NICE TO HAVE FEATURES
    - Mid height at the ankle. I could go higher or lower.
    - Non-waterproof. I prefer either leather or fabric shoes but accept I'm one of 7 people on the planet who think so.

    Thanks for any and all suggestions...
    Last edited by dave.m; 07-14-2018 at 09:06 AM.
    - Dave (a.k.a. pinnah)

    " Power corrupts. Absolute power is kind of neat." - John Lehman, US Secretary of the Navy 1981-1987

  2. #2
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    You might consider LL Bean's Cresta. 1-piece leather upper (or leather and fabric). My all-leather size-9s weigh in at 3lb-3oz. Decent support both underfoot and ankle without being noticeably restrictive--just walked on lots of rocks last weekend (Mt Garfield Trail) and never felt a one. They fit me well (of course, YMMV). The only downside is a Gore-Tex lining with the net effect that my feet are always damp by the end of the day. (So there are 8 of us left.) Other than that I like them...

    They also come 14's.

    https://www.llbean.com/llb/search/?f...ta+boot&init=1

    Doug
    Last edited by DougPaul; 07-14-2018 at 10:38 AM.

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  4. #4
    Senior Member dave.m's Avatar
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    Doug, 7. I had already counted you.

    Quote Originally Posted by jfb View Post
    JFP, interesting find. Thanks. Any idea how A7 flex translates to the Whites?
    - Dave (a.k.a. pinnah)

    " Power corrupts. Absolute power is kind of neat." - John Lehman, US Secretary of the Navy 1981-1987

  5. #5
    Senior Member Nessmuk's Avatar
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    If you are any where near central NH, then you might want to pay a visit to Limmer Boots.
    http://www.limmerboot.com/
    They are long known for making boots customized to any feet, but they have in recent years made standard sizes off the shelf as well.
    I have had 2 pairs of standard size Limmers (the lightweight model) and they are the best fitting most comfortable sturdy boots I have ever owned. Completely waterproof and easy to care for.
    Last edited by Nessmuk; 07-14-2018 at 03:46 PM.
    "She's all my fancy painted her, she's lovely, she is light. She waltzes on the waves by day and rests with me at night." - Nessmuk, Forest and Stream, July 21, 1880 [of the Wood Drake Canoe built for him by Rushton]

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave.m View Post
    JFP, interesting find. Thanks. Any idea how A7 flex translates to the Whites?
    No idea what A7 means. My Mammut Ridge Low shoes have pretty stiff soles for a hiking shoe. They're good for walking on the tops of pointy things.

  7. #7
    Moderator bikehikeskifish's Avatar
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    My starter hiking boots were Crestas in size 13. They were great, sturdy, reliable, but just too heavy for me. I would recommend them, however. I've become a trail runner fan at this point...

    Tim
    Bike, Hike, Ski, Sleep. Eat, Fish, Repeat.

  8. #8
    Senior Member dave.m's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfb View Post
    No idea what A7 means. My Mammut Ridge Low shoes have pretty stiff soles for a hiking shoe. They're good for walking on the tops of pointy things.
    JFB, your description is super helpful. Thanks a ton.

    A7 flex is how the Mammut site describes the stiffness. Your testimony is much more helpful.
    - Dave (a.k.a. pinnah)

    " Power corrupts. Absolute power is kind of neat." - John Lehman, US Secretary of the Navy 1981-1987

  9. #9
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave.m View Post
    Doug, 7. I had already counted you.
    Great minds run in the same gutters...

    Doug

  10. #10
    Senior Member bignslow's Avatar
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    If you want stiff; these are for you:
    https://www.scarpa.com/kinesis-pro-gtx

    These might as well have been lightweight mountaineering boots.

    I bought these about the same time as I took the plunge into trail runners. I sold these, and I haven't looked back since.

    They have up to size 15 on Amazon (which has free returns on many of their footwear choices).
    Warning: BigNSlow may not actually be all that slow

  11. #11
    Senior Member CaptCaper's Avatar
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    Being I wear size 14 and have the aweful time of finding sneakers or any other shoes that fit my right foot that is built a little different then the left. Back a few years ago I had Crestas.. but found them not great so I embarked on a quest. Tried many boots... one day at REI I put on a pair of Asolo TPS 520's.. So much better then the Crestas....right off the bat I felt the comfort. Since then I have many hundreds of miles on them.. I have 3 pairs now. One I leave in the camper and another is the first pair I wore the sole down some from many miles that I use around the woods at home. The latest pair is my serious hikers.

    The Asolos can be resoled with OEM soles from Asolo and I had a pair of Fugitives done which came out awesome. The TPS 520's are the best between the two by far.

  12. #12
    Senior Member cushetunk's Avatar
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    I can’t vouch for how they work in large sizes, but I also really like those Asolo boots. Actually I prefer the Asolo 535, which is the same as the 520 except... wait for it... no Gore Tex lining! I guess that makes me person #8.

  13. #13
    Senior Member CaptCaper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cushetunk View Post
    I can’t vouch for how they work in large sizes, but I also really like those Asolo boots. Actually I prefer the Asolo 535, which is the same as the 520 except... wait for it... no Gore Tex lining! I guess that makes me person #8.
    I don't know what is issue is with Gore Tex.. I don't sweat in them at all wearing Ragg Wools year round. Amazing boots again. Never had a shoe,work boot or sneaker that fit and wore like these 520's. Walking down steep hills is the clincher.. never lets my toes get crunched. Were the Fugitives and many other shoes' I've had will or let other parts of my feet jam,crunch or get blisters.. Blisters have never happened with these in many years. I do wear heavy wool's with them thou.

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