Author Topic: waterproof walking boots  (Read 879 times)

henryb

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waterproof walking boots
« on: 14:43:58, 13/08/17 »
I'm intending to buy new walking boots. I'm looking for a boot with two essential criteria: waterproof and lightweight. Previously I've worn Meindl and Salomon. I didn't like Meindl because the boot was too big. When they let water in after 2.5 years, I switched to Salomon. Salomon was great because they were more comfortable, a third of the weight of Meindl boots. However, after one year, the Salomon boots have let water in. Ideally I'd like a boot which is lightweight, not too heavy and one which will remain waterproof for longer than one year. I'm happy to spend around 150. Does anyone have any recommendations? I only walk Lakeland fells and Mourne mountains so I'm not looking for a boot geared at walkers going on foreign expeditions. Just an ordinary hill walking boot. Thanks, Henry

kinkyboots

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #1 on: 17:19:04, 13/08/17 »
Have a look at Alt-Berg's range of boots. You can find your nearest Alt-Berg retailer here http://www.altberg.co.uk/stockists/ The Premier retailers (the one's marked in red on the map) are where they will have the widest range available. They are slightly above your budget but there are are occasional bargains to be had online from some retailers and eBay but make sure that you get properly measured and try them on so that you know what size and width fitting you require before buying online.

The Tethera and Nordkapp were specifically designed for use on the Lakeland Fells and Scottish Hills and are highly regarded amongst many forum members. Regular treatment with Alt-Berg's Leder Gris Original Wax will ensure that the boots remain waterproof and all have a Sympatex waterproof lining to back that up. All models can be resoled as and when the need arises. Numerous posters have reported using the Tethera with flexible crampons for short periods without any problems or issues.

Leather boots will obviously be slightly heavier than comparable fabric boots but they do not suffer from the same failure rates and will last considerably longer.

2-3 Season Boots - Fremington 1412g  (standard last with 5 width fittings) or Malham 1344g (A-Forme last with 1 width fitting)
http://www.altberg.co.uk/product/the-fremington-mens-boot-mto/
http://www.altberg.co.uk/product/the-malham-mens-boot-mto/

3 Season Boots - Tethera 1472g (standard last with 5 width fittings) or Nordkapp 1460g (A-Forme last with 1 width fitting)
http://www.altberg.co.uk/product/the-tethera-mens-boot-mto/
http://www.altberg.co.uk/product/factory-stock-nordkapp/

nesty

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #2 on: 17:27:27, 13/08/17 »
Thumbs up for the Altberg.
Have the Tethera. A real decent boot.
On Ebay. If your size is 10 or below there tends to be frequent listings in those sizes, then 10 & above.
As Kinkyboots states; get measured. I didn't, but I took a chance on practically new on ebay and it worked out ok. Though I would strongly advise you do, as there are many width fittings in some versions.


ninthace

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #3 on: 18:55:19, 13/08/17 »
Another vote for Tethera. I have used them in very boggy conditions, forded streams etc with no problems. I reckon used in conjunction with good gaiters they are unbeatable. My current pair have done 1400 miles according to my log and there is still plenty left in them. I can also confirm they work with flexible crampons (and snowshoes).
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kinkyboots

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #4 on: 10:38:10, 14/08/17 »
If for any reason the Alt-Berg's don't float your boat the Scarpa Delta may be worth a look and is available in both a half leather & Cocona lined version or a Gore-Tex lined version. The Gore-Tex lined version will offer better waterproofing protection should you ever manage to fully saturate the leather. Scarpa recommend the regular use of their own HS12 Cream to keep the leather waterproof and in good condition. From what I can see both models weigh 1520g so are slightly heavier than the Alt-Berg's.

The weight of any boot is always a compromise and trade off between the weight and quality of the materials used in it's construction and the boot's expected life. If you want waterproofing that will last a full leather boot is definitely the way to go as even if the lining fails the boot will remain waterproof and usable provided the leather is regularly maintained. A fabric/leather construction will probably last 2 years at most before the Gore-Tex lining fails and the boot becomes totally useless whereas a full leather boot should last 5+ years provided the leather is regularly maintained and can usually be resoled numerous times to considerable lengthen that period.

Scarpa Men's Delta Leather Walking Boots @ 149.99 http://www.outdoorkit.co.uk/product.php?product_id=22248

Scarpa Men's Delta GTX Activ Walking Boots @ 169.95 http://www.walkoutdoors.com/scarpa-delta-gtx-activ-walking-boots

Both models are available from Go Outdoors so you should be able to get a price match there reducing the prices by 10% taking the Delta Leather to 134.99 and the Delta GTX Activ to 152.95.

http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/scarpa-delta-activ-p269717
http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/scarpa-delta-gtx-activ-walking-boots-p205555
http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/scarpa-hs12-cream-p215700
« Last Edit: 10:44:51, 14/08/17 by kinkyboots »

pauldawes

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #5 on: 11:43:24, 14/08/17 »
If for any reason the Alt-Berg's don't float your boat the Scarpa Delta may be worth a look and is available in both a half leather & Cocona lined version or a Gore-Tex lined version. The Gore-Tex lined version will offer better waterproofing protection should you ever manage to fully saturate the leather. Scarpa recommend the regular use of their own HS12 Cream to keep the leather waterproof and in good condition. From what I can see both models weigh 1520g so are slightly heavier than the Alt-Berg's.



I don't doubt for a second that Altberg make good quality boots that are well worth the money for keen walkers.


But I'm always a bit puzzled that when people ask for boot recs, that pretty often a specific boot gets suggested...rather than a process that stands a good chance of leading person to right boot for him or her.


If you look at "spec" that HenryB  has...surely you'd expect any quality lightweight boot with a leather exterior with few seams/ stitching would meet it. (I'd suggest leather boot rather than fabric because he placed heavy emphasis on long term waterproofness...and think leather is best to meet that requirement. If you treat the leather appropriately, you'll have a boot that will continue to be well waterproof after internal membrane fails.)


There's a ton of boots that would meet that overall spec...including ones from Scarpa as you suggest, and other reliable brands such as Zamberlan.


Honestly think going to a shop that has qualified fitters, walking slopes, a wide variety of boots to try on...and just trying on a ton of boots until you find one that is really, really comfortable...is far better than starting with a particular boot firmly in mind,

Dyffryn Ardudwy

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #6 on: 17:25:03, 14/08/17 »
Probably the best boots, that will keep most of the damp at bay, are four season boots.
Made from heavier duty leather or synthetic materials, they can withstand considerable amounts of moisture, and only become slightly damp, when exposed to heavy rain or such like.

The only problem with four season boots, is that they tend to be expensive, and are a bit over the top for everyday walking.

The name Scarpa and Zamberland comes to mind, when i was looking for high quality footwear.

The best course of action, is to visit a seriously good outdoor shop, and ask to be shown various 3-4 season boots, and explain that your after quality, and boots that are not to cumbersome.

Quality will cost, but really good quality boots, will last the owner many years, as long as they are maintained properly.

kinkyboots

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #7 on: 19:42:04, 14/08/17 »
@ pauldawes
The reason specific boots or brands of boots have been suggested or recommended is that henryb asked for specific boot recommendations.

The fact is that there is a huge amount of poor quality overpriced rubbish out there which need weeding out so the buyer is not wasting their time. Ploughing through a ton of boots in a shop until you find one that feels really, really comfortable is not an option most people have either the time or energy for particularly if the really, really comfortable one turns out to be a boot which has extremely poor user reviews which state that they felt fine in the shop but they could feel every stone through the soles or that they fell to bits or leaked like sieve after only 3 months of light use.

I would suggest all potential boot buyers would benefit from having a shortlist of boots to spend their time looking at closely. I would never recommend a boot that I either had not owned and used myself or had seen and read excellent independent user reviews of. Personally I would trust a forum member's recommendations and actual user reviews over the recommendations of some spotty faced sales assistant on minimum wage who is only interested in the commission on the sale. In many cases the reviews you read in magazines also need to be taken with a pinch of salt - they're fine to use as a starting point but the buyer really needs to do their own homework before they go anywhere near a shop.

@ Dyffryn Ardudwy
I would suggest that you actually read henryb's the original post again slowwwwwly!  ::)
Look for the word lightweight and explain how that relates in any way to the 3-4 season boots you posted about? A 3-4 season boot is usually crampon compatible and suitable for use on the steepest and highest terrain or in winter conditions. Due to the increased thickness of the leather they're usually too heavy and the soles are too stiff for normal hillwalking and would be uncomfortable for use over longer distances.

@ henryb
Another possible contender to add to your list is the Scarpa Men's Kailash Pro GTX (1480g) @ 158.95 http://www.walkoutdoors.com/scarpa-kailash-pro-gtx-mens
It's also available from Go Outdoors so you should be able to get a price match there reducing the prices by 10% taking the price down to 143.05
http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/scarpa-kailish-pro-gtx-mens-p389439

Islandplodder

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #8 on: 19:54:05, 14/08/17 »

The waterproof bit is the problem.  I once heard that a good pair of boots should be waterproof for 1000 miles and if you are lucky that might stretch to 1500.
I really like Lowa renegades which are lightweight, comfortable and do about 750 - 1000 miles.  I recently tried Scarpa terras which are lightweight, nearly as comfortable and I am not sure how far they go yet, only done about 400 in them.  After much experiment I think I prefer the comfort of the Lowas even if they aren't going to last quite so long.  I finished my first pair off on the Pennine Way, after a couple of years good service, the second pair didn't do quite so well, but I still wear them, though they let a bit of water in, for the beach and local walks. (I try to keep the new ones out of the sand, not so easy when you live buy the sea!)
I also have Altberg tetheras, which I find very comfortable but don't really think of as light weight - they are the ones I go to when I want something more solid.

pauldawes

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #9 on: 07:49:31, 15/08/17 »
@ pauldawes
The reason specific boots or brands of boots have been suggested or recommended is that henryb asked for specific boot recommendations.

The fact is that there is a huge amount of poor quality overpriced rubbish out there which need weeding out so the buyer is not wasting their time. Ploughing through a ton of boots in a shop until you find one that feels really, really comfortable is not an option most people have either the time or energy for particularly if the really, really comfortable one turns out to be a boot which has extremely poor user reviews which state that they felt fine in the shop but they could feel every stone through the soles or that they fell to bits or leaked like sieve after only 3 months of light use.



But if you go to a good specialist shop...say Whalley Warm and Dry..you wouldn't be offered a wide range of crap boots. If you gave them a spec they'd only be bringing forward boots appropriate for that spec.


And the crucial thing is that you'd be many times more likely to get a really, really comfortable fit. Those Altberg boots you (rightly) recommended earlier come in how many widths? And in some boots I need a 10, in others a 10 and a half...and until I try them on I don't know which size I need in each boot. And I don't think that's unusual. And it's hard to be confident fit is right unless you try on a walking slope..etc.


Of course..trying out rigorously for comfort is time consuming...it could easily run to one or two hours. But...for somebody whose main hobby is walking its surely time well spent. The alternative is buying an expensive pair of boots, and having an increased chance of them being "fairly" comfortable rather than very comfortable...and compromising walking pleasure for a few years to come.


But I do agree with you about benefits of asking for advice here, with intent of identifying good brands, and eliminating poor ones.

kinkyboots

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #10 on: 09:13:30, 15/08/17 »

But if you go to a good specialist shop...say Whalley Warm and Dry..you wouldn't be offered a wide range of crap boots. If you gave them a spec they'd only be bringing forward boots appropriate for that spec.

And the crucial thing is that you'd be many times more likely to get a really, really comfortable fit. Those Altberg boots you (rightly) recommended earlier come in how many widths? And in some boots I need a 10, in others a 10 and a half...and until I try them on I don't know which size I need in each boot. And I don't think that's unusual. And it's hard to be confident fit is right unless you try on a walking slope..etc.

Of course..trying out rigorously for comfort is time consuming...it could easily run to one or two hours. But...for somebody whose main hobby is walking its surely time well spent. The alternative is buying an expensive pair of boots, and having an increased chance of them being "fairly" comfortable rather than very comfortable...and compromising walking pleasure for a few years to come.

But I do agree with you about benefits of asking for advice here, with intent of identifying good brands, and eliminating poor ones.

I agree entirely but I would hazard a guess that not many people, including regular walkers, take the time, trouble and effort to visit the ever reducing number of specialist bootfitters such as Whalley Warm & Dry. For most people it's probably an effort and inconvenience for them to even visit their local Go Outdoors!

The reason the Alt-Berg's get recommended so often on here is that their build quality is second to none and all their range are available in half sizes and they offer 5 width fittings for boots built on their standard last. They also have boots built on an A-Forme which has an asymmetric forefoot, increased toe spring and a narrower heel so they have a boot for anyone whose feet don't quite suit their standard last. A recent addition to their range are boots built on a G-Fit last for people with extra wide high volume feet. No other manufacturer offers as many sizes, width, shape and volume combinations - they literally have a boot to suit everyone.

Going back to the lightweight and waterproof discussion - everyone has a choice to make before they buy. They can choose to buy a lightweight and waterproof boot but with a short 1-2 year life expectancy before they fail completely and need replacing or they can buy a slightly heavier boot which will probably last 5+ years or even longer with regular maintenance. There's not really that much difference in the initial cost but it may come a big shock to some people when they're back in the shop again having to buy new boots in as little as 12 months time. Of course there will be others who are quite prepared to buy new boots every 1-2 years just for the weight saving. Everybody is different.

henryb

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #11 on: 19:05:11, 15/08/17 »
Thanks for feedback folks. I should say I live in Northern Ireland and Cotswolds is really the only place I buy walking gear. I don't know of Altberg stores. Here's one I've my eye on: http://www.cotswoldoutdoor.com/the-north-face-mens-ultra-fastpack-ii-mid-gtx-boot-b1134227?id_colour=3495. ANy thoughts? Thanks, Henry

henryb

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #12 on: 19:15:51, 15/08/17 »
Meant to add: would Salomon boots typically let water in after one year?

sussamb

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #13 on: 19:56:47, 15/08/17 »
My Quest Primes started leaking in just under the year. Took them back to Cotswold who exchanged them without issue for a pair of Salomon 4Ds.  Hoping they will last more than a year!
Where there's a will ...

ninthace

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Re: waterproof walking boots
« Reply #14 on: 20:19:56, 15/08/17 »
My own experience in recent years for what its worth by brand in order of acquisition:
Salomon (fabric)  - Got progressively more uncomfortable with use, leaked before they wore out.
Millet (fabric) - light, well made, stayed waterproof for a couple of years but then seam stitching went along with the membrane.
Meindl (Kansas - Nubuck upper)- heel broke after a few weeks, refunded by vendor and replaced by
Meindl (Borneo - Nubuck/leather) - lasted around a year, stayed waterproof but then interior heel stitching failed - instant blister
Mammut (leather)  Waterproof at first but some seepage after a few months. Sole wore out very quickly - refunded by vendor
Altberg Tethera (leather) 1400 miles so far, still perfectly waterproof.

Mrs N had a pair of Berghaus fabric boots for years then they suddenly leaked catastrophically, she now has a pair of Altberg Fremingtons that are fully waterproof and very comfortable despite a bad bunion.

Based on my own experience I would look at Altberg again for all the year round and Millet for summer use.
« Last Edit: 20:26:05, 15/08/17 by ninthace »
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