Author Topic: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?  (Read 5103 times)

happytoon

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Hi All,


I had some Meindl Vakuum which were great. After 10 years of abuse, they gave in (leather and rant split + sole unglued etc)
I will go for Meindl once again as their MFS system makes for very comfortable boots and I was impressed with that comfort compare to other high spec boots I previously owned... I also found their sole perfect for most condition...


Now I need to choose between another pair of Vakuum or the Bhutan?
I am looking for 3-4 seasons boots. I mostly walk on hill, often in wet and muddy conditions. Some mountain and some snow but very rarely with crampon (twince in 10 years!).


What are the differences?

Which one would you recommend?

Thanks


Tony.
« Last Edit: 10:05:24, 19/07/16 by happytoon »

kinkyboots

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #1 on: 12:12:41, 19/07/16 »
Both boots fall under Meindl's own rating of Category B and the main difference is that the Bhutan is listed as a 3 season boot whilst the Vakuum is listed as a 3-4 season boot. Both boots are stated to be not crampon compatible on most websites. I think that's probably just covering their asses and the Vakuum's would probably be fine if used with flexible crampons for short periods or in an emergency.

I've not seen either boot but I would expect the Vakuum to be made of a slightly thicker leather and have a slightly stiffer sole than the Bhutan to account for the difference in season rating.

Meindl's Category B suitable for extensive walking and moderate trekking.
Demanding hikes in the low level.
Easy trekking trips in the major mountain ranges of the world.
Marked mountain paths.

For guaranteed crampon compatiblity you need to be looking at something from their Category B/C boots (Himalaya, Island, etc.) which will be made of even thicker leather and have an even stiffer sole to allow for the use of crampons.

Meindl's Category B/C suitable for ambitious trekking, easy and moderate alpine use and fixed-rope routes.
Demanding trekking
Extended hikes in the high mountain
Poor mountain paths
Scree
Fixed rope routes

Whichever you choose make sure you do your pricing homework first then go to Go Outdoors or Cotswold Outdoor to try on and get them to price match.

Glyno

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #2 on: 12:27:04, 19/07/16 »
I've been wearing Meindl Vacuums for the last couple of years all year round. I find them very comfortable (though you may not), and although I also have crampon compatible boots, I have no qualms about fitting a flexible crampon (eg, Grivel G10's) to them.
Mine get a fair bit of abuse (eg, scree slopes, sharp rocks) but look great after some polish, wax and tlc.

Lost_Yeti

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #3 on: 01:20:16, 20/07/16 »
I was in a similar position a couple of months back, Vakuum or Bhutan.


Vakuum was difficult to get in my size for the price I wanted to pay and settled for the Bhutan after trying on in the shop and I have not been disappointed.


One thing I would say is the insoles that came with the Bhutan were like a piece of card board, thin & non existent! I replaced them with Superfeet after the first 15mile hike when I'd felt a noticeable difference in the feel/fit on the 2nd outing. Would be worth trying them with better insoles in the shop with the thickest socks you'll wear before buying as I had to return mine for 1/2 size up after fitting the Superfeet.

Dyffryn Ardudwy

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #4 on: 11:16:03, 21/07/16 »
The right pair of boots, are the ones you find most comfortable on your feet, possibly Meindl or Bhutan are not the boots to go for, you can only find that out by trying them on.
Boots are a personal choice, and the only sure way of finding the best boot for your feet,is to visit an established retailer and try them on.

As for category boots, ie designed for different uses, that's a load of rubbish, it's just a very clever ploy by the manufacturers to increase the price on a particular type of boot.

I used to wear Brasher Hillmasters for every type of terrain, however severe, simply because of the all round comfort and support they offered, and they could put up with an awful amount of punishment.

You see, boots are a personal preference, the most important aspect, is comfort on your feet, and you can only discover that by trying them all on.

- Dave -

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #5 on: 14:31:17, 21/07/16 »
Echoing Glyno, I too wear the Meindl Vakuums and they are a superb boot (if they fit of course!) - well worth the investment. Comfortable, waterproof and no qualms with a strap crampon
I'm on the internet!

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bgravato

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #6 on: 18:56:51, 28/05/18 »
Hello,


This is a bit of an old thread I know, but I'm in the exact same situation...


I own a pair of Meindl Vakuum GTX, that were heavily abused for 8-10 years.
Soles came off recently. I thought about having them resoled, but the leather already has some minor cracks, so I think it's probably better to get a new pair of boots...


happytoon, what did you end up buying? Did you get the Bhutan? If so how do you like it in comparison to the Vakuum GTX?


Anyone else who might have owned both boots?


Thanks

Percy

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #7 on: 20:47:02, 28/05/18 »
For what itís worth:


My last 3 pairs of boots, over a period of 15 years, have all been Meindlís. I had Lhotses (no longer made) followed by Burmas and then a pair of Vakuums.


All three are excellent boots but the Vakuums would be my choice given that the Lthoses are no longer available.


Iíve still got the Burmas, resoled, so I clearly quite like them too.


Iíve stick with them as they seem an excellent fit for my rather oddly shaped feet.

Troggy

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #8 on: 08:44:09, 29/05/18 »
Boots,Boots Boots! I've been reluctant to buy a new pair of boots because my feet, particularly the right one, have been causing a load of gyp for ages, which are now, hopefully, on the mend. So I bought a pair of Meindl Borneo Pro off Ebay and hoped they wouldn't end up like a lot of shoe/trainer buys off ebay which most were either too narrow or too short. A bit daft but a bit desperate. Anyway, I saw these Meindl and thought I'd bid for them and hope for the best. as I still have a pair of Meindl pfelge 2 (very light, suede/goretex ones) very comfortable but no longer made. (nice suprise, I can now walk in them again!)
I won the auction and wondered if the Borneos would be any use. Well. luckily, they're really, very comfortable and I'll have a walk along the Wirral way in them tomorrow and see how I get on. The reason I'm prattling on about the Borneo boots is that they are not lined with Goretex, which is the way I prefer my walking shoes/boots to be. I thought that if you are particular about having a goretex lining these wouldn't suit; but my, they are comfortable and are a class "B" 

rambling minster

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #9 on: 13:05:57, 29/05/18 »
I too find it hard to find a pair of boots which fit my slightly awkwardly-sized feet, but I recently purchased a pair of Meindl Vakuum's and they feel amazingly comfortable so far, touch wood.


I got my shoes measured up at Whalley Warm & Dry and it's a place I'd recommend as they took a variety of foot measurements, picked the boots most suitable for my feet and gave me a cuppa while i waited!

Troggy

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #10 on: 14:03:00, 31/05/18 »
For anyone who might be interested, there's a pair og Meindl Bhutan boots (size 11) that are being auctioned on Ebay and there's just over 4 hours left. Highest bid so far stands and £40 but there's 10 other bidders. Auction ends at 17.57. They look in pretty decent order. The soles have had little wear by the the look of them.

bgravato

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Re: I need a new pair of Boots - Meindl Vakuum OR Bhutan ?
« Reply #11 on: 13:21:27, 01/06/18 »
Thanks for all the comments.


I wear size 8, so that ebay opportunity not for me...


I think my most usual complain about shoes/boot when it comes to comfort is the back of my heel (or between heel and ankle). I think my foot there is a bit "thin" and I often find it hard to find footwear that doesn't hurt there.


The Vakuum are some of the most comfortable boots I've owned in that matter, but still have been a slightly uncomfortable in that matter (mostly walking up very steep slopes). That's the main reason
why I'm looking for alternatives.


I often hike in rocky trails and shock absorption on the Vakuum is great.


This is something that requires a full day walking on them (or even a few days) to take some conclusions, but in a week I'll be in London so I'll try to go to a cotswold or similar store and try a few in store.