Author Topic: Boots recommendation - can't believe I'm having to do this so soon.  (Read 2672 times)

WhitstableDave

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I have low arches that appreciate some support and so I use insoles to tailor most of my footwear accordingly.

I use Superfeet Blue in my Scarpa boots, Superfeet Green in my Scarpa shoes, and Superfeet Trailblazer in my HigherState shoes. The Scarpa shoe insoles have gone into my Salomon shoes, and I've just put Enertor (running) insoles into my Garmont trail runners (initial impressions are that they're excellent!).

In fact, the only walking shoes I haven't put insoles in are my Merrell Cham 7s because they're incredibly supportive anyway and my first choice shoes for walking long distances.

I'm also a firm believer in the benefits of shoe rotation - as in, I like to wear different shoes (or boots) on successive days.

gunwharfman

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Unlike me, I tend to have one pair for one job, or for one season and will only buy again when they are no longer any good.

April

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Interesting thread (seems to have drifted a bit though  ;D ). I'm another one who mainly uses boots. I have deformed feet (think orangutan feet) and boots are the best option for support and comfort on the rough terrain we normally walk on. I have used trainers on local walks during the lockdown last year when it was dry on the mostly flat and hardly challenging terrain but this year we have a foot of mud on the paths so back to boots for those local walks. I also use inserts, I have a very high arch. If I don't use them I get metatarsalgia and plantar fasciitis. Everyone has different needs; there is no right or wrong way to do this, this footwear choice, only what works for yourself.
"Who would've thought...... you are light and darkness coming through" words by Tim Armstrong

kinkyboots

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Altberg's Aforme last has a closer heel fitting and seems a bit more modern and sculpted generally, supposedly taking some direction from sports shoes. Unfortunately whilst it is used on some of their civilian boots, the only military boot that (I think) they use it on is their newer 'ops' boot, which doesn't seem at all common/cheap second hand (presumably not standard issue) and so I've never tried it. I too would like a better toe shape than the defenders offer, though might struggle if the last is narrower around mid-foot rather than just the heel.

I found this YouTube video which shows a comparison between the Altberg Defender and the new Altberg Military Ops boots which you may find interesting if you haven't already seen it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTMtp1ALJVE

Amongst other changes the design improves level of support provided above ankle level with the added bonus that it's also available in half size increments which allows for a better fit. Obviously choosing it would be dependent on whether the A-Forme last suits your feet or not.

Kev06

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Interesting, thanks very much! So both more ankle support and more flexibility, that could be ideal for general walking. It does seem narrower mid-foot though, so I'd probably need to get a wider version; possibly might not find favour with the MOD if a more sculpted fit reduces compatibility but I hope they take it on.

That is the thing with defenders really, they've stayed pretty much the same fit forever so one can be confident a new pair will still fit. I can never tell if a new model of boot is going to work out until boot and feet have adjusted to each other, which is far too late to then take back if not. For me, that is where softer fabric boots score well, along with being better for infrequent use; with leather I find it necessary to use frequently enough to keep feet accustomed to them.

But probably this is yet again going off topic; my apologies it seemed relevant when first brought up, but it is rather a niche thing really.

kinkyboots

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It does seem narrower mid-foot though, so I'd probably need to get a wider version; possibly might not find favour with the MOD if a more sculpted fit reduces compatibility but I hope they take it on.

All Altberg A-Forme last boots are only available in Medium Fit there is no Wide Fit or other width fitting options available. It might be worth going to an Altberg retailer and trying one of the other A-Forme boots to see whether the last suits your feet.

Agreed about drifting off topic, I only posted it here to keep the info re the Altberg Military Ops boot in one place.

That's me done on this thread.

tetheredgoat

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For the sake of neatness, I thought I would follow up on what has become a long and varied thread. Who thought asking a bunch of walkers what boots they prefer would generate five pages of answers?  ::)


First of all Arc'teryx agreed to take my Acrux boots back after I submitted photos. I had had them for 7 months and the fabric had split in two places. Whether they replace them or I get a refund I'm not sure.


Secondly, I would love to have tried a range of boots in one of the many outfits in Snowdonia, but sending the Arc'Teryx back left me without any boots other than my old Scarpa's and whilst they are ok for walking the dog, I didn't want to park my bigger walks whilst I waited for the next announcement from the government.


So I ordered a couple of pairs based on the recommendations. The first was the Altberg Malhams. They are a beautiful boot and with my medium width feet the fit was great - I suspect they would have been great after a few miles but walking around the house and up and down the stairs, the stiff tongue on them just kept cutting in to my leg. My fear that was I would not be able to get them past the wearing in stage and I knew that if I'd been trying them in a shop I wouldn't have bought them. So I arranged a return and then ordered the Berghaus Supalights . They are clearly not the Altbergs but I like the less weight and the soft leather lining. They won't last me for years but I suspect the leather will outperform a canvas boot if I look after it.


I took them for a proper trudge on Friday and managed to bury both shins in mud on the way. By the end of a morning out, I'd pretty much forgotten about them, which I guess is what you want from a pair of boots.


So thanks for all the suggestions - I really do appreciate you all taking the time.


Simon


Kev06

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Glad you got a good result, a comfortable fit can be worth its weight in gold and is very individual.

I've always struggled to tell with walking around the house so quite agree it is a risk. For that reason I usually go for brands where the replacement can be expected to still be the same model and fit, even then each new pair can break in somewhat differently though.

Best of luck with the broken boots, too!

kinkyboots

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The first was the Altberg Malhams. They are a beautiful boot and with my medium width feet the fit was great - I suspect they would have been great after a few miles but walking around the house and up and down the stairs, the stiff tongue on them just kept cutting in to my leg. My fear that was I would not be able to get them past the wearing in stage and I knew that if I'd been trying them in a shop I wouldn't have bought them.

I'm glad you got sorted out and I hope you are happy with your choice.

My only comment would be that as an owner and user of the Altberg Malham boots I can confirm that your concerns regarding the stiffness of the leather at the top of the tongue was totally unfounded. After a couple of coats of leather conditioner and following the pre-impregantion waxing process recommended by Whalley Warm & Dry previously posted on the forum the leather does soften considerably. A couple of hours wear round the house and that initial stiffness of the leather at the top of the tongue just vanishes.