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Thread: Boot to stay waterproof longer than a year!

  1. #1

    Boot to stay waterproof longer than a year!

    I have been using my LOWA Valbona GTX for about 15 months and have been largely happy with them. Until now. Both boots have suddenly started leaking at the same spot.
    Previously my Salomon Quest 4D GTX leaked within a year and thankfully I was refunded in full. So, I am now looking for a pair of fabric boots, preferably B1 rated which might just survive longer than my goldfish and welcome your suggestions. Use: Scottish Highlands, Sutherland bog, occasional crampon use. I'm looking at the likes of Scarpa Marmolada, Mammot Ridge High or similar.

  2. #2
    Ultra King Diddi's Avatar
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    Where do they leak?

  3. #3
    Both have started leaking at the instep towards the front, at the ball of the foot if that makes sense.

  4. #4
    Widdler
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    Lundhags - Shell boots - no gtx liner to fail just really high quality thick leather .. Mine are 8 years old and never leaked - As for the occasional crampon use I can't vouch for their suitability but I dont think their particularly stiff soled - Maybe one boot doesn't work for everything? I've certainly found that to be the case . . Pertaining to your Gortex liners failing you mentioned that they fail in a similar place - near the ball of your foot - Are you ordering online ? Or are you trying on to be certain that fit is perfect ? If a boot is a poor fit this can often cause the boot to crease which will cause Gortex to prematurely fail . . The boot's silhouette so to speak should be relatively intact - if thats not the case and you find your boots looking misshapen due to wear then this means they are a poor fit . Also and apologies if stating the obvious but proof them !

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Noltae View Post
    Lundhags - Shell boots - no gtx liner to fail just really high quality thick leather .. Mine are 8 years old and never leaked - As for the occasional crampon use I can't vouch for their suitability but I dont think their particularly stiff soled - Maybe one boot doesn't work for everything? I've certainly found that to be the case . . Pertaining to your Gortex liners failing you mentioned that they fail in a similar place - near the ball of your foot - Are you ordering online ? Or are you trying on to be certain that fit is perfect ? If a boot is a poor fit this can often cause the boot to crease which will cause Gortex to prematurely fail . . The boot's silhouette so to speak should be relatively intact - if thats not the case and you find your boots looking misshapen due to wear then this means they are a poor fit . Also and apologies if stating the obvious but proof them !
    Interesting, not familiar with Lundhags but I do prefer a fabric boot. I always buy my boots from an outdoor shop to ensure a good fit, no problems there and the LOWAs are stiff enough that any flex of the membrane should be minimal. I think the leak is at the upper/sole interface so I suspect maybe a tape/bonding has failed. I've carefully cleaned and proofed the boots as per the manufacturers instructions and dried them gradually. Thanks for the suggestions.

  6. #6
    Ultra King Peter Clinch's Avatar
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    For bog-trotting, use wellies.
    Otherwise, if it's crampon-compatible boots they'll be stiff enough to take yeti-gaiters or similar. Those are expensive, but not only do they keep your feet dry they preserve the uppers remarkably well.

    Waterproof liners suffer in anything but the stiffest boots with constant creasing at a single point, typically just about where you say they're leaking. So either get boots so stiff they don't crease (but they'll not be much fun to walk in...) or stop relying on waterproof liners. Yeti gaiters take the waterproofing outside so they don't have a heavy chunk of leather creasing at a fixed point every step so despite being more exposed, might actually last longer. And any water that does get through them should be taken care of by a decent leather boot, especially if it's been waxed.

    Pete.

  7. #7
    Ultra King Diddi's Avatar
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    Are the insoles wet ? Are the bottom of the boots wet ? Where the insole meets the boot footbed ?
    They are a serious boot for alpine use which would have a warmer inner , are you sure its not sweat?

  8. #8
    ‹bermensch Trevor DC Gamble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin A 9 View Post
    Interesting, not familiar with Lundhags but I do prefer a fabric boot. I always buy my boots from an outdoor shop to ensure a good fit, no problems there and the LOWAs are stiff enough that any flex of the membrane should be minimal. I think the leak is at the upper/sole interface so I suspect maybe a tape/bonding has failed. I've carefully cleaned and proofed the boots as per the manufacturers instructions and dried them gradually. Thanks for the suggestions.
    A great brand of boot long popular with bushcrafters, and too especially with many serving Royal Marines Commandos and other assorted British and European Special Forces soldiers actually. Expensive boots, but really rather excellently tough kit overall.


    http://www.lundhags.com/Products/Boots

    https://www.alpinetrek.co.uk/hiking-shoes/for--men/5/
    Last edited by Trevor DC Gamble; 20-01-2017 at 04:18 PM.
    Trevor DC Gamble

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Diddi View Post
    Are the insoles wet ? Are the bottom of the boots wet ? Where the insole meets the boot footbed ?
    They are a serious boot for alpine use which would have a warmer inner , are you sure its not sweat?
    Yes, the insoles and the bottom of the boots are both wet in that area but I am confident this isn't sweat. I've previously used them in much more arduous and sustained conditions without any issues. Don't get me wrong, they're a great boot in every other respect and fit my needs perfectly but I expected more than 15 months of dry feet.
    I am starting to wonder if what seems to be a standard 12 months warranty across brands is a reflection of the manufacturers level of confidence in the technology?

  10. #10
    Ultra King Martin Carpenter's Avatar
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    Quite possibly. Overall it just isn't a very solid technology. Unlined/meshy works great outside properly cold/snowy conditions.

  11. #11
    Widdler Erst's Avatar
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    I just bought some Peter Storm leather boots, reduced to about £70. I've only done a couple of day long walks in them but they're surprisingly good, seem well made and are waterproof. They're the first leather ones I've had for ages, I've decided leather is the way to go, but you do need to look after them.
    I really like to just jump in a truck with your backpack and just drive and go somewhere.

  12. #12
    Initiate padstowe's Avatar
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    I'd recommend the marmolada's although i've a few pairs of different footwear from shoes to boots I really like these & on irish bogs i've stayed dry any time of the year for the past near 2yrs. They say its because the membrane is bonded to the upper & not a floating sock like most others, can't say if that's the reason or not but dry feet I have. (edit) You may find a little dampness on some days around the edge of the sole of your sock, but that's just the rand keeping that area from letting the heat go)
    Last edited by padstowe; 20-01-2017 at 09:01 PM.

  13. #13
    Yes, Outdry sounds interesting and seemingly is bonded to the boot almost in one piece which sounds a good idea. Any other users of the Scarpa Marmolada I wonder?

  14. #14
    Ultra King Imperial Dave's Avatar
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    agreed Martin...slightly off topic but I stopped worrying about having waterproofed footwear a long time ago unless going for multiday deep winter trips (for me as rare as rocking horse shite these days )

  15. #15
    Widdler
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    Have a pair of Berghaus Explorer Trek Plus GTX walking boots (now done a total of 7 days in the field and about 50 odd miles.) In the top six waterproof boots list by OM "it’s an extremely good waterproof fabric fell walking boot. Offering you first-class Gore-Tex waterproof protection, comfort straight out the box."

    Walking through a day of damp grass and the odd puddle (no rain) and the boots are saturated. For one day they just about do, if they are for two days or more then you can forget it as the water hasn't dried out yet by the following morning so part way through the next days walking of similar conditions and the feet get damp. They passed some 60min test that Berghaus use and they are deemed fit for purpose
    Anyone know the actual waterproof test Berghaus use??

    Am eyeing up a pair of leather Scarpa Kailash Pro GTX at the moment.
    Last edited by Dan1902; 21-01-2017 at 01:39 PM.

  16. #16
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    The Berghaus boots will be waterproof after two day's walking.
    Just not breathable as the outer has wetted out.
    Like all GTX boots and jackets if the outer is soaking the moisture vapour can't pass through to the outside.
    So the moisture vapour builds up and the humidity inside the boot increases and your feet get wet.

    One thing that might help is applying a proofing agent to the outside so the moisture doesn't soak in and saturate the outer of the boot.

    I've found leather boots generally keep your feet more comfortable as far as breathability is concerned.
    Even ones lined with the completely unnecessary GTX (most of them nowadays) are fine as long as you have realistic expectations. i.e. if you you're out all day you'll have some sweat build up in your socks and they'll be damp at the end of the day.
    You will need to proof the outer occasionally as if the leather gets saturated you'll get the same issues as you do with the fabric boots.
    Generally I find it's easier to keep smooth leather outers proofed than fabric boots.

    The other alternative is to wear shoes that are not waterproof and allow the water in and also allow the water out. Many people prefer that approach.

  17. #17
    Widdler
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    Hi, been lurking for a while. I have gone through 2 pairs of fabric boots that started out waterproof then weren't after about a year. Had Solomon and Merrell. Each time I took them back to Cotswold and upgraded. Now have a pair of Scarpa GTX leather boots. They have to date been totally waterproof and comfortable, had them six months. So here is hoping. As an aside, love the site and the great posts, very knowledgable people.

  18. #18
    Ultra King Peter Clinch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan1902 View Post
    Walking through a day of damp grass and the odd puddle (no rain) and the boots are saturated.
    It's fairly typical to get wet feet in (long) wet grass by way of the grass getting your trousers and socks wet and that water wicking down in to your boots, where the Miracle Waterproof Liner ensures that's where it stays. If you were wearing gaiters you can probably blame the boots, but a day in long wet grass without them generally ends up with lots of water getting in via the big hole at the top...

    Pete.

  19. #19
    By way of an update, the shop called me back today. The boots are indeed out of the manufacturers warranty. However, if they are in decent condition and clean, they will send them to Gore for them to investigate the leak. It seems that Gore may be able to help if the membrane has failed and not as a result of reasonable wear. That could be interpreted many ways but it's worth a try. I must say this dealer may not be the cheapest but has given excellent customer service in the past. I'll report back when I know more.

  20. #20
    Ultra King Imperial Dave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fatwalker View Post
    The Berghaus boots will be waterproof after two day's walking.

    The other alternative is to wear shoes that are not waterproof and allow the water in and also allow the water out. Many people prefer that approach.
    bingo....a lot less to worry about in the long run with this approach

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