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Thread: Winter boots

  1. #1
    Widdler
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    I got my hands on a cheap pair of Scarpa Freneys and took them onto the Helvelyn horseshoe with crampons to see how they performed. Going up they were fantastic but going down was like having a Rottweiler chewing my feet off. A narrow toe box and space on the heel left me crippled within an hour.

    When trying them on they felt perfect and the 4 season bridgedale socks were the right match. Sometimes it's only when you get on the slopes that the problems start.

    Does anyone know of a stiff, light winter boot that won't chew my toes off because it's too narrow?

    Uses will be winter trekking and rope/crampon/axe work but no ice climbing.

  2. #2
    ‹bermensch
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    As you mention loose heels, were the boots too narrow though or were they slipping forward when you descended ?

    Before investing in a new pair I would try two things.

    The first is to investigate different lacing techniques that can prevent the feet slipping. There's plenty of threads on here

    If that doesn't work I would try something like Superfeet insoles which should support the heel much better.

    One costs you nothing and the other about £35.

    I realise that you may be reluctant to face the pain of wearing the boots again so perhaps pick a small local hill and do some experimentation before writing the boots off.

    And if you go for new boots be aware it is not only the toe width but also the curvature of the last that can cause problems. If the boots are built on a straight last on the inside of the boot and your feet curve inwards slightly then you can get sore big toes even though the boots may be wide enough.

    i.e the shape of the boot may be the problem rather than the width


  3. #3
    Goon
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    I always have trouble buying boots, must have funny feet, they are thin at the ankle, wide at the toes,but nottoo much volume if you know what I mean. So either the boot fits the ankle or holds the mid foot well or doesn't squish the little toesor doesn't squish the big toe, but its very rare that I'll find a boot that does everything, so I always compromise.

    anyhow, on my recent trip to Dublin I popped into the Great Outdoors shop and met a lady called Jennie who was a proper boot fitter.

    She properly measured my feet, and from her experience and based on my foot voilumeshe suggested a couple of pair of boots and the size was a whole size bigger in a make I'd used before. I scoffed at the idea as this other pair of boots fit my ankle and midfoot brilliantly, although not the toes.

    So I tried the various boots with the superfeet insoles and then we tried going down half a size and a whole size and with and without various insoles and with different lacing techniques. And now I have a pair of boots that are roomier for my toes but fit well in the "body" of the foot too.

    First time in going to outdoors shop that I have found someone who really knows boots... and feet!

    So if you ever find yourself in Dublin, go to the Great Outdoors shop off Grafton street and ask for Jennie.

    Anyone else else got any "boot fitter" recommendations for staff in the UK?

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Metric Kate's Avatar
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    I would definitely try what Fatwalker's suggesting, to try to work a better on the Freneys, but if that doesn't work it might be worth looking at the Salewa Blackbirds. I've got a pair, but that's irrelevant, I don't have feet like hours! But one of my female friends bought a pair recently because they were the best she could find for her slightly duck feet. She bought a pair of men's because they had a bit more room in the toes.

    But it's an expensive business and Fatwalker's suggestion would be the one to go for first!

  5. #5
    Goon
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    Quote Originally Posted by Billy No Mates View Post



    Anyone else else got any "boot fitter" recommendations for staff in the UK?


    Aye:



    Outside in Hathersage.

    Cotswolds on Deansgate, Manchester, (specifically that store).

  6. #6
    Goon
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sid Dongre View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Billy No Mates View Post



    Anyone else else got any "boot fitter" recommendations for staff in the UK?


    Aye:



    Outside in Hathersage.

    Cotswolds on Deansgate, Manchester, (specifically that store).
    Hi Sid, any specific staffin those stores?

  7. #7
    Goon
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    From my experience and from the reports of others, they all seem well-trained, so anyone in the footwear section in either. Though there could always be new staff and perhaps the older staff will have more life experience.

  8. #8
    Goon
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    Light 4 season boot with large toe box, have a look at the Lundhags range, great for flat wide feet in need of toe space.

  9. #9
    Widdler
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    Fantastic advice thanks. The narrow front is a bigger issue than the heel movement because as you said, an insole can take the space out of the back. As I decend it seems the front pinches and the back of the boot has room behind the base of the heel. The next size down was far too tight.

    I doubt the narrow toe box is something I can fix.

    The other brands are not ones I'm familiar with as most of the retailers only stock the usual Sportiva's and Scarpa's. Still, I know more now than when I opened this thread. Thank you.

  10. #10
    Ultra King Diddi's Avatar
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    I always buy a size up in walking/winter boots as this allows for 4 season socks like you say but also for feet swelling like they normally do on a days outing.

  11. #11
    ‹bermensch
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    The superfeet (or equivalent)insole can also prevent your feet from slipping forward when you descend.

    That is a more common source of sore toes than the actual width of the toe box.

    And as mentioned it can also be the shape or even the height of the toe box that can cause problems. You would be surpised at the movement of many people's big toe when walking. Particularly over rough ground as your feet try to stabilise you..

    Runners sometimes poke holes in the top of the toe boxof theirrunning shoes.

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