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 You Choose For Me!! 

Which boot should I buy?
Poll ended at Wed Sep 02, 2009 3:03 pm
Merrell Perimeter GTX  63%  [ 5 ]
Asolo Fugitive GTX  38%  [ 3 ]
Can't Go wrong with either  0%  [ 0 ]
Total votes : 8

 You Choose For Me!! 
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Flatfoot
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Joined: Mon Aug 17, 2009 5:55 pm
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I own the fugative gtx, and absolutly love them, they had virtually no break in time, even thought the don't have vibram, the grip on them isn't bad at all, i've hiked in the rain and on dry days and was fine. EMS sells them for 200 so you can go in and try them on and make sure they fit, then buy them online for much cheaper.


Tue Sep 01, 2009 5:58 pm
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Sovereign Woodsman

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Aren't the vibram soles less sticky? They might last longer, but is that any good if the rest of the boot falls apart?? I guess if that happens then the boot actually becomes a sandal! :lol:


Tue Sep 01, 2009 10:11 pm
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I too love my Merrells!

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Wed Sep 02, 2009 12:16 pm
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I Spend All My Time on This Forum
I Spend All My Time on This Forum

Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2007 2:04 pm
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Location: Newmarket, NH
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ericcferg wrote:
you can go in and try them on and make sure they fit, then buy them online for much cheaper.


Ha ha! Oh that's just bad....I would never, ever consider doing something like that. :twisted:


Wed Sep 02, 2009 12:18 pm
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Flatfoot
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BobC wrote

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Ha ha! Oh that's just bad....I would never, ever consider doing something like that.



it's called EMS for a reason.

Expensive Mountain S***


Wed Sep 02, 2009 2:32 pm
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I'll weigh in here as I'm a bit of a gear junkie and have a definite opinion on this one!

Sorry in advance for the long-winded pontification!

Yes: LL Bean Cresta Hikers!
No: Kayland Zephyr's

First - about Vibram soles. Vibram as a manufacturer makes over 80 different compounds of sole materials. Some are hard, some are soft. Some stick like glue, some are slippery as plastic. I do love Vibram soles, but want to make clear that there is a HUGE variation in the feel and level of protection offered by the various compounds. Both of the boots I mention above (which I own) have Vibram soles and they could not be more different.

Here's my take on the Cresta Hikers. Made in Italy, Cresta Hikers are absolute top-quality craftsmanship that you will not find in any boot made in China - or perhaps all of Asia for that matter. Not sure if that matters to most people, but I like to try to support the world economy outside of China. The fact that retailers and manufacturers ask huge dollars for items made in China (as opposed to items manufactured in markets with higher labor costs) bothers me - because they're not passing the savings along to the consumer. They pocket the profits instead. Alright, I'm digressing… back to the boots.

Cresta Hikers have a relatively hard compound Vibram sole. In the Whites, most descents are made up of thousands of rock-hops downward onto the pointy tops of granite. That's one of the hallmark features of the Whites. That stiff sole means that you can pound down on the sharpest of those granite hop-scotches without feeling any hot spots or resulting bruising on the foot. Other perks of the Cresta Hikers - no funky smell thanks to all leather, great waterproofing made even more so due to leather’s water repellant nature and minimal seams. They also come in a wide variety of sizes (including wide) for a really good fit.

My second pair of Cresta Hikers is about worn out - which is why I picked up a set of Kayland Zephyrs.

I'll admit it, I'm a weight weenie. I wanted the new boots instead of a third pair of Cresta Hikers for the weight reduction and for the promised breathability of the e-Vent waterproof membrane. Also, the Kaylands were rated a top pick by Backpacker magazine in the latest gear guide.

I drove to Townsend MA to get these Kaylands and then started wearing them around the house for a week in preparation for a two-day of the Wildcats and Carter Range.

The Kaylands are indeed light - but not that much lighter than the Crestas when you pick them up to compare. It's perceptible - barely. The Kaylands have a softer Vibram compound - which I was psyched about because of my bad knees which often hurt on long descents. They also have e-Vent instead of Gore Tex - which is twice as breathable according to previous tests I've read. What could go wrong????

So my trial with the Kaylands took place as mentioned - on the Wildcats and Carters. It was wet by the way... rained the whole time.

At first, I loved them. Light and fluffy. Then came the descent to Carter Notch and that's where the trouble began. One wrong step - rock digging in to ankle. More steps - ball of foot getting sore. More still - feet are wet despite avoiding all puddles. More, more still - toes slide forward on sloped ground despite the green Superfeet insoles which I transferred from my Crestas. No blisters at all - so for that I'll give them two points - but I was really missing my bean boots overall.

Since then, I went back to my ratty three-year-old Crestas - which have about 30 4,000 footers on them. I can't really imagine a better boot - for the Whites.

We have unique terrain and I think a boot with all-leather construction and a firmer sole is best suited for our conditions.

If you can find a Merrill or other brand (and don't care about made in China) that covers those basics, go for it. Otherwise, I really think the Cresta Hikers are one of the best boots out there for where we live.

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Wed Sep 02, 2009 6:51 pm
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Peesalot. wrote:
Aren't the vibram soles less sticky? They might last longer, but is that any good if the rest of the boot falls apart?? I guess if that happens then the boot actually becomes a sandal! :lol:


From what I've read they are a little less grippy, but as mentioned above, different compounds will have different characteristics. But vibram has a good reputation for longevity, which if I am spending around $200 or more for boots, is something that I am looking for. My non-vibram soles have lasted me for 1 season, which is not long enough.

As for the Cresta's, it seems like a very popular boot, and will last a long time, but I can not imagine it being the best boot for White Mountain hiking. It might be if it had a toe rand. That rubber coating make a big difference. It really protects your toes when trekking through rocky areas. I use to hike in boots without one, and will never go back. I don't want to sound like I'm crapping on Cresta's, it's just not a boot I would consider.

This thread has been very informative, as I as well am looking for new boots. It has made me take a second look at the Merrel's, but to me, for my hiking, it seems a little "light". It seems to have good reviews, but it looks a little low-cut, and most of the reviews I've read say that there is little break-in period, which makes me think that the leather may be thin, and that they may wear out too quickly, and not me very supportive. I would be interested in hearing more about them from those of you who wear them, as the boots I'm thinking of going with (Asolo Powermatic 500GV) are quite a bit more expensive.


Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:36 pm
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So Chris...which one did you end up buying?


Mon Sep 07, 2009 9:14 pm
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I have worn Timberlands, North Face, Merrells and most recently Cabelas and I must admit that the Cabelas have been the most satisfying for me. They broke in nicely. The are very rugged, waterproof and great grip. I've got 70 miles on them and can't complain at all.


Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:05 pm
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I have a pair of $60 Hi-Tecs from Sports Authority that I bought about 14 months ago. I got blisters on my heels the first time I wore them but from what I can remember have been fine ever since. They're all leather and have carried me through all four seasons, keeping my feet warm in the winter and not too hot in the summer. TrailCred got some goretex boots but his feet managed to get soaked through at times when mine were more or less dry. On July 4th the soles were horribly melted and hollowed out next to a campfire....yet they got me through the Presi Traverse the next day....and at least 125 miles since then. They're the boots that won't die but unfortunately I'm thinking I'll need to get new ones before the winter. It's very tempting to look at the top (or middle) of the line boots but then I think about how many hundreds of miles these have carried me over the last year and I think I'll just stick with another pair of Hi Tecs if I can find the same model!

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Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:08 am
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The one pair of Merrells that I had fell apart at the seams and I hated them. But it sounds like the rest of you had much better experiences with them so maybe my case is not the norm.

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Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:42 am
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Quote:
At first, I loved them. Light and fluffy. Then came the descent to Carter Notch and that's where the trouble began. One wrong step - rock digging in to ankle. More steps - ball of foot getting sore. More still - feet are wet despite avoiding all puddles. More, more still - toes slide forward on sloped ground despite the green Superfeet insoles which I transferred from my Crestas.


This was the first negative thing I have heard about Kayland boots. I am not surprised though because I tried the Zephyrs on and they felt kind of on the flimsy side. I have never been a fan of a Synthetic boot.

I wear through Merrells extremely fast but they are extremely comfortable. I really like the <a href="http://us.kayland.com/details.php?id=43"> Kayland Veritgo High </a> Its more of a midweight backpacking boot but I use it on day trips and they are great. No break-in, no leaking, no toe bang or heel slip, nice stiff shank for the wonderful rocks of the Whites. I find them to be great without aftermarket insoles. I use the Superfeet in my Koflach boots though.


Thu Oct 22, 2009 8:52 pm
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Just did some new boot shopping! My brother works at a shoe store and gets me 60% off Merrells, sooo awesome 8) Here is what I ordered and a break down of what I thought about each of the boots I tried on (a review of just walking around...no actual hiking involved):

I bought these, cost me $54.00 :P > http://www.merrell.com/US/en-us/Product ... Waterproof
VERY COMFORTABLE, I like how they fit. The nylon loops make me a bit nervous but should hold up.

These were choice 2> http://www.merrell.com/US/en-us/Product ... r-Gore-Tex
Joe said he bought these. They felt a little heavier than the others and seemed to bulky for what I am used to. Also the tongue was digging into my ankle, but that could go away when they are broken in. Also didn't care for the lower shoe lace hook, seems difficult to get the lace around (maybe Joe can give a review on this now that he has been wearing them awhile). They do look great though and are constructed very nicely. My brother said they are a very good boot.

Last choice was these> http://www.merrell.com/US/en-us/Product ... d-GORE-TEX
They were nice but the tongue wasn't staying in place. Nothing turns me off more than a tongue that doesn't stay snug against the ankle. As much as they cost everything should be perfect with them. They were a very nice looking boot and felt good.

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Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:38 pm
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I do own the pare that Jason mentioned, the Merrell Perimeter. Extremely waterproof. With gaiters on you can literally walk through a stream and your feet stay dry. But I reserve these for hikes that I'm pretty sure I'll be encountering water, rain, mud, crossings and such. For all other hikes I wear, these .

As mentioned, Vibram makes alot of different soles. I find that in almost all cases that the soles on all leather uppers are far to rigid, thus no grip. I have never had a problem hiking with the softer sole. There is no problem walking a jagged rock as some might think, it does not poke into your foot. In fact they just give you more confidence in your step because they have far superior grip than the rigid ones. They are also pretty water proof to a point. I've had these for 6 years, no idea how many miles, and are just now starting to show signs they may need to be retired. :( Not bad for the $100 I paid for them. :P

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Sat Nov 14, 2009 7:02 am
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Quote:
These were choice 2> http://www.merrell.com/US/en-us/Product ... r-Gore-Tex
Joe said he bought these. They felt a little heavier than the others and seemed to bulky for what I am used to. Also the tongue was digging into my ankle, but that could go away when they are broken in. Also didn't care for the lower shoe lace hook, seems difficult to get the lace around (maybe Joe can give a review on this now that he has been wearing them awhile). They do look great though and are constructed very nicely. My brother said they are a very good boot.



I took a look at these when I bought new boots in September. I got the exact opposite impression. I thought they felt very light, and seemed kind of flimsy. The display pair at the store even had creases in the leather, I assume from people flexing the boot while checking it out. After checking them out, I thought they were way over priced. For the same price, the Vasque Wasatch seemed to be a much sturdier boot. But I didn't get those either.


Sat Nov 14, 2009 7:45 am
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