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TOPIC: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India

Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 9 months ago #858

I am looking to buy a shoe which I can use in Denali as well.
Plastic boots though are heavy ..proved its metal. so was relying on them.
Keeping an eye on this in parallel
www.rei.com/product/733952/la-sportiva-n...ts-mens#ReviewHeader
Way too much without a discount.
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Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 9 months ago #859

These boots are poles apart in their utility.

Lined plastic boots vs Single layer leather boots. I guess its about what one is comfortable with.

Invernos allow you to dry the liners after two or three days of grind. Which is more often the case on Denali. There will be a lot of lugging, hiking and skiing on Denali. So it will be grinding and the shoes will be soaking wet inside often. That option (drying the liner) wont be there on the Nepals.

Another thing to consider on Denali would be the temperatures. It will be freakin cold. Leather has a tendency to freeze in extreme temperatures. So that's 2-0 in favour of Inverno. I think based on these things and the fact that your first choice was the Inverno, stick with it. Koflach Degre comes close to your requirement in case you are not able to locate the Invernos.
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Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 9 months ago #860

Thanks lot!!! Really helpful!
I almost spotted an Inverno. Lets see. Else will go for a koflach.
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Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 9 months ago #861

Friends, moved this to a new thread. Technical mountaineering boots deserve a separate thread for discussion :-).
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Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 9 months ago #862

Inverno are good no doubt about it. But guys any thoughts about these Asolo AFS 8000. I personally like them, though I haven't used them yet. Recently, I observed that not many sites (US vendors of course) are selling them. But, I always though these are above Inverno. Why I am saying that is, these also double boot type but still less bulky as compared to Inverno or koflach

thoughts ?
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Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 9 months ago #864

These Asolos are good. True! not many vendors stock these. The only downside with boots of this design is the flexibility in the walk mode. Although that very characteristic makes it perfect for technical ascents and at 340 Euros I think its a steal.

I briefly had a Zamberlan 8000 RR. Fantastic boots. Had to return because of a complaint I had with the zipper on the integrated gaiters. Can be had for about 45000 INR. Zamberlan is one of the few brands which still handcrafts its boots. Of course there are 6000, 4000 and 3000 variants too.

Another fantastic piece of work is the Scarpa Phantom range. You have one for almost any sort of mountaineering endeavour. Light, fast (yes fast - really fast lacing system) and terrific insulation.
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Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 8 months ago #998

Hi everyone,

I couldn't resist jumping in this topic as this is a topic of my passion.
The advice and insight provided by most of the members here is incomparable to anything on other forums out there.
But one thing seems to be missed out for some reason.
The fit of the footwear is equally important as the quality of the maker, now feet not only come in different sizes but different shapes too.
Some are wide and short while some can be narrow and long(me), some might have high instep, some could be flat with low arches.
But there are only certain types of boots out there, so it is important to try a few different brands and models and see which one is for you.

Here are few examples:

If you are looking at 3-4 season boots
Wide foot with heavy volume: Meindl Burma pro MFS (the memory foam adjusts to your foot shape in around 10mins), Scarpa Ranger gtx activ, Scarpa Baltoro(medium to wide)
Narrow low volume: Asolo Fugitive(low volume), Asolo Flames(medium volume) Asolo Powermatic 200(low to medium volume due to pulley system in laces), Salomon Quest 4D(Narrow heel cup+ wider toe box)

If you are looking at 4-5 season mountaineering boots
Scarpa Manta( med to wide foot)
Asolo Sherpa gtx (low to medium)
La Sportiva should fall in the same category as Asolo

P.S. Footwear I own:
Asolo Sherpa
Asolo Creek gtx
Teva trail event
Inov-8 Terrafly 313 gtx
Brooks Glycerin 11(B width)
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Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 8 months ago #999

Ravi makes an excellent point. IDEALLY one must never buy boots without having tried them. To further emphasise the point he is making, if you tried two pairs of boots not just of the same brand, but the same make/model, there is a good chance that you will feel the difference in the fit. The difference in fit is magnified with brands like Zamberlan who handcraft their boots; further requiring the climber to try before buying.

Unfortunately, where we live; doesnt afford us that luxury. Just getting hold of the footwear seems to make it all worth it. You can do stuff with insoles, socks of varying thickness, layering etc to adjust, but it wont be the same as "having tried the boots at your kitters place" before paying for them.

@Satya
I think we already established the suitability of Plastics (Inverno or Degre) over the Nepal Evo's in your case (Denali). I used the Evo's older version; Nepal Extreme recently.

Pros -- Agility, Lightness, Comfortable
Cons -- Cold, Cold, Cold, Freezin freakin cold. (I type that as my feet are soaking in hot saline solution right this moment). You DO NOT want that on Denali. (Nepals are insulated alright; but that's another discussion)

One more thing to consider on Denali is that the lattitude it is located in is way beyond (further north) compared to the lattitudes that the Himalayas are located in. So 6168 will FEEL similar to a 7000+m Himalayan peak. That equates to TOUGH as it is. The low temperatures wont make it easy for you. Point - Stick to plastics.
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Last Edit: 6 years, 7 months ago by jerrypothen.

Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 7 months ago #1042

Hi Jerry,

I am finally going to buy the boots after trying them in a store in the second week of Nov.

I have now two choices:

1. Scarpa Inverno
2. La Sportiva Baruntse

I need to scale

1. Aconcagua
2. Denali

I came across many blogs including the one below:
coldthistle.blogspot.in/2010/04/la-sportiva-baruntse.html

where people say Baruntse worked well in Denali and light weight too. Of course some recommended to carry an Over boot.
Whats your thought on this?

I am getting a good deal of 437$ for Baruntse.

Cheers,
Satya
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Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 7 months ago #1043

Hi Satya,

I saw your post a couple of hours ago. I didn’t want to post a shoddy response, so I waited till I got to the notebook. Better late than bad I guess, since this involves you picking something that you are probably gonna use (or abuse ;))for the next few seasons. I check out cold thistle too, once in a while.

Your Post:
Satya we've got to realise one thing that you, I and Dane (and the readers too) are all different people with different feet, different styles, different comfort zones and different preferences. What works for me might not work for you and vice versa. So I will try my best to give a modular solution which will help you decide on the best boots for you instead of just naming ‘ONE’ boot and suggesting that you go for it. That would not be right at all.

Dane:
There is a lot of great stuff on Danes blog, and a lot to learn. Its interesting he calls the Baruntse a warmer version of the Nepal Top. I am actually in gross disagreement there. The Nepal tops were designed with the Alps in mind. Technical mountaineering boots for the summer alpine climbs but with very little insulation, if at all. Because it was extremely popular, La Sportiva redesigned and developed the Nepal Top into the insulated Nepal Extreme for winter technical mountaineering and over the years it has further evolved into what we know today as the Nepal Evo GTX. Extremely light (insulated) single layer technical mountaineering boot. So,the Baruntse is a different line altogether (marketed by LS as a winter work boot; BUT just as nimble and warm as the Spantik). Its probably not as agile (but agile enough for most mountains) as the Nepal extreme/Evo GTX, but much warmer and in my opinion an all rounder.

Me:
I use the Nepal Extreme and in the past have used Scarpas (Inverno and Vega), Koflachs among others. Nepal Extreme is insulated but in extreme Himalayan conditions the insulation is not good enough. I am still under medication and might even have to get through a surgery sooner in case the condition doesn’t improve. So, with that background, you might ask- would I trade the Nepals for the Baruntse and then opt for the overboots? Nope. I just love the lightness and agility of the Nepals. If I had the option to change it for another boot, I would probably consider the Phantom Guide. But otherwise I would stick with the Nepals. Unless it involves climbing something more than 7500m, I would still take a chance with the Nepals (minus the overboots). Caution: This is only a personal preference. I am not recommending this for others.
Personally, if I have to go for a light boot and then pick an overboot too, then I might as well pick a warmer heavily insulated boot like the Millet 8000 or Spantik (even Olympus Mons for that matter) or Boreal G1 Expedition or Zamberlan 8000 RR etc etc. This choice adds only a few hundred grams to the Nepals or Phantoms, but you can avoid the boot+overboot mess and its much warmer when you need it in extreme conditions. Personally, I think that system (Baruntse+Overboot) wont work for me. I am of the same school of thought as Loneranger. Light is fast. While the light=fast theory might not necessarily work in the Himalayas one has to 'along with lightness' be able to improvise and adapt. So that’s that.

Denali?
If it were I doing Denali (and I do ski a lot), then I would actually invest in proper ski boots and leave my mountaineering boots behind. I would go for boots like the Scarpa Maestrale (or If my mom found me that rich bride; most seem to be taken – the Scarpa Alien or the Dynafit TLT 5 Mountain TF-X; I think the TLT 6 is out too; ‘cause at close to 900 USD they are quite frankly out of my budget). BUT nobody exactly skis on Denali. Ski’s are more a means of transportation and meant for lugging around the sledge that you will be required to haul up and down between different camps on Denali. So you can probably give it a miss. Mind you the Scarpa Alien and Dynafit TF-X can give any proper mountaineering boot a run for their money. PLUS skiing in mountaineering boots is terrible. The whole set up – climbing boots, bindings, short skis etc; the whole nine yards is terrible. It is meant only for transportation and it is not fun skiing downhill in that set up. So for me its different boots for mountaineering and a different set for skiing/ski mountaineering. My two pence worth, but you should probably give it a miss.

So lets stick to your specific requirement; “how we can make do with a good/best possible mountaineering boot”. Something which will offer you versatility across different conditions.

You:
I never knew you were open to other options as well.

1. Between the Scarpa (Inverno) and Nepals (your original choices), there is no doubt that Scarpa is much better suited to the rigours on Denali and will get you to the top of most mountains after that.

2. Baruntse is better than the Scarpa Inverno (better is a relative term) because it will be warmer (you really need that), is modular (removable liner – Inverno is modular too but the baruntse liner is warmer than Inverno) and is much more agile than any plastic boot. I am surprised that Dane believes the Baruntse is warmer than the Spantik. Ask La Sportiva, and they will tell you that the Spantiks are warmer and slightly better than the Baruntses.

3. If you choose the Baruntse, talk to the agency that is organising this for you. Ask them if they have the bindings for Baruntse. I know the Spantiks are compatible with Fritschi Touring bindings. Not sure about the Baruntse.

4. To further soup it up, Koflach Plastic Degre’s are a good option too. They are compatible with Randonee ski bindings and are warm and excellent for general mountaineering. If you know your size for sure, Koflach Degre's can be arranged here.

So! If its just a little bit of lugging around on skis on Denali, but mostly general mountaineering for you, Baruntses are an excellent choice. Do consider the Spantiks and Scarpa Phantoms (Guide and 6000, more expensive than the Baruntse but worth the money in the long run). Plastics are of course classics. But I think their time is up. Agile, light and fast is the order of the day. That said, I know people who still swear by plastics. Both the Koflach Degre and Scarpa Inverno (even Vega’s) are excellent boots for general mountaineering and should also be compatible with randonee ski bindings. Most operators in Denali should have this set up. If you look up deliberately, you might even spot the Invernos for under USD 300.

I hope this helps.

Do let us know which one you will zero in on? Reasons for your choice? And most importantly, did my post help at all in helping you make that choice? .. LOL.

Happy shopping.
Jerry
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Last Edit: 6 years, 7 months ago by jerrypothen.

Re: Technical Mountaineering Boots in India 6 years, 5 months ago #1060

Hi Jerry,

Bought myself a Baruntse.
Spantik was good but I couldnt find a size that fits ...

:) Thanks for the research.

Cheers,
Satya
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