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Shoes or Boots?

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Shoes or Boots?

Postby dustyj » Fri Jan 01, 2010 12:04 am

What's the better way to go when on talus and class 3/4 scrambling? Shoes or Boots? I've always been a boots guy but now I'm seeing that more and more people are using shoes.
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Postby JHH60 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 12:12 am

Maybe I'm a weenie but I like boots on talus, especially if using a heavy pack. Nice to have a little ankle support and protection, especially if the rock is loose and shifts underfoot. For class 3/4 scrambling a light, sticky soled approach shoe is ideal.
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Postby Day Hiker » Fri Jan 01, 2010 1:08 am

I have never been able to relate to the ankle-support thing. It just doesn't apply to me; I don't have problems related to the strength of my ankles on any terrain. So "ankle support" is like dividing by zero; it just doesn't compute.

But I do use boots for situations where rocks can hit my ankles, specifically talus slopes. I used to wear running shoes for everything except snow and/or VERY cold temperatures, but I did enough stuff in talus that banged up my ankles a bit, so I started using light boots for that. On smaller scree, I'm still just fine in running shoes. It's when the rocks are big enough to rotate and flip up and hit my ankles that it becomes a problem.

I also use boots for off-trail desert hiking, where there is a lot of picky cactus and miscellaneous anti-human desert crap that will nail my feet, right through thin running shoes.

So, for me, boots: snow OR below 20F OR "mean" talus OR picky desert crap.

Running shoes for virtually everything else. When it is cold (but dry), I wear mountaineering socks with the running shoes. You can probably go down well below 20F in running shoes in dry situations if you have the right pair of socks.
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Postby JHH60 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 2:15 am

When I'm talking "boots" I mean something like LS Trango S Evos, not Scarpa Invernos. Protects your ankles against abrasion and provides a little bit of support. The Trangos are actually pretty good climbing shoes too, though not as good as approach shoes or real rock shoes.
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Postby dustyj » Fri Jan 01, 2010 3:37 am

I'm currently using Trango S Evo's and am pretty happy with them. I just don't know if I'm missing anything.
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Shoes

Postby BLong » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:04 pm

In mu opinion, the technology that has gone into shoes recently (still medial posts offering better support, grippy lugged soles, etc) makes shoes the obvious winner in all but the most demanding conditions. I have found that the extra weight of boots is not worth the added benefits unless demanded by cold temperatures.
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Postby gomez13 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:51 pm

I'm with DayHiker on this, When I first started hiking- climbing, everyone wore boots for everything short of rock climbing. These days I'm wearing La Sportiva Cirques for just about everything except bad talus scrambles and deep snow. Even the boots I wear are pretty lightweight. Alot of times I wear some short gaiters with my approach shoes if I'm on loose scree. I've even worn strap on crampons with the approach shoes.
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Postby mconnell » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:57 pm

JHH60 wrote:Maybe I'm a weenie but I like boots on talus, especially if using a heavy pack. Nice to have a little ankle support and protection, especially if the rock is loose and shifts underfoot. For class 3/4 scrambling a light, sticky soled approach shoe is ideal.


Unless you are wearing rigid, high top boots, boots don't really give any ankle support. If you want to keep from rolling your ankles, get a shoe/boot with a heel cup that fits correctly. I agree that boots will protect your ankles from bouncing rocks but that's about it.
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Postby JHH60 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 8:16 pm

Perhaps I should have said "stability" and protection. Agreed that the Trangos don't give much direct support but they do seem to help me avoid rolling my ankles, especially when tired after a long day. Time to stop typing and go run off last night's dinner!
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Postby dustyj » Fri Jan 01, 2010 8:20 pm

I think I am going to have to track down some approach shoes for this summer's climbing trip.
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Postby EManBevHills » Fri Jan 01, 2010 8:52 pm

I ponder this question almost every time I'm about to "get out".

If I'm carrying more than a 30 pound pack, I generally opt for boots. It may be habit -- maybe an old belief system, -- but I feel more "surefooted" in boots under a heavy load.

If I'm going to be in deep snow, I prefer to be in ski boots rather than Invernos. :D
However, I have carried ski boots more frequently the past few years in the local Mountains (if skinning was likely to be a pain) and instead hiked up in a treated leather boot. (Think Baldy.)

If I'm going to be on a lot of scree, I bring lightweight gaiters regardless. And if there's going to be some scrambling, the shoes Dave Daley recommended a while back are great, 5.10 Camp Fours.
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Postby gomez13 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:53 am

My partner swears by his Camp 4's. My big old 13 plus size feet seem to fit better in La Sportiva products, but once I get into the 30 pound range on the pack the soles start to feel like paper at the end of the day. My favorite light boot these days is the Asolo Fugitive GTX, did some 5.5-5.6 slab in them last summer.
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Postby MoapaPk » Sat Jan 02, 2010 4:02 am

Stiff soles are more important for talus than high tops. You want to be able to cut into the slope as if you were skiing.
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Postby scottmitch » Sat Jan 02, 2010 6:56 am

shoes -- for the same reasons as dayhiker and gomez
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Postby drpw » Sat Jan 02, 2010 6:03 pm

Low cut approach shoes for everything but snow.
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