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Maybe the boots don't fit? (x-post from Gear)

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Maybe the boots don't fit? (x-post from Gear)

Postby Jaskic » Tue Jul 16, 2013 12:34 am

Two years ago I purchased a pair of La Sportive Makalu boots. Overall they have been great. I've used them on class 4 rocky hiking in the northeast and with crampons in the Cascades. They've been with me on three climbs now. But this last one I noticed, more so than the first, that my toes hurt (pretty bad) on the descent. When I am finally done the big toe on each foot feels like the nail or nail bed is bruised. As in very painful to the touch.

So, I was initially hoping to get an easy solution for this, i.e. wrapping my big toes before I put the boots on or orthotics or some other solution. Someone mentioned to me that this actually means that the boots don't fit. Unfortunately, I have a climb on Shuksan scheduled for a month from now. I know these boots, and they are well on their way to being broken in. So I am afraid to get new boots now and try to break them in just walking around in them for the next few weeks and them jump right onto a serious mountain with them.

Looking for thoughts/advice/guidance from the experts!!

Thanks!
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Re: Maybe the boots don't fit? (x-post from Gear)

Postby robertjoy » Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:53 am

Many years ago I had the same symptoms. I discovered that it was not boots that were too small, it was that the nail of my big to was rubbing imperceptibly as it touched the area above the toe. This is worse on long downhill sections. My nails were maybe a bit long. but the problem was they had a well defined edge where they had been cut. My solution was to trim as short as possible, but most important, use a file and emery board to smooth the edge of the nail. This eliminated my problem.
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Re: Maybe the boots don't fit? (x-post from Gear)

Postby ExcitableBoy » Tue Jul 16, 2013 4:09 am

robertjoy wrote:the nail of my big to was rubbing imperceptibly as it touched the area above the toe. This is worse on long downhill sections. My nails were maybe a bit long


I've had the same problem. I have to remember to diligently give myself mani-pedis.
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Re: Maybe the boots don't fit? (x-post from Gear)

Postby Jaskic » Tue Jul 16, 2013 1:22 pm

My nails we're cut pretty short, but I guess they could be shorter, so that's one strategy to definitely try. I might try doubling up on socks as well just to provide additional cushion at the front.

If I can avoid having to buy brand new never been tried boots 30 days before a major (for me at least) alpine climb, then that would be ideal :)
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Re: Maybe the boots don't fit? (x-post from Gear)

Postby WillP » Fri Jul 19, 2013 7:01 am

I recently experienced exactly the same thing, with exactly the same boots - a three hour hike gave me significant bruising and abrasion just below the nail on the big toe (one foot only though). And these boots, also, have been well-used in the past. I suspect, in my case, it's because I haven't used them in the last few years - perhaps the leather has stiffened up and changed shape somewhat. The double-tongue design likely has something to do with it too. Obviously this is all irrelevant if you've been using your boots recently, but I'm going to try to walk mine back into shape before I start shopping again. Give it a try, even if it doesn't work, the pain will be character-building.
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