Sunday, October 04, 2009

new boots

new boots
Originally uploaded by wereldmuis.

These are my new boots, as I stand in the Greeley Ponds parking lot on my first trip to the White Mountains.

One of the reasons I didn't do as much hiking this summer is that my boots, a pair of Lowa Renegade GTXs, are in such bad shape. They're nearly ten years old. They've become leaky with some pretty big holes in the toes. And the soles are worn unevenly; in some places the treads are gone.

I tried to buy a pair of identical-but-new Lowas because I was so happy with their fit and flexibility. While Lowa still makes the Renegade GTX, it seems they have resized them. I bought a new pair, same size as my old, but my orthotics, which were cut to fit my current pair exactly, did not fit into the new boots. And the next size up was far too big.

So I knew I was doomed to have to go shopping for hiking boots, an activity that I dread, and I procrastinated.

It got to the end of the hiking season and I still hadn't gone on a backpacking trip, mostly because of the boots. I had one weekend targeted to go backpacking, so I could procrastinate no longer. I went to REI and EMS, and after much suffering and despair, I finally wound up with a pair of Asolo Styngers. These are about as light as my Lowas (about 2 lbs), and seem to fit me about right (not as well as the Lowas, unfortunately).

I was going to use these boots under non-ideal conditions. I had bought them one week before my backpacking trip, so there was no time to break them in. And I'd be hiking in the Whites, unfamiliar terrain. It would be a good test of the boots!

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