Home Forums Campfire Forum Boots

Viewing 35 reply threads
  • Author
    Posts
    • Ptaylor
      Member
      Post count: 579

      After reading Going Trad I’ve been thinking about those LL Bean boots. It’s always a struggle for me to buy a pair of boots that are both quiet-light and have some support. Currently I wear the Danner Jackals. They are one of the few boots I know of that has a moderately thin sole and no extra heel riser. They are light, and I can feel the ground below my feet. However, they are NOT waterproof. And after just a year of hunting and hiking they are torn to shreds…1 year:evil: From what I hear they used to last longer when they were made in the USA.

      So a couple of questions for those of you out there. With the LL Bean hunting boots, have you noticed the extra heel riser to be a problem? I can see with the thin sole on the toes and ball of your foot you can feel ok, but that heel just looks son big and tough (in the picture). Do any of you that wear this boot have any comments?

      And are there other boots out there that you folks enjoy. Specifically ones lacking a lug sole?

      I’m almost to the point of getting custom, heavy duty mocassins with a “rock-climber” sole (1/16″ rubber grip) for the dry season. When I have the opportunity I slip my shoes off anyway. But sometimes I don’t and usually I wear shoes when walking around the woods anyway.

      preston

    • sinawalli
      Post count: 222

      Ptaylor wrote: After reading Going Trad I’ve been thinking about those LL Bean boots. It’s always a struggle for me to buy a pair of boots that are both quiet-light and have some support. Currently I wear the Danner Jackals. They are one of the few boots I know of that has a moderately thin sole and no extra heel riser. They are light, and I can feel the ground below my feet. However, they are NOT waterproof. And after just a year of hunting and hiking they are torn to shreds…1 year:evil: From what I hear they used to last longer when they were made in the USA.

      So a couple of questions for those of you out there. With the LL Bean hunting boots, have you noticed the extra heel riser to be a problem? I can see with the thin sole on the toes and ball of your foot you can feel ok, but that heel just looks son big and tough (in the picture). Do any of you that wear this boot have any comments?

      And are there other boots out there that you folks enjoy. Specifically ones lacking a lug sole?

      I’m almost to the point of getting custom, heavy duty mocassins with a “rock-climber” sole (1/16″ rubber grip) for the dry season. When I have the opportunity I slip my shoes off anyway. But sometimes I don’t and usually I wear shoes when walking around the woods anyway.

      preston

      Well I’ve owned all types of boots! Danners are good in that they have excellent customer service! Buy the USA made ones! Have a pair of Meindl Island Pros and they are a far site better than the Danners! Both are crappy for being quiet in the bush! I too own a couple of pairs of LL Bean Maine Hunting Boots. They are comfy although I find them warm in warm weather. My go to ones for early season are my Arrow Bush Boots! Just like 10″ high mocassins! Awesome quiet and comfortable hand made totally AFFORDABLE!!

    • James Harvey
      Member
      Post count: 1130

      Preston,

      Have a look at Nike’s SFB and Rocky C4’s. They’re just like wearing a pair of runners. The rocky’s are 120 bucks tyd from uspatriot. Danner reckons their Jackals are light at 42oz (I don’t know if that’s one or the pair), the Nike’s are 16oz/boot.

      If you’re going to carry a heavy load any kind of distance, these two are no good.

    • Col Mike
      Member
      Post count: 911

      Preston

      Well I am not a doctor or anatomical expert–but from my research and experience (32 years of humping heavy loads in stupid boots) forget all that stuff about ankle support. Your body evolved to carry moderate loads over difficult terrain—barefoot! Any sense of support you feel from leather uppers is wishful thinking. So try this–WWW.mukluks.com. I use the Yukon for cold dry conditions for wet you want the ones with the camo upper and rubber coating on the moose hide. I have both and wear them from 32deg. to minus 40 (aw not here different life) yes they are a bit pricey –well not really, my first pair of the Yukon worn daily lasted 6 years and they are only a few $ more then the bean. Milder then 32 I wear the moccasins on the same site (Apache model). They all have rubber soles so no scent. Have a pair of the bean boots and tried them again this year based on all that was said about them–I find them very restricting and that heel is a bother for stalking.

      Wearing the mukluks is trad. and they are lighter then my barefoot running shows–that Linda makes me wear in polite society. Haven’t worn a pair of real shoes or boots in 10 year–you will be surprised at the sensitivity these give you and another upside is your sense of balance improves dramatically. Follow the sizing info on the site any ? give them a call. These boots crossed Antarctica on Will Stegers first and only dog sledding expedition across that continent. Don’t get much better then that.

      Hey thanks again for that link to cybertracker just down loaded the books and logging off to start reading:D

      Semper Fi

      Mike

      edit note–Patty changed the name of the Apache to the Tracker moccasin which is a great description of what I use it for

    • William Warren
      Member
      Post count: 1384

      Not everyone can do the barefoot thing. I think it is easier if you never went down the ultra support road or if you switch while your still young. I’m 56 and I’ve worked and played outdoors all my life and good boots were always comfortable to me if they gave good support and fit properly. So I’m reading about the barefoot running and hiking trend and decide to give some Merrells a try and after just one day of wearing them my right arch dropped a little and plantar facsitis reared its ugly head. Fortunately I can tape my own foot and make it ease off. I’m just saying that some folks may have weak arches, etc and may be better off with boots with some support.

      As for the LL Beans, I don’t find the heel to be too high. It is lower than a cowboy boot riding heel which I find somewhat tedious to walk in for very far. I’ve worn out at least 3 pairs of the Bean boots and had them resoled a time or two. I think they are the best boot I’ve ever used for hunting. They are fairly light, quiet, waterproof and durable, lasting many years.

    • David Coulter
      Member
      Post count: 2270

      I’m a big fan of Red Wings for being in the woods, but I do hunt in a pair of Bean boots. They work quite well. dwc

    • Ptaylor
      Member
      Member
      Post count: 579

      Thanks fellas, great firsthand info!

      Sinawalli- are the bottom of those Arrow Mocs slick? Its hot and dry here for most of the season, and those look nice and cool.

    • sinawalli
      Post count: 222

      Ptaylor wrote: Thanks fellas, great firsthand info!

      Sinawalli- are the bottom of those Arrow Mocs slick? Its hot and dry here for most of the season, and those look nice and cool.

      Straight leather and slicker than calf slobber on wet ground! But I take tire crumbs and mix with contact cement and put a thin (.125″) on the soles on hat improves traction immensely!

    • James Harvey
      Member
      Post count: 1130

      colmike wrote: forget all that stuff about ankle support.

      My experience with all this, limited though it is, is a bit different. I have a dodgy right ankle from a pretty rough ligament tear, several years old. It means when I lift my knee up, instead of hanging in a generally well aligned fashion like my left, my right foot hangs with the outside very low.

      It’s not hard to imagine that causes problems stomping around rocky features in the middle of the night with heavy loads on my back. It’s an ankle that wants to roll at the best of times. So for me the value of a boot isn’t support, in any sense of it strengthening the joint, it’s value is in alignment. It keeps that wonky foot aligned so the natural ‘strength’ of the joint (as mike rightly points out) can do the work.

      Obviously my case is extreme because of my goofy stump, but the aid in alignment is applicable to smaller degrees with other factors, like fatigue, steep inclines, rough terrain. Put weight on your back and all your tolerances narrow even further and the amount of damage done by a roll is enhanced.

      All that being said I’ve met aborigines who’ve never worn a pair of shoes, I have a friend who runs several marathons a year barefoot. But they have the most hideous, gnarly feet I’ve ever seen 😉

    • sinawalli
      Post count: 222

      ausjim wrote: [quote=colmike]forget all that stuff about ankle support.

      My experience with all this, limited though it is, is a bit different. I have a dodgy right ankle from a pretty rough ligament tear, several years old. It means when I lift my knee up, instead of hanging in a generally well aligned fashion like my left, my right foot hangs with the outside very low.

      It’s not hard to imagine that causes problems stomping around rocky features in the middle of the night with heavy loads on my back. It’s an ankle that wants to roll at the best of times. So for me the value of a boot isn’t support, in any sense of it strengthening the joint, it’s value is in alignment. It keeps that wonky foot aligned so the natural ‘strength’ of the joint (as mike rightly points out) can do the work.

      Obviously my case is extreme because of my goofy stump, but the aid in alignment is applicable to smaller degrees with other factors, like fatigue, steep inclines, rough terrain. Put weight on your back and all your tolerances narrow even further and the amount of damage done by a roll is enhanced.

      All that being said I’ve met aborigines who’ve never worn a pair of shoes, I have a friend who runs several marathons a year barefoot. But they have the most hideous, gnarly feet I’ve ever seen 😉

      Bare feet isn’t for you if you already have feet issues! I am a bare foot person who rarely wears shoes unless at work. I run bare feet as well and my feet aren’t gnarly, although there is a thick layer of callous and skin on my soles!

    • Troy Warner
      Post count: 239

      I have a pair of the Bean Main Hunting Shoe’s that I wore on an Idaho elk hunt in very rocky, steep terrain, and they gave my ankles plenty of support and I could feel the ground very well. I actually believe the flexible rubber sole of the boot helped out more than a stiff soled boot while climbing around in the slide rock and cliffs by giving me a better grip.

      For extremely warm weather hunting I use a fancy moisture wicking sock liner next to my skin and a light weight good quality hiking sock over those, my socks are damp at the end of the day as well as the inside of the boot but my feet are comfortable all day.

      I usually get an hour or so in the early afternoon that I can take my boots off if I feel I need to, and take a short snooze under a shade tree, just to give the animals a chance to realize I’m harmless of course. 😉

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      I really like my Beans for most of my bowhunting. They’re really quiet, with a reasonable amount of support.

      When I know I’m going to be in really steep, rocky terrain (such as the places we chukar hunt, etc), I have a pair of Meindl Denalis that are excellent. Great footbed and traction, with excellent support. But they’re stiff enough that they wouldn’t be my first choice for stalking.

    • paleoman
      Member
      Post count: 918

      Short and sweet here as usual….Bean boots are excellent until colder weather. Heel never caused me any issues. Negatives are they don’t breath and the chain tread slips on damp dirt and snow. Have worn them for countless miles and will keep doing so. My feet ” know” them.

    • Greg Ragan
      Member
      Post count: 201

      paleoman wrote: Short and sweet here as usual….Bean boots are excellent until colder weather. Heel never caused me any issues. Negatives are they don’t breath and the chain tread slips on damp dirt and snow. Have worn them for countless miles and will keep doing so. My feet ” know” them.

      Same experiences here. Love my Beans! Have 2 pair and occasionally wear them around the house or if it is raining…that comfy!

    • wahoo
      Member
      Post count: 415

      I’ve tried light weight boots but hunting elk I find I blow thru them. I still use a heavy boot Lowa Baffin pros with leather insides real comfy great traction.

    • grumpy
      Member
      Post count: 962

      Duct Tape.

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Update – I’ve been using Schnee’s insulated pac boots as my “go to” winter boots for years, but earlier this year I bought a pair of their uninsulated “Guide” boots for early-season hunting, and used them quite a bit until it got too cold for an uninsulated boot. While they are more expensive than the Bean Hunters, I’m now convinced that they are worth it.

      Why do I think they are worth the extra $$? They have a more sturdy sole than the Bean boot, thus a little better support, without giving up any of the sensitivity and quietness that makes this type of boot so great for stalking. They have thicker, higher-quality leather in the upper. Additionally, heavy leather ‘tongue savers’ are included which increase the longevity of this part of the boot.

      Also, the last time I ordered a pair of Bean boots, I was told I had to order them either with all speed hooks, or all eyelets – I couldn’t do 1/2 and 1/2. This is silly, imo – ideally a boot should have eyelets on the lower, exposed half of the boot where you don’t really need speed hooks anyway (and where hooks tend to snag/catch on stuff in the field), and speed hooks on the upper half of the boot that is protected by your pants. The Schnee’s are set up this way – no special ordering involved.

      Frankly, the last pair of Bean boots I bought just felt a kind of flimsy in comparison to the Schnee’s Guides.

      Schnee’s has the same “no questions asked” guarantee and excellent customer service that Bean has, in my experience. Their pac boots are handmade in Montana, and are completely rebuildable for a reasonable fee. But you probably won’t need to look into that for a long, long time.

    • Ptaylor
      Member
      Member
      Post count: 579

      Bruce, do the Schnees have that raised heel like the LL beans do?

      I came to the conclusion this season that no boot will ever be tough and quiet. I just have to remove the. And stalk in bare feet or socks.

    • Patrick
      Member
      Post count: 1148

      How about these guys, since they advertise in Traditional Bowhunter and are a BHA sponsor:

      http://www.kenetrek.com/Kenetrek-Pac-Boots/products/1/

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Ptaylor wrote: Bruce, do the Schnees have that raised heel like the LL beans do?

      I came to the conclusion this season that no boot will ever be tough and quiet. I just have to remove the. And stalk in bare feet or socks.

      Preston – yeah, they have a bit of a raised heel, similar to the Beans. Clearly, it’s a trade-off. For serious stalking, I’d rather not have the heel, but for the other 95% of my on foot travel, I like it.

      Patrick wrote: How about these guys, since they advertise in Traditional Bowhunter and are a BHA sponsor:

      http://www.kenetrek.com/Kenetrek-Pac-Boots/products/1/

      Patrick – I’ve heard lots of good things about the Kenetreks as well, and I have a couple friends that swear by their mountain boots. I just haven’t had a chance to try them, and with the boots I have now, I imagine it will be a long time before I’m in the market again. Have you tried their pac boots?

    • Col Mike
      Member
      Post count: 911

      Brennan time for you to chime in:D

    • sinawalli
      Post count: 222

      One thing about the Beans is that traction is marginal on wet grass, and really sucks in snow. Wore them last Nov. in a foothills hunt in deep snow. Had to change them out for my Danner Canadians. Steep hills were darn near impossible to negotiate.

      Col. Mike, how are those Trackers?

    • grumpy
      Member
      Post count: 962

      Grew up wearing bean boots, or something like them in the Adirondacks/Green Mts. Slipped in the snow. Had to walk uphill sideways.

      Now I wear sneakers until it snows, then switch to snowmobile boots. Rubber bottoms/nylon uppers with a lug sole, and thick felt liners (Tolstoy mentions felt boots in War and Peace). Hate them, but they are warm, and give good traction. I have worn sneakers (with a lot of socks) in below freezing weather for hours in comfort. Remember the shoes/boots are to keep you dry and prevent abrasion. It is the insulation that keeps you warm. In extreme cases I have put plastic bags over my socks inside my sneakers (kinda like stocking foot waders). Worked!! Just remember to buy shoes big enough to accommodate the socks without cutting off circulation. Yes, I have summer sneakers, and winter sneakers (if I tell you the sizes you’ll laugh at me).

      I actually bought a pair of combat boots, feels like walking in wooden shoes.

    • Col Mike
      Member
      Post count: 911

      Bill

      Ok for the last time my thoughts on this thread. The trackers are all I wear down to about 20F then to the camuks which are good to about -50F. http://www.mukluks.com

      Yes pricey but mine are into their 8th year of almost daily wear–out there.

      Well. your already a barefoot guy–but I shudder to think what the mountain guys will find when they give up those heavy pack boots for something that really works.With out the weight.

      You know. I guess I have worn every boot made and humped more miles then I even want to remember all with sore feet. Trust me folks on this one I know–you DON’T need support for your feet or ankles–do your own research.8)

      The old grunt who continues to learn:shock:

    • David Coulter
      Member
      Post count: 2270

      Just found the stitches rotted off on the heals of my llbean boots. I was going to order a new pair but saw they wouldn’t be a availaable til February. I called in and found i can get them resewn for third the price and in a third the wait. For $1.75 they’ll put lace hooks on,too. They are not the right boot for everything but they cover a lot of ground. Best, dwc

    • Patrick
      Member
      Post count: 1148

      Smithhammer wrote: Patrick – I’ve heard lots of good things about the Kenetreks as well, and I have a couple friends that swear by their mountain boots. I just haven’t had a chance to try them, and with the boots I have now, I imagine it will be a long time before I’m in the market again. Have you tried their pac boots?

      No, I’ve never tried them, but I’m considering getting a pair.

      colmike wrote: You know. I guess I have worn every boot made and humped more miles then I even want to remember all with sore feet. Trust me folks on this one I know–you DON’T need support for your feet or ankles–do your own research.8)

      I had a pair of heavy hiking boots a number of years ago, and sold them because they were miserably heavy. Since then, I’ve avoided heavy boots like the plague. I will say though, here in Michigan, I almost exclusively hunt using my uninsulated rubber boots, and they work great. When the temp drops below freezing, I’ll bring my boot blankets along. My point though is that since the rubber is not rigid at all, I have to be very careful as to not twist an ankle. I’ve come close on numerous occasions.

      I’d like to get a pair of those Mukluk Trackers, but they don’t make them in size 14. 👿

    • John Dilts
      Post count: 135

      My wife made these kamiks for me the inside is an ankle hight duffle sock. The middle is a water proof lined material. The outside is sheep on the top deer on the bottom. When I go in the cabin i leave the outside layer outside so the snow on them never melts. There quite and warm and you can feel the ground under your feet. I know they wouldn’t work for a lot of you because you still come across water but they work for me fall to end of spring.

    • Abel
      Post count: 29

      Patrick wrote: How about these guys, since they advertise in Traditional Bowhunter and are a BHA sponsor:

      http://www.kenetrek.com/Kenetrek-Pac-Boots/products/1/

      I don’t have the Pac boots, but the Kennetrek Mountain Extreme 400’s, awesome boots. It’s a waterproof leather boot that’s actually waterproof. They were my go to boot for everythign up here from my 10 day spike shunts for goats to day hunts for deer up here in AK. Now my main boot is a Scarpa Mount Blanc, but those are sheep and goat boots only, they make easy work of the mountains.

    • sinawalli
      Post count: 222

      colmike wrote: Bill

      Ok for the last time my thoughts on this thread. The trackers are all I wear down to about 20F then to the camuks which are good to about -50F. http://www.mukluks.com

      Yes pricey but mine are into their 8th year of almost daily wear–out there.

      Well. your already a barefoot guy–but I shudder to think what the mountain guys will find when they give up those heavy pack boots for something that really works.With out the weight.

      You know. I guess I have worn every boot made and humped more miles then I even want to remember all with sore feet. Trust me folks on this one I know–you DON’T need support for your feet or ankles–do your own research.8)

      The old grunt who continues to learn:shock:

      Good stuff Mike! Hard sell to those who don’t get it!

    • Fallguy
      Member
      Post count: 317

      Just came across these on another forum. The price is right. They are supposedly the Military issue.

      http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IAVJDMC/ref=pe_385040_128020140_TE_3p_dp_2

    • coldpak
      Post count: 60

      Mike do tell. I’m all ears tired of buying boots now have worked so far.

    • coldpak
      Post count: 60

      That have not work so far. Cross trainers to me are the most comfortable. They don’t do well with water.

    • David Coulter
      Member
      Post count: 2270

      I last wrote that the stitching on my LLBean hunting boots had rotted. I sent them in to have them re-sewn. They fixed the boots, added lace hooks, threw in new laces and insoles, all for less than $19 and free shipping. Pretty good deal. dwc

    • Col Mike
      Member
      Post count: 911

      coldpak wrote: Mike do tell. I’m all ears tired of buying boots now have worked so far.

      First for Fallguy

      Those AF boots (and yes I have worn them on Adak) are worthless–my opinion.

      For coldpak

      See this link http://www.mukluks.com/

      Yep pricy but my pair are 10 yrs old and still keeping me warm. For wet conditions and overall you want the Camuks. I also have the Yukon model for very dry cold conditions.

      As the site states–best hunting boot you will ever own.

      Mike

    • coldpak
      Post count: 60

      Yes Sir Mike bought a pair this year.

      Yukon. Perfect

      Thank you.

    • Fallguy
      Member
      Post count: 317

      Thanks Mike I was hoping you would have some first hand knowledge on them. I have the Steger Mukluks and they are far and away the best winter boot I have ever owned.

Viewing 35 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.