Re: Kemetrek Boots
Only thing about the Kenetreks I've noticed is that they have a full nylon shank and are very stiff. To back this up, they are set up to accept mountaineering crampons. Two + decades of technical mountaineering has taught me a bit about boots. Walking around in Kenetreks would be about like walking around in my stiff plastic mountaineering boots--that's not much fun for trail or x-country work. On snow/ice w/ or w/o crampons, that stiffness in a boot is great, but not elsewhere. Several pairs of mountaineering boots of varying stiffness and design used in very varied terrain over the years has taught me that.
I'm curious what model of Danner the other poster was referencing. Danner has some mediocre boots made offshore and some really good boots made here in the US. You get what you pay for.
My pick for an all around big game boot is their GoreTex Raptor. I've had the same pair over 8 years (using the Danner waterproofing product exclusively, which is the best waterproofing product I've ever used and I've used a few). I've put many miles on these boots on trail and cross country, often very steep and treacherous, many times with packs in excess of 100 lbs. packing out several elk, deer and bear all killed in designated wilderness. Over that time period, from summer to winter, 70F to 0F, they've been very comfortable.
Now, that being said if you are on a sheep hunt in AK where it is very steep pretty mcuh all the time, you may want a boot that is stiffer, to a point, than the Raptor. Perhaps a well broken in Kenetrek would be the way to go for this particular hunt, that is, if they do break in and become a little less stiff.
There is no perfect boot for everything. Each design is a compromise.
But, AK has a way of destroying boots. A pair of work boots I bought for wildland firefighting that did OK down here, were in sad shape (and so were my feet) after a week in the tundra north of the artic circle fighting a fire we jumped up there in '91 when I was a smokejumper. Got back to the continental US and picked up a pair of White's Smokejumpers and never looked back--my wallet was empty, but my feet happy. Don't buy junk boots if you're actually going to use them. If you road hunt, well...no big deal what you buy, but if you're packing stuff out of designated wilderness areas on your own, usually solo, like I am, get the right boot or boots for the job. Good luck.
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Last edited by jmden; 02-03-2011 at 12:29 PM.