Location: Base of the Bluemountains aka Gods Country
Re: Kemetrek Boots
I have a pare of them They are okay. But I like my La Sportivas a lot better. But they are a Very good boot but every budies foot are differant so just because some one likes them does not mean they are the best for you. I would look at lowas kenetreks and La sportivas.
These are without question the best boots I have ever worn. I have used my Extremes for 2 years now. Been to Alaska bear hunting. Went to the Wyoming backcountry deer and elk huning and Utah deer and elk hunting. They came through with flying colors in every situation I came across. From Riding horse back for 6 hours to hiking with a 50lbs pack up 30 degree slopes for hours to sitting around camp. Rain, snow,mud and river crossings the whole 9 yards they came through every time. I liked the Extremes so much I bought a pair of the cowboy pac boots. So far they have proven to be everything I had hoped for.
I tried on a pair of their Mountain Extreme boots at the NRA convention a couple of years ago. It was slipping my feet into pillows. I was sold. I bought a pair and never looked back. Since then I have tried a couple other boots. I have come to the conclusion that buying boots is like buying good glass - you get what you pay for. The high end boots are just that. Schnee, Lowa, Meindl, etc. are all quality with subtle differences. Some feet just feel better in certain makes. If you run a "Kenetrek" search on LRH, you should find a similar thread. In it, I posted a reply with a link or reference to an article that reviewed all the top end boots. It was unbiased and a practical guide.
My buddy has the same size foot as me. He has the Kennetreks Mt Extreme 400. I have the Cabela's Alaskan Miendls (400). Both are great boots, we both use custom insoles. I'd try both and and see what fit your foot best. Nice thing is the Miendls are a little cheaper... : ) I have just over 2.5 yrs on my Miendls, with a solid 30 days use in the field. Still 100% waterproof, bit beat up, but purely cosmetic...
I have tried the Mountaineering boots from LaSportiva and Scarpa. Great boots, but I REALLY like the 400grams of insulation. If you have warm feet then they are a great option... Just my take...
Quite simply the best boot I have ever worn. I use my boots pretty hard. I used to bring two or three pairs of boots on a two week hunting trip so that I could alternate in order to keep my feet from feeling broken down. I now can make that same trip with just the Kenetrek.
I have had trouble with them leaking. I sent back my first pair, and they replaced them no questions. I just sent that pair back last week, we will see how that goes. Hopefully they stand by them. Like I said, I use them hard, and feel a little funny about sending them back. But, my Irish Setters went 8 yrs of hard use with out leaking. Four different pairs of mountaineering/backpacking boots completely worn out with out leaking. An my kid's cheap hunting boots that don't leak no matter what they do to them. Needless to say, I will be disappointed if they do not replace them when they cost double the money of any other boot I have bought. When I can break others down physically and they still do not leak. I expect them to do as well as less expensive boots for waterproofness.
I will come back to this thread when I find out the results.
Like a few of the other posters, I like my Danners best. I have a pair of Lowa Sheep Hunters and Kenetrek Mountain Extremes. The Lowa's and Kenetreks are the most comfortable for me, and certainly very high quality, but for backpacking I have found they both give me bad heel blisters. My Danners tend to make my the balls of my feet ache after packing for a week or more, but it isn't nearly as bad as the bloody blisters I get from the other two. I have treid several different foot beds and had a cobbler work them over, but after three years both still blister me.
Someone mentioned squeaky boots. All three of my boots squeak to some degree. I stay away from oils as they can ruin the Gore Tex to treat squeaks and use parafin instead. I have to recoat the tongue and contact areas every few hunting days, but it works well for me.