Boots and socks

Discussion in 'Backpacking Gear & Clothing' started by Mcarso1, Oct 12, 2018.

  1. Mcarso1

    Mcarso1 Well-Known Member

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    Well it’s tome for a new pair of boots and over the years hunting in Pennsylvania deer seasons I have used mainly Irish setter elk trackers for rifle season and rubber boots for archery. Looking for rifle season boots and something to work well for a western hunt next year. I want to get something good and the right size and setup for socks as well. I wear 8.5 D regular shoes and have generally bought same size in the Irish setters. What do you all recommend? Brand, style, size and sock setup.
     
  2. Litehiker

    Litehiker Well-Known Member

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    For October and later hunts I always wear 3 mm closed cell neoprene divers' sox over thin synthetic liner socks. These are called Vapor Barrier Liners (VBLs) and keep your boot insulation DRY and WARM. The closed cell foam never gets wet so it keeps you warmer than wet wool socks.

    I prefer the US Divers brand B/C they have a Right and Left specific sock and that prevent s bunching pf material at the toes. Plus they are factory seam sealed to keep all your sweat inside.

    Take one pair of liner socks for each day of hunting. Turnthe divers' sox inside-out to dry at the end of the day.

    Yes you should still get Gore-Tex or similar waterproof breathable lined boots to keep water out and the insulation or even non-inslated lining dry (and warm).

    Eric B.

    P.S I feel Cabela's has the best selection of good quality hunting boots.
     
  3. Mcarso1

    Mcarso1 Well-Known Member

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    With the addition of the liners how much larger of a size boot do you buy? A full size larger or more?
     
  4. Mcarso1

    Mcarso1 Well-Known Member

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    Also where do you get the liners ? Divers and vapor
     
  5. Litehiker

    Litehiker Well-Known Member

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    M,
    With 3 mm divers' sox and thin poly liners you should not need to go up a size if your boot fits with thick wool socks.

    But be sure to get boots one size w i d e r than your street shoe size B/C your feet spread out when standing all day or carrying a pack.
    But with 5 mm diver's sox you will need to go up one size if you want to make a boot quite a bit warmer. Blisters between your toes are painful. (Don't ask...)

    ->US Divers is the company that makes the best divers' sox. Factory seam sealed and R. & L. shaped sox. GOOGLE the company and find dive stores online or near you.

    ->REI will have the liner socks. Lucky for me I have an REI store about 5 miles away. Or you can use thin dress socks that are 100% synthetic or synthetic/wool blend. Never, ever use cotton in winter. "Cotton kills" is the saying winter outdoors folks use.

    Eric B.
    P.S. you may hear of coated ripstop nylon VBL socks. They are not good compared to closed cell neoprene divers sox. They will slide down and bunch up and have no insulating value.
     
  6. Mcarso1

    Mcarso1 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the good advice, I want to get liners before I go to Cabela’s for boot shopping so that I can try on boots with liners etc on. What brand liners at REI ? We have one in Pittsburgh so I will head over there!
     
  7. Litehiker

    Litehiker Well-Known Member

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    M,
    There is no specific brand for thin liner socks. I usually get white polypropylene or polyester liners. Mainly they are to absorb your perspiration and prevent chafing.

    BTW, I have never had blisters using this system. I began using it to keep my felt pac liners dry when tree stand hunting all day where I was sitting still and needed a lot of insulation. I gotta say that when winter camping and changing out liner socks at night it did stink until I got those liners into a quart freezer bag. :eek:)

    Eric B.
     
  8. Lionheart

    Lionheart Member

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    I have to admit I am scratching my head here about this whole "seal the moisture inside my socks" theory. I have always tried to use a 2 layer wicking system of socks and breathable Goretex boots to get as much moisture as possible AWAY from my feet, not to trap it in my liner sock...but hey I'm an old geezer so if your new way works then go for it.
     
  9. Litehiker

    Litehiker Well-Known Member

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    Lion,
    The VBL (Vapor Barrier Liner) thing is something you need to GOOGLE. VBL clothing is worn in very cold temps like 5 F. and lower but VBL boot liners are common to keep boot insulation dry from 30 F. down B/C we sweat a lot in our fees and CANNOT vent our boots as we can out pants, parkas and hats.

    Also VBL clothing is used when sleeping (full suit) to prevent our body moisture from building up n our sleeping bags night after night until the bags have lost a lot of insulation and gained a lot of moisture weight. Read about the ill-fated British Scott South Pole expedition where their down "sleeping robes" accumulated so much moisture (and froze every day) that they could barely melt their way into them. Everyone in that expedition died of hypothermia!

    Eric B.
     
  10. azsugarbear

    azsugarbear Well-Known Member

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    What is your budget for boots?
     
  11. Mcarso1

    Mcarso1 Well-Known Member

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    When it comes to my feet I don’t really have one, I am a utility worker and usually spend 3-500 a year for my work boots. Recently had Achilles surgery and doing well but incision area is still tender, gonna need something with good padding in that area?
     
  12. azsugarbear

    azsugarbear Well-Known Member

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    I have never been disappointed when buying true quality. Any high end boot is generally worth the price - kind of like buying swarovski or leica glass. Lowa, Crispi, Kenetrek (and others) are top end with each offering something a little different. My feet prefer the Kenetrek ME. I chuck whatever insole comes with the boot and add a pair of superfeet, copper johns, etc. If the prices are a bit of a stretch, try the Meindel offered by Cabelas. A low end option would be the MCB (mountain combat boot) offered by Belleville. These are my 'beater' boots I wear when kicking around in the rocky desert where I live. You can usually find "new without box' MCB's on eBay for $70 - $100.

    As far as socks, I guess I am old school. When expecting heavy hiking, I wear a thin nylon sock to avoid creating hot spots. Then I have either a medium wool or thick cotton sock over the - depending on hot or cold weather.
     
  13. Mcarso1

    Mcarso1 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info. I will be looking at Meindl and kenetrek just because I can try them on and not have to deal with mail orders and returns. The crispi are really nice looking but no place around to actually try on.