Boots for Hunting high / backpacking

Danner - Raptor? GTX® Mens/Womens 400G Hunting Boots

Danner Raptor. These are US made, as are all of the better Danner boots. I think about the best 'all around' big game boot out there. There are boots that would be better for certain extreme and specific hunts, but for an all around boot...hard to beat.

I've spent 7 years in these before I felt the need to buy a new pair this year as the stitching was getting questionable. Hundreds of miles of backpack hunting--nearly all in designated wilderness with loads from 40-115 lbs. Never shot a big game animal below 5400' elevation, so up in the mountains. About half and half x-country and trail in these. And, after finally buying a new pair this year, I'll send in the old pair to be completely rebuilt (anything replaced that needs to be) for about 1/3 the cost of a new boot. Then I'll have a great pair of backup boots at the car/etc. if need be--something that's always a good idea.

Ability to be rebuilt is something to consider for the long term. All the boots that you see that have the rubber rand that comes up from the sole and surrounds the bottom of the boot upper--these can't be rebuilt and that encompasses many, if not most of the boots mentioned above.
Thanks for the feedback, I came really close to buying Crispi Ascent but just couldn't do it withouttrying them on. I ended up getting Zamberlan's due to th reviews in bakpacker and being able to try them at REI. I put Lathrop insoles in them and after a hard day of packing everything hurt but my feet, best set up I have found so far. Next year I will try the Crispi's.
I would take a good hard look at Lowa Hunter GTX. I'm on year 4 with my set. I've have crampons on them climbing in the winter, hiking in the summer, been in high alpine and scree, rough trails and everything in between. They are well worth the money.
You'll Love the Crispi's!
A friend called and asked me to help him pack an elk out when I was home recently, I pulled on my Ascents and went with him. We packed out the whole bull in one trip with 150lb packs {horns, meat, cape} and had No problem with my feet what so ever! My shoulders and hips however were a different story. After a 12 mile round trip my body was ready to die, but my feet were not. I have now logged over 100 miles this year elk hunting in Crispi's with a large day pack, or backpack the whole time. I cannot say enough about the pair's I own. As soon as I get back in Montana I will be back in the mountains with my Hunter GTX trying to locate some wolves. My permit is burning a hole in my pocket!gun)
Crispi is truly the best boots on the planet!
I would recommend LOWA PRO HUNTER, i use them for sheep hunting up here in alaska, very tough,warm and they are great for loose rock and cramp on compatible. They also have a complete toe cap all the way around the boot for protection against rocks and abrasions.
I realize this thread is old at this point and some models change however I did want to weigh in on Kayland boots in general. I have a couple pairs and really like them. I have the Contact Duals and Vertigo Highs.

Vertigo's are more a daypack boot in my mind with a little lower top on them. They are fairly light but have held up to some heavier loads and they are my go to boots for an all around boot. They have held up well and been very durable for me. They have a full nubuck exterior.

The Contact's a little heavier duty backpacking boot. A little taller, just about ideal in my mind. These don't have a full leather covering but aging very well.

Both boots are very different from one another. Both fit my narrow, flat feet well and are very supportive to my bad feet.

Pros on both : good toe rand on both, both fit narrower feet well. The eVent waterproof membrane is the best I've ever experienced as far as venting. Really keeps your feet cool in warmer weather. Always has proven to be waterproof in my experience. That might be the best feature but I really like these boots overall.

Are these the hardest core boots out there? Well, not these models, but Kayland's mountaineering boots might very well be up to the task. I'd never heard of Kayland until reading several reviews from Backpacking sources and they were highly rated. Glad I decided to try a set. For me, I like them much better than Asolo's I've had, and certainly older Danner, Vasque, Raichle's, etc I've had over the years. I think worth a look anyway

Now my newest Love......Crispi! Just got a pair in a couple weeks ago. I cannot say enough good things about them so far. No hardcore testing at all, just great fit, stability, and comfort. Can't think of anything negative on them yet. I got the GTX Wilds. Mid grade insulation that supposed to take you down to -20 if you are actively hunting, hiking. I cannot make any judgements there although they do seem to breath pretty well. I ordered a pair of Crispi's and a pair of Meindle's. For me, there was no comparison but the Meindle's are built on a wider last and much more high volume so I can't condemn them for that, they just didn't fit my feet as well. Still, they are a solid boot as well. Love the Crispi's though - just something about them! Will most likely buy another pair. Have my eye on the Nevada's.
I've had a couple of pair of Danner boots and a couple of pair of Italian AKU boots.

My favorites are the AKU boots, but the Danner is a tough boot and some models made in the USA are rebuildable.

Crispi, AKU, Zamberlan are a few of the Italian built brands. Beware of Italian brands made in China. There are somme horror stories on hiking forums. The Danner boots made in China do not compare to the USA Danner boots. AKU builds 100% in their own factories either in Italy or eastern Europe. The eastern European AKU boots seem just as well made as the Italian boots. I have owned boots from both AKU factories.

Meindl and Lowa of Germany are two other top brands. Meindl is available from Cabela's. They have a policy of not using cheap materials like EVA foam rubber that breaks down into toxic substances and have a short lifespan. You want PU foam, not EVA, in your footwear. I had EVA foam Merrell hiking boots that literally fell apart.

My motorcycle boots are also Italian. Top Italian footwear brands are simply unbeatable, as everybody who owns them knows.
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