Plastic Boots?

Easton

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May 8, 2012
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Alaska
Anybody using plastics (Lowa Civettas, Koflach Degres, Scarpa Inverno or others) for sheep and goat hunts?

I have got some REALLY bad ankles (one probably needs surgery) and looking for some input as I am looking at buying a pair, considering they fit my feet. I currently use Scarpa Liskamms which are great but I still managed to roll my ankle last season in them. Plastics might not be for me or they may but input from those that wear them would be greatly appreciated.
 

McFly83

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Apr 27, 2012
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Colorado
I don't think I would go that far. I would get a good 11" boot like the Lowa Hunter. It seems like it would be impossible to twist an ankle in those.
 

thru-hunter

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Feb 25, 2012
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313
Easton,

I know this is pretty dated, but I have been going through the same thing and just took the plunge on a set of Koflach degre boots. I only have 2 days in the mountains on them but so far I am impressed. We did long sidehills and they are night and day over my leather Kennetreks. When sidehilling both my upper and lower foot can cut into the face of the hill which takes pretty much all of the pressure off your ankle. The ability to toe-in and go straight up some steep stuff just like climbing stairs was also simply AWESOME! I am a long way from advocating plastic, and I can see where they would offer some negatives over leather for a long flat approach. They are weird to get used to because your feet actually move inside them some. The salesman at Barneys said that would be normal. I do use orange superfeet and thick socks to minimize it but it is there. I didn't get any blisters and the salesman at Barneys said that would be the case. It still seems weird but I have no evidence that it isn't the truth and my limited use seems to find it accurate.

Other thoughts, They are noisier than leathers for sure. I had to go a size up from my normal for the Koflach degre. I would be wary of toe space, I could see my toes jamming against the ends on heavy descents with a shorter (smaller) boot. I would be interested to try them on tundra hummocks, there is potential there. I will be trying out the Barneys Glacier socks system with them next year, I can see a real value there in areas with many shallow stream crossings.

I am a long way and a lot of miles from singing their praises over other options but I am surprised to see them so quickly dismissed here for sheep and goat hunting.
 

swat8888

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Apr 6, 2012
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457
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Alaska
I've had success with my Lowa leathers, but after sizing up and getting destroyed with blisters, coupled with the fact that sheep hunting rarely has me on flat ground, I've decided to go plastic. Better climbing ability on the rocks and side hill, custom fit, can take out liners for creek crossings, or wear liners only when bivying on the hillside, and totally waterproof are the main perks. Well see if those outweighs some of the negatives...bulk, weight, noise, long "flat" walks, replacement cost of liners. have to wait till I move back to AK to try some in and get back with a review. No place in AZ to find any to even try on.
 
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Easton

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May 8, 2012
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Alaska
After a lot of though I went to Barney's the first part of June and bought a pair. So this reply is also outdated a bit. I had them heat molded with the socks that I wear and I put my insoles in them as well. I could not be happier with how well they have performed! I wore them while training all summer and basically brook my feet and walking into them. They actually flex way more than I thought making it actually easy to walk on flat ground in my experience. I walked on a gravel road for a 1/ 1/2 mile before hitting my training hill and after a week they felt like a normal pair of boots. I think my body just got used to the style of walking and compensated in a good way. I used them this past August on a 10 sheep hunt and put them through the ringer. They performed awesome! I will never use another pair of leather boots for Sheep or Goat hunting. I agree, they are noisy but I found a fix called "super lube" it is a Teflon based lubricant for automotive tasks. No it is not used for other purposes, lol. Just put it on the boots and it will help significantly.
 

swat8888

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Apr 6, 2012
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457
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Alaska
Easton...just curious which specific boot did you get? Degre? Omega? Good tip on the super lube....never thought that's a line I would utter to another man.
 

Yellowknife

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Apr 9, 2012
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1,672
Location
Fairbanks, Alaska
I'll be trying to break my feet into some plastics this year too. Two pairs of expensive leathers wrecked in three years is too high of attrition rate for me. Also get really tired of the perpetually wet boot syndrome on a long trip. The problem is going to be finding a set with enough toe volume, but I've got all winter to work on it. Omega's and Degre's will be the first I'll try.

Yk
 

Madnik

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Apr 8, 2012
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120
Location
Georgia, USA
I own a pair of Scarpa Invernos that I haven't needed for hunting. Other cold weather exploring? Yes, but not hunting. As noted, the weight is worth it to cure "perpetually wet boot syndrome" under the right circumstances. If they fit your feet, you could do much worse.
 

thru-hunter

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Feb 25, 2012
Messages
313
I finally got the chance to help hump a buddies caribou a couple miles off a mountain in my Koflach degre's. Nothing crazy technical but plenty of side hilling with some fairly steep ravines and a few sections of moraine to scramble over. Pack weight was right at 115lbs according to my fish scale.

First off 1 heavy haul is far from enough to make a definitive conclusion. That said so far I am impressed. I never felt unstable. I was able to make the boots cut in to side hill with almost no stress on my knees and reduced fatigue despite the heavy load. Kicking in toe holds to climb up steep ravine walls was easy and made for solid footing. They are not quiet but not really any noisier than my buddies Barney's frame pack. I will say they are significantly more stable than my Kennetrek Mtn Extreme.

One thing worth noting is that I run 285 lbs just stepping out of the shower so this is north of 400lbs on those boots.
 

Daniel_M

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Jan 17, 2013
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Wasilla, Alaska
After eyeballing them for some time, I stumbled across a pair of Koflach Degres that were in my size. Size 14us are tough to come by.

What an awesome feel. When the time is right I will be springing for a pair.
 

Matt W.

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How does sizing work on these? one size up from normal size? Example: 9.5 for leather, 10.5 for Koflach Degres?
 

Daniel_M

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Jan 17, 2013
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Wasilla, Alaska
That is definitely going to be different with everyone. Putting my feet on an actual shoe scale to measure, I'm a 13.5US. My Lowa GTX are a size 14. Koflach Degree 13UK/14US. So I'm a half size bigger on both.

Something else to ponder is that you can use a half size smaller liner to get dialed. I settled on a 13uk boot and a 12.5uk Intuition liner. Wasn't a big fan of the stock Koflach liner lacing.

The whole size and half size below utilize the same plastic shell ergo the 13 and 12.5 are one in the same.
 
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