Best Winter Hiking Boots For 2017-2018

by | Dec 18, 2017 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

The comfort and overall experience of your hike depends on a lot of factors and arguably the most important one is having the right pair of boots. The trends and favourite brands change quite rapidly depending on the season and what’s hot at the time. Generally speaking, most hikers lean towards lightweight, waterproof and well-insulated boots. For winter hiking, these factors are essential and a standard in every decent pair of winter boots. If you’re a keen winter hiker then the boots you use in summer usually aren’t going to be suitable for alpine winter hiking. However, this isn’t always the case and below I’ve taken what I believe to be the best boots for winter hiking in 2017-2018, in no particular order.

¬†Some of them are frighteningly expensive and some a lot more budget-friendly, it all really depends on what you’re using them for and your level of hiking. You’ll probably notice that a lot of the brands are the same and these tend to be the top brands for winter hiking boots. The boots listed below are all waterproof and very well-insulated, I go into more detail on the advantages and disadvantages of each pair. Most of the boots listed are under the category ‘mountaineering boot’ and, while some are for the more advanced hikers, there are several pairs that are also good for the beginner winter hiker. I’m going to do a further post explaining the differences between a mountaineering boot and a hiking boot (it’s a bit of a grey area).

 

1. Scarpa Phantom Guide (£460)

 

Brand: Scarpa.
Type: Mountaineering.
Weight: 1.8kg (3lb 15.5oz) pair of 42 (8 UK, 8.5 US).
The Good: Comfortable, lightweight, warm, suitable for a wide range of activities.
The Not So Good: Thinner than normal sole meaning crampons can pop off and extra insole maybe required.

 

Worn by the famous Ueli Steck, few can argue that the Scarpa Phantom Guide is a quality hiking boot. This is a non-removable boot with a gaiter fixed to the outside which seals the boot completely from both water and snow. The gaiters’ material is Scarpa special s-tech fabric with a waterproof membrane. They are wide-fit which makes them ideal if you’ve got wider feet.

The shock absorbing inserts in the heel and forefoot are great for long hikes if you find yourself carrying a heavier load. They are warm to approximately -10F (-23C) and have a fast lock lacing system. A variety of crampons can be attached to the boots although I have seen some reports of certain types of crampons popping off so make sure that you get these fitted in store before you hit the ice. Aluminium support and reinforcement in the boot makes them extremely rigid and capable of tearing through the rockiest and iciest terrain.

Although ideal for hardcore ice-climbing and winter alpine hiking, don’t think that these boots are just for the pros. They are a great all-round buy and even though they are maybe slightly too warm for summer hiking, they’re still a great choice which will not let you down. One main negative that I’ve seen is that the stitching on the gaiter can come undone after a lot of use but this is easily reparable.

 

 

 

 

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