No matter what size the mountain, your feet have to be a priority. They’re your connection with the ground, rock or ice. They’re your means of maintaining balance at all sorts of angles. But since they’re at the extreme end of your body they’re vulnerable to cold and if something goes wrong with one it’s a serious problem. Thus however long it takes to find your technical mountaineering boots is time well spent – the right boots are a solid foundation for your whole expedition.
Comfort is defined as the absence of discomfort. So if you don’t notice your feet all day long you know you’ve assembled the right combination of footwear. What that combination is, however, changes with the terrain, with the temperature, with duration of trip and with all sorts of other factors too. A good thing then that we have a wide range of mountaineering boots, socks and accessories to give you maximum freedom to find the set-up that works for your feet.
The first thing we need to say is that you need to get your mountaineering boots sorted early in the preparations for a trip. Whilst you might be lucky and find your perfect pair first time, it might take several trips to the shop or rounds of online ordering and returning before you’ve got the best fit possible. Plus you want plenty of time to try them out indoors so you can return them if necessary, because there’s nothing quite like realising that your boots aren’t right when you’re halfway up a munro or cascade.
Another thing is that choosing technical boots is always going to be easier in-store. There’s a range of different brands and sizes available, our knowledgeable staff are there to assist and we’ve got a ramp and steps to test each pair on. Ideally, set aside a couple of hours and let us know in advance so we can reserve or even obtain the pairs you want to try.
If you can’t get to us though, (we know that fifteen minutes from the M1 J14/15 isn’t handy for everyone), there are ways to give yourself the best possible chance at finding the right boots. Firstly, speak to our staff – they combine plenty of mountain experience with knowledge of the shapes and sizes of boots in our range, so they’ll help you zero in on likely candidates. Secondly, order several pairs if at all possible – at the very least a size range, preferably different brands if you’re not sure about shape. Our sixty day returns policy will cover the time you need to walk around the house and up and down stairs enough to be sure which are best, so you can return all the others (in shop condition of course) for a full refund.
Trying your new boots at home is the only way of being almost completely sure that they’re right. Try to simulate the extremes of your trip – the end of a really long day walking, the hottest day, the steepest terrain etc – such as is possible without stepping outside. If you do encounter any trouble, let us know as soon as possible and we’ll sort you out with an exchange or refund.
All this goes for any specialist mountaineering boot, from the slightly flexible lightweight type to all-round B3 winter boots right up to double-insulated 8,000m boots. It’s also applicable to walking boots and shoes to a great extent. Whatever the project, if you’re travelling on foot your feet are vital; let us help you find the boots to support your journey.