Hunting Boots

Mel Carter

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Alright, I know someone here has had this problem before. Last year I bought a pair of Cabelas Quest hunting boots, the first 4 or 5 times I wore them they felt great. Know, it seems like the last 4 or 5 times i've worn them they're starting to give me blisters on my heels. This past weekend I wore them I went from 2 pairs of socks to 3, this made things a little tight inside the boot. When I started out with the 2 pairs this weekend, it already had iritated the heel area where I don't think the 3rd pair helped at all. They're not extreamly loose with only 2 pairs of socks, you folks have any suggestions? I do like the boots, so I hate to get rid of them.

Thanks, Mel
 



Slugblaster

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I had the same problem with my boots for the last 2 years. They just wouldn,t break-in. Then someone suggested submerging them in water then hiking in them. So I put them on and stood on the 1st step of my pool until they soaked thru and then I played basketball with my son then ran 2 miles on the treadmill with them. I got no blisters with them while doing this and then I went to Tejon Ranch for the Pig-o-Rama this weekend and no problems. And I got a nice Boar too.
 

fishhead

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The only time I've had a blister problem is when I wear the wrong socks.  
The WORST socks you can wear are sweat socks.

Go to Big 5 or some other sporting goods store and purchase a pair of merlot (?sp) wool socks.  The'll set you back about $15, however they are worth the money.  These socks don't itch like regular wool socks.

If all else fails, purchase a pair of wool socks and a pair of mens nylon dress socks.  Put on the dress socks on first then the wool ones.

Hope this helps,
 

Speckmisser

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Wally World has the boot socks for about $6.98.  I got a pair of wader socks and they're the best thing I ever wore inside my waders.  I'm picking up a pair for my hiking/hunting boots before I go back out pig hunting.

Scroll down the list a ways, and there should be a long discussion about good boots and suggestions for comfortable feet.  The topic was started by me, and was titled something like "Trip Report".  
 

m57jager

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The filling of the boots with hot water for a few minutes then wearing around is a good idea if there leather.  It worked with my Whites(the best boots in the world).  As they dry on your feetthey form to the shape of your foot.  Also, before you soak them, see if this works.  Wear panty hose booties under your sock, this allows your heel to slide without taking the brunt of it.  Good Luck!!
 

shaginator

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If you're not into wearing pantyhose, gore-tex socks also work :)
 

Mel Carter

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Thanks for all the input, I read all the posts in the "trip report". It sounds like wearing the thin pair of wicking socks with 2 pair of heavy socks is the trick. Anyone know where I can get these wicking socks from? I've also heard about soaking them in water and then wearing them until they dry, since these boots are waterproof will soaking them in water still work?

Thanks again guys.

Mel
 

Speckmisser

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I think soaking in water is really for leather boots.  You can try it, though.  Probably wouldn't hurt...but you'll want to do it on a warm day.  

As for your wicking socks...  take a look at WalMart.  The one near me has them in sets, a pair of wicking socks and a pair of oversocks.  Pretty neat marketing idea...wish I'd thought of it.  Also, Big Jive Sporting Goods usually carries them as well.  Or if you wanna spend some ducats, you can always find an REI.  
 

One Track

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I bought mine through Cabelas.  It's the perfect set up.  The liners come in long and short.  I bought the shorter version, mistake. Now, I have to fold the outer wool socks down, to prevent the itching syndrom.  I haven't had a blister or cold feet since. No need to wear two pair of wool socks. Spend the money, and get the good ones. Also, if you're going to soak your boots in water, make sure to rub a can of conditioner back into them after they dry out.  That leather is like skin, keep them moisturized and they'll last a long time.
 

Bill in SD

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I'll jump in here with my suggestions.  I believe I am now at the point of understanding my feet and how to buy shoes and socks.  I have wide feet and have had a hell of a time getting boots to fit.

Over the years I have learned that it is important to try the boots on with the socks you intend to wear.  That is tough to do when ordering from a catalog, however you can always return the stuff for the price of shipping.  

Boots vary quite a bit, and depending on the socks you wear, you could easily go up a size larger than what you normally wear.

For me, I have found that a polypropalyne liner sock with a synthetic blend lightweight hiking sock works best for me.  My feet sweat and the liner sock wicks the moisture away from my feet.  I have Thorlo brand Light hiker socks.  And this combination is the best I have found for me.  When it comes to Thorlo all there socks have really, really THICK padding and a light hiker sock is really more like a heavy duty hiking sock.

I had the backpacking socks from Thorlo before, but they were so thick I could not get my feet into the boots, way over kill for me.

I have heard nothing but good things about Smartwool, however my feet are warm and I prefer synthetic verus wool.

Wait a minute, I read your thread again.  "What are you thinking...three pairs of socks?!?!?! You can't get a good fit with three pairs of socks!!!!

Send your boots back to Cabels and get a size smaller boot, or better yet get a refund and take your money and go to a boot store and try on the boots with socks you intend to wear.  Cabelas has a wonderful return policy.

Or here is another suggestion buy a pair of those thick padded Thorlo backpacking socks and stick a pair of liners underneath and I'll bet your feet won't be loose anymore.

Another trick if you heel is rubbing and getting blisters because it is loose, is to put some moleskin on your heal before heading out or some duct tape and that will help prevent blisters caused by your heal rubbing.  

Just remember that the socks you wear will drastically effect the fit of your boots.

Don't get attached to your boots, how could you like them if they don't fit.  
Good luck and take care
Bill
 

EL CAZADOR

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I'd have to say that a good pair of socks will make a crappy pair of boots halfway decent.  I have incredibly sweaty feet (maybe a little too much info), and I always had a blister problem.  I always thought that the wool socks would be too hot and thick to be comfortable.  I started wearling Thorlo's (spelling?) and similar ones at REI & AC16.  I tried the liners, but they didn't do that much for me.  Now I am so used to the wool socks that a lot of times I use them for everyday use.

I did have to send back a pair of Cabela's boots because they didn't fit with the thicker socks, but it was a minor inconvienence in the end.
 

MapMan

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I really want to purchase a new pair of hunting boots. I would rather not order them through the mail as I want to try them on first. I live in Highland (just north of Redlands area)and I would be willing to drive an hour or so to a store that has a good selection of hunting boots. I am looking for a 8"  high leather boot with about 200 grams of thinsulate and stiff vibram soles, similar to Cabellas Outfitter series, for climbing around in the desert hills. I went to Sport Chalet in Rancho Cucamonga (near Ontario Mills Mall) and they had a good selection of light/midweight hiking boots but no tall hunting boots. They had a pair of Vasque day hiking boots that were very nice and I may get them for the easier hunts. The salesman there said to try Chicks Sporting goods (spelling) in Upland on Foothill but I have not been there. Anyone know about this store?

Anyway, If anyone knows of a store locally that stocks hunting boots let me know. I appreciate it......
 

Maverick

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Wallys discount boots in Riverside. I bought a pair of Hawthorns about 5 yrs ago. They are going on there 6th fire season and I have worn them hiking, hunting, fihing when ever I go outdoors. They'er water proof just a all agound great boot. The leather is in great condition and the soles are like new. I think I paid around 250 for them. If i was going to buy another pair of boots it would be the same boots even for 300 its a great buy.
 There 10" with the the vibram sole .
 

MapMan

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Judging by the lack of replys, except "Coveybustinchris",  I guess there are no places locally that carry a good selection of hunting boots. Mabey a good outfitter store like Cabellas would do well to open out this way. Heck, I would drive a couple of hours if necessary! Last call, anyone know of a place?

Chris, Is Wallys boots still in business?
 

coachdog

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I don't know if you have them near you, but Workboot Warehouse in the Valley has some pretty good stuff. They buy overstock, closeouts and surplus and stuff like that and sell it at a discount. I got a pair of top of the line Bates tactical boots for $125. They're excellent upland boots, but are probably a little too loud for deer stalks (they have a very slight squeak). I've worn them comfortably in hundred-degree-plus quail hunts and below freezing hikes at Shasta. Waterproof too.
 

Maverick

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Yes Wally's is still in business. I know alot of people that buy botts from him. they have a good slection of boots. the boot i decribed is what they call a loggin boot. I don't know why I guess logger use them.
 

spectr17

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Hello Mapman,

I stop in Chick's once in awhile. They don't really cater to hunters like REI and Sport Chalet so they don't have much in the way of hunting high leather boots. You could call them and check to be sure.

Turner's doesn't have much selection either.

I buy my boots from Cabela's or Bass Pro since they have what I'm after.

Wally's sounds like a place to check out too.
 

MapMan

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Thanks for the input you guys. I will try Wally's. I may just have to order from Cabellas. Has anyone bought Cabellas Outfitter boots. If so how do their sizes run. I like to wear a good quality thick sock over a thin liner sock. I was going to order a half size larger than my foot measures. What do you think?
 

shaginator

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I have Cabela's 9" Outfitters w/200gr Thinsulate and like them a lot. With it I've worn a wool sock over thin wicking liner most of the year since this past winter.
 


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