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Devildog89
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Devildog89
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PostWed Dec 20, 2017 12:41 am 
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Looking for some input on how much insulation i may need for winter boots used for hiking\snowshoeing?

Have been considering TNF Chillkat 400, but was told that much insulation would be too much for high activity.
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Pyrites
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PostWed Dec 20, 2017 1:16 am 
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I canít give an experienced answer. But Iím looking at these:

https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5048-790/Toundra-Pro-CS-Waterproof-Winter-Boots

Best.
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Devildog89
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PostWed Dec 20, 2017 2:32 am 
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Thanks, I will look at these too, though the chillkats are only about $150.

Here is the review that turned me on to them.
https://www.outdoorgearlab.com/topics/shoes-and-boots/best-winter-boots

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Semper Fi
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pcg
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pcg
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PostWed Dec 20, 2017 10:21 am 
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I simply wear a comfortable pair of hiking boots and then use overboots over them if it's really cold. I have an old pair from OR that attach with velcro and you can add/remove foam inserts as needed. I never do as they are warm enough without. These have no sole (the newer Brooks Range did) and I prefer that as it makes it easier to take on/off.

As an aside I once had a job that required a lot of standing around outdoors at a location that was extremely cold - minus 40F was not uncommon. I tried everything, including moon boots, to keep my feet warm and the only thing that worked was a simple pair of buckle up rubber boots that I wore over my hiking boots. This would be way too warm for snowshoeing, but it speaks to the effectiveness of overboots.
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jared_j
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PostWed Dec 20, 2017 3:31 pm 
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Foot warmth is a fairly idiosyncratic thing.  I know people who get by doing snowshoe day trips in the PNW with regular hiking boots that are reasonably good at keeping moisture out.  I know others who struggle with anything less than a very heavy insulated winter boot.  As such, you should expect to get a spectrum of responses.

Not that you're asking, but there's also a spectrum of views on boot stiffness and snow.  Insulated winter boots (such as the Chilkat listed by OP, or others like Kamik) tend to have a soft sole.  This is great for walking around town.  I can't stand walking /snowshoeing on actual snow with soft boots;  I pretty much only wear a totally stiff mountaineering boot in snowshoes.  But I'll acknowledge that's probably idiosyncratic and you'd find plenty of others who prefer a soft boot.

I'd suggest doing some outings with whatever hiking boots you already own (if you haven't already), you might surprise yourself.

Last note, I find that how warm / cold my extremities feel has more to do with how warm I am in general.  This is driven by the level of physical exertion I'm undertaking, and the amount of insulation I have on around my torso / core.  I'd argue intelligent management of your layers relative to how hard or not hard you're working while snowshoeing will go a long way towards keeping your feet comfortable even in regular boots.

I think the insulated boots suggested by OP really shine for being sedentary / still for long periods of time in cold weather.  If you anticipate walking very slowly, taking frequent breaks, or otherwise standing around a lot, then you should ignore my comments.
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Devildog89
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PostWed Dec 20, 2017 10:35 pm 
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Thanks.
I've never been a fan of over boots, they just don't work for me.

I have used my Merrell Phaserbound boots the few times I have been out on snow shoes, they are waterproof enough and warm enough for the activity. I was looking at something with insulation  because I have a tendency to stop and get distracted by the scenery.
I was also thinking of dual use for shore fishing on Lake Roosevelt this winter, where warm footwear will be needed.

Thanks again for the input

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Pyrites
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PostThu Dec 21, 2017 2:02 am 
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Note the boots from MEC are priced in CAD, not USD. $269 CA becomes $210 US once you get out your PayPal. Of course this varies day to day.

Still pricier.

Best.
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christensent
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christensent
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PostThu Dec 21, 2017 9:53 pm 
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An important thing to consider is sock thickness, and it's not always intuitive. If your boots fit well with light socks, then if you cram in your feet with 1/4" thick super-heavyweight wool socks, most people will expect hot feet but find that their feet are actually even colder due to reduced circulation. In my experience, sock fitment and matching to the boot is as important as selecting the right boot. If you get everything really perfect, you should probably have boots and a specific size and type of sock (or socks if using a liner) that goes with each boot type you own.

I went through a roughly 2 year period where I tried a lot of different footwear, socks, etc. and figure out what works for me. As has been stated by others, everyone is totally different in preference and needs, so it's expensive but if you really want to dial in the best footwear for you you're simply going to have to try a lot of things and accept that many of them will fail miserably.

If I'm not skiing (which is rare these days), I've converged on wearing Nepal Evo's for practically everything in the winter, except overnight trips where temperatures are expected to be well under 20F in which case I wear double boots (which I think I've only used twice since moving back to Washington 3.5 years ago).

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Learning mountaineering: 10% technical knowledge, 90% learning how to eat
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trestle
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PostFri Dec 22, 2017 11:12 am 
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You could also try a vapor-barrier lining with your current boots. You don't need anything fancy either, just a plastic bread bag over each foot will work. This safe link from Andrew Skurka has a lot of good information. There are a few VBL users on this forum as well.

And a +1 for paying close attention to air circulation around your foot. Too much sock is never a good thing despite what all the decades of dogma say.

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"Life favors the prepared." - Edna Mode
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DIYSteve
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DIYSteve
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PostWed Dec 27, 2017 10:32 am 
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2mm neoprene kayaking socks worn next-to-skin are good VBs, add 15F+ warmth IME
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