footwear

And that's what I'm gonna do. Wait, sorry, I got distracted. Everyone talks about boots, so they get their own special forum.
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granola21
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footwear

Post by granola21 » Sat Apr 04, 2009 3:15 pm

I am thinking about getting hiking boots with gortex seal this year but I was at mec and they were telling me a need steal slanks in them for planting. I know alot of people have this but will my boots wreck if I don't have the steal slanks in them. Just because I find them to be really heavy and would perfer to get a good pair of hikers if they will last

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Seabass
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Re: footwear

Post by Seabass » Sat Apr 04, 2009 3:52 pm

What province are you planting in and what MEC store was this at? Unless you're in Ontario and need steel toes, you really don't need boots with a steel shank in them. I think that wearing the boots with the steel shanks actually damages your arches if worn over extended periods of time as well as there's no flex in them when you walk. I wear the Zamberlan Vioz GT and they definitely don't have steel shanks in them. There's a plastic half shank but that's it. I find them much more comfortable and way better quality than other boots I've worn planting. I don't see why your boots would wreck if you don't have steel shanks, unless of course you were using the kicker on ever single tree in which case any boots you wear will have completely wrecked soles.

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Re: footwear

Post by vacationer » Sat Apr 04, 2009 4:38 pm

You don't actually "need" much of anything apart from a tent, a sleeping bag and planting gear. Everything else is subject to experimentation. On flat land many people plant in gumboots or running shoes.

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Re: footwear

Post by barnbill » Sat Apr 04, 2009 5:19 pm

vacationer wrote:You don't actually "need" much of anything apart from a tent, a sleeping bag and planting gear. Everything else is subject to experimentation. On flat land many people plant in gumboots or running shoes.
in the interior i used running shoes made for use on artificial turf for years. they have for want of another word "knobs" all over the bottom of the soles.
other than that i used leather caulks on the coast (great ankle support) oh yeah and insoles are a must!!!!

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Re: footwear

Post by mcD » Sat Apr 04, 2009 7:53 pm

I have tried most things at one time or another and now use good leather caulk boots everywhere. they are a bit heavy sometimes, but I find my feet and knees really like the extra support and traction. a good pair will run you almost five hundred, but my last pair lasted five long seasons, so per season it was less than a hundred dollars.

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Re: footwear

Post by Duncan » Sat Apr 04, 2009 8:03 pm

mcD wrote:I have tried most things at one time or another and now use good leather caulk boots everywhere. they are a bit heavy sometimes, but I find my feet and knees really like the extra support and traction. a good pair will run you almost five hundred, but my last pair lasted five long seasons, so per season it was less than a hundred dollars.
I agree with caulk boots most of the time, but if your in a dry area with fast ground having something lighter will make a big difference especially if your rockin' out without shoulders straps, you need your legs and feet to have something light.
I've been rockin' caulks lately, but I used to love my Scarpa's, $300 per day, but made about $50-100 per day difference on dry and fast ground.
And I must add, I once overheard Franz Otto say "It's all in the boots"
If you seen his white boots, and the guy plant, you'd want his boots too.

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Re: footwear

Post by TheHamsterizer » Sat Apr 04, 2009 8:15 pm

Duncan wrote: but I used to love my Scarpa's, $300 per day, but made about $50-100 per day difference on dry and fast ground.
Don't kid yourself, there's no way that wearing a particular pair of boots will make you an extra 100$ per day. Come on.
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Re: footwear

Post by jono » Sat Apr 04, 2009 8:16 pm

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Re: footwear

Post by jono » Sat Apr 04, 2009 8:18 pm

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Re: footwear

Post by mcD » Sat Apr 04, 2009 9:42 pm

I could be ussing lighter footwear, but I just really hate to fall down. I also had a very bad ankle injury a few years ago that didn't heal until planting season started. Vibergs are about the best ankle brace in the world.

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Re: footwear

Post by Duncan » Sat Apr 04, 2009 10:29 pm

TheHamsterizer wrote:Don't kid yourself, there's no way that wearing a particular pair of boots will make you an extra 100$ per day. Come on.
jono wrote:I dunno, when I went from wearing concrete boots to leather ones my production went way up
Wearing the right boots can be a big difference maker. Good hikers in northern BC or Alberta gives good ankle support and a lighter boot will give enable you to move faster and will avoid wearing you down over the course of a day, a shift or the entire season if you look at the long term effects. Maybe not $100 per day for some, but for others it can be the key to going from average wages to big numbers. Some people have no problems with their feet and are comfortable with most of anything so they don't think about it much. Personally, I hate the shoulder straps so I'm always looking to help make my legs or feet lighter because when I bag big, I'm slower. So wearing light boots made a huge difference for the early part of my bag ups and it can be the difference between one or two bag ups which in some places is $100. And if my feet are bugging me on the fast ground then I can't run which could cost me 2 or 3 bag ups in a day, easy. Then again, I hate wet feet so I like my caulks. I think you'd be better off never wearing running shoes as they will f$ck your feet up unless you got orthopedics. My highballer the last few years sweared by his runners on the fast ground, but he also had orthopedics. In the rain, didn't usually highball.

If you've found the boots that make your feet love this job then you are lucky. Boots are some of the biggest difference makers in planting but also a topic that many vets still battle with throughout their careers as their feet sometimes stop agreeing with their longtime boots. Don't cheap out is my advice and break in new boots BEFORE you plant. (I know most people know, but I still met vets who don't do that.)
I will agree that $100 is not attainable for some, but it WILL make a huge difference for those that have yet to peak or have foot problems which is common to treeplanters and could even be that one thing that helps someone break out and be even more of a difference maker than $100. We've all done things to improve our performance and boots are one of the big difference makers in my opinion.
jono wrote:If you look a little deeper into the quote it makes sense in a different way... Nothing to do with the boots, but what is IN them.
If one of the best planters ever talks about something giving him the edge then you should probably listen. If not then your not looking into the real sense of how to become a better planter. Don't look deeper sometimes because sometimes it is what it is.

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Re: footwear

Post by granola21 » Sat Apr 04, 2009 11:26 pm

I am planting in interior BC this year so I guess not worry about the steal slanks. I tried them on and so heavy ti made me sad so I didn't buy anything figure I would post here first. And i know Marcs's is awesome fro returns so I may buy a pair between Salomon Quest 4D GTX or Scarpa Kailash GORE-TEX and then if shit goes down get a pair of caulks at marcs and return at the end of the season. Last year I found the heavy boots slowed me down a bit.

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Re: footwear

Post by TheHamsterizer » Sun Apr 05, 2009 5:21 am

bla bla bla, yeah boots are important, etc but there's no way they can add 50-100 to your day. No way.

Duncan wrote:
jono wrote:If you look a little deeper into the quote it makes sense in a different way... Nothing to do with the boots, but what is IN them.
If one of the best planters ever talks about something giving him the edge then you should probably listen. If not then your not looking into the real sense of how to become a better planter. Don't look deeper sometimes because sometimes it is what it is.
Franz Otto is overratted. He was good back in the day, but these days there are lots of people putting in 3k on the coast. He's not the best planter ever anymore.
If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong

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Re: footwear

Post by Captain Slashpile » Sun Apr 05, 2009 8:01 am

Hear that bubs?...The shitwinds are coming.
Now I'm Drivin the Bus!

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Re: footwear

Post by mcD » Sun Apr 05, 2009 8:27 am

your footware sure can make that $50 - $100 difference, but it ain't on the fast ground. fresh caulks on a wet 40c heli block will make you money.

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Re: footwear

Post by jimbrowski » Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:17 am

Depnds on the where and who.
Where are you planting and who are you planting for?

In some places, caulks are a must. Showing up without them means sitting in the crummy all day an not working. Or sitting in the rain waiting for the heli.
Personally, I've never worn anything less than caulks and would never wear a regular hiking boot on any block. Then again, I've never planted east of Kelowna or north of Willie's Lake.
I can't imagine paying $500 for caulk boots though (as someone mentioned). Usually they are in the $100 range.

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Re: footwear

Post by Haugen » Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:19 am

TheHamsterizer wrote:bla bla bla, yeah boots are important, etc but there's no way they can add 50-100 to your day. No way.
How about Bad footwear subtracting 50-100 from your day? Blisters, sore feet? seems about right.

As for the Steel Shanks - Theoretically if I remember correctly ALL bush workers are req. to have them in their boots via WCB. Same with steel toes in many locations (Alberta, Ontario, some contracts in BC). The Block IS a jobsite, despite what everyone thinks it is - and should be treated as such. I'm not surprised the salesman covered his ass by telling you that.

I've seen people planting in rubber boots... I've also seen tons of rusting steel shrapnel, which could easily puncture a boot, tentnus, infections, it's the bush right?

There are a TON of safety regulations that are ignored/swept under due to the practicalities of them.

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Re: footwear

Post by mcD » Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:59 am

jimbrowski wrote:can't imagine paying $500 for caulk boots though (as someone mentioned). Usually they are in the $100 range.
the boots I was refering to are handmade double cowhide(or bison if you prefer) lace ups by viberg. I used to rock the $100 rubber caulks but ended up going through 2 or 3 pairs in a season. I found even the laceup rubber caulks didn't give me enough ankle support to really move on hard terrain. also having a high arch they didn't provide enough under foot. the boots I use now are expensive, but as I stated earlier it is a one time expenditure that easily pays for itself over 4 or 5 seasons.

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Re: footwear

Post by granola21 » Sun Apr 05, 2009 6:32 pm

For those that use hikers does it make a difference between leather or suede. I am scared my boots will be punctured witht he suede ones

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Re: footwear

Post by Seabass » Sun Apr 05, 2009 6:33 pm

Go for full leather with as few seams as possible

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Re: footwear

Post by krahn » Sun Apr 05, 2009 11:41 pm

i often planted in rubber boots that cost as little as $6.97+GST, but i also destroyed my arches and that might be why. and when i did pick out a more expensive pair, they never lasted even a whole season. last year i bought these sweet dunlop rubbers that were a bit pricey but i really like them, the have lots of arch support plus i add my own, they're super light, not steal toe but the toes and shank are some sort of composite and very strong. had to patch a few holes but they might last me longer than any other boot.

i bought those orange caulks when i did a month and a half on the coast, and by the end of that they were basically destroyed. it made me think that these $500 custom boots people use on the coast are definitely worth it.

but so far nothing lasts, not scarpas not anything i've tried. it might not just be the abuse they take out on the block though, the daily drying out in front of a fire after being soaking wet i've been told weakens leather. not sure. a good set of boots or tough runners will make you money though and may pay for themselves even if it is just for a contract, depending on the situation.

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Re: footwear

Post by madddave » Mon Apr 06, 2009 2:10 pm

krahn wrote:
but so far nothing lasts, not scarpas not anything i've tried. it might not just be the abuse they take out on the block though, the daily drying out in front of a fire after being soaking wet i've been told weakens leather.
That's the reason none of your boots last. Never dry them out by the fire or extreme heat like that, no matter how soaked they are. If you dry them by the fire you will crack the leather or any of the material. I'll never put my boots near the fire, it is way too hot for them, remember leather is only treated cow skin, how hot can you make your skin till it gets damaged?

I found the best way to dry my boots out is to put on a dry pair of socks and change them 3-4 times while planting. But if you want dry boots for the morning, no better feeling, I agree, think about investing in a Dry Guy. you can get one that is a small heater that plugs into a cigarette lighter and slowly dries out your boot in an hour or two. One boot on the way from the block at night and dry the other on the way to the block.

You can annihilate your boots on the block, if they are good quality, and treat them right, they will last a long time. By treat them right, i am saying use some type of boot treatment atleast once a month while using them.

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Re: footwear

Post by krahn » Mon Apr 06, 2009 3:02 pm

yeah, i've tried the many socks per day technique, mostly out of necessity when there's no place to dry them, most companies don't have a good dry tent. but having dry boots in the morning makes the idea of getting up and going so much easier to bear on cold rainy days. also when you change socks you need a dry place to do it, sometimes under the cache tarp is not so great either, and also you have to lace up your boots again. this is one reason i gravitated towards rubbers. even with those they get wet inside from your pants or whatever but they dry easier.

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Re: footwear

Post by Sebastian » Mon Apr 06, 2009 11:46 pm

I hate wet feet more than just about anything in the universe of treeplanting. For that reason, I've spent a great deal of time figuring out the best way to avoid them.

1- become a foreman so you can stay in the truck all day when it rains.
***crap, let me try again

1- Buy good, solid leather boots with as few seams as possible and treat them on a regular basis. I wear gronnells, but I've seen La Sportivas that are similar. I treat my boots every day off.

2- If you're gonna try to dry them, be smart about it. Don't put them by the fire; you'll burn the outside to a crisp, while the inside stays nice and damp (you don't bake a cake on broil). Put something absobent inside the boot; newspaper works great. Use a steady and mild heat. Don't use the oven or the vents in your foreman's truck; you'll be universally despised.

3- Since no water will get in through the boot (remember, you're treating it every week and NOT ruining the leather by the fire), you have to make sure no water funnels in through the top of the boot. Use Goretex gators, and make sure they're tight on the boot and tight on the top of your calf. Don't put your pants inside your gators when its pouring rain or you're going through a bush wash cycle; the water will seep in through your pant leg, through your socks, into your boot.

4- If you can afford it, and if you hate wet squishy feet as much as I do, buy goretex socks. Yes yes, I'm a bourgeois asshole. But I'm a bourgeois asshole with dry feet, so I win. Yeah, they're expensive, but I only wear them when it rains, so they've actually lasted me 3 years now and show no signs of letting up. I guess a part of this is making sure there's no friction anywhere; wear properly fitted boots! Also, make sure the top of the goretex sock goes over your normal socks; otherwise the water that makes it past your gators or down your leg will seep into your socks.

Yeah, this is all really weird and totally anal on my part, but I haven't had wet feet in years.

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Re: footwear

Post by jdtesluk » Tue Apr 07, 2009 9:46 am

I would add

-avoid fabric speedlacing- you know those little cordura loops that are sometimes used as lace guides. They will fray out in a week. Your footwear (if laced) should use metal speedlacing loops, or grommet lace guides only.

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Re: footwear

Post by Ben Mac » Sun Apr 12, 2009 10:43 am

Sebastian: I also agree on the importance of dry feet, especially in the rain. But keeping ones feet dry is the hardest damn thing. I wear leather viking caulked boots for the past two years which i think are awesome. I put my boots on right after breakfast and don't unlace them or take them off until 5:30 or supper time. For me even during the dry days I will take my boots off and they will be pretty damn soaked from sweat alone. I always wear two pairs of socks for comfort but on the rainy days the vikings usually do their job. I was wondering about these gortex socks you speak of and where i can get these, honestly i have never even heard of them. Army surplus maybe? or any place in P.G.? and how much per pair?

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Re: footwear

Post by Rainman » Sun Apr 12, 2009 4:13 pm

I have used Gore-Tex socks before and they worked quite well when I was cycling a lot in the rain. I have carried them around for years planting, but have only used them sparingly. I layer on the wool socks into my Vibergs and though the feet get wet on the bad days, they stay warm. It is pretty much impossible to keep dry feet on those super rainy days, unless you have brand new boots. In the many years of coastal planting I guess having wet feet is just something I have got used to. For those who like to keep their feet a little drier, or who at least want to try, I suggest the Rocky Stretch GORE-TEX Oversocks. Many Vancouver bike couriers swear by them. Another option is Sealskinz. I would probably wear thinner wool socks with the Gore-Tex socks over that, and then some heavier wool socks over that.

http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_deta ... 4441772599

http://www.sealskinz.com/

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Re: footwear

Post by Sebastian » Sun Apr 12, 2009 7:36 pm

yeah, I wear the MEC stretch stretch ones. Expensive, but you can make 'em last a while if, as rainman said, you use them sparingly.

Your problem, Ben Mac, might be that you're using Vikings: as far as I know every Viking has a rubber bottom. This is probably contributing to making your feet sweat more than anything else. If you treat leather right, and it's good leather, it's a way better material for your feet.

Having leather uppers with fubber bottoms never made a whole lot of sense to me. I guess you get a little more ankle support, but you lose the 100% impermiability, which kinda seems to be the point of rubbers. Most of the time my feet have gotten wet in the past, it's been because of water seeping down my socks, so if the leather part of the Vikings isn't keeping your feet dry, it's not really doin any good. Also, they're heavy as hell.

I guess my point's basically that if you want caulked boots, get Vibergs... They'll last longer, be more comfortable, weigh less, probably be just as waterproof (or pretty near), have better support, etc etc.

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Re: footwear

Post by Ben Mac » Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:05 pm

I was seriously considering spending the extra money on Vibergs this season, they will most likely last a couple seasons as I usually tend to take care of my boots, plus i can also write some of it off on income tax (Get whatever i can from the gov't) I'm definately going to check the pawn shops in PG and hope there is a pair of Vibergs waiting...if not i'll just hit up timberline.

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