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kmehrtens

Olympus Mons Overkill?

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I am going to Denali West Buttress in May/June of this summer. What is the opinion of Olympus Mons on the West Buttress Route? Are they overkill?

My feet tend to run warm usually and I will wear a pair of poly liner socks along with a single layer of Smartwool Mountaineering wool socks. I also have a pair of Baruntse boots that did just fine on Mt Rainier this past March (2016) on a Denali Prep and also on The Presi Traverse & Mt Washington in February 2015.

 

I am going with a guided group and they have told me whatever my feet are comfortable in but the Olympus Mons maybe not be needed, but I know that Denali is a whole different animal than the lower 48. What I do like about them however is they have a built-in overboot and gaiter which would be two less things to carry and pack. If I do use my Baruntse boots I am looking into a pair of Forty Below Purple Haze overboots for the really cold days and summit day.

 

I currently own both pair (that fit correctly) thanks to a couple of GREAT ebay finds. My Olympus Mons weight 6#7oz (size 44) and the Baruntse boots weight 6# even (size 43).

 

What is everyone's opinion?

 

Thanks again.

 

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in my experience on two trips up Denali, generous fit seemed more important than enormous insulation. I knew regulars who fitted their boots two sizes big to be absolutely certain they'd have no restriction of circulation - then they'd fill any extra volume by wearing more socks. with a pair of insulated supergaitors, you can get by with a far less expensive boot than Olympus Mons. What's critical is that besides a generously fit boot, you keep your feet DRY. we used foot powder and changed/dried socks religiously, and our feet were never remotely cold...

-Haireball

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You don't need the Oly Mons by a long shot and if you didn't already have them I would say no way should you buy them unless you already have plans for even bigger objectives.

 

If you decide to go with them you won't be the only person on the mountain wearing them.

 

Really it is going to be a personal preference issue

 

I prefer the flexibility of a leaner boot and the option for overboots if needed. The overboots are handy around camp as booties and you can easily wear them with your boot liners for calls of nature, visiting with neighbors, etc without going on and off with your boots all the time.

 

The oly mons is a set it and forget it boot. No advance decision making about yes/no for overboots, no adjusting crampons.

 

Your call...

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I saw a number of climbers with Oly Mons on Denali. They may be warmer than you need, but since you already have them, might as well use them.

 

The comments about foot hygiene above are key. Buy a small bottle of Gold Bond foot powder and alcohol hand sanitizer from the trial size department at Target. Wash your feet when you roll into camp, (I use snow), use hand sanitizer on them, put on foot powder and a thick pair of wool socks that you only use to sleep and hang around camp in.

 

I used VBLs, insulated super gaitors, and Scarpa Invernos with Intuition liners. Even in a cold year, in mid May, my feet were never cold.

 

Thin, merino wool liner socks are gold. After a couple of days the poly versions smell like death. Down booties for wearing around camp are nice.

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Like DPS said if you already have them take them. I used similar on several trips. Much better to have warm toes all the time then to be worry about them.

 

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Thanks for everyone's opinions. The flexibility of the boots and the ability to split them apart in camp is appealing.

 

Here is the next DUMB / Noob question, those who have used the Olympus Mons, what did you do with your climbing pants that would normally go over the outside of your boots? Did you roll them up/under to lay on the boot top and still under the built-in gaiter?

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Here is the next DUMB / Noob question, those who have used the Olympus Mons, what did you do with your climbing pants that would normally go over the outside of your boots? Did you roll them up/under to lay on the boot top and still under the built-in gaiter?

 

So, I did not have Oly Mons, but had La Sportiva insulated super gaitors over my double plastics. In fact, a number of people thought my boot were Oly Mons.

 

Any how, I wore MH Chugach Primaloft insulated over pants on summit day, and I wore the pants OVER the top of the super gaiters. I was a little concerned about snagging a crampon, but I was careful, and the pants were not super baggy. I think if I were wearing down pants, which tend to be more lofty than Primaloft, I might tuck them into my gaiters.

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All the folks that i saw up there with those boots looked really hot and uncomfortable. They strapped the snowshoes on, unzipped the boots and clonked along the lower glacier.

 

The reason they were wearing them is because they bought all their gear for the 7 summits quest, and most of those people are very European.

 

I think overboots on baruntse/phantom 6000/spantik-esque boots is the way to go. Down booties inside 40 below overgaitors is the way to go for campwear. Its what everyone in the know does up there.

 

Interesting though the weight difference is not that much. How does the overall bulk of the 2 compare?

 

FWIW i only wore my overboots on the early-morning ascent from 14k to the summit (summitted from 14 camp), on top of stock dynafit tlt-5's (notoriously cold boots)

 

and of course daily around camp

 

 

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You're getting both sides of the aisle in here but I'll just line up one more time to echo Christoph. Most of the people wearing them were guided Euros. (This was later May into early June). I will also agree that unless you make a mistake in climbing when you shouldn't or in how you outfit the rest of your body the Baruntse + overboot will for sure be warm enough. Like toasty warm.

 

Weight is similar manly because the Baruntse is the heaviest among rivals like the spantik and phantom 6k. It is also the warmest and has the moldable liner.

 

Bulk will be lower between the naked boots, maybe similar with the overboots. Again the comparison is closer than maybe with other models since Baruntse is bulkier than the spantik and 6k.

 

I'd still say 6 in one, half dozen in the other but I'm obviously advocating for the baruntses... May be 5 in one half dozen in the other.

 

Maybe the more important thing to worry about - how is your fitness? :grin:

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