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dryad

Shin banging with plastic boots

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Yesterday I went for a hike in the snow to test out my new plastic boots and I found that when walking downhill my shins were banging on the tongue of the boots and it really hurt. Is this a fit problem with the boots, or is it just the nature of plastic boots and I have to learn how to walk in them better? Did I have the ankle strap cinched down too tight? Not tight enough? Does it matter than I seem to have freakishly thin ankles? Any other advice for dealing with this problem?

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It seems odd to me that you would be hitting your shin on the front of the boots when walking downhill. In my experience, I usually have more trouble hitting the back of my leg when walking downhill and the front while walking uphill. I wonder if there is come kind of fit problem.

 

However, one thing you might try is just not lacing or buckling the boots all the way up. I do this all the time with ski boots when I'm touring and don't need the support. Cinch down the ankle strap when you are front pointing or something, but otherwise, leave it open if you think it may be bruising you or restricting flexibility that would make walking more comfortable.

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I get shin bang in my plastics walking down long level grades, eg. logging roads. The only sure fire cure I've found is to shave your shins and protect them with duct tape. wave.gif

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I always had this problem until I got some custom thermal intuition liners. Still bothers me a bit but not too bad. Also might try and loosen the cuffs a lot when walking downhill - what Matt said.

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Skinny ankles may be a problem. Cut some padding from some closed cell foam and pad down the sides of your ankles over those bumpy bones, between the shell and the liner. I've heard that wrapping the strap over your ankle INSIDE the boot tongue works sometimes.

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I have rarely heard anyone say anything good about Asolo plastic boots.

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They have some rocker, but not as much as the Scarpa. The problem with the AFS "Expendition" is they are very high AND the tops are rather stiff. At first glance, the Scarpa Inverno and the Asolo AFS are similar, but having both, I can say the Scarpa are easier to walk in on hard surfaces.

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I used to have this problem with my Invernos. Follow Matts advice as well as put some duct tape on your shins.

 

Until you get different boots. I never wear my invernos anymore.

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Hmmmm....interesting. If Invernos are supposed to be better than Asolos, and rbw1966 doesn't like Invernos either, then what other boot would be better than Invernos? In other words, what plastic boot is best for walking in?

 

BTW, please don't tell me that all plastics suck and I should get leathers. I already have leather boots and I specifically want plastics to keep my feet warm.

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I have weird feet. Plastics are warmer and more comfortable if you have little or no approach but everytime I wore my invernos for more than say, a mile, my shins would get torn up. That is, until I learned the tricks described above. Even so, I find my level of comfort greatly enhanced by wearing insulated leather boots.

 

Just try keeping the uppers loose when walking downhill and tighten them up when you are getting down to business.

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Hmmmm....interesting. If Invernos are supposed to be better than Asolos, and rbw1966 doesn't like Invernos either, then what other boot would be better than Invernos? In other words, what plastic boot is best for walking in?

 

BTW, please don't tell me that all plastics suck and I should get leathers. I already have leather boots and I specifically want plastics to keep my feet warm.

 

I can walk for days in my Koflachs. Real comfy. thumbs_up.gif

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One other bit of advice: if you are loosening a boot to reduce shin or calf bruising, do not simply loosen up all the laces on your boot or you will run the risk of having your heel lift up and down, causing blistering. Keep the buckles or laces around the bottom of your ankle fairly tight. For some boots, I have tied the laces here with a square knot, then laced on up to the top as a separate "unit" so I could adjust the tightness up top without loosening the boot around the foot. If you know how to "break" a square knot and if your laces are freindly, it is not hard to untie after you've done this.

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I rented several models before buying a few years ago. Some were reasonably pleasant. Others were terrible. My shins were pretty beat-up after a couple. I believe it was a pair of Asolos that were the worst for me (although I've done my best to block the memory of that painful weekend...)

 

When I rented a pair of Koflach Degre's, they worked so well for me I went ahead and plunked down the $$ (Yes, the same red ones REI has rented for years).

 

My climbing has all been easy to moderate glacier routes - Leuthold, Wy'East, Disappointment Cleaver, etc. They might be too soft for ice. I haven't been disappointed, but my climbing partner has never been all that happy with his Koflachs (some other model they don't make anymore). So as always, your mileage may vary...But at least as of a year or so ago you could still rent the Degre's from REI and try before you buy.

 

Hope that helps someone. Sorry you're already stuck with a painful pair, Dryad.

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