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Need opinions on versatile walking boots

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
I want a pair of high end, high quality boots that will last me for as long as possible and will also be versatile. I will be traveling with them, using them in cold/warm weather, hiking, in the rain, and also trying to look stylish while walking around in the city with them worked in and beat up with jeans. Will not wear them to work or dressy events. My style is vintage and faded out, and I try to be anachronistic and stick out while still being classic and as minimal as possible. The consensus here seems to be Alden Indy Boot, Red Wing Gentleman Traveler, and White Semi-dress. I'm leaning towards the indy boot because the Gentleman traveler looks a little clunky in the front, and perhaps appears a little more modern. I was also a fan of Indy when I was a kid. Although the color is absolutely fabulous on the GT. I don't know anything about the semi-dress. I really wanted the indy boot in cordovan but for twice the price I can't justify it. Here's some pictures:
post #2 of 23
I'm trying to remember some boots that I've seen, but am making this post to say those bottom boots are gorgeous!

I really like that style.

What about cowboy boots? I know that's vintage, but you may not like that look. They sure as hell are utilitarian, though.
post #3 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by brainmonster View Post
I want a pair of high end, high quality boots that will last me for as long as possible and will also be versatile. I will be traveling with them, using them in cold/warm weather, hiking, in the rain, and also trying to look stylish while walking around in the city with them worked in and beat up with jeans. Will not wear them to work or dressy events.
What kind of hiking do you plan on doing? Day hikes? Paved or unpaved trails? Backpacking? All the boots pictured seem as if they would be just fine for all the activities you've outlined, except perhaps more challenging hikes. I'd recommend a proper technical boot if you plan on spending a lot of time in the outdoors. For those, I like Asolos. Also, what's your budget? If you're not going to use it for serious technical hiking/backpacking, and you have the funds to spare, I'd throw my vote in for the C&J Coniston. I also quite like the Shipton & Heneage Bleasdale, Selkirk or Kelso.
post #4 of 23
Don't know how much you are willing to pay, but Leathersoul has a nice looking pair of Alden Indy Boots for $450 that are apparently an upgrade from the regular style.

http://www.leathersoulhawaii.com/200...ate-indy-boot/

They also sell a shell cordovan pair for $650, but then you have to factor in the cost of a flight to Hawaii because they only sell those in their stores.

P.S. Cowboy boots look nice and I like them as much as the next person, but they're not designed for walking long distances or hiking.
post #5 of 23
I love my Asolo boots. I also think Vasque or Alico boots are extremely well-made, comfortable, and have the proper looks.
post #6 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by brainmonster View Post
The consensus here seems to be Alden Indy Boot, Red Wing Gentleman Traveler, and White Semi-dress.

That is correct, these are all good high quality choices. You really can't go wrong with any of them, so go with what you feel. The main consideration besides aesthetics is probably fit. The RW supposedly runs narrow, for example. If you can try them on before buying I'd recommend it. Might be more difficult to try on the White's but they have a MTM program (good if you have hard to fit feet).
post #7 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by HORNS View Post
I love my Asolo boots. I also think Vasque or Alico boots are extremely well-made, comfortable, and have the proper looks.
I do like Vasques but I've found that their manufacturing and quality control is a bit less consistent than Asolo. Of the two pairs of Vasques that I've owned, one pair was a really excellent, robust shoe. The upper for the other shoe held up pretty well against the elements, but became less and less comfortable very quickly. I've found that my Asolos are more predictably comfortable and robust, at least for my feet... Haven't tried Alicos. Which ones would you recommend?
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Wow...I took a look at those C&J Conniston's and they look absolutely amazing. They look a lot more "natural" than the indie boot and from the pictures I've seen they 'appear' to look slightly better made. Thanks, I hadn't heard of them. I don't expect to do any seriously professional hiking or climbing, just sightseeing and hiking unpaved trails mostly. So I don't need a technical boot. I can't handle cowboy boots and I can't imagine hiking in them. Lived in LA a long time and saw way too many of those... Actually I live in Hawaii/Japan and could probably get those cordovan shoes. The only thing is that I've heard those cordovans aren't waterproof so I'm worried about durability... Also it rains tons in both places so I think the white's are out because of the leather sole. Anyone know how the sole is on the default indy boots? I don't think it's rubber which means it might be out, unsure of the durability of that... Right now I'm seriously considering those C&J boots and and plal.com has them in Malaysia so I don't think shipping would be much to Japan. I also like the sole. I really want to make a good choice because I want to buy only one good pair of solid boots.
post #9 of 23
Thread Starter 
Snow is also probable since I travel all the time.
post #10 of 23
The last pair looks fantastic. I could only hope boots would look that good after years of wear. I have been looking at a pair of Red Wings from JCREW (small budget), but have not pulled the trigger yet. They are basically just a standard Red Wing, but with a black commando sole instead of the lame white one.

[url="http://www.jcrew.com/catalog/product.jhtmlid=prod88346171&catId=cat302118"]
post #11 of 23
Those White's Boots are amazing, I am actually considering getting a pair myself in black though. Custom fitted boots at that price you just can't beat it....
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by academe View Post
I do like Vasques but I've found that their manufacturing and quality control is a bit less consistent than Asolo. Of the two pairs of Vasques that I've owned, one pair was a really excellent, robust shoe. The upper for the other shoe held up pretty well against the elements, but became less and less comfortable very quickly. I've found that my Asolos are more predictably comfortable and robust, at least for my feet... Haven't tried Alicos. Which ones would you recommend?


I had a pair back in the early 90's. They were goodyear welted with a classic lug sole, but I can't remember the name of the style. The leather seemed, before breaking them in, to be able to stop a bullet it as so thick.

I gave them to my brother for a new pair of Asolos, but I wish I still had them. I've learned a lot about shoes since then and now know that they would have probably lasted me a lifetime.
post #13 of 23
I really like the C&Js and would love to pick up a pair in the future (they're on my wish list). I think they have a much more elegant last than the Alden Indy boot. They could even perhaps be paired with tweeds for more of a British country gentleman type look (although you probably won't be wearing tweeds in Hawaii, unless you're at high elevation!). If I'm not wrong, the Conistons are storm welted with a danite sole, so they should be waterproof - they're made for rainy old England/Scotland/Wales, so they should hold-up quite well in a tropical down pour or in Japan's wet season. That said, I'm sure the Alden are made very well, too, and have a nice rugged look about them; I suppose it boils down to aesthetics, personal style and the size of your purse. If you do by the C&J's, please post pics!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by brainmonster View Post
Wow...I took a look at those C&J Conniston's and they look absolutely amazing. They look a lot more "natural" than the indie boot and from the pictures I've seen they 'appear' to look slightly better made. Thanks, I hadn't heard of them. I don't expect to do any seriously professional hiking or climbing, just sightseeing and hiking unpaved trails mostly. So I don't need a technical boot. I can't handle cowboy boots and I can't imagine hiking in them. Lived in LA a long time and saw way too many of those... Actually I live in Hawaii/Japan and could probably get those cordovan shoes. The only thing is that I've heard those cordovans aren't waterproof so I'm worried about durability... Also it rains tons in both places so I think the white's are out because of the leather sole. Anyone know how the sole is on the default indy boots? I don't think it's rubber which means it might be out, unsure of the durability of that... Right now I'm seriously considering those C&J boots and and plal.com has them in Malaysia so I don't think shipping would be much to Japan. I also like the sole. I really want to make a good choice because I want to buy only one good pair of solid boots.
post #14 of 23
I'd say C&J or Tricker's if you want something which can even go for a country gentleman look. If it's just for hiking I'd say La Sportiva or Calzaturificio SCARPA
post #15 of 23
If any kind of rough terrain were to be negotiated, I would prefer a more heavily lugged sole than on any of the boots shown.
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