Those of you who follow these ramblings may recall two previous entries about these boots. On 3/10/07 and on 19/6/08, when I purchased a new pair to take to the Alps. Those who read the missives from the IBR (Italian Border Route) will know that the new Fugitive foots leaked from the outset. Luckily we only had 4 hours of rain (on the trail, that is) in two months of walking, so it didn't really matter.
[See below for digression.]
Anyway, on return the rather battered boots went back to Outside and they sent them to Asolo's UK people in Preston.
And yesterday I went back to Outside to collect my refund, replacements, or alternative boots. Yes, the Asolo people had done the honourable thing and admitted that there was a manufacturing fault with the boots I bought in June.
So I tried on some Aku boots (very light, but perhaps not as robust as the Fugitives, and rather too much arch support for me) and some Scarpas (nice and solid but a bit too roomy around the toes).
The Asolos, as usual, fitted perfectly, so I now have my third pair of Fugitive GTX boots. It was raining, so Mike at Outside gave them a quick spray and I wore the boots for the rest of the day. I felt like a stroll so went up to Monsal Head (see next posting). I needed to get home fairly early as Mrs B needed her car, but I did manage to break in the boots. They rubbed one of my ankles for the first kilometre, but were fine after that, and will be from now on. When I arrived home after an hour's drive I stooped to take off my trainers and found this view:
Will they last? I don't know.
Will they be comfy? Yes.
And I can always use Sealskinz to keep my feet dry. I'm not worried about the goretex liner, either - my feet obviously don't sweat as much as those of some of our esteemed gear reviewers.
A digression: Despite what Jim Perrin would have you believe:
'....This miserable summer, its sodden presence imposed over most of Europe....' he writes in the newly vamped TGO magazine, we really did spend over 400 hours exposed to the elements during our walk from Menton to Saas Fee, out of which it rained for 4 hours - that's half a day's rain in two months. Alright, we did observe rain from our tent and other shelters, but it was actually a magnificent summer where we were in the high Alps. I know Jim is unwell, and I have every sympathy for him in that respect, but why did he have to be untruthfully negative just to provide the headline that enabled him to write about 'rainy day pleasures'? Surely he could have approached the topic from a more positive stance?
And the new TGO magazine? We'll see how it goes, the first issue after a revamp is always going to be a 'flagship' effort. But I particularly enjoyed new writer Jamie Whittle's piece on Wilderness.