I have had the Mountain Light II’s for over 25 years now with a recent resole done in Melbourne. Awesome pair of boots with one piece leather outer and GoreTex liner. Just be aware that the Kiwi tradition seems to be to walk through rivers and a waterproof GoreTex liner won’t let the water in or OUT !
Recently for something a bit more lightweight I ordered a pair of Danner Zigzag 3″ boots. As usual they met all my expectations in terms of outstanding Danner quality at a price better than almost all the cheaper options from elsewhere. I got the sizing wrong by ordering the narrow width boot rather than the wider one. Anyway I send this pair off to my brother who is a farmer and wears them daily. He has been amazed at the performance of this pair of boots as he lives in them.
Recently went for a hike around Wilson Promontory (Australia) and found my trust 30 year old pair of Danner’s chewed up my feet rather badly, perhaps something to do with the fact that a local shoemaker had resoled them, or just because they were too tired to continue…
I ended up doing half the walk in a pair of runners and on return set about hunting for a new pair of boots. Initially I thought I would go for a lightweight pair of Vasque Taku GTXs but ended up making the same mistake I made with the Danner ZigZag’s – I got a pair that was too narrow around the front of the shoe. Sadly I only really noticed this after taking the boots on their first outdoor trip ! Despite getting them stretched by a shoemaker they always felt like they were crushing my toes.
After trying on every make of hiking boot I finally found a pair of Zamberlan Viol GTX that felt like a perfect fit from the start. Unfortunately the first pair I tried seemed to have a hard knob under the right heel which seemed to get worse the more I wore them (2 weeks). Fortunately the retailer was happy to swap them for another pair – we had to check a few pairs before we found one that have very little bumpiness under the heel area. In any event so far these have been fine despite being able to feel a slight unevenness under the right heel. I placed a small sliver of wood in a strategic position which seems to have almost completely reduce any unevenness.
A bit surprising that I could even feel this unevenness through the liner which does not have a lot of support. The liner in the Vasque boots seemed to provide considerably more support.