A story about hiking boots

I want to post about how great Berghaus hiking boots are. I love them!

First of all, a bit of background.


These are my old boots (before and after being cleaned!). They’re Brasher ones. I must have had them for about, ooh, fifteen years or something like that. I’ve done a lot in them. See, here they are on the South Downs:


Obviously other people liked them too, because for some unknown reason, the photo below is the 21st most viewed photo of mine on Flickr (and a long time it was higher up in the list). Goodness knows why.

Mud Clods

But they’ve been old and cracked and worn for a few years, but I’ve struggled along because:

a) new boots are VERY EXPENSIVE.

b) every pair of new shoes or boots I have EVER had in my life has caused my feet to rub, blister, or even bleed. Maybe I just have funny shaped feet or something, but basically, it’s not a case of breaking the shoe in, it’s my foot that has to be broken in. After a while, the shoe feels okay. So I’ve resigned myself to this as a natural process of wearing new shoes.

Anyway, a couple of years ago I decided to take the plunge and I bought these Meindl boots which cost over £100:

New Boots

I had tried them in the shop and a bit around the house, and they seemed okay. I had a walk in them and they seemed a tad uncomfortable, but due to my past experiences I just assumed this was ‘breaking in’.

So, I set off on the last two days on the South Downs Way.

It was a disaster! By the end of the weekend I was literally hobbling in agony. My ankles had swollen up like balloons and my big toe had turned black. It was really bad.

There was nothing wrong with the boots themselves and I’m sure they were fine, but they were obviously too small for me.

I was very fed up, it was such a lot of money to waste.

They’ve been sitting in my wardrobe for ages waiting for me to finally get around to putting them on Ebay.

So, for a while it was back to the old, leaky and sponge-like but comfortable stalwarts.

Then, this year we walked the West Highland Way, and as we prepared for the trip, I knew I couldn’t go walking in boots that seemed to suck up water.

So with trepidation I went shopping.

Andrew had bought some Berghaus boots a few years ago and had had no problems with them. They had been great. Also, he had a really brilliant BBC discount which we could take advantage of… so off we went to the Covent Garden store.

The man in the store was very helpful, but I was nervous. I basically had about a week until we were going, and all I could do was wear them around the house a lot more than I did last time. If there was a problem, I’d have no choice but to revert to old-leaky boots.

Boots enjoying the show

My new Berghaus boots are the ones in the middle in the picture above (photo by Bods).

So how were they?

I couldn’t believe it.

They were PERFECT.

In fact, they were probably the most comfortable pair of shoes I have ever worn (in other words, not needing to be broken in at all).

The man in the shop had told me that Berghaus now prides themselves on customers not having to break in boots, and that you can basically wear them ‘out of the box’.

It was true!

Berghaus boots are great.

And my old boots? I’m hoping to turn them into flowerpots. They have some good memories.

They can be retired, and grow flowers. They’d like that.

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