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Boots for SCA Crew
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William Johnson
Boots for SCA Crew on 05/03/2012 23:02:07 MDT Print View

I am working for three weeks with an SCA Crew this summer, and in the recommended gear list it says all leather boots are required. I have never hiked in boots, will never hike in boots, and therefore will be taking my Trail Gloves for any hiking. I believe the reason the boots are required is for the worksites, with all the tools being used. My question is, if anyone has experience with the SCA Crews, how stringent are they with this requirement? I'm not naive enough to think they will let me work in the Trail Gloves, but I have a pair of Merrell Chameleon 3s that I would like to work in. Do you think this would be allowed?

Looking over the gear list it becomes obvious they aren't ultralight, and I know I will be carrying some group gear, but I am trying to stay as light as possible within their guidelines. I really just don't want to have to buy and break in a pair of boots.

Thanks for any help.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Boots for SCA Crew on 05/03/2012 23:38:57 MDT Print View

You're correct. The boots are for the worksites. You should be able to hike in your sneakers most of the time, but sometimes you won't if you're working as you hike like when you're cleaning drainages.

What boots you actually need can be tough to figure out. Most of the crew members I've met were using Asolo 520's. One of the National Forests we worked in required 8" leather boots, and hiking boots are only 6", but this let it slide. I don't see them allowing your Chameleon 3's. Between them being too short and having too much fabric, I'd say they're a nonstarter.

You can go ultralight, aside from the boots. Maybe the pants too. They all wore Carhartts. They're required to wear some kind of work pants, but I'm not sure that that is strictly specified. Most of the time I wore nylon hiking pants, although I've worked a few projects in Duluth Fire Hose Logger pants. Also keep in mind that if you're required to have everything on the checklist, there's nothing to keep you from leaving the heavy gear in the SCA trailer.

As far as boots, I found a pair of 8" Caterpillar wide work boots for $50. They worked very well, aside from being slippery on spring snow. They didn't have a waterproof liner, and when we all got our boots soaked during the day, my boots would be the only ones fully dry in the morning. Part of that was because at the end of the day I'd quickly take the boots off and leave them in the sun.

Jace Mullen
(climberslacker) - F

Locale: Your guess is as good as mine.
Boots for SCA Crew on 05/04/2012 09:34:04 MDT Print View

In my Experience,

Vert stringent. They have quite a hefty rulebook of sorts. They are one of those orginizations where sometimes you jut have to do it their way, even if there is a better way.

William Johnson
Thanks on 05/05/2012 00:46:52 MDT Print View

I figured it would be a no go, but I just wanted to make sure. I'm looking at the Vivobarefoot Off Road Highs, do you think these would be acceptable? I'm not sure I could go back to having heel rise after wearing trail gloves everyday for a year.

Also, I am going to need some pants since I normally wear shorts, any suggestions? I would like to find a pair with the right balance between weight, durability, and price.

Thanks again.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Boots for SCA Crew on 05/05/2012 03:00:26 MDT Print View

Hey William,
Trust me, you need real boots with thick soles for working. I have no idea what the SCA is, but if you are ever going to have to work with with a shovel you need them. You are going to have to use your shoe to push the shovel into the dirt. Doing that with minimal shoes is very uncomfortable and ineffective. This specific issue is not a minor issue, it's a make or break issue considering you might spend a very significant amount of time with a shovel.

You don't need "leather" boots. There are synthetic boots made from cordura like material. A good option would be the military surplus desert boots, or any of the aftermarket military "style" desert boots which might be better and more comfortable but more expensive. They would be lighter than leather.

What I would do personally, is on your very first day, strap your boots on the top of your pack where they can be easily seen from the front or the back, and then wear whatever shoes you are going to hike with. First impressions. You can only hope. If you get resistance, try to reason with your leader, or make up something like you have ankle issues which make it painful to hike long distances in boots(this actually worked for me once.)

I hike around in minimalist/barefoot shoes and can't stand to even hike in trail runners so I feel your pain. But working around a job site like that, you will quickly find them a liability. Get used to wearing different kinds of shoes.
If it becomes a real issue, there are some high top, minimalist combat style boots in black leather. Check them out

Edited by justin_baker on 05/05/2012 03:09:36 MDT.