I hate new boots.
I like old boots. They're comfortable. They hold great memories. They communicate that this isn't your first stroll off the pavement.
I generally wear the old ones until they fall apart. A few years ago a buddy who spent a year in the desert convinced me that Danners were the best boots for living in so I gave them a try. I didn't go for the hardcore high-tops that his profession chooses but instead went with a hiking variant. It was a good choice.
They're well worn; an old baseball glove comes to mind. Still watertight. I've gone through several sets of laces. The laces that are currently strung seem too new to abandon. I'll have to find some use for them.
I've given up on this pair because they've finally given up on me. The tread has been worn fairly smooth. Not baby bottom smooth but smooth enough that the parts that need to grip when grip is necessary no longer serve the purpose.
Last winter I got little purchase while shoveling. Thankfully there was little snow. A couple of weeks ago I was walking along a trail and slid down a tricky slope. Only
So the new boots were ordered. The same make and model.
Something is different though they sure do look the same. They're lighter.* The leather seems thinner. The tongue is not as robust; though that may actually be an improvement. And I keep tripping myself as I shuffle my feet and the tread actually grips.
I'll be breaking these ones in over the next few weeks. I'll have to go get them muddy, too. I can't show up in Yellowstone with crisp new gear. My feet have walked too far to be thought of as pretenders.
* Which will be helpful in outrunning Rebecca, Chris and Marc when the bear starts chasing us.