Boots fo D of E expedtion

(41 Posts)
TwigTheWonderKid Fri 05-Apr-19 12:16:25

Need to get DS1 some boots for his expedition (Bronze). I doubt he'll wear them much before he outgrows them so I don't want to spend a fortune but obviously don't want him to be uncomfortable either. So we're most likely to go to Decathlon or Sports Direct where I realise we won't really get any assistance from staff.

So any advice on what we need to look for (or avoid)?

OP’s posts: |
DobbysLeftSock Fri 05-Apr-19 12:24:11

Could you go to an proper outdoor shoo first, get some advice on fit etc, then buy them from decathlon etc later?

Or if you have a go outdoors near you I've found them pretty good on helping with fit, far, far more knowledgeable and helpful than sports direct and good prices.

Whatever he gets, make sure he gets proper socks - not cheap ones. Bridgedales or similar. And wear the boots in! If he wears them for the first time on expedition he'll get blisters regardless what you've spent.

DobbysLeftSock Fri 05-Apr-19 12:25:14

Gah, typos! a proper outdoor shop

LIZS Fri 05-Apr-19 12:27:01

Dd had a pair of karrimors from Sports Direct. Mesh/leather upper and lightweight. Cost about £40. As long as they are not likely to be walking in heavy mud or snow they did fine. If he is likely to do silver or gold maybe go for a full leather upper and vibram sole.

Fazackerley Fri 05-Apr-19 12:29:04

Mine did theiers in trainers (admittedly very good supportive ones)

It's only 2 days walking

Itsagrandoldteam Fri 05-Apr-19 12:43:07

My son did the D of E bronze last year. He wanted walking shoes, rather than boots, he found the boots uncomfortable. We got his from Go Outdoors, I think the ones we got had been reduced to around £40-45.

He only ever wore them once, he never wore them on the practice expedition, he wore his trainers, good quality nike trainers. He decided to wear them for the actual expedition, but he said his feet ached more when he wore the walking shoes. He did break them in first, he wore them around the house and garden.

Make sure you get good quality socks though. Most kids took trainers as well and a lot of them ended up changing from their boots/shoes into their trainers because they were more comfortable.

DobbysLeftSock Fri 05-Apr-19 13:16:06

Just walking round the house and garden wont be enough to properly break them in. Do you have a dog? Dog walks in new boots for two weeks!

I used to assess d of e - part of the requirement is to properly equip yourself for the conditions/terrain. I had to threaten to fail a girl for taking off her boots once she got 5 mins away from the start and putting on fucking ballet pumps! They need to be able to keep themselves safe - so proper walking shoes / boots with ankle support so that if they wobble over they dont break their ankle. Waterproofs so that if it pisses down they dont get hyperthermia. Etc.


Freshprincess Fri 05-Apr-19 13:22:32

Do you have a Go Outdoors near you? You get an extra 20% of with the DofE card.
And you can also buy all the rest of the stuff there as well.

JustDanceAddict Fri 05-Apr-19 13:23:19

Sports direct is fine. Karrimor are a good make. They have to wear boots with ankle support.

Treefloof Fri 05-Apr-19 13:34:24

If you want waterproof dont go with karrimor. Karrimor are now made by sports direct. They are crap for the price.
I have got a pair of waterproof northwest territories from Amazon. They were about £25. Cannot fault them. And they say if not waterproof, send back and they will send a new pair. I have taken mine around a forest in the most miserable weather and come back with warm, dry feet. Go up a whole size.

Treefloof Fri 05-Apr-19 13:36:01

These are mine. Gone up a few quid since I bought them.

TeenTimesTwo Fri 05-Apr-19 13:38:35

Go Outdoors have a little bridge you can walk over which is helpful for checking fit when going uphill or downhill.
You need imo nice lightweight waterproof boots with good ankle support. I think DD's were ~£30 and have lasted very well.

MrsAird Fri 05-Apr-19 13:42:42

mountain warehouse always have something useful

Mrsjayy Fri 05-Apr-19 13:45:37

Mountain warehpuse do walking trainers they are not hugely expensive , be careful of sports direct karrimors they are very slidy in the wet much to poor Dhs surprise he went his length in them.

Mrsjayy Fri 05-Apr-19 13:46:41

Oh i noticed you have a karrimor warning

TheStakeIsNotThePower Fri 05-Apr-19 13:49:22

Mountain warehouse boots are good, waterproof and inexpensive.

BlueCornishPixie Fri 05-Apr-19 13:51:21

It depends what walk he is doing surely? If its uphill or mountainous I would go for proper boots. If not I would go for trail shoes if he is not used to boots. I would go for mesh not leather, there's no need for leather and it's normally heavier, more expensive and he'll grow out of it. Again if its a flat walk there's no need for vibram soles (for grip on Rockies terrain) but most walking boots will have these anyway.

There's no point putting him in boots he's not used to wearing, he might as well just wear worn in trainers.

Go for something lightweight, get him to try on lots of different pairs, I would go to go outdoors or Cotswold. They might have offers on even if they are more expensive, and again a cheap, poor fitting boot is going to be more uncomfortable than trainers. Different people will get on with different boots because it depends on your foot shape.

Get him to wear them in properly before hand, wear them as much as possible and at least a proper countryside walk.

SavoyCabbage Fri 05-Apr-19 13:52:42

I’m going to Go Outdoors for my dd’s tomorrow. Like the FreshPrincess says, there is 20% off with your DofE card instead of 10% at the moment.

I had a quick look in Decathlon yesterday and they had some on sale too.

BlueCornishPixie Fri 05-Apr-19 13:53:50

Rockier* not just the Rockies!

DobbysLeftSock Fri 05-Apr-19 13:54:20

There's no point putting him in boots he's not used to wearing, he might as well just wear worn in trainers.

Apart from the fact that if he's got an assessor who sticks to the rules, he won't pass!

stucknoue Fri 05-Apr-19 13:55:41

Mountain warehouse own brand are fine for bronze and silver, might need a stronger boot for mountains though

AuntieStella Fri 05-Apr-19 13:59:08

Karrimior are not what they used to be, but I think they wouid be fine for a spring/summer bronze level expedition.

I think most of the outdoorsy high street shops will have suitable stuff - try Cotswold, Trespass, Snow and Rock, Blacks.

You're more likely to find staff who know something about the stuff they sell in Decathlon (rather than Sports Direct, IME). Get something that's comfy and 0.5-1 size bigger than daytime shoes (ie sports trainer size, not usual fashion size)

Consider getting twin skin socks to minimise risk of blisters, or wear two pairs (thin ones in the inside)

Mrsjayy Fri 05-Apr-19 13:59:53

Mountain warehouse also have D oE discount

AuntieStella Fri 05-Apr-19 14:02:38

"he might as well just wear worn in trainers"

If an identifiable fell-running trainer of a brand such as Salomon, he might just get away with it. But you can't count on that (ankle support is better, and also what is stipulated). And proper fit-for-piurpose trail shoes will almost certainly cost more than standard (entry-level) walking boots.

BlueCornishPixie Fri 05-Apr-19 14:03:36

dobbys but that assessor would be an idiot to force him to wear something uncomfortable, that's not worn in and potentially going to cause blisters/bruises.

If the terrain is flat he doesn't need high sided boots, that would be appropriately assessing the terrain and if he's not comfortable in his boots they aren't appropriate footwear. If I was doing a flat 2 day walk I would wear comfy low sided walking shoes, not boots because they are lighter therefore easier to wear for longer periods and proper boots aren't really needed.

I'm not suggesting he goes in flip flops, a trail shoe might be more appropriate if he's never worn walking boots before.

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