Buying boots - some advice please

I’m looking at buying boots, mainly because I’ve volunteered to do the Cosford March. Its been recommended that I look at Haix, but wondered if there are any other brands that people prefer. Also, sizing - what to go for. I’m a 5-51/2, but usually buy a 6 in anything else. Also got fairly wide feet. Been having a look round fleabay already, but any help accepted!

I quite like Haix, also a fan of Lowa which I wear at work.

Best bit of advice I can give is to go and try them on in person rather than buying online.

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The issue Haix boots are sized properly so I personally would suggest trying a 5 before going up to a 6. Wide width fittings are available. They also do a “womens” version of all the sizes, but not being a woman I have never looked into it!

Altberg, Haix and Lowa are the big three names. I have tried AKUs which seemed like they would have been very comfortable, but I was never quite able to get a pair to fit. If your feet are wide, I would suggest you might have the same problem!

Brands? Depends how much you want to swear.

I swear by Lowa Patrols. Non goretex. Half a size bigger. I have wide feet too. I prefer a big sturdy heel. I wasn’t impressed with the Hiax to be honest.


I don’t see the point of goretex boots and they make your feet sweat and overheat. I prefer leather to synthetic.

Best thing to do is go to a shop and try a multitude on. Get a feel for each one. Every foot is different. And take yourself over to the thread about Nijmegen, the treatment of blisters etc has been done to death in there.

The problem I had with AKU was the sizing and the fact that the sole was thinner than the boot. Otherwise they were alright. Good for desert/amphibious ops.

like the others, i can only advise that you try them on - the only ‘good’ boot is the one that fits, and a £500 boot that rubs you raw or cuts off the blood supply to to you toes isn’t much kop…

personally i get on very well with the Alt-berg Defender/Warrior and the Haix Cold Wet Weather boot, as well as the Meindl Borneo/Burma (can’t rember which one - the one without the Gore-tex lining) - the Haix and the Meindl seem to be ‘properly’ sized with me fitting a 42Medium in both cases, wheras the Alt-berg has a much smaller fit and i wear a 43wide.

in terms or more specific advice for this event only, you’re looking for the lightest boot you can get away with, and the boot that will keep your feet as cool as possible (which means no gore-tex ling!) - for me the choice, assuming they fit you, would be the Alt-berg Tabbing boot, but if you need a boot that can do Cosford/Nijmegan as well as a 3 day walk through Snowdonia with a full rucksack, then i’d go fr the Alt-berg Warrior/Defender.

the Haix CWW boot has a thinsulate and goretex lining - its fantastic for standing around Artillery ranges in the Falklands or Cape Wrath, and winter walks in Snowdonia or the Cairngorms, but (for me) its too warm for the summer or late spring.

Haix is only full sizes (so it said on the leaflet with mine) but come with a ‘spacer’. They do have different width fittings. The male ones at least are generously sized. 11w in Haix fits me nicely, but I’m a 12 in magnums.
Haix are great boots - I love mine - but they and the Alt-bergs are heavy. For road marching you might want to look at a Patrol boot (Bates or YDS are issue brands) and good insoles and socks.

I can vouch for YDS Kestrels , very breathable and comfy . I would also strongly recommend 1000 mile socks for Road Marching as they are very good for reducing amount of blisters. There is a combat sock version I think …

Sorry to resurrect an old thread, I’m looking to get a pair of Alt-Bergs, probably these

In general experience, are they true to size or would you advise sizing up or down? I’d be wearing socks the thickness of the boot Issue ones so medium thickness

Thanks in advance.

I found Alt bergs to be true to size, but I did tend to replace the footbeds.

Stupid question but what do you mean by this?

You can swap out the insoles of the boot on most boots anyway. Different insoles can have different benefits. Warmer, comfier, or better suit a certain size/shape of foot! I assume this is what OldNewbie means.

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And to add to the general boot conversation, the LOWA Combat GTX was what I had as a cadet once a stopped growing too much! Awesome boot that I did a lot of walking in, and still occasionally use today for the higher ankle/leg support. Had the soles replaced after a couple of years and they were basically new again :smiley:

Exactly this.

Sorbothane make some great ones, always better than the ones you get in the boot.

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Ah, I didn’t know this but that is useful to know, thanks both.

I’ve found I need to go half a size up for road marching.

Also, don’t buy Altbergs new - there’s plenty on eBay second hand.

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Seconded about buying Atbergs second hand, lots of good ones out there.

I loved my Lowa Mountain, exactly the same as the Combat but 200g lighter and £10 cheaper Great all round boot, If you are only going to buy one pair of boots for everything I recommend the Lowa Mountain.

If you want a lighter boots then Lowa Recce are great. If you want a great tabbing boot for Nijmegen then you will be wanting the Lowa Elite Lights £78.00 great value with a Sorbathane double strike replacement insoles.

Other boots and insoles are available.



Hi, I am looking to buy some boots for the No. 3 uniform, and my budget is up to £50, i am looking for a size 8 and don’t mind any colour.
I have caught my eye on the grafters thinsulate boots and i was wondering if they are permitted in cadets
Please respond to me quickly as i need to order some ASAP
i have also attached a link for the boots im looking to buy

They look fine, and wouldn’t cause any issues visually.

But I’ve never heard of the make so can’t say whether they’d be good value.