A spit of kit

There wasn’t much new on the Fisherfield trip, after my down time I think I needed familiar stuff so I didn’t really have to think or worry about anything at all given the miles I was covering.
Mountain King sent up a new set of their brilliant Trail Blaze poles, now in a coppery-orange colour, and taking these out was comfy and familiar. Nice to be using a completely straight pair again and they are a handy device for keeping your flysheet door open, I’ll need to do a photie of that some time.
The Berghaus Asgard Smock is the eternal talisman of good luck for me, every time I pull it out of my pack the rain disappears, I’m glad it’s light as all I ever do is carry it, poor thing.
Took a warmer sleeping bag as frost in the glens was forecast, shouldn’t have bothered as I was roasting, the PHD quilt would have been perfect, could have stuck a leg out the side to cool down. Next trip for sure.
Wore my new berry coloured Chocolate Fish Taranaki t-shirt which was a joy as expected, comfy and stink free despite being attacked by sweat in three flavours: exertion; desperation; panic.

That theory of tried and trusted was pants in reality though, it was one of my most-worn pairs of shoes that caused me the most grief, my Montrail Hard Rock Mids.
Not the shoes fault, they’re just past it. The uppers are delaminated in most places, the inner lining fabric is loose and moves independently of the rest of the shoe and the outer layers are detached from each other with some patches of fabric missing now too with a couple of small holes right the way through. The Gore-Tex lining is long gone, as if it’s just disappeared, water is immediately felt on my foot wherever it splashes on the shoe.
The outsole is very worn, there’s chunks missing and slashes through the rubber with some sections of tread peeling off, but the grip is still good which is a little frustrating. The midsole is crushed and has lost a lot of it’s elasticity, it’s a bit ragged too. The invisible foot protection plate is still working okay and the general flex seems okay.
The heel cup is fine, and the upper around the cuff and tongue is also fine, it’s the most-flexing parts and those in contact with the scenery that are goosed. And the insoles, which look like two bits of old lino cut from the damp kitchen floor of an abandoned tenement.

I’ve had these for a few years, they’ve been a regular choice and I think they’ve lasted really well considering they’re just a pair of high-cuffed trainers. I think it might have been the screes of Assynt last year that threw them over the side and it was definitely the wet trek across Rannoch this year that sunk them.
For me it confirms that a lot of the shite talked about lighter footwear self destructing in the mountains is speculation from folk that don’t use it, but also that Gore Tex in flexible footwear is a temporary joy. It will not last as long as the shoe.
I’d buy another pair of these if I could, the replacement models just aren’t the same.

11 thoughts on “A spit of kit”

  1. You know sometimes, just sometimes, you can be a right pain :o) OR at least cause me pain.

    Lightweight shoes….got em
    Smock….dinnae need it
    Quilt….dinnae want it
    Wool T-shirt….HOW MUCH !!
    I dinnae hae a pair o’ they tent type trekking poles………whit a bummer !!!!

    Hope that everyone is having a nice midsummers day.

  2. I shall miss these shoes. But, I must resist the temptation to wear them again, I’m still peeling skin off my feet a week or more later.

    Had a great solstice, took the afternoon off and went to the new Transport Museum on an impromptu familyday out :o)

  3. Looks like they’ve done some scrambles. Always tricky getting the timing right, leaving one pair behind and popping your feet in some new ‘uns.

    And, more often than not – the next version of your trusty faithful, is a ‘step’ backwards, in quality and/or design.

    Just about to try and get some degree of waterproof-ness back into my fave trail runners. Even though I have a fairly new set of goretex lined hedgehogs begging to be let out.

  4. Aye, the replacements got replaced by something different and equally disappointing after one season.

    Always buy sprares…

  5. the insoles, which look like two bits of old lino cut from the damp kitchen floor of an abandoned tenement……….damn……..I wish that I could write like that. I can see that and even smell it. I think that evocative might cover it.

    By the way…….the midge repellant ???

  6. Writing that was easy, it’s exactly what they look like :o)

    Repellant coming soon, just need to find the can in the motor to photograph it…

  7. Just got some montrails AT plus http://www.montrail.com/Men%27s-AT-Plus%E2%84%A2/GM2082,default,pd.html sent over from the states but they are too big. Gutted as i ordered a size 8 thinking that due to their sizing changes they would be fine, but no. Usual 7 or 7.5 would have fit. Even with a bigger sock and enduro insole (got 2 pairs of them though and they are fine) no chance of them fitting. Gonna have to sell em. They’ve really arsed themselves up Montrail & pissed loads of customers off. You should put them ones of yours in a glass case for nostalgia.

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