A tough double-boot for the high-altitude realms of the world.
- Item #LSP0136
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Great boot. Used on several 5000 and 6000m peaks in Ecuador and Peru. Never once had a problem with cold feet, using only a single pair of medium-weight wool socks - and was practically the only person in the group not to have problems with the cold. No hotspots or blisters even on 16 or 18h summit days, and only minimal break in. The heat moulding of the liners was surprisingly simple and made a world of difference in terms of fit - I molded them with green superfeet insoles. Super flexible and comfortable, quite technical. I wear 39/40 in normal shoes and decided on the 41.5 la sportivas, finding the 42 to be a bit too big.
Great mountaineering boots
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
I purchased the Baruntse's for an expedition to Mt. Rainier. I literally lived in these things for the better part of 6 days. They were a little too warm for a summer ascent of Rainier but I appreciated the extra warmth at camp after the sun went down as well as on our summit bid which took place through the night and into the morning hours. On the upper mountain these things were super bomber. I cut up the rubber around the toe a bit with my crampons but nothing a little patch kit can't fix for me. I purchased the boot a full size up and they were perfect, no toe smashing and absolutely ZERO shin bang. I'll be using these this winter for a winter attempt of the Presidential Traverse in NH and hopefully on Denali and some of the volcanoes in South America. I absolutely recommend these.
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
- Fit: True to size
I think these boots are pretty fantastic. I use them for winter mountaineering and ice climbing in the northeast (mostly in the White Mountains in New Hampshire). I have yet to have cold feet in them, and I've been out when the temperatures were well below 0 F. I really like the flexible ankle, which makes the boots quite walkable, and is also really nice for more technical ice pitches. The lacing system is old school, but works really well and allows you to dial in a perfect fit. These seem to work well with almost all step in crampons as well. I haven't had any issues with durability and expect them to last quite a while, though I do think they will be slightly less durable than Nepals or another full leather boot.
I wear a size 11.5 in street shoes and running shoes, and I found that a size 45 fits me best. I am not an easy fit for boots since I have a relatively wide fore-foot, but a narrow heel (I also have bone spurs on my heels). I get good heel hold from the boot though. I tried a 46 also, but this seemed too big and I got a bunch of heel lift when trying them out on the stairs of my apartment.
One comment I will make though is that since these boots are hand made (or seem to be) there can be quite a lot of variation between boots. When I got my first pair, I noticed that the rocker was quite different from one boot to the other, and that the height and stiffness of the ankle was also quite different between the left and right boots. Even the sizing of the boots seemed different between right and left (and my feet are the same size). This was actually very obvious when walking around my apartment, and the fact that my stride felt very different from right to left was pretty annoying. I worked with Backcountry to resolve this and they were fantastic about helping me, but I thought I would throw this out there as one issue I had with the boots.
Great Once Fit Well
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
- Fit: True to size
Since it's what everyone wonders, I'll open by saying I wear a 45.5 Nepal, and a 45 Baruntse. Arguably should have a 45.5, but the 45 gives me less heal lift than the larger sizes did and a better technical fit.
These are fantastic winter or cold weather boots, especially for overnight use. I've been using them for New Hampshire trips in the White Mountains so far, and they are perfect. I start to get chilly feet standing around for below zero F temperatures. The only time I've been actually cold was waking up to a 0F morning, my toes were pretty painful but warmed up soon when I started moving. I have very cold feet, I'm in serious cold-toes pain standing around in Nepals even at 32F, so no doubt these boots are way warmer.
People say these fit like Nepals and are "the warmer Nepal", but I didn't find that true. They can be adjusted to be, though! The Nepal fits my foot better than any boot I've ever worn, and the Baruntse was initially too narrow for the entire length of the boot. I had to get the toe box punched out, and then I went through a few iterations of punching out the mid-foot width myself (easy to do with a hot air gun). I also had to push the shell up around my 5th metatarsal as it was pushing down quite extensively and caused lots of aching. After forming the liners and four adjustments on the shells, they're finally wide enough and fit great!
The down-side: These are really fragile boots. I'm a little concerned about how the shells will hold up in the long run. I've taken them out on I think 12 trips, and the shells are already taking a beating. Nothing serious, but I imagine the material (fake leather I guess? not sure what to call it) at the front of the boot will become quite shredded. I always wear gaiters even if I don't need them to protect at least half the boot.
Hiking in to Tsartse camp
Hiking around between Tashi Kang and Dhampus to gain access to Tsartse
- Fit: Runs large
I ordered a pair of these in 43 and 43.5. Both were too tight on my somewhat wide foot with high arches. I wear a 9.5 US normally. Mostly though, these boots are heavy and cumbersome. I felt disconnected from the ground and had a poor feel for where I was stepping. I also had trouble walking on flat ground, I think these would be very hard for the approach. I ended up ordering the spantiks and really like those. It is an extremely well constructed boot though and if the fit was better they may have been great, not for my foot though.
La Sportiva Baruntse Mountaineering Boot
These Bad Boys are Awesome!
OK. Doing some background research I decided to try two sizes and then return the one I least like. I often wear size US 11 (men's) in street shoes. That depends. Some times I have to go larger. I have a pair of Asolo Fugitive backpacking boots that are size 11.5 I believe. They're fine but sometimes I wonder if I should have size 12. I mention all of this just so that you have more information on your possible sizing. Anyway, I decided to try the Baruntse in sizes 45.5 and 46. It turns out I prefer the 46, even though that just seems like it'd be way too super huge. I was tempted to go with the 45.5 (temptation probably stemming from my experience downsizing snowboard boots so that they fit better on the board). The 46 simply felt like there'd be fewer issues involving possible blisters, etc. I've taken them on a couple outings already and they stick well (after tightening the top laces a lot) and I have no blisters. 46 was definitely the way to go for me.
As far as the shoe itself goes, it's great! I'm very happy with it so far. It feels good and secure. I imagine it'd keep water out better than the Scarpa Inverno because there are no possible entry points for melted water. The liner's a little funky. Something on the liner agitates the top of my foot after a long day. It might be the tie-in point. I'm going to investigate it further and possibly modify it.
Warm enough for the Transantarctic Mountains
I used these boots for a months worth of stomping around the Transantarctic Mountains (at ~85ºS) during the austral summer.
Warm, very warm. I can't offer a temperature rating as that involves so many variables as to be somewhat meaningless. By comparison others in the region were using the Spantik, Arctis expes, bunny boots, Asolo 8000's, Scarpa Inverno etc. so I would say these boots offer comparable warmth as the other tried and tested cold weather boots. I usually wore one liner sock (wool or silk) and a medium to heavy weight wool sock, stayed hydrated, kept my core toasty warm, issues with water didn't apply to me (save for sweat). I wore these boots at various altitudes ranging from ~6000 feet to ~11000 feet. These boots were worn while traveling on rock, snow, and ice (but not ice climbing).
Sturdy. It was easy and comfortable to kick steps and walk around uneven terrain. No rolled ankles, minimal shin bang. A solidly constructed boot.
Light weight. Seriously light weight, you'd think the bunny boots were lined with lead after picking these up.
Good soles. Deep lugs, a nice heel, really gripped well onto rock and snow.
The lacing system is nice. I had thought about using the Spantiks, but that single thin cord made me nervous (seemed so delicate).
The PU-coating escapes me. The only obvious sign of wear is on the outside-facing PU-coated panel. My problem with this is once it abrades the PU-coating is basically gone and it seems like it is up to the owner of the boot to decide on repairs. No big deal in regards to boot maintenance, but why not make the exterior of the boot out of more "permanent" or abrasion resistant material and not something that will basically peel off on rocks? The remainder of the boot was exceptionally durable (except for the Cordura that underlies the PU, I'm not sure how well that will stand up to abrasion all by its lonesome).
Personally, the fit works for me. La Sportiva lasts tends to fit the shape of my foot better than Asolo (for example), but everyone is different. The boot has a large volume, but it is a double boot so no surprise there. The boot works very well with crampons, I used them only once and no complaints there.
The liners dry quickly, and I appreciate the "speed lacing" thing they have going with them. You can form fit the liners to your foot and brief "how to" directions come with the boot. I didn't, just didn't get around to it, but they fit very well and seemed to take shape to my foot over time. It is also not a chore to take the liners out of, or put them into the boot (I noticed that the plastic double boots were less forgiving in this regard).
Did not fit my foot
Did not fit my foot. I have Nepal Evos and the Spantiks and love both of these.
For me, these boots had a poor fit esp. over the dorsal surface of the foot. Lots of toe room though.
For more technical stuff, pay a fraction more and get superb technical cold boots: Spantik
Great hybrid mountaineering boot
So far, this boot has lived up to all my expectations. My foot size is 11 (US) and kind of narrow at the heel. After researching various double boots, I initially purchased the LaSportiva Spantik boot (got UK sizes 45.5 & 46) through REI. Although this boot is a top performer, I had too much heel lift (at least 1/2 inch) and also had some heel lateral movement. In addition, I did not like the outer boot lacing system with "thin lace", plastic sleeves, and "plastic wedge" that you anchor the lace down with.
I also tried UK sizes 10 & 10.5 in the Scarpa Inverno and was not happy with the fit. Although a UK size 11 or possibly 11.5 would have fit better, there is no getting around the fact that a double plastic is going to be pretty stiff. In contrast, the LaSportiva Baruntse
(UK size 45.5) fit like a glove. Since purchasing them a month ago, I have used them on several training hikes and have not had a single hot spot. My only complaint was having to trim a little plastic off the Superfeet insoles I added to the boots (the Superfeet insoles were causing some soreness on the outside edge of my feet). This slight problem (easily remedied) was in fact the Superfeet insoles, since I later tested the thinner factory insoles and did not have this issue.
The Baruntse was kind of "spendy" at $600, the extra money over traditional "double plastics" was worth it. The boots have heat moldable inner "booties" you can heat up in your kitchen oven and have a "speed" lacing system with velcro tabs which work fine once adjusted. The outer boot hase a space age aluminum heat reflective layer, and has a traditional "tried and true" lacing system with metal sleeves which I liked better than the Spantik design.
All in all, a great boot which I look forward to wearing on Aconcagua in a few weeks.
Was excited about it, but ultimately too narrow
Was excited about this boot, US size 14 (48) seems hard to find (not sure why, in mountaineering boots you're supposed to go one size bigger, and size 13 seems fairly common). Unfortunately it dug into the outsides of both my feet BAD just walking around the office for a while. I tried removing insoles, lacing loosely, everything, still rubbed. I was so disappointed because otherwise it was comfortable to walk in, felt lightweight, looked pretty damn cool, and represented a warm, flexible alternative for me vs. leather boots as I get too cold in them. Also I wanted something I could take to Denali or do any sort of Winter climbs. Even for spring/summer, I previously tried the Lowa GTX boots and my toes got way too cold even in good weather from 12,500 up on Rainier.For a Mt. Adams climb I did a last minute REI switch from Baruntse to the Invernos due to burn issues on the Baruntse. The Invernos are a bit loose to I'm on the fence due to ankle protection, but I'm going try tightening the inner boot more and maybe putting on some neoprene ankle wraps to fill out volume/provide more ankle support. Invernos are sort of a last resort as they just don't feel like a great fitting boot and are heavier, it's like a completely inflexible big plastic shell, then and inner boot. But what can I do? Open to other boot suggestions. Want something that can do winter + June Denali, in addition to Rainier spring/summer (Id rather be too warm on the feet). Plus I need the boot in a US 14.If you have narrower feet, this boot may be awesome for you. Also if you have this boot, write a review because I literally could not find one review on this anywhere and I hate buying un-reviewed items. I will say that I don't consider myself to have wide feet necessarily, I guess maybe just slightly wide? I fit most other shoes/boots aside from a lot of Salomon trail runners which run super narrow. Anyway 3 stars but if you don't have the rub problem maybe these could be 5 star boots for you.NOTE: backcountry doesn't carry anything beyond a size 47 in this boot, bought the 48 from a local shop near Mt. Rainier.
I just got all excited to order a pair in size 49-50...nope. Not going to happen says BC customer service. This is the first time I will have to go elsewhere for outdoor gear (besides local sales...etc) in a little while. Kind of in shock right now. How would BC not be able to get the entire size range from La Sportiva??
I apologize about that inventory issue. Generally in men's footwear we stock sizes 7-14. If you have a hard time finding that 49-50 size from another vendor let me know and we can look into working with the vendor to get that size. I am sending you an email with a little more information. Again sorry for that issue and thanks for checking our site first.
Hello! I have size 45 Baturas 2.0 and 45.5 Olympus Mons. Which size should I go with the Baruntses?? Thankss
I wear a size 45 Nepal Evo(it fits well), and I"m wondering if I can wear the same size Baruntse, or do I need to go up a half or even a full size to get them to fit properly? Intended use is both Waterfall Ice climbing and high altitude.
I also wear a Nepal 45. I wear the same in the Baruntse. But a 45.5 in Spantik. Only way to know for sure is to go try it on.
I normally wear a size 43 in street shoes and have a semi-wide foot. I am over 4000 miles from the nearest retailer and can't take a day trip to try these on. What size should I order in this boot?
I just got a pair of Baruntses in size 47. I wear a street shoe size 12 and most running shoes in size 13 (47). The 47 Baruntse fits perfectly with a medium Smartwool sock and the thicker Sole footbeds. I still have room to wiggle my toes but the heel stays put (and I still have not heat molded them). I wear a 46 in the Nepal Evo, which is pretty much a performance fit for me for ice climbing....in the Evos I use a Sole thin footbed and I use the extra tongue.
What size should I order if I have very narrow and low instep 280 mm and 275 mm feet and my average size in Lowa trekking boots is 9.5 UK?
I would suggest the size 43.5 in these boots. Obviously, trying them on will give you a better idea if they will fit, but La Sportiva boots typically are 6.6 mm per EU size. 280/6.6 is 42.42 but with the removable liner you will need a little more room.
I have ordered size 44 of these (not from...
I have ordered size 44 of these (not from here), because my street shoe size is around 43. I find the fit perfect, but without insoles. If I put the insoles, which were in the box, the boots become too tight at the toes. So my question is, is it normal to wear them without insoles or I have bought a size too small or I should thermo mould them with insoles in?
You should order and try a larger size.
I have la sportiva karokorum boots size...
I have la sportiva karokorum boots size 45.5 us12 . What size La sportiva baruntse i must to have ?
How do the la sportivas fit compared to...
How do the la sportivas fit compared to the Scarpas.. i have a scarpa mont blanc GTX.. 42.5 bigger, smaller??
I have a pair of the Baruntse that I climbed...
I have a pair of the Baruntse that I climbed Aconcagua in last year.Loved them,no problems whatsoever.Several of the other climbers in my group had them and felt the same way.I am going back this January to climb the Polish Direct.I purchased a pair of the Scarpa Phantom 6000.They are about 10 ounces lighter than the Baruntse per boot.(I weighed them on my digital scale) I have a wide foot 4 E + and a high arch. I have found the phantoms to be a tad bit smaller (lower volume wise at the same length) consequently I usually wear a mid weight sock compared to a heavy weight with the Baruntse . My question is, will they keep my feet warm.I have done several winter ascents on 4000 meter peaks in deep snow on zero degree/windy days without any cold issues wearing the phantoms 6000. Considering the fairly significant weight difference I would prefer the lighter weight boot especially on summit day. Any thoughts on this ?
Hey there--the Phantom 6000 is a great boot for Aconcagua and as such, is included in a number of major guiding company's recommended equipment lists. See here:
You'll definitely notice the 10oz gone off your feet--that's a huge difference right there. Assuming you're an efficient and skilled climber, the Phantom 6000's should be a perfect boot for you. Good luck on the Polish Direct!
Got two pairs to try, normally wear a size...
Got two pairs to try, normally wear a size 12 hiking boots, have wide feet.
1. 45.5 outer with a 45.5/46.0 inner
2. 46.5 outer with a 46.5/47.0 inner.
-How much space should I have on the side of my feet at the widest part? It is not tight, but snug.
-How much toe space should I have?
If I kick a wall in the 45.5 outer, my toes will not hit the front, but my toes will notice where the front is. They will slide forward as I keep on kicking. I have about 1 finger width space in the front of the liner.
In the 46.5 I have about 2 fingers space in the front of the liner and will never even notice the front of the boot.
I do not want to get a boot that is too big.
Will heat moulding make more space in the toe area if I allow enough space with a toe cap?
I am wearing a thin liner and Heavy Smartwool socks.
Going through the list of reviews I am...
Going through the list of reviews I am coming to an understanding that to properly size my boot I must order up to three different pairs to see which one fits best (no suppliers near me). Well, I can't shell out that kind of money right now and I would like to get as close as possible on the size on the first try. Across the board I am a size 10.5; climbing shoes, sneakers, hiking boots. I have a pair of LS Xplorers that are size 44 and fit just fine. Not too big, not too small. Would a 44 be an appropriate place to start? Can anyone give me a comparison of their street shoe size to the Baruntse's?
If there aren't any suppliers near you, I would order the 44.5 (US 11). Try it with thick socks and potentially an insole. If it doesn't fit after a few trips around the house, then work with BC on a return. Hope this helps.
Thanks Jeff. I'll see what BC can do for me.
Dear Bryan, i'm facing a similar conundrum. What size did you eventually end up getting?
I actually have yet to purchase a pair because I really need to try them on. In a couple of weeks I will be in CO and will try on a pair.
planning on climbing mt bona(16,421ft)in...
planning on climbing mt bona(16,421ft)in alaska soon, and planned on wearing these boots. the company i would be going with suggested i have an overboot and im not a fan of overboots. so the question is should i just go with and 8000 meter boot like the olympus mons or should i just go with a different company and just wear the baruntse's?
You've gotta assume they know what they're doing, so if they recommend an overboot, and you hate them, use a warmer boot like the Olympus Mons or Phantom 8000. Did they suggest, or demand that you wear overboots? You could just not wear them and tell the company you'll deal with it. I'd go with the warmer boots and protect your feet.
I need to replace a pair of plastic double...
I need to replace a pair of plastic double boots (an older model Asolo AFS 8000) with something new. I use my mountaineering boots for climbing on vertical ice and for multi-day, backcountry winter treks in the New England mountains rather than high altitude mountaineering. Rainier is most likely the tallest glaciated peak I'll climb in the next five years. I just want to buy one boot to cover all my needs. Can the Baruntse fit the bill, or will I later be finding myself pining for the Nepal EVO GTX? (I can't afford to buy both, of course). Thanks all!
Mike, I think these boots would fit your needs. I would rather hike in the Nepals but these boots are warmer.
If you know what size you wear you can usually find these for about half the price on www.geartrade.com which sells excess and returned stock for Backcountry. But, they do not accept returns if they are the wrong size.
i found the instructions for heat molding...
i found the instructions for heat molding these confusing. not sure what toe cap hight is, or what a foot bed is (that aka a insole?) if anyone as clearer instructions id be in your debt, thx.
The foot bed is the insole. I have no idea what those crazy Italians mean by "top-cap." The procedure is pretty standard for molding liners:
You'll want to use a convection oven to make sure the liners heat evenly. Preheat to 250º. Place the liners in the oven - I've heard on a foil-lined cookie sheet, but I've used the bare rack without issue - for 10-15 minutes. You want them to look puffed up like a marshmallow.
While they're heating, prep your feet. I like to use the same socks I'll be using in the boots later to get the right fit. Put a neoprene toe cap on under the sock. If you don't have toe caps, you can make them out of whatever you have around the house. The point is to spread your toes a little bit to give them room once the boot cools. I've used cotton balls and packaging tape.
Also, grab a 2x4 out of the garage and put it on the floor.
When the liners are heated up, pull them out, toss your footbeds in there and put them on your feet, cranking the inner laces. Then shove your liner-clad feet into the boots, being careful to keep them straight and not snag them on anything. Lace them like you normally wear them, kick your heels to get them set into the boots, and stand with the toes of the boots on the 2x4 for about 10 minutes. At the end of the 10 minutes, pull your feet out, tie the boots back up, and let them sit until they cool entirely.
Also, never listen to Italians. They'll try to steal your women.
thx dave, they turned out great, appreciate the advice.
Is this too much boot for ice/winter/spring...
Is this too much boot for ice/winter/spring mountaineering in the cascades, and summer trips on rainier/baker? i'm prone to cold feet.
Nick, these are a decent all-around boot and should work for your intended adventures. If you are prone to cold feet these should fix that.
Similar/follow up question: haven't received mine yet (I'm a very large size and haven't been able to try them on), but I'm curious if they'll be possibly ok for the trip up to Muir or should I still plan on carrying them up while I hike in something else. Typically I have to hike a very heavy backpacking boot anyhow due to trashed ankles. Thanks!
would these work for ecuadors volcanos?...
would these work for ecuadors volcanos? antisana(18,875ft, cotopaxi(19,347ft)and chimborazo(20,565ft)
great boots, they can do everything from hiking in to near vertical ice.
Does anyone know where you can buy replacement...
Does anyone know where you can buy replacement liners for the Baruntse from in the U.S.?
I'm thinking your best bet is straight through La Sportiva.
So I've tried on a few pairs of these and...
So I've tried on a few pairs of these and the fit is great except for under the arch of my foot. I've got moderately high arches and when feeling in the boot shell I can feel a rather pronounced dip right after the arch. I know this part won't change any, but will custom molding the liner or adding superfeet insoles help, along with breaking it in?
Maybe I'm just not a good fit for La Sportiva. Any feedback is appreciated.
I have low arches and I have similar issues with finding a good fit. Proper fitted insoles will help, but then the question is, will the boot then be too tight? I've found I either have to size up or find a wide width to make up fot it.
Before comitting, try them on with insoles you know will work for you, along with your regular liner/sock combination. The last thing you need is to cut off circulation in a cold enviornment.
Thanks for reply. I'm getting some superfeet insoles tomorrow and will see how they work with those. I think I'll stick to a half size bigger (as I ordered two and will send one back), since the boots have a nice way to tighten the upper ankle without tightening the toe box too much.
How are these for vertical ice climbing
How are these for vertical ice climbing
I haven't personally used them, but my local club rents them out for ice climbing and they seem to do really well. They have all the features you'd want in a ice climbing boot. My Scarpa Mont Blanc are similar and work great.
I recently picked up a pair of these. ...
I recently picked up a pair of these. What are you guys using to treat the stitching, the darker grey leather and the rubber rand?
You should not need much treatment if they are new