Rated 5 out of 5 by Rescu82 LOVE these
I have a beloved pair of these boots. They have countless miles on them in the White Mountains. I've finally worn out the soles so I will be purchasing a new pair. I highly recommend them. They do have a break in period but are so worth it.
May 16, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by Sweet5k Highly Recommend!
I got these boots for a recent trip to the Grand Canyon. I took my time breaking them in beforehand and did a 4 day, 40+ mile hike into, around and out of the canyon with no blisters and only occasional mild foot pain even though I was going up and down some pretty steep switch backs. I've since done a few more hikes with these and they really hold up. The only thing I'd point out is that if you're going to be walking on ice, get some crampons, these can still be quite slippery.
May 6, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by Forestlove Great boot
I loved these boots! They fit well, sizing was perfect for my woman's 8 1/2 foot. Great ankle support. (I have very pronounced arthritis in one ankle.# It does take awhile to break them in, but don't give up!
The only reason I could not keep them was that the leather on top did not hold up well on rough #old# lava fields in Hawaii. The hard lava substrate is very jagged in some areas with caves, lava tubes, tree tubes and lots of other things to trip over. The soles did just fine, rugged construction. Slightly heavier than other boots I have worn. But not a problem in the field. Great support! My job requires bending and kneeling as well as hiking.
In any other environment- I used these briefly in New Hampshire woods- they were awesome, decently warm and water proof!
The return process was outstandingly simple.
So instead, I bought a pair of Merrell Grassbow's and they lasted for a year on the very rough substrate that I work on. They were not very waterproof, but that didn't bother me. #We do not have day long cold weather up on the mountain) The toe flap finally separated after eleven month's and by month 12, I decided to replace them.
I just ordered a pair of woman's 8 1/2-Keens Gypsum hikers to replace the Merrell's. Have received them and am "house" breaking them in...super comfortable with a great fit and ankle support! Awesome! You will always be my favorite place to order from, LL Bean! Mahalo!
April 24, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 I want to wear these everyday.
I'm new to this process of getting older. Somedays I curse it and other days I revel in it. The last two years I've been getting acquainted with ways of dealing with a diagnosis of moderate arthritis in both ankles. When we booked an expedition in Alaska for July 2015 I started working with a physical therapist to strengthen both joints as well as had surgery to clean out my left ankle which radiated the most pain. I began my search for the best possible hiking boot and found them in Bean's Cresta Hiker. I can't possible articulate how wonderful these boots are. I have not climbed mountains or scrambled up rock walls but I can speak from the prospective of a 62- year-old with not so perfect ankles. When the boots arrived I started wearing them around the house getting used to their feel. Without feeling too snug these babies cradle the dimensions of your ankle and foot. They honestly felt as though they were made for me. I recently had orthopedics made for me but I don't wear them with the Crestas. I don't have to since the bed of the shoe has a great arch. I pair them with the Smart Wool socks to keep my feet warm and comfortable. These boots are so great I'm trying to think of ways I could wear them 12 months a year.
February 24, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by QueenAnnie Excellent for wide feet!
Bought these in a 7.5 Wide, as I'm usually a 7.5 or 8, and they fit perfectly! I usually have to really work hard to break in shoes and especially boots, but these are already sufficiently wide enough even for me. While I bought these for an extended stay in a rural region of South America, I live in the city and these are great boots for trudging around on concrete in the snow and rain--they have solid soles and are totally waterproof (even if they don't look very chic). I have only had them for a month but have also worn them doing yard work, and have already been hiking on a few very different trails that are any combination of very rocky, muddy, steep, icy, snowy... They have supported my ankles well and protected my feet and I barely slipped at all, and then only on really severe ice. The only drawback is they are a little uncomfortable around the ankle, mostly due to being new and a bit stiff, but I also think that has to do with what socks you wear and how you tie them--the laces tend to loosen up quite a bit as you hike so be sure to really knot them. Surprisingly they didn't feel TOO stiff though to begin with, as other reviews have stated, though they definitely need more time to be fully broken in. And I agree they are very heavy, but when you're hiking over a ton of sharp rocks, you want that heavy sole. But coming from someone with really wide feet that usually hurt horribly by the end of the day if shoes aren't wide enough, these give me plenty of room and plenty of protection from the elements. Seriously awesome boots, can't wait for my trip!!
January 23, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by Twiggy305 Great boot
I got these boots a gift in the black leather version about a year ago in a 6.5 narrow. These boots have been through a trip to Alaska including a bouldering/glacial hike. I have also worn the, through several other week+ hikes in British Columbia, the Smoky mountains, and various state/national parks in Pennsylvania. In each circumstance the boots have been fantastic. They have even become so comfortable that I have been wearing them as everyday boots in cooler months! I can't wait to put more miles in them!
December 26, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Poppy5027 I LOVE these boots
I bought these boots as a treat to myself a year and a half ago. They are still in excellent condition and haven't failed me at all. When I first got them out of the box, they seemed heavy and tall...the soles are very thick. This wasn't something I was used to, but it works to my advantage because it protects my feet incredibly well. It took a little bit of getting used to, but I quickly did.
I tend to wear them as farm boots on a regular basis. They keep my feet cool in summer, warm in winter, and always dry.
I went up to the Canadian Rockies this past summer with my brother who swears he only needs tennis shoes to hike. The trail had slick, melting, wide patches of snow on it and several streams. I didn't slip once on the snow (unlike my brother and others on the trail) and I didn't have to risk jumping between slippery rocks in the streams - I just walked through and my feet stayed dry. I was grateful for that, since most people ended up slipping in the stream and the trail followed a cliff, so a slip could prove to be dangerous. I didn't have to worry.
There are some things to consider with these boots, though:
- The leather where the attached tongue meets the boot tends to squeak when the boots are new. I found some leather conditioner and breaking them in solved this.
- I would recommend good, wool hiking socks. I wore regular socks with them on the farm and was fine, but I noticed after spending days in them in Canada that I was getting blisters on my toes and heels. A woman at a camp store sold me an amazing pair of wool socks and I didn't run into the problem again.
- I did get some of those semi-custom insoles for my boots. They didn't really *need* them, but the sole they come with is rather firm. Now I feel like I am walking on air, and I feel like the boots themselves feel lighter too.
- I do think the boots run a little large. I wear between an 8.5 and a 9, but I ordered the 8.5 figuring it would be easier to see if the boots were too small and I could exchange. Even with insoles and wool socks, the boots are kind of big. It's not enough to bother me or warrant sending them back, but I probably could have worn an 8.
Overall, these boots are awesome. So comfortable, durable, and practical.
November 22, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Thrillseeker My second pair -- the last one lasted 20 years!!
I LOVE these boots. My first pair lasted about 20 years, and I hated to part with them (I actually still have them just in case). I ordered my new pair for a hiking trip in South America last month. They were fabulous...I specifically remember an incident when I stepped into a rapidly flowing stream up to my ankle and did not get wet at all. These boots are THE BEST. The quality does not seem to have changed.
Even better -- they come in narrow sizes. I wish LL Bean offered more narrow sized shoes and boots!
November 2, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Hiker45209 Happy customer
I purchased these boots two years ago with points that I had earned. I've put about 200 miles on them since then, and each time I wear them I fall more in love! It took a few wears to understand how to set the tension w/r/t the laces - I was tying them too tight at the top and my feet would start to go numb after about an hour. Once I set the laces to be more loose, it was perfect. I mostly hike around rocky terrain and through water, and these keep your feet protected and dry.
October 31, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Paddleswithlabs So far, worth the expense
This review is for the women's Cresta hikers. I am a traditionalist and like hiking boots with full leather uppers. I have been looking at these boots for about the past year, and when the sole split open on my Vasque Sundowners a few weeks ago, decided to make this expensive purchase. The boots are, as one would expect with leather boots, stiff when you get them, but I hiked 4 miles up and down some steep hills in the Adirondacks on the first day I wore them, and my feet did great! I usually wear between a 7.5 and 8 - these run large. The 7.5 fits very well and especially on the down-hill, my toes had plenty of room in the toe box and were not getting jammed. Traction on the vibram soles is good, as expected. I also like the fact that I could order in different widths - medium is a great fit for my not narrow, not wide feet. The ankle supporting portion of the boot is a bit taller and snugger than my last pair of boots - takes a bit of getting used to, but I like the extra support.
I'm hoping that these boots hold up well over time, as that was the main disappointment with my last pair of non-LLBean boots. Bean's excellent warranty is part of what made me switch to this boot, given the expense.
The boots arrived with a second set of laces. Nice touch.
So far, I'd say they are worth every penny. However, it is a lot of pennies! Thus my 4 rather than 5 star review (plus, I'm holding out until I see how they do over time).
October 11, 2014