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Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

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Hong Kong, China
posts: 11
Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Dear experts,

The subject may seem a bit silly, however, i'm a city girl living in Hong Kong and have very little experience in dealing with the extremely cold weather (there is no snow and average temperture about 8C only in Hong Kong winter), especially my trip to Alaska or Lapland in Feb aim to Northern Light hunting. I seek your advice in hellping my decision, all the advice is appreciated.

I understand to keep my feet warm & dry is a crucial but difficult task in the extreme weather, hence i'm looking for good quality and functional snow boots for myself and my husband. There is very limited choices in Hong Kong, and my limited choices include LL Bean snow boots (Maine Pac Boots) and Columbia's Omni-heat boots. Does any one of you have a trial of these boots? And what is your recommendation to me please?

My thank you in advance.

isabel

Rovaniemi, Finland
posts: 987
1. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Glad to hear you are thinking about your feet as too many visitors overlook good shoes when coming here in middle of winter! It's cruical, very true, but not that difficult - you are not going to an expedition I think... :) You can put off your shoes in the evening and have dry ones again the next morning.

I haven't tried those boots you mentioned, but to me they look ok. You should be fine with those. There are many good brands Sorel and Helly Hansen just to name two...

But couple of general tips in winter shoes: they should be roomy enough to comforably fit two pairs of socks and still feel a bit loose. Only skates or skiing boots should be a tight fit - other shoes absolutely not. WIth socks on there should be I'd say 1-2 cm from toes to the tip of your shoes. Also invest in good insulating insoles. Those things are more important than the brand you choose.

But if you can't find any good shoes before leaving, we have good sports shops in every resort up here too. And with sports shops comes experienced sales men who will know what you need. You don't need to be extra protected just getting off your plane, getting to a hotel and waiting for the next morning to go shoe shopping. If you have some boots or hiking shoes they'll be enough for that.

Oulu, Finland
Destination Expert
for Helsinki, Oulu, Lapland
posts: 3,385
reviews: 50
2. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Don't know the shoes you've mentioned, but if you can find Columbia Sportswear branded boots, you should also find Sorel boots, as they are also owned by Columbia Sportswear: http://www.sorel.com/ . E.g. Sorel Caribou is an excellent waterproof winter boot (I have a pair of them myself). Maybe not ergonomic enough for a long hike but very good for what is needed e.g. for staying outdoors in cold climate for extended periods of time.

Helsinki, Finland
posts: 627
3. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Sorel, Ecco, Columbia have some good shoes, and if you are able to find online store selling Viking footwear, they should work too.

But me and my daughter love Australian Ugg boots (not the UGG brand particularly, but the type of shoe in general). If the weather stay below zero, so that there is not too much moisture, they are the warmest comfiest shoes ever. For hiking you will need sturdier shoes though.

Hong Kong, China
posts: 11
4. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Dear all the tripadvisors,

Thak you very much for all the advice, I have browsed through the brand you suggested and have finally made my decision, I come back and report my final purchase..... I buy a pair of Columbia Omni-heat boots with more than 50% discount online! Honestly, the discounted price beats all.

To make sure I have warm feet when sitting outdoor for hours waiting for northern lights, I will take PasiRoi's advice to invest in good insulating sole.

Hong Kong, China
posts: 11
5. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Mrs._MM77, I will bring along my UGG too, however, i doubt if UGG is really water-proof and has good insulating leather when my feet standing on ice-lake for hours?

Helsinki, Finland
posts: 627
6. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

It is not water-proof, ie. close to zero temperatures they will get wet. But when it's minus ten or so, the snow is really dry and natural sheepskin works perfectly. My daughter wears her EMUs with just woolen socks when it's minus twenty-five.

Hong Kong, China
posts: 11
7. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

Dear Mrs._MM77, thank you very much for your information, i will defintely try UGG with smart wool socks in -30C Inari! i shall report if this combination works well on me too!

8. Re: Warm Shoes when travelling to Alaska or Lapland in Feb

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