Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Sorel 1964 Pac Boot Review

When most hear the name Sorel, an image of a winter boot pops up. Like Xerox or Kleenex, a company has defined a product. Established by William Kaufman in the early 1900, Kaufman was building winter boots in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada, before any of you readers even knew of snow, or the cold, or even life... In 1964 Billy we the first to combine a leather boot upper with a rubber sole and removable felt liner. That boot is still around today, and in fact is keeping my feet warm as I type. Two features of this boot that make it great; the removable liner and the minimal wavy thread.

An average foot has 250,000 sweat glands, and can produce up to a pint of sweat a day! A PINT!!! Man if foot sweat was beer... So where does all this sweat go? Into your sock, then into your boot. In order to be totally and completely water proof for the life of the boot, the boot relies on totally water proof material, PVC coated leather (not available back in 1964), and rubber. Not a fancy one way membrane that claims to be waterproof and breathable, but ends up being both not water proof and not breathable. Membranes like that also tend to only work for short period of time before they wear out, and the more abuse they are exposed to, like being pounded to the ground, the shorter the life span. Also since it is a delicate membrane it must be sandwiched between tougher materials, which is not usuualy water proof and will become totally wet and freeze; dry yet very cold. So back to my point; with a removable linear, one can easily pull the boot apart and let the insides dry out.

When I was a kid, one measure of how cool your shoes were, was by how aggressive the sole pattern was. If that still held true, I would not be given a positive review on these boots. With the 1964 pac, there is little more than a few wavy lines and some texturing. But on snow and ice, thread make little difference as far available traction goes. You do need some thread pattern on the bottom of your shoe but it doesn't make that great of a difference. The really cool thing about this thread pattern is that is sheds snow very easily. A simple tap of the boot and it is clear of snow. This actually aids traction cause the thread is self clearing, and able to dig in with each step. And the most important thing about easy clearing thread is that it doesn't track snow into the house like other boots, that leave little squiggles of packed snow to melt on the carpet.

These boots however are considered my outdoor "slippers". I do not lace them up tight and I can slip them on and off with ease. I do not go on long hikes with these on. I just go from my house to the car, to the office, walk around the grocery store...

I have had these boots for less than a year and they have held up so far. I did get them directly from Sorel as a manufacture warranty replacement (that says something). My last pair, not the 1964 or the other ultra classic Caribou, did not hold up so well; but that my Friends is a story for another time... Look under reveiws MrPulldown

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