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Warm and water proof shoes suggestions?

Old 11-06-13, 03:40 PM
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cookiejar
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Warm and water proof shoes suggestions?

I used to ride 6 miles one way and it would take only 20 minutes so it wasn't too hard to suck it up. Now my commute is 15 miles one way and I think I should gear myself up for the winter. I have everything else except shoes. I'm wearing thick wool socks but my feet still get cold. It's not even that cold here in Seattle compared to most places in the country or Canada. I wonder what shoes people from cold places would recommend. Waterproofness is very important. It rains a lot here. I'm using eggbeater pedals.
Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-06-13, 03:55 PM
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the most extreme clipless compatible boots are 45Nrth Wolvhammers. From my experience I think you'd never get cold in the PNW with them. Im in MN and I'm a cold feet all the time guy, and they're warm for about 2-3 hours in pretty extreme cold with a single pair of thick wool socks. They are totally waterproof, will accept any mountain style cleat, very well built, and also they are stupid expensive.

Yes, They might be overkill for you and there are probably a few others to recommend, but I have these and I can attest to their warmth and performance.
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Old 11-06-13, 05:48 PM
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Take the eggbeaters off , and get a grippy platform pedal , and then you can just buy some rubber boots
and be able to slog through the puddles and ford shallow streams ..

LL Bean has some models of their rubber foot- Leather Upper Boots lined with cozy Sheepskin.

Last edited by fietsbob; 11-06-13 at 05:54 PM.
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Old 11-06-13, 06:17 PM
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I would agree with changing out your pedals and going with platforms, and some type of rubber boots. Here in Montana we don't have rain in the winter, just sub-zero temps and cold winds...not sure which one is worse...lol. One old trick which works surprisingly well for warmth, is to put your foot in a plastic grocery bag, put the sock over that...or put the bag over your sock, either way. Sure your feet might sweat, and it might feel odd, but no one can see the bag, and if you change in a bathroom at work no one would know. Feet stay shockingly warm and dry. Here, when it gets really cold, I use snow boots and platform pedals.
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Old 11-06-13, 06:51 PM
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I'm very satisfied with the Showers Pass club covers. They keep my feet dry in long heavy Puget Sound rain showers and fold compact to be stored away conveniently in my pannier. I agree with others suggestion to just swap out the pedals to platforms and wear a shoe of your choice. Also, the soles can be cut out to accomodate cleats if the later is not an option.
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Old 11-06-13, 11:04 PM
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I think I remember reading that the mounting plate in the sole of your shoes act as heat sink...
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Old 11-07-13, 08:57 PM
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Ride when it gets zero or below in northern VT.
best combination for me has been the shimano mx30 flat pedal and a pair of LLBean snow sneakers over wool socks.
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Old 11-07-13, 09:49 PM
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clipless addict, but i'm going to try bmx pedals and Sorel boots at some point. last year i got down to -7F in the Louis Garneau Zero boots after adding 100% WOOL FELT INSOLES.

emphasis because they made a whole world of difference.

if not expecting to go to single digits, i also have Sidi Diablo boots that work fine with a thin/thick sock combo.

i will say though, both boots are a bit treacherous when walking on wet tile floors on the way into work....
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Old 11-08-13, 07:28 AM
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My opinion is that the greatest heat loss factor of biking in cold &/or wet weather is heat loss due to wind (convective heat loss). Therefore, unless you're wearing enough wool to block the wind entirely, you will get cold. I have ridden this fall in -17C (1F) wind chill with wool socks, shoes, plastic bag and then a moderately wind resistant bootie and my feet were toasty, even after 65min on the bike at speeds up to 40kmh (25mph, wind chill was based on the 9kmh wind plus 16kmh riding speed, 40kmh riding speed would impose a greater wind chill). The shoes are regular SPD shoes.

I put my shoes in the bag (standard thin grocery bag) and then the booties over top. The shoes can still clip in to the pedals through the bag either by ripping it a bit or just because the bag material is thin. I don't know how eggbeaters will do but I suspect they'll be similar.
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Old 11-08-13, 12:18 PM
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Bear in mind that three-seasons shoes are designed to keep your feet cool. So you're working against the shoe's design when you try to keep your feet warm.

The other thing to consider is that it's blood flow that distributes heat. Tight-fitting three-seasons shoes can reduce blood flow. Cram in thicker socks, and something's gotta give--usually blood vessels.

For a cold weather shoe, whatever your final choice, make it a metric size or two larger than your three-seasons shoes so that you can get warm blood where it needs to be, while at the same time adding insulation.

I strongly prefer clipless. My choice is the Lake MXZ series of clipless winter cycling boots. I have the older MXZ302 model. The current model is the MXZ303, which seems to have addressed my only two issues with the 302s.

These are a full-grain leather boot that's fully insulated. They are waterproof. I can stand in an ankle-deep puddle without water getting inside.

The cleat backing plate is embedded within the sole, on the outside of the sole's insulation. This avoids the heat-sink effect. Besides insulation in the sole, they come with insulated insoles. They're flat, so if like me you need arch supports, they go in right on top without issue.

They are also durable. I'm beginning my eighth winter with mine. This mitigates their expense a bit, althought theyr'e still breathtakingly expensive.

At the beginning of every season, as you would with any leather boot, I give them a new coat of waterproofing. I use Kiwi's Wet Pruf, found in the shoe polish aisle of the grocery store. (Trouble is, every year I forget I still have some, and buy a new tin.)
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Old 11-08-13, 01:34 PM
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Rather than worry about shoes, my approach is to go with waterproof socks, like these from REI. Then you can wear your regular shoes. The socks are just a little bit thicker than my normal (wool) socks, but shoe sizing hasn't been a problem. The socks are toasty warm, but they're not breathable. If your feet perspire a lot, they'll get damp wearing these socks. One additional plus is protection from rain as well as cold.
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Old 11-10-13, 11:06 AM
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If you're going to stick with clipless, consider some dedicated winter clipless shoes (Lake, Louis Garneau, Shimano, SIDI).

For commuting here in Colorado, I have a few different "grades" of shoe covers, the warmest being SealSkinz's heavy-duty oversocks. I just finished reviewing the Louis Garneau Bimax covers, and they're good for mild-moderate conditions. I tried some Shimano MTB winter shoes, but I couldn't replicate my preferred cleat position.
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Old 11-10-13, 12:41 PM
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This season I have been using the booties that fit over your clipless shoes. They rise up past my ankle and are windproof, but not waterproof. Surprisingly though, I have worn them in the rain and they kept my feet pretty dry regardless. I have seen a vast improvement in my comfort using the booties and not had to change my pedals or my shoes.

Last year was a struggle to keep my feet warm. I think this year is going to be much better.
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