I tried the Kokatat boot, but couldn’t get it on over my feet due to a high arch and the design of the boot. Anyone with high arches tried the Chota Mukluk or the Chota Chaney Fork. Am especially curious about the latter as I wear a dry suit with gortex booties and would then use my regular neo booties. I’ve got a pair of NRS boots so this would be trading up…
Glad for your 2 cents…
Tall boots and drysuit
I’ve found this always tough to put together, the dry suit and the tall upper of the high boots. Just seems to jam a lot of fabric into the boot. I’ve been extremely pleased with one size larger of Astral Brewer than the normal shoe size I take. I can run on slime and stop without winding up on my but, the dry in a flash and look presentable enough for terrestrial wear.
Without drysuit I’ve used the Kokatat Launch Socks or the Seal Skinz Waterblocker tall socks with them.
See you on the water,
The River Connection, Inc.
Hyde Park, NY
Chota Mukluk Lites are much more flexy
than the Quicklace, so they may be your better choice of the Chota Mukluks.
I can comfortably kneel with the Lites, but not with the Quicklace, but hte Quicklace are more secure on the foot and offer a bit more arch support.
Looks like a world of difference
I don't think it's even proper to compare the Nomad with the Caney Fork. Here's why. Just last week I looked at the Kokatat Nomad boots, and to me, they look more like socks than boots, as there is no structural integrity to the part that fits around your foot. Yes it has a sturdy sole, but no means for creating "fit" (like effective laces or straps). The uppers look nice, but the lowers are made for sitting in a kayak, not walking. I do a lot of walking along with my paddling and that floppy, shapeless sock isn't for me. On the other hand, the Caney Fork is a very big, cumbersome, sturdy boot, and it looks like an oversized hiking boot. There really is no logical comparison between a big, stiff shoe and a floppy sock. Pick one or the other, but don't try to compare. A Chota quick-lace style of mukluk would be somewhere between those two extremes.
As a side note, I found out why the Caney fork wading boot is so darned bulky. I was looking to replace my no-longer-made Chota Quick-Lace boots with Gore-Tex uppers, and as a compromise solution, I bought the booty/gaiter combo for the Caney Fork boots, thinking (stupidly) that I could wear them with regular paddling shoes. The booty part of the gaitor/booty combo is so voluminous and the fabric is so thick that even with my extremely slender feet, they won't fit into any normal shoe or boot. Not even close. The inability to fit is so extreme that I don't believe there's a "normal" shoe that's made, other than something like the gigantic Caney Fork boot, into which I could stick my feet while wearing them. I'm going to return them, because I don't wish to buy a specific boot that's made for them when there's plenty of reason to doubt how well that "gravel guard" construction will do at keeping out the grit, or especially muck (anyone who steps in the water regularly can vouch for the fact that where water can go, sand, fine gravel and mud will inevitably follow). For me, that's way too much money to spend on a combination that's likely to let all sorts of garbage into the boot (two-piece boots in dirty conditions make as much sense to me as two-piece dry suits do in water). YMMV.
Chota Quicklace Mukluks no longer?
“I was looking to replace my no-longer-made Chota Quick-Lace boot”
Are you sure? They are still listed in their online catalog:
chota mukluk lite better than nomad
My arches are high but tend to collapse so I need to wear arch support inserts. I have a pair of chota mukluks that look like what are now called mukluk lite. With added arch supports those are comfortable and actually work pretty well even though there is minimal structural support. More recently I bought a pair of Kokatat Nomads thinking that the breathable tops would be good. I can get my feet in them, but just barely and they are not as comfortable as the chotas. The problem isn’t that they are floppy - the foot part is somewhat stiff but it doesn’t conform to the foot well. If you don’t need to do significant portaging I’d definitely recommend trying the chota mukluk lites, possibly with arch support inserts.
That’s not the boot I mentioned.
The boot they no longer make is the Quick-Lace model with Gore-Tex uppers, which can be worn any time of year, not just when it’s cold. That old Gore-Tex model is great when the weather is too warm for the neoprene model (the neoprene model is the one shown in that link you posted) but yet you still want to avoid having wet feet or shoes full of sand or mud. I even wear them around camp on the Wisconsin River so that by just shedding them at the door of my tent I can immediately enter without taking a bunch of sand inside with me, and that’s especially nice in rainy conditions (otherwise, whether barefoot or wearing paddling shoes, there’s no easy way to get the sand off your feet). Plus, even in warm weather they never get stinky as long as you wear good socks (and with a good-quality boot, you should). You can wear socks with paddling shoes, but because they are constantly wet inside, often with dirty water, they still get pretty nasty.
By the way, I took another look at the Caney Fork booty/gaiter combo, and though they give the appearance of having a full-height Gore-tex upper like the old Gore-Tex Quick-Lace, only the top few inches is without a full neoprene liner, so the breathability will be a lot less. Even with my old Gore-Tex boots, having more breathability would have been preferable to having less, so I can’t see the booty/gaiter as equivalent.