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Blisters with touring boots

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I got some new touring boots last season. I mainly used them for about 3 weeks of lift served off piste before the season was curtailed no problems with the fit. My touring holiday was cancelled but I did manage 3 touring days last season and the last day touring I got a big blister at the back of my right heal after a coupe of hours of uphill.

I was out for a tour yesterday and again a huge blister in the exact same place during the uphill. (For the avoidance of doubt the tour was local within a few miles of my house!). I can feel in the liner that it has become rough and bobbled at the are where the blister occurs. Less so in other parts of the liners.

I did ask last year at the shop I got the boots from and they were at a bit of loss other than to suggest buying a different liner. I have very narrow heals and often find boots difficult to get fitted right but these are absolute fine other than the blister. It’s not the socks, never had blisters with other boots before.

Any ideas for solutions including other liners to try? Boots are Atomic Hawk 120 ultra xtd
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
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Do you have custom insoles, a little extra volume in the right place may stop your foot moving about as much and stop the rubbing? I have the same boot in the 130 but it has a different liner to yours.

Otherwise perhaps you could just put some preventative compeed over the spot that rubs? I found it very good to protect and already rubbed blister on my instep (with different boots)
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Army trick:
Two pairs of socks, the inner pair as thin as possible...cut-off tights or pop-socks work the best.
Honestly, try it. I have never ever had blisters with any boots of any kind when doing this. It really works.
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Remove the bobbles. Compeed. Experiment with different 'buckling' regimes to stop your heel moving.
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Thanks for the suggestions everyone
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I have Sidas footbeds, but I think I will try to use a heel grip or padding to try and reduce movement.
Compeed are great, Put one and went running today - no pain at all.
Never thought of using them preventatively though
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Sounds like your heal is lifting, wet & rubbing = blisters. The rubbing then wears the inside of the liner.

In addition to the above good suggestions I’d say make sure your heel is properly seated by striking your heal on the floor when you put the boots on. The second buckle over the top of the foot should be tight enough so that your heal cannot lift. If this isn‘t possible it might be worth seeing if a boot fitter can do something to secure the heel.

I hope this isn‘t the case but it could be that the boots are too big and now that the liner has started to pack out you are moving about in the boot. I‘d get a good bootfitter to check if the shell is the right size for you before investing in another liner.

Be sure to use the same thickness of socks each time (thin) otherwise the thicker socks pack out the liner and you have movement when wearing thinner socks.
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Try these in the thin 2mm option. Brilliant for minimising heel blisters. They come in thicker versions too.

https://www.ezeefitsports.com/mobile/Product.aspx?id=37719
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brownie wrote:
Boots are Atomic Hawk 120 ultra xtd


Funny you should say that. I ave a pair, professionally fitted, and they are dreadful for blisters.

Last time out I used some posh anti blister tape which seemed to help.

Having thought about this I suspect it's the liner at issue. I'm planning to drop Atomic UK an email and see if it's possible to swap liners from another model. If nothing else it might save a couple of hundred grams Smile
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Quote:


Boots are Atomic Hawk 120 ultra xtd


Funny you should say that. I ave a pair, professionally fitted, and they are dreadful for blisters.

Last time out I used some posh anti blister tape which seemed to help.

Having thought about this I suspect it's the liner at issue. I'm planning to drop Atomic UK an email and see if it's possible to swap liners from another model. If nothing else it might save a couple of hundred grams

Interesting....not heard of issues elsewhere but makes me wonder too
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@brownie, and others, some people sweat more than others and some people do not suffer from blisters at all.

Over the years, of which there are many, I've tried every conceivable method, even to hiking in my touring-boots back in the UK on the grassy South Downs to get a blister in advance of a trip.

Problem is most people only react to a blister once it is too late, the bubble had burst as it were.

I wrote this feature about what to do and prevent blisters, plus get yourself off Amazon some Hypafix tape, which you can lay over the compeed.

https://www.stylealtitude.com/how-to-treat-a-ski-boot-blister.html

I'm currently "nursing" one on each heel (I use different boots), but they are not open Vesouvious craters, and I'm still able to tour in no discomfort, when the compeed dressing eventually comes off and if I'm careful I'll have decent hard skin callouses for the rest of the season. Though in the warm temps of Spring and again sweating like a pig they can come back.

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Great article - thanks for sharing
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Never tried it but looks like petroleum jelly could be another Option


http://youtube.com/v/lIvLRG31MZI&feature=emb_logo
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I am a devotee of Leukotape as directed by a reliable mountain guide. Tape up early, prior to the blister developing then leave it on for the day, week month. Nature will remove it!
One of our issues is that we simply don't do enough to harden the feet off, Weathercams remark about hiking the south downs in touring boots makes sense. Develope the blisters when it doesn't really matter and in so doing you've produced a patch of much tougher skin.
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Scarpa wrote:
Try these in the thin 2mm option. Brilliant for minimising heel blisters. They come in thicker versions too.

https://www.ezeefitsports.com/mobile/Product.aspx?id=37719


We use those for touring and have found them to be great. Definitely worth a try.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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@brownie,

skinning is a brilliant way of creating blisters. You can't have your boots super snug without rerstricting range of motion, you are lifting your heel every stride, your boots don't breath so trap in moisture. Everything is stacked against you.

Like you I have quite narrow heels relative to forefoot and this makes heel-hold a key issue with ski boots for me. With the right fit, I can get good hold while skiing but skinning is much tougher.

I've come to the view that I cannot stop movement so need to take preventative measures to stop that movement making blisters. I'm still experimenting but some sort of dressing (perhaps compeed) on the area that gets effected covered with SMOOTH tape that won't be "grabbed" by a sock seems the best approach for me. I've not done it yet but some people even use duct tape as the top layer. That way the liner/sock slides over the shiny tape without rubbing the skin below.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
A long time ago my rugby boots gave me blisters on my heels, what worked for me was to wrap 3 or 4 rows of electrical tape directly to the skin before putting the sock on carefully
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Kinesiology tape is great for preventing blisters and much less expensive than compeed
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Purplecat wrote:
Kinesiology tape is great for preventing blisters and much less expensive than compeed


Does it stay on even in the sweat drenched environment of a ski-touring boot? Must be difficult to make something that is going to stay on under these conditions but not rip your skin off when you come to taking it off.
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I have used KT tape for another purpose on my ankle and it stayed on fine skiing
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I have only tried it when wearing my goretex trainers but I've never had it even begin to lift at the edges until I want to remove it.
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Anyone tried liquid skin on touring blisters?

Quote:
Just like regular bandages, liquid bandage is useful for treating and preventing blisters. (Andrew Weil mentions musicians using superglue to protect their fingers from stringed instruments.) If all you need to do is reduce friction, but regular bandages keep coming off, slather on that liquid bandage.
Like self-adhesive postage stamps and better cereal box tops, liquid bandage is one of those tiny advances in technology that feels life-changing the first three times you use it, then becomes part of the beige background noise of life.


https://lifehacker.com/when-to-use-liquid-bandages-instead-of-band-aids-1826485377
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jedster wrote:

I've come to the view that I cannot stop movement so need to take preventative measures to stop that movement making blisters. I'm still experimenting but some sort of dressing (perhaps compeed) on the area that gets effected covered with SMOOTH tape that won't be "grabbed" by a sock seems the best approach for me. I've not done it yet but some people even use duct tape as the top layer. That way the liner/sock slides over the shiny tape without rubbing the skin below.


I have similar problems, and if I skin much more than ~600 vert (less on a hot day) I WILL get blisters, simple as that. Nomatter how many I've already had over the season.

Ducktape works the best out everything I've tried - ideally applied before touring, but if I've been lazy and already developed blisters I put compeed on first to prevent pain later when removing.

I keep meaning to try those Ezeefit sock things too (tried pop socks once, but they ended up sliding down off my heel to under my foot), but they're actually quite hard to find in adult sizes in Europe!
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Quote:

Ducktape works the best out everything I've tried - ideally applied before touring


THat's what I meant - before I start.
WHat's it like removing the ducktape - I've always been a bit nervous it would take skin with it!
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clarky999 wrote:
I keep meaning to try those Ezeefit sock things too (tried pop socks once, but they ended up sliding down off my heel to under my foot), but they're actually quite hard to find in adult sizes in Europe!


Most people seem to be happy with those Ezeefit ankle booties but not everyone, one guy on Amazon.com said the seam that runs done the back of the heel made it worse for him.
As for the pop socks, sounds like you need the full monty to keep them up (suspender belt) wink

PS Do you happen to know if hinterstoder is crazy busy on the weekends?
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Haven't tried it touring, but I will second duct tape based on hiking experience. I am prone to awful heel blisters, but a strip or two of duct tape completely prevents them. Just make sure it's good and smooth with no lifting edges when you put it on. I've never had a problem getting it off after. Preventative Compeed works too, but costs way more.
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Pop socks tip: if you want them to stay up, you need the knee-high elasticated ones wink The ankle ones work for normal shoes, but they’ll ball up in a ski boot. Obviously, all pop socks are blood-sapping accessories of the devil that will leave indentations in your legs, but whatever floats your boat Laughing

Not tried to buy them over here, M&S being the obvious supplier – H&M, C&A or any department store with a decent hosiery section at a guess.
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Sounds like the best solution would be knee length / lace top pop socks held up with duct tape. wink
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@DB, yeah, but get the ones without the lace. It’ll get knackered anyway wink You need the very simple elasticated topped version, and the wider the band the less you’ll have to say goodbye to your circulation.
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jedster wrote:
Quote:

Ducktape works the best out everything I've tried - ideally applied before touring


THat's what I meant - before I start.
WHat's it like removing the ducktape - I've always been a bit nervous it would take skin with it!


After a bit of sweat then shower or bath it's really no problem, as long as the skin underneath isn't already hurt!
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
DB wrote:
clarky999 wrote:
I keep meaning to try those Ezeefit sock things too (tried pop socks once, but they ended up sliding down off my heel to under my foot), but they're actually quite hard to find in adult sizes in Europe!


Most people seem to be happy with those Ezeefit ankle booties but not everyone, one guy on Amazon.com said the seam that runs done the back of the heel made it worse for him.
As for the pop socks, sounds like you need the full monty to keep them up (suspender belt) wink

PS Do you happen to know if hinterstoder is crazy busy on the weekends?


Good to know - for me it's always the side, between the heel the heel and ankle bones, that gets blistered though, so hopefully will be ok for me.

Re. Hinterstoder: no personal experience as we're back in IBK now, but apparently yes, still getting v busy on weekends (Wurzeralm too, but not quite as bad apparently).
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
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Quote:

Sounds like the best solution would be knee length / lace top pop socks held up with duct tape.

Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy


Last edited by Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person on Mon 11-01-21 23:00; edited 2 times in total
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DB wrote:
Never tried it but looks like petroleum jelly could be another Option


http://youtube.com/v/lIvLRG31MZI&feature=emb_logo


I use something similar when I feel some friction developing. Aquaphor is another skin type cream/gel that works well too.
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Quote:

Good to know - for me it's always the side, between the heel the heel and ankle bones, that gets blistered though, so hopefully will be ok for me


That's the fecker! I'm going to give the duct tape a go next time
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Duct tapes a bit industrial isnt it? I’ve found using Zinc tape quite helpful with blisters and boots, although army not touring.
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So these feet, and sorry if you're looking at this over your breakfast Laughing have clocked up a fair amount of vertical in the last week or so and cross country.

If you put a compeed on well then it will last a good week or so, sometimes the edges will start to curl up, but as long as it is still stuck well over the blister then simply cut the errant edges off where it is not stuck well to the skin and then tape over with that tape I mentioned above, that tape is so good, though if the tape starts to peel back you simply remove that tape whilst the compeed remains stuck and then add a new strip of tape.

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@Weathercam,

Have to admit I prefer your skiing pics but glad I'd already had my breakfast before seeing that.

Tend not to get serious blisters but probably because I'm a ski-touring weekend warrior rather than out day after day like you. My multi-day trips tend to be at the end of the season by which time the skin on my heels has hardened.

Do you wait until there's a problem and then start applying the compeed/tape or did you get the blisters despite taking preventative measures?

Find compeed is great - if it stays on. If the compeed starts to peel it's always a difficult decision to take it off on the hill as you can end up taking chunks out of the heel with it.

Have ordered some of that tape and plan to take nail-clippers with me on big trips so that in the event of a compeed/tape coming off at the edge I can trim the edge away and stick some tape over it until I get the chance to look at it after the tour.

Is the cut higher up on your right heel also from ski touring?

Suspect our feet were not designed to be in sweaty touring boots day after day and we lose the oils from our skin. Then the ski hardens and cracks like dry leather. Maybe we should moisturise our feet after the tour. I only shower with a shower gel that contains a micro-moisturiser, the skin on your feet looks a lot dryer than mine.
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DB wrote:
........Do you wait until there's a problem and then start applying the compeed/tape or did you get the blisters despite taking preventative measures?......


It's a bit of a calculation in that I do not start the season off wearing competed as a preventative measure, so I know I'm going to get them and then it's all about minimising the damage so that I can build up some hard skin callouses and then not need compeeds until I get really sweaty in the Spring!

The trouble is that on the hill, especially in a group when you feel the hot spot developing, apart from asking people to wait up, it's really hard to apply a competed successfully and I don't know as I've never tried, using that tape as well.

If on the hill take your sock off and really dry to cool the skin down before trying to apply any dressings.

When I say calculation, it's more or less a strategy, in that get a small blister and whilst it's not burst get back down the hill and treat it afterwards as I describe in this feature.





So note that needle is going into the good skin 2mm from the blister, take the needle out and the water will seem out through the good skin, and then you'll find that the skin will quickly bond back without developing something horrible like this Shocked

Shocked
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That is a real cracker of a blister! Once saw a young Swiss lass up in Rotondohütte with something similar. How she got boots on and skied out I will never know. One life's mysteries!
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Since I was in the Army I have sworn by a sheet of fine zinc oxide tape directly onto the blister or potential site of the blister.

Works for potential SAS troopers doing the Pen Y Fan dance should work for touring skis.

The serous fluid can ooze out of the tape onto the sock. The boot/sock rubs onto the tape not the skin

This type:
https://www.medisave.co.uk/leukoplast-25cm-x-92m-zinc-oxide-adhesive-tape-per-roll-p-1215.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIgvzb6YKZ7gIVcmHmCh02PgteEAYYByABEgL8XvD_BwE

Give it a google although I used it 20 years before google
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