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What's the lowest temperature you've used Scarpa Mont Blanc Pros in?


Original Post
Sherman Lam · · Pittsburgh, PA · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 0

I'm interested in purchasing a pair of Scarpa's Mont Blanc Pros for winter mountaineering and alpine ice climbing. However, I'm concerned that it might not be warm enough. Ideally, I'd like to use it in the range of 0-32F. Has anyone had experience using these boots in this temperature range? What's the coldest temperature you've used your Mont Blanc Pros in?

jdejace · · New England · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 5

Your concerns are well founded. Invariably, some warm blooded mutant will drop in and tell you they've used single boots at 0F. I wouldn't count on it, personally. 

I see you're on the East coast. If you mean alpine ice in the Northeast then IMO singles won't do. They'd be fine for cragging at >10F. 

Sherman Lam · · Pittsburgh, PA · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 0

I plan on using them primarily on the East Coast but also hope to go out west. I'll primarily be using them in the lower 48.

Tony K · · Pa · Joined May 2017 · Points: 0

Agree with jdrjace  single boot won't cut it for prolonged temps below 0 need a quality double boot  especially here on east coast for the alpine and ice climbing trips when you are not moving toes get cold real fast

Nick Andrasik · · Broomfield, CO · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 0
jdejace wrote:

Your concerns are well founded. Invariably, some warm blooded mutant will drop in and tell you they've used single boots at 0F. I wouldn't count on it, personally. 

I see you're on the East coast. If you mean alpine ice in the Northeast then IMO singles won't do. They'd be fine for cragging at >10F. 

I'll be that warm-blooded mutant and say I've been fine in mine down around and a little below 0F.

My wife has the women's version, though, and she was absolutely freezing. Her experience is more in line with what most folks would say.

HBTHREE · · ma · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 30

these boots are fine for ice, and mountaineering in the temp range you r looking to play in. They're great for approaches and mountaineering type 2 fun, just make sure u have a little wiggle room in the toes. i liked the wide toe box but the heel didn't fit me right (i have a narrow heel) for super cold days i usually were my batura's unless i'm moving fast then i rock a set of silver bullets. It's been a while since i've scene anybody wearing dbl boots in the east, and imho they're easilly replaced by the new singles w/ built in gaiters.

jdejace · · New England · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 5

I guess I should have been more clear. I don't think a typical leather single (Nepal, Mont Blanc) is warm enough for belaying in exposed conditions in the single digits fahrenheit. A supergaiter style boot (e.g. Phantom Tech if OP likes Scarpa) would be much more reasonable. 

that guy named seb · · Britland · Joined Oct 2015 · Points: 205

As someone with little to no experience but a fair amount of reading, at those temps I would say a nice warm single boot like lasportiva's G5 would be best if doing traditional mountaineering/ice climbing where you are sitting still for long periods providing you aren't going on a multiday trip, in which case a double boot or vapor barrier socks would be my choice. If you are doing non technical routes you will be moving considerably faster and not staying around in which case mont blanc pro's or a similar boot would probably be fine.

AlpineIce · · Upstate, NY · Joined Mar 2011 · Points: 255

I agree with most everyone, but I found that winters here in the northeast, especially northern New York (Adirondacks), New Hampshire and Maine (Baxter) are brutally cold.  I wear Phantom Techs (singles) from 15ºF or above and doubles, either La Sportiva G2 SM or Phantom 6000s below 15ºF due to belays. Maybe it's just me, but my toes get cold and painful really quick in those temperatures.  


Nick Drake · · Newcastle, WA · Joined Jan 2015 · Points: 481
jdejace wrote:

I guess I should have been more clear. I don't think a typical leather single (Nepal, Mont Blanc) is warm enough for belaying in exposed conditions in the single digits fahrenheit. A supergaiter style boot (e.g. Phantom Tech if OP likes Scarpa) would be much more reasonable. 

This is solid advice. Three of my group used mont blancs in Canmore this winter. We still climbed well below zero, none of them got a cold injury and none were remotely happy. My feet were toasty in phantom 6000s

jdejace · · New England · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 5

They were lucky. I've gotten some immersion foot in Baturas in subzero F. I remember seeing icicles on my eyelashes every time I blinked that day. Goes to show it depends on a lot of things - your personal circulation, if you slept well in a warm bed and had a big hot breakfast, how warm the rest of you is (warm core >> warm feet to a certain extent) etc.. 

The supergaiter boots climb well and don't weigh any more, they're the clear choice in the Northeast IMO. They do cost more, of course. 

Nick Drake · · Newcastle, WA · Joined Jan 2015 · Points: 481
jdejace wrote:

They were lucky. I've gotten some immersion foot in Baturas in subzero F. I remember seeing icicles on my eyelashes every time I blinked that day. Goes to show it depends on a lot of things - your personal circulation, if you slept well in a warm bed and had a big hot breakfast, how warm the rest of you is (warm core >> warm feet to a certain extent) etc.. 

The supergaiter boots climb well and don't weigh any more, they're the clear choice in the Northeast IMO. They do cost more, of course. 

No doubt, I would not recommend leather singles to anyone in those temps. These were the days where it hurts to wiggle your nose because all the little hairs inside are frozen. I think that the warm bed, large hot breakfast, and hydroflask of hot tea helped. On the coldest days Allie was climbing still wearing her BD stance puffy over everything. 

Jesse Coonce · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2016 · Points: 5

I have the Mont Blanc Gtx (non-pro version with more real leather) and I have worn mine down to -28 C, though at those temps. they are starting to get pretty cold when you aren't moving.  I wouldn't say they were comfortable at those temps. but I have no issues down to about -20 C with mine for whatever that is worth.

jaredj · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2013 · Points: 165

Are you skinny?  Do you feel like you "run cold" compared to others you've climbed with?  Also, you live in PA, but where you gonna be alpine climbing and mountaineering?  

If you're looking for one stop shopping to do a trip on Rainier, some ice cragging in the northeast, and maybe an ice cragging trip in the Canadian rockies, then singles like the Mont Blanc or La Sportiva Nepal could be "one and done" as long as you're willing to accept that a one-size-fits-all solution may leave you wanting in some circumstances (such as what's been higlighted by other east coast ice climbers in this thread).

If you're gonna mostly be east coast ice cragging where there's a lot of dickdancing and standing around, then I'd probably favor something warmer.

If you're just getting into this activity, then I'd try to stay focused on buying boots for what you're trying to do in the next year or so, not for what you want to be doing three years from now.  Your present self most likely isn't going to be good at forecasting what your future self actually cares about (warmth vs nimbleness, stiffer ankle or softer ankle, ease of drying out, etc).  

Christopher Martin · · Babylon, NY · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 0

Been climbing in the NE for almost 10 years. I own both single leather Nepals and older phantom 6000 doubles. I think it definitely gets too cold for the single leathers sometimes and am happy to have the 6000's for those days. 

I agree you can probably get away with a "1.5" batura, phantom tech, or new G5 for all temps and am currently deciding between phantom tech and G5 to replace my beat up nepals but will hang on to the doubles for extra cold days and winter camping.

caesar.salad · · earth · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 75
jaredj wrote:

dickdancing and standing around, 

dickdancing brings on bizarre mental images

Christopher Martin · · Babylon, NY · Joined Oct 2016 · Points: 0

FYI, below 10F pretty safe to say I regret wearing single leather but sun and wind are a huge variable. My boots are also sized small that if I try to wear a real thick mountaineering sock they are too tight and have the opposite effect for warmth. 

Sherman Lam · · Pittsburgh, PA · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 0
jaredj wrote:

Thanks for all the advice guys. 

I went through the Pittsburgh Mountaineering school last winter. I wore some plastic double Koflachs at the Adirondacks (day cragging) and Mt Washington (climbing and camping). My feet were mostly warm with the exception of cold feet when I first climbed out of the tent in the morning.

@jaredj - I'm pretty lean but I think I run warm in comparison to others I've climbed with. I'm planning on climbing in the Adirondacks, NY. I'd also like to do some ice climbing in the Canadian Rockies and mountaineering in the California Sierras (Whitney). 

It seems like a lot of people here like the supergaiter style boots. Are normal leather boots (e.g. mont blancs) with gaiters (e.g. OR crocs) of equivalent warmth to a supergaiter boot?


Ryan Hamilton · · Orem · Joined Aug 2011 · Points: 5
Sherman Lam wrote:


Thanks for all the advice guys. 

I went through the Pittsburgh Mountaineering school last winter. I wore some plastic double Koflachs at the Adirondacks (day cragging) and Mt Washington (climbing and camping). My feet were mostly warm with the exception of cold feet when I first climbed out of the tent in the morning.

@jaredj - I'm pretty lean but I think I run warm in comparison to others I've climbed with. I'm planning on climbing in the Adirondacks, NY. I'd also like to do some ice climbing in the Canadian Rockies and mountaineering in the California Sierras (Whitney). 

It seems like a lot of people here like the supergaiter style boots. Are normal leather boots (e.g. mont blancs) with gaiters (e.g. OR crocs) of equivalent warmth to a supergaiter boot?


No they are not equivalent. I can also add my experience. I have used the Mont blancs (with gaiters) extensively when ice climbing in 0-10F weather and your feet stay warm when moving, but get pretty cold by the time you're done belaying. I've used the Phantom Tech and like them a lot, but I'm personally really eyeing the La Sportiva G2 SM as my cold weather boot. My good friends that have used them tell me that they are not bulky for a double boot and work great for ice climbing. My usual climbing partner says that he barely notices a difference in size and weight between those and they La Sportiva Nepals that he uses for warmer weather. 

jaredj · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2013 · Points: 165

For mostly ice cragging in the Adirondacks and Canadian Rockies, a modern supergaiter - style boot is probably the ticket.   I'm spooked by zippers as the main outer closure but that's based on intuition / gut / fear rather than experience.  

If it were me, I'd go for a modern double boot like the La Sportiva G2 or Scarpa Phantom 6000.  

jdejace · · New England · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 5
Sherman Lam wrote:

Are normal leather boots (e.g. mont blancs) with gaiters (e.g. OR crocs) of equivalent warmth to a supergaiter boot?


No. Typical gaiters won't cover the forefoot so your toes get no benefit. Mountain Tools makes an insulated gaiter that covers the whole top of the boot, but with the extra cost you may as well have bought a supergaiter boot. In addition, I suspect most of the colder rated boots will have substantially more insulation in the sole (probably the source of a lot of heat loss since it's touching frozen metal), which you won't replicate by simply adding a gaiter. You could email Scarpa for the differences between the MB and Tech if you're particularly interested in those models. 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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