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winter gear, boots and slip-sheets
maigo
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I’m off to back-pack Europe and the UK this year – only we’re doing it in autumn/winter (sept – january). I’m going to buy some good walking shoes, probably boots, this weekend (so I can wear them in) and I was wanting advice on whether or not i needed water-proof boots or something… or if I can water-proof whatever boots I buy just as effectively. Any general advice about boots??

Also, I’ve heard people suggesting slip-sheets to use as sleeping liners when sleeping in hostels etc. I was wondering if I’m going to freeze to death if I don’t have even maybe just something a little warmer??

Any other general advice on good things to have with me on a winter back-packing trip would be muchly appreciated as lots of information is about the popular summer season. I’m from Australia and this is my first backpacking experience so any advice on braving a european winter as a backpacker would be greeaaaat. Smile

oldlady
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1. Not sure why you’re looking at boots instead of walking shoes… are you doing serious hiking/climbing? Are you spending lots of time in the highest mountains and think you need boots for snow? Snow deep enough to require boots is a rare even in most of the European cities that tourists visit. Rain is a much bigger issue.
2. Water proofing your shoes/boots with scotchgard or other high quality product works fine. Ask what products are good at a camping store or shoe store. Follow instructions carefully — often you have to spray, let dry for a day and spray again.
3. I don’t think you’ll really need a sleep sheet for warmth, but if you want to take one, a silk one will be lighter to carry and warmer. I like to take silk long underwear — takes up no room, weighs nothing and you can sleep in it if you’re cold.

maigo
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oldlady wrote:
1. Not sure why you’re looking at boots instead of walking shoes… are you doing serious hiking/climbing? Are you spending lots of time in the highest mountains and think you need boots for snow? Snow deep enough to require boots is a rare even in most of the European cities that tourists visit. Rain is a much bigger issue.
2. Water proofing your shoes/boots with scotchgard or other high quality product works fine. Ask what products are good at a camping store or shoe store. Follow instructions carefully — often you have to spray, let dry for a day and spray again.
3. I don’t think you’ll really need a sleep sheet for warmth, but if you want to take one, a silk one will be lighter to carry and warmer. I like to take silk long underwear — takes up no room, weighs nothing and you can sleep in it if you’re cold.

thanksfor the reply oldlady.
I was thinking boots for a number of reasons. A) because i’ve had lots of people recommend it, b) because with our crazy rough itinerary and our adventurous personalities we probably won’t be just sticking to major cities, and c) i personally find them more comfortable. Although when I go looking tomorrow, of course I won’t only look at the boots. It’s good to know I probably won’t need anything too specialised or anything, and that just waterproofing them myself will be enough.
silk sounds like a good idea too, ill think about that one.
Thanks for the help!!