BEST BOOTS EVER, I was lucky enough to get a brand new pair in a charity shop for £20. What a bargain, but sadly now have worn them out, and need to get another pair. The other reviews are right, best ever boots that I have bought.
Had a pair of Brasher Boots for 10 years need a new pair 'cos they let water. Never had a days problem and couldn't break them in as I was walking two days after buying them. Fantastic boots. Hopefully my new pair of Brasher Hillmaster 11GTX will be as good and last as long. Outstanding boots.
I bought my first pair of Brasher boots in the mid 80's (1985?) when they were still very new ('the rocking boot', with the upturned toe preferred by Lakeland shepherds. Up to that time, Vibram-soled boots were flat-soled so that they could lock onto skis, so they were not ergonomically designed for hillwalking.) I've a broad foot, so the Brasher boots have suited me very well ever since. I've lost count of the pairs I've bought and that my friends and relatives have bought with me on boot-buying sorties in Keswick. My favourite Brasher boots were not Goretex lined, though: they had a lighter, more breathable lining which I think was called 'Air-Eight'. That waterproofing was less reliable, but the greater breathability was much better in hot dry conditions, and they got less cold in extremely low temperatures (high-altitude snow) where the Goretex gets damp inside, through what I assume to be reverse osmosis. The Air-??? lined boots are discontinued now, so all the Brasher boots come with Goretex as standard. Bad purchases: I had a glitch in the late 80's/early 90's, when Brasher altered their sizes, and I bought a pair that were too small, though they were labelled in the size I had last worn. The next mistake was when I bought a suede pair that I imagined were lighter than the leather ones. They weren't, and they were an awful lot hotter than the classic Hillmasters: too hot for mountain walking in the Taygettos in summer. In fact, whenever I've bought anything except the Brasher Hillmaster line, including Meindl and Scarpa - one pair of each - I've given those boots away. They just don't fit me as well as the Hillmasters. I'm about to replace another very worn pair that I recently abandoned in Morocco, and I find that there has been a redesign. I'm praying that Brasher haven't changed the last in the process of this update, since I've been relying for the last 15 years on just re-ordering a size 6 Ladies Hillmaster each time the previous pair wears out. These boots have been perfect for my broad foot. They wouldn't suit someone with a narrow foot and a high instep. Maybe an Italian make would suit that foot-shape better. I have worn Brasher Hillmasters in all terrains at all seasons, including on some very long walks in the Greek mountains, the Jordanian desert, and the High Atlas - not to mention my home-terrain of the Lake District. I have found them to be just right from the moment I put them on: no 'breaking in' - and never had a blister, apart from the 2 glitches mentioned above. I hope the new ones will fit from new just as well. We'll see.
I have been wearing Brasher Hillmasters for over ten years, every day at work, plus hiking in India, Syria, Canada and Iran as well as in the UK, replacing them regularly and strongly recommending them to many friends who ask me for advice.
They are simply wonderful, I cannot fault them, I was forced to buy my first pair literally the day before leaving on a three week hiking holiday following the failure of my previous boots and was expecting to be crippled until they were broken in. To my surprise they were incredibly comfortable from day one and I've been a convert ever since.
Now, however, I'm wearing an inferior alternative.
Why? Because despite their website saying the Hillmaster is available in sizes 3-9, Brasher have in fact abandoned their Size 3 customers, presumably because we don't purchase enough of them to be sufficiently profitable, and stopped manufacturing them in that size some years ago.
PLEASE Brasher, do reconsider this policy.
According to their website the Hillmaster II is available in sizes as 3-9, but they still say that about the Hillmaster despite discontinuing Size 3 years ago.
Yes Brasher do kids boots in Size 3, yes I'm sure they're good enough for children who might grow out of them quickly, but frankly after wearing Hillmasters for so many years they're not in the same league.
Seeing this article about the great new Hillmasters just makes me rather sad....
Just about to buy a new pair of boots, mine have started to crack across the front but have been worn constantly for the last 10 years, mainly dog walking. Excellent boots.
Best boots I've ever had, and I've had a few different makes! The first time I put them on they felt like slippers, lasted me 5 years. I am about to get another pair the same.
My leather-lined Hillmasters are very comfortable, and my feet are perfectly warm and dry in the snow, but they do not grip in the wet, and I've slipped just on wet pavements, let alone in the aftermath of snowfall.
My heels have been torn to shreds. I have always worn Brasher with no problems but my last Hillmaster boots did not have leather lining. Have tried every variation of sock and plaster and am about to take them back as I see there is a new model which has a leather lining like the old.
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