hi all, my husband and I (both mountain bikers living in the CO front range) decided to go in on some XC ski touring gear last spring during clearance season so we could XC ski tour / bushwhack during the winter for crosstraining. We are skiing the same trails we ride bikes on in summer, and have no desire to go anywhere near avi terrain. Have been out 3x already this year on local MTB and hiking trails close into town and are absolutely loving it. Got a GREAT day in up at Brainard Lake on the Wapiti / South St. Vrain trails on Xmas Day. Except for one problem...
Ungodly heel blisters. omg the blisters... seriously, I have never had such bad blisters in my entire life. The boots I got fit nicely and work right up until I really have to start working them on a climb or long kick section. I'm wondering if it isn't just my weird feet - I've got a wide forefoot/narrow heel that's always been a fitting problem - alpine boots, hiking boots, bike shoes, whatever, it seems like there's no getting around it.
Has anyone else ever had this problem? Suggestions? Do I just suck it up and break the boots in and wear moleskin until I callous, or do I need some custom bootfitting or ???
My boots are comfortable and a great fit except for the heel blistering - and it only seems to really bug me climbing. The skis and boots glide, turn, and run great otherwise. I've a feeling that with my foot configuration I might have a problem in any XC ski setup owing to the range / type of motion needed. Right now I'm running a nice beginner touring XC setup - Madshus Epic full metal edges (these are the old Karhu "10th Mountain" ski, I am told), Alpina NNN-BC boots & Rottefella NNN-BC bindings. I picked up the technique right away and within a day I was kicking my husband's ass at classic on the flats & downhills (I alpine ski, he does not). To his credit, he's on a heavier, slower old 3-pin backcountry setup and probably has never bothered to tune his stuff. So much fun, except for these godawful blisters.
HALP! it sucks and it hurts, but I want to go back out, and soon! Right now I have 2 nasty, weeping, quarter-sized holes on my inner heels and it's also interfering with running, cycling and other stuff I want to do. Any suggestions from experienced backcountry ski / XC ski types would be much appreciated.
Thanks! - lfr