Lowa Sheep Hunter Boots
I know that boots get a lot of discussion on here so I thought I would post a little info on a purchase I just received.
After many years of use and abuse my Lowa Tibets finally needed to be replaced. I did researched a bit and asked a few questions on this forum and a few others. I wanted something a bit taller and ended up getting the Lowa Sheep Hunter. Nearly every time I had water go over the tops of the Tibets and soaking the inside, it seems like those extra couple of inches height these have would have been the difference in preventing it. Plus my job requires that I wear a boot of a certain height and the Tibets were right on the edge of that standard.
I am a full-time wildland firefighter and these will replace my Tibets as my work/fire boots for summer fun in the AK woods. I used to wear the traditional White's boots that most firefighters wear, but I got tired of my feet feeling like crap after a long day on my feet. I switched over to the not-so-traditional Lowas a few seasons ago and will never go back. Plus, the Lowas have way more ankle support than those old White's. I pretty much wore the same pair of Tibets for everything else outside of work - cutting firewood, hunting, hiking, heading to the grocery store. Needless to say they will get a workout and a few miles on them in the future.
The Lowa Sheep Hunters are a bit different than the standard Lowa Hunter Extreme GTX you usually see that Lowa markets. First off, the leather is not the nubuk you find on the Tibet and Hunter models. These have regular full-grain leather which is very thick. Comparing it to my old Tibets the leather seems to be a bit thicker where you can see and compare the edges. No scientific measurements or anything - just eyeballing it side-by-side. I never had any issues with the nubuk on other Lowas, however I have always found full-grain leather to be a bit more water resistant where nubuk seems to absorb water more readily. We will see how that works out after a few days in the tundra and tussocks. The leather color is also more of a burgandy color than a standard brown.
Next, all the seams are triple stitched in contrast to the double stitching found in the Tibet and Hunter models. Probably some inherent added durability there.
Other than that, they seem to be the same as the regular Hunters. The Tibets combined with a pair of the green Superfeet insoles seemed like they were designed for my feet. This same combo in the Sheep Hunter fits identical and are comfortable right out of the box. The Tibets were one of the only shoes that I could take right out of the box and hit the mountains with zero blisters or foot issues of any kind. They were also the only boot that never gave me a blister on any occasion. After this new pair fit perfectly, I am now sold on Lowas for life.
They cost about the same as the regular Hunter model at most AK retailers but you can find the Hunter a bit cheaper on the internet on occasion. Since these are apparently made exclusively for Schnee's I doubt that they are sold anywhere else.