Thursday, January 21, 2016

Danner Extroverts

XPG Hikers 2.0
I really liked the Danner Extroverts, and they were on the short-list of boots I'd like to have bought.  I would have had to order them, though—I couldn't ever find any stores that actually carried them.  I was unwilling to order boots that I couldn't try on, and there was a sale at Cabela's that impacted both their own XPG Mid-hikers (another of my top 3 choices) and the New Balance 703 Country Walkers (the third of my top 3), so those two were both significantly reduced in price (from about $140 to $100).  I ended up being happy with the fit of both the XPGs and the New Balance, but I decided to go with the GORE-TEX, even though I wasn't sure I wanted it.  I think my thought was that if I could get a feature for free—even one that I was a little bit hesitant about because of a few people online complaining that GORE-TEX lined boots made their feet sweat—then I was better off taking it.  Plus, I ended up liking the look of the gray color more than I thought I would. (Although looking at the 703 Country Walkers, they do have a GORE-TEX lining, so I was mistaken in thinking that they didn't, and there wouldn't have been any substantial difference between the two shoes I was most leaning towards.)

I've ended up being very happy with the XPG hikers.  They've got plenty of miles still in them.  But I was always a little sad to have not taken a chance on the Extroverts, if for no other reason than that I really liked the look of them.  However, I went on a whim to the Danner site yesterday and realized that they're gone!  They're no longer listed.  I did a search for them, and found that you can still order them (in low stock circumstances) from a handful of retailers, but they're obviously essentially just exhausting inventory.  Sad.

Interestingly, the Cabela's XPG hikers that I got are now on sale at a rate reduced even below what I paid for them: $84.  Stock seems to be drying up on that too.  I noticed that they were being replaced with an XPG Mid-hiker 2.0 (actually its name) that looks similar, although comes in just a little heavier.

Another search found me the Cabela's 4MOST DRY-PLUS mid hikers, which look exactly like the outgoing XPG hikers, just with slightly different colors.  Looks like Cabela's replaced the GORE-TEX layer with their own 4MOST DRY-PLUS lining instead, but otherwise left the shoe completely the same.  They probably make more profit on it without having to pay a premium for the GORE-TEX fabric when they can make their own substitute (even after dropping the base price by $20.)  Even the description is almost word-for-word the same.

So although the brand changed slightly, you can actually get exactly the same boots that I have.  Or, you can get the new and (presumably improved) XPGs.

By odd coincidence, the brown/gold color of the new 4MOST hikers kinda look a little like the old Danner Extroverts.  If it were brown/orange, they would look even more like them.  It's nice to know that when I want to replace my existing pair, I can basically get the same thing again, even if the waterproof lining is a different brand.

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