Down booties (DB) are the most essential, and underappreciated, item of climbing gear on today’s market.
DBs can be used for objectives large and small. On cold days at the boulders, I don DBs in between burns with my climbing shoes still on. My piggies stay warmer and retain sensitivity, which means I am less likely to slip.
On a nine-pitch free climb, my partner and I brought up one belay parka and one pair of down booties. Sliding into the feathery goodness during the hanging belays was awesome.
Recently, while camping, I actually couldn’t sleep because I was so pumped for morning to come so I could throw on some DBs and fire up the espresso!
For those into the “fruit boot” scene of mixed climbing, bringing DBs means you can hike to the crag in your integrated crampon shoes, but once you are there, put on DBs for belaying/chilling between burns.
Sierra Designs makes fine booty in general, but the DBs I recommend for climbers are the DriZone Down Booties. The down is encased in waterproof/breathable ripstop nylon, which offers excellent protection against cold wetness. A durable EVA sole provides a bit of traction, and the seams are taped. DBs are clumsy to walk around in at first, but you will learn … and you will love it.
Sizes: Men’s and women’s sizes, S—XL.
Weight: 13 ounces (M).
Colors: Black, Paprika, Biscayne (women’s)
Outer shell: Drizone, a two-layer waterproof/breathable shell.
700-fill goose down.
EVA foot bed for comfort.
Recommended uses: For cold belays on long free routes; winter bouldering; ice/mixed cragging; winter camping.