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Brett Prettyman
Brett Prettyman writes about the outdoors, recreation and fishing for The Salt Lake Tribune

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Packing for Alaska and adding Goat Head Sole Spikes to my wading boots

Packing for my upcoming trip to Alaska has proven a daunting task. Apparently, I asked way too many people for advice on gear and I decided to try and pack it all.

One of the most useful tips came from my buddy Todd Tanner. He suggested I check my equipment - namely waders and boots - carefully to make sure I won't have a leak or a blown boot in the middle of the nowhere. There is no guarantee that won't happen, of course, but a thorough check is never a bad idea.

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I checked my waders — oh wait I still need to do that — but I did find some wear on my boots that concerned me a bit. Alaska is officially a felt-free zone meaning wading boots with felt-lined bottoms are out. Not a problem there, I have a pair of Patagonia's Riverwalkers with a sticky bottom I've been using for years. But they are a little worn.

That's when Goat Head Sole Spikes came to mind. I've heard good reviews and have been considering trying the spikes since last winter, but just never got around to doing it.

Since I know Mat Brown, one of the co-owners of Goat Head, I decided to see if he could stop by and help me get them in my boots - anything to avoid having to do it myself. Matt graciously offered to come over. We sat on my front patio chatting while he installed the spikes. Before I could finish telling him plans for my Alaska trip he was done. My well-broken in wading boots now have a second life. I'm looking forward to giving the Goat Head Spikes a true test in Alaska (I'll post blogs, send Tweets and post on Facebook when possible). Now onto the waders....

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