Anticipating the upcoming winter mountaineering season (and the fact that my old boots finally bit the dust), I am in the market for a new pair of boots that will work well with my strap-binding crampons. Any recommendations....preferably in the non-heart-attack region of the price spectrum?
given your last requirement, there's only one place - ebay. At least that is how I manage to avoid the sticker shock on gear I want.
If you have some patience and know what size you're looking for, you should find some that fit and are under $200. Last year I bought brand new Koflach Actis Extreme that way ($430 boots for $130) but sold them - didn't like the hard plastic shell. Very much a blister boot if you have to walk anywhere in it.
Then I scored a pair of La Sportiva Trango Prime (the yellow insulated ones that look like the Trango line http://www.ems.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3659867
), and those have been fantastic once I put lot of sno-seal on them, almost as comfy as the red summer version of that boot. New they are $400, with $50 insoles. I got them for $180, after they climbed Rainier once. Really like these boots.
I haven't been quite as successful to get the touring ski boots I want at the price I can afford: the manufacturers in that market make less than they plan to sell for the season and there's no leftovers on any of the good models on sale at the end of the year, only the dud designs of overweight boots are cheap. If anyone knows where I can find a Dynafit TLT5 Mountain mondo size 28.5 for less than $699, let me know...