Tag Archives: hiking shoes reviews

Gear Review Update: La Sportiva Ultra Raptor Shoes

July 15, 2013  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , ,   |   2 Comments
La Sportiva Ultra Raptor

La Sportiva Ultra Raptor

Hiking/Trail Running Shoes
La Sportiva Ultra Raptor
$130, 1 lb. 10 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: Euro men’s 38-47.5, women’s 36-43
sportiva.com

For a recent 28-mile dayhike through Idaho’s spectacular White Clouds Mountains—partly off-trail, with a cumulative elevation gain and loss of nearly 8,000 feet, including a steep, very loose scramble of several hundred vertical feet over a pass—I wanted the lightest shoes possible, yet ones with plenty of support, comfort, and traction. It didn’t take me long to decide on the Ultra Raptor, which I had worn a lot and reviewed previously. Not only did they perform as I’d hoped they would throughout this long and rugged hike, but afterward, my feet felt fatigued but otherwise not like I’d just hiked 28 miles. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Salomon XT Wings 3 Shoes

July 1, 2013  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment
Salomon XT Wings 3

Salomon XT Wings 3

Hiking/Trail Running Shoes
Salomon XT Wings 3
$140, 1 lb. 9 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 7-14, women’s 5-12
salomon.com

For my regular trail runs, I like a shoe with plenty of stability and cushion, so that my feet don’t get beat up (and because I sometimes start and finish a trail run on pavement). If the shoe is surprisingly lightweight for the amount of support it delivers, that’s a bonus. So I got a bonus with the XT Wings 3, which I’ve worn on numerous, hilly trail runs of up to 12 miles, mostly in the Boise Foothills but also in Massachusetts. While not in the category of super-light, minimalist trail-running shoes, the XT Wings 3 have enough support to cross over nicely as light dayhiking or ultralight backpacking shoes. Continue reading →

June 26, 2013 Jotunheimen National Park, Norway.

Ask Me: How ‘Waterproof’ Are Waterproof-Breathable Apparel and Boots?

In Ask Me, Backpacking, Gear Reviews, Hiking   |   Tagged , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

Can I sound off for a moment about Gore-Tex and other supposedly waterproof/breathable membranes? I’ve owned four pairs of boots, a running suit and a pair of gloves that have been Gore-Tex lined, and got wet in all of them. Not wet from sweat or water going over the boots, but wet from rain (soaking through) and in the case of the boots, even wet grass. I think Gore-Tex should change its slogan to Guaranteed to Keep You Dry—If It Doesn’t Rain. How can manufacturers make these waterproof claims? People’s lives can depend on their gear.

Thanks,

Dave
Worcester, Mass. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Oboz Traverse Low Shoes

May 2, 2013  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , ,   |   2 Comments
Oboz Traverse Low

Oboz Traverse Low

Hiking Shoes
Oboz Traverse Low
$125, 2 lbs. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 8-12, 13, 14
obozfootwear.com

Don’t be fooled by the fact that this shoe is as light and nimble as many low-cut hikers; the Traverse Low is like a Hummer that weighs no more than a Prius. Dayhiking in Utah’s Bryce Canyon and Capitol Reef national parks, I found them as supportive and tough as models several ounces heavier—a significant amount of weight in footwear—and a standout for traction. Continue reading →

Gear Review: La Sportiva Hyper Mid GTX Boots

April 15, 2013  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , ,   |   1 Comment
La Sportiva Hyper Mid GTX

La Sportiva Hyper Mid GTX

Boots
La Sportiva Hyper Mid GTX
$180, 2 lbs. 1 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 38-47.5
sportiva.com

A boot hits a rare trifecta when it excels for traction in any situation, delivers enough support and comfort for backpacking, and weighs only as much as the lightest hiking shoes. The mid-cut, leather Hyper Mid GTX does all of those things. I wore them on a pair of backpacking trips that would put even a much beefier boot to the test: carrying up to 40 pounds on a four-day, roughly 40-mile September hike in the Olympic Mountains, including 10-plus miles off-trail with very steep scrambling in the Bailey Range and two days of wind, rain, hail, and snow and temperatures in the 30s; and a three-day, 17-mile, mostly off-trail hike in early spring through the rugged canyons of Utah’s Capitol Reef National Park. These boots shined by all measures. Continue reading →

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