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Gear Review Update: La Sportiva Ultra Raptor Shoes

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

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.

My original review covers these shoes in detail. But I had not taken a dayhike or trail run this long in them before, nor done a serious, off-trail scramble. I was impressed with how well they gripped steep slabs and loose dirt and scree; how they remained comfortable over the course of a very long day; how the mesh uppers breathed so well that my feet never got sweaty, and my left shoe dried quickly after an accidental dunking at one creek crossing; and how the close fit from the collar through the midfoot helped keep trail debris out of the shoes. While my companions on this hike were dumping stones from their shoes several times—especially after that steep scramble in sliding scree—I never had to empty my shoes out. No matter what distance your trail runs and dayhikes, the Ultra Raptor is an outstanding shoe.

See all of my reviews of hiking shoes and my reviews of trail-running shoes I like.

NOTE: I’ve been testing gear for Backpacker Magazine for 20 years. At The Big Outside, I review only what I consider the best outdoor gear and apparel. See all of my reviews by clicking on the Gear Reviews category at left or in the main menu.

—Michael Lanza

About The Author

Michael Lanza

A former field editor and primary gear reviewer for Backpacker Magazine, Michael Lanza created The Big Outside to share stories and images from his many backpacking, hiking, and other outdoor adventures, as well as expert tips and gear reviews to help readers plan and pull off their own great adventures.


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    Thanks for the review! It’s the only one out there, that contains all the information I was looking for!

    • MichaelALanza

      You’re welcome, Thorsten. I’m glad you found The Big Outside. Visit again!


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Hi, I’m Michael Lanza, creator of The Big Outside and former Northwest Editor at Backpacker magazine. Click my photo to learn more about me and my blog. Click here to sign up for my FREE email newsletter. Join The Big Outside now to get full access to all of my blog’s stories. And click here to learn how I can help you plan your next trip.

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