In the past I have tended to spend upwards of £100 on footwear as my feet often suffered from aches and blisters. I felt the more money I spent the better quality I got which in turn meant the less suffering I was going to have to go through. Could these be the boots to change that?
I needed to replace my inov8 390 GTX’s which had fallen apart after only 100 miles or so when I saw these boots advertised at GO Outdoors. I liked their styling and on paper their specification was impressive. So for the one day in December 2011 when the price was slashed from £120.00 to £39.99 I sat up and paid even more attention. Actually I got in my car and drove to the store so that I was there for when it opened at 9am!
On opening the box in-store my initial impression of the boot was that it was lightweight and well constructed. The main body is made from ‘Wolverine’ pig suede and Cordura panels which is used in conjunction with eVent (a waterproof breathable membrane) sewn into the boot. There is a high rubber toe rand which also extends around the side of the boot to protect the suede from scrubbing on rocks. The lacing system is traditional with three sets of locking cleats, and the sole is a Vibram unit with a reasonably aggressive pattern glued to an EVA mid-sole. I had brought with me my favourite socks and insoles (Wigwam Ultimate Liner Pro Crew, Smartwool Mountaineering Extra Heavy Crew and Superfeet Orange footbeds) duly donned said items before wandering around the store for half an hour. The boots were initially very comfortable and the Vibram sole felt stable underfoot. I knew that I was going to get on with these boots and I had already begun to realise that I didn’t need to spend a fortune.
I wore them around the house on Christmas day to make sure that the sizing was correct before setting out on a quick 5 mile walk on Boxing Day. I arrived at my destination feeling a very slight rubbing under my right big toe; I put this down to new boot syndrome and began wearing them every day to get them used to my feet.
I’ve now worn them for about 60 miles and I’m very impressed. They are extremely comfortable with only a small amount of sore feet syndrome at the end of a 12 hour walk. Most importantly there were no signs of blisters with my feet remaining dry and sweat free all day. I’ve only one small criticism to date and that is the Vibram sole appears to clog easily when encountering extremely thick mud. This is only a minor gripe as I was able to clean them out well enough and they have so far provided good grip on all surfaces I’ve encountered.[easyreview cat1title=”Styling” cat1detail=”They look great.” cat1rating=”4″ cat2title=”Build Quality” cat2detail=”A supportive 2-3 season boot which although not built for mountaineering and won’t take a crampon, is suitable for hills and fells, trails and paths.” cat2rating=”3.5″ cat3title=”Weight” cat3detail=”They are pretty light at only 666 grams per boot.” cat3rating=”4″ cat4title=”Waterproof” cat4detail=”eVent lining is holding out so far and my feet remain dry.” cat4rating=”5″ cat5title=”Beathability” cat5detail=”The eVent lining is breathable and my feet remain cool all day.” cat5rating=”4″ cat6title=”Grip” cat6detail=”The only complaint is that the Vibram sole appears to clog easily in heavy mud. Otherwise the grip is very good.” cat6rating=”3″ cat7title=”Price” cat7detail=”Excelent value at just £39.99″ cat7rating=”5″ overall=”true”]