Jon Doran makes acquaintance with a “handsome, solid leather, three-season hiking boot with a solid, supportive feel for people who like handsome, solid supportive boots”
Buying boots used to be easy back in the 1970s. You went to an outdoors shop and you chose a pair of walking boots…
Jon Doran tries out a really nice, broad-fitting, all-round mountain walking boot which features traditionally high ankle cuffs and traditional underfoot lateral stiffness, but without the accompanying discomfort or clumpiness.
‘It is, says inov-8, ‘the world’s toughest shoe for running the world’s toughest long-distance trails’, but it’s also quite good for shorter runs in the Peak District’ – Jon Doran goes for a run to test out these claims (especially the second bit).
If you’re a climber, walker, mountaineer or runner, you’re pretty much dependent on the rubber on the soles of your shoes or boots to keep things sunnyside up or, in the worst case scenario, for stopping you cratering. But mostly we just take rubber compounds and technology for granted. So what’s going on? What makes one brand’s sole unit stickier than another’s and who makes the stickiest rubber soles?
‘Radical’, ‘futuristic’, ‘cutting edge’… we test out Scarpa’s latest lightweight mountaineering boot, the Ribelle Mountain Tech OD
A ski boot that climbs, or a climbing boot that skis? We test out Arc’teryx’s new ski alpinism boot that promises you the best of both worlds…
The Uneek O2’s are a lighter weight version of Keen’s original Uneek sandals that, with their new closed heal, gives more of a ‘trainer feel’ in the back – perhaps confusing how to really classify these shoes!
Jon Doran ponders boot classifications and, in particular, the difference between so-called 3/4-season boots and 4-season ones. What do those designations mean and do they actually make any sense?
We travel to the Balkans to try out Keen’s latest European Made hiking boot…
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