With 70 years experience in the making some of the most reliable outdoor gear anywhere in the world, Salomon have proven time and time again that they’re a brand you can trust.
Their walking boots and trail running shoes are particularly good. If peaks are your playground, then a pair of walking boots like Salomon X Alp Mid LTR GTX’s are a great idea. Granted, it’s not a name that rolls off the tongue, but they’ve been selected for the Outdoor 100 because they keep your feet happy, not for linguistic reasons.
This is a close relative of the brand’s excellent X Alp MTN GTX boot, which we reviewed recently, and shares a lot of the same characteristics and tech that make that model so good. Beneath the Salomon X Alp Mid LTR GTX is a high traction Contragrip sole, which digs into the ground, whether you’re crossing sun hardened earth, muddy terrain, or even icy rocks. But the feature we really liked (in common with the boot’s bigger brother) is the 3D Edging Chassis.
This is a series of interlocking plates within the sole that flex lengthways with your foot as you walk, but lock together under sideways loads. This really does improve the edge hold of the boot, so you can balance on those niggly little rocks by the side of steep trails that would usually send you pitching sideways and potentially twist your ankle. Further protection comes from the rubber toe and heel caps at the front and back of the boot.
“The tech really does improve the edge hold of the boot, so you can balance on rocks that would usually send you pitching sideways and potentially twist your ankle.”
The upper of the boot is rugged and hard-wearing. Protecting your feet from the worst that nature can throw at them are a combination of split-suede leather, rubber, and Gore-Tex. The latter ensures that the boots offer superior waterproof protection, with advanced breathability.
The mid-cut profile of the boot supports your ankle, but is designed to be low enough to allow excellent freedom of movement and flexibility. These aren’t designed for serious alpine ascents after all, more for tricky, technical trails.
All of this armour doesn’t mean that comfort is compromised at all, though. Up top, the gusseted tongue, which is attached to the boot to aid waterproofing, is designed to sit snugly against your ankle while not restricting movement. The fact that the laces go right from the top to the toes means that you can customise the tightness along the foot, for tailor-made comfort.