Zamberlan Virtex GTX Boot | Review - Outdoors Magic

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Zamberlan Virtex GTX Boot | Review

Zamberlan designed the Virtex GTX with the aim of specifically appealing to the UK hillwalking market

Why We Chose The Zamberlan Virtex GTX Boot: Classic Italian heritage, durable leather build, waterproof protection.

The needs of UK hillwalkers are relatively simple; we generally tend to lean towards durable, waterproof boots that provide all-day comfort. We also gravitate towards the kind of boot that you’d be able to pull on every weekend in all but the most wintery of conditions. To top it all off, it’s always nice when that pair are on the right side of £200. With the Zamberlan Virtex GTX all of those boxes have been ticked.

“After 90 years of boot production, Italian boot makers Zamberlan are now onto their third generation of family ownership.”

Zamberlan are now onto their third generation of family ownership, with Marco Zamberlan now continuing their legacy of boot making, one that goes all the way back to 1929 when Marco’s grandfather, Giuseppe Zamberlan, founded the company in the foothills of the Dolomites.

It all started when Giuseppe managed to strike a friendship between the founder of sole manufacturer, Vitale Bramani aka Vibram. This led to Giuseppe joining his artisan boot crafting skill with Vitale’s cutting edge sole design. The rest, as they say, is history.

With an upper built from a mixture of super tough ‘Hydrobloc’ leather, Zamberlan’s latest offering, the Virtex GTX, is a real high quality, durable walking boot. Previous versions of the Virtex have used Cordura in certain section around the ankle, but with this iteration we’ve gone for a complete covering of full grain leather, with a Gore-Tex lining underneath for when you inevitably find yourself plodding through a bog, and then a dependable rubber toe bumper.

Chunky lugs and a slight undercut for braking. Photo: Chris Johnson
Italian design meets UK hillwalker needs. Photo: Chris Johnson
A toe bumper protects the leather from any inevitable scuffs. Photo: Chris Johnson

The midsole is one that, in our books, is made for big days out, and that’s thanks to the slightly flexible shank which allows a more natural roll of the foot while still offering dependable protection and solidity over rocks and roots – in other words, you don’t feel sharp stuff but you also won’t feel like you’re walking with planks of wood under your feet. Complementing this, there’s thermoplastic protection on the back of the heel and around the toe, ultimately giving a solid foundation for the leather upper.

As for the outsole, unsurprisingly Zamberlan have continued their long-standing partnership with Vibram, choosing a tread from them with a slight undercut and deep enough lugs to provide dependable grip on muddy slopes.

Being true to hand-crafted Italian boot design, expect this boot to come in a narrow last, so as with all boots, make sure you try them on in-store before committing to a purchase.

Tester’s Verdict

Ieuan Barrett, outdoor photographer

“These have been great to hike in. They’ve got just the right amount of sturdiness underfoot and at the ankle without feeling too stiff for big mileage. The slight heel arch and amount of cushioning both really contribute to their all-round comfort as well. They’ve definitely been suited to the hiking I’ve been doing in the wet conditions of the Brecon Beacons.”

Classic looks with a few modern ingredients. Photo: Chris Johnson

Trade Secrets

Chris Davison – UK Sales Manager for Zamberlan

“We were delighted when Marco Zamberlan agreed to make a model specifically for the UK. A stiffer flexing boot with great ankle support with a toe bumper to protect the beautiful waxed full grain leather. Featuring a breathable water poof Gore-Tex lining and a rugged Vibram Schwarzwald sole unit which features high side walls for extra protection on rocky hill paths, the Virtex GTX RR is the hillwalking boot you have been looking for at the perfect price.

“I love the little touches like the soft calf leather trim, the protective toe bumper which is unusual on a boot of this price and the colour of the lovely waxed leather!”

Zamberlan Virtex GTX Boot

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