I recently have gone through the sole of my Mammut Brecon GTX boots. These boots have been fantastic and lasted 7 years of regular use over a wide range of terrains. The Brecon GTX were very comfortable and I had confidence in the sole when scrambling. For a replacement I chose the Mammut Trovat Guide II High GTX Hiking Boot.
The key features:
- Vibram MT Traction II Sole Backpacking sole
- GORT-TEX Performance Comfort membrane lining
- Memory Foam padding around shin & ankle
- Compatible with B1 walking crampons
- Rand around entire shoe.
On first inspection, I was impressed by the rand that comes all the way around the boot. I regularly scramble in my walking boots, making it essential to protect the shoe from damage from boulders or crossing scree. Compared to the Brecon GTX, where the rand was only present on the toe, this is a great upgrade.
A GORE-TEX lining in a walking shoe is something I would never sacrifice under any circumstance. GORE-TEX linings give the best level of waterproofing whilst remining breathable. To say your foot never gets sweaty when working hard would be a lie. I have had shoes without a GORE-TEX lining in the past and I will never turn back after having reoccurring nightmares of putting wet shoes back on.
The Vibram MT Traction II Sole is brilliant. When I took these boots out for a “test drive” in Snowdonia, I had real confidence in my foot placements. I never slipped or felt unsteady on hard terrain. When scrambling up Bristly Ridge, I had complete faith in using the edges of the boots on small feet placement, they performed exceptionally well.
I wore them constantly over a weekend of scrambling, walking steep ascents and descents and I found the boots comfortable throughout. I did not suffer from blisters or rubbing pain. Note, I was also wearing very good socks which is just as important as good boot choice for avoiding foot pain.
Being compatible with walking crampons is beneficial as I can opt to wear these boots when enjoying gentle winter mountaineering days instead of wearing my larger, more aggressive alpine mountaineering boots.
The Mammut Trovat Guide II High GTX Hiking Boot is a bit on the more expensive side at the £250 from Mammut (it can be found cheaper elsewhere). However, boots are an item you should not attempt to cut corners on. Your feet will take you on your epic hikes and surely you should treat your feet with love. From experience, pay cheap, get cheap. It is worth splashing out a bit more to get the higher quality, especially with GORE-TEX liners!
If it wasn’t for my GTX Brecon’s succumbing to time and use, I wouldn’t have replaced them. However, I am glad I did as the Mammut Trovat Guide II High GTX Hiking Boot is excellent and if not better boot than the last. I look forward to many an adventure in the future with these boots on my feet.