Product: Kahtoola Microspikes
Price: £160 (£110 on sale)
Years Tested: 9 months
These are a 2-3 season hiking boot by Meindl. They are not a cheap brand but do have an excellent reputation. I have found that over the years, qualities from other brands such as Berghuas have deteriorated throughout the years, so I am always anxious getting new boots, even if they are the same brand, just in case the build quality isn’t as good.
I have previously had a pair of Bhutan’s, which were bombproof, so thought I’d try a lighter book I could wear for summer. Having had these for about 9 months now, what’s the verdict?
What I like about the boots:
Light and comfortable – They are very light (well compared to the Bhutan’s) – meaning they are ideal for summer. They are pretty comfortable, and I have done long distance trails in these before. So long as you get the right size, I think you’d be comfortable in these on 10–20-mile trails.
Wider Toe Box – My feet are slightly wider around the toe box, so these just about work for me. I think if you have very wide feet, even these may be ever so lightly too narrow. The other positive is that they have a good range of sizes.
Grip – The soles have a good amount of grip, even in wet weather, they seem to keep you as sturdy as you could hope for.
Ankle support – This is usually one of my biggest priorities when buying hiking boots. Some people don’t link rigid ankle support, but it makes be feel more comfortable when doing mountain walks. The ankle support on these is good and solid, whilst still being a comfortable and flexible boot.
What I don’t like:
Waterproofing – Although these are Gore-Tex, my feel just never feel 100% dry in wet and muddy conditions. In some cases, my feet are dry, but they feel cold. Either way, not ideal. They do still give you a good level of protection, but if you are going out for a day and its forecast rain, for even half a day, I wouldn’t bank on your feet staying dry by the end.
Although, from my experience, fabric boots never give you the same level of protection as leather boots. (Happy for people to argue this point).
Colour – They are Brown, but is it that much of a big deal?
Price – With an RRP for £160, they are not a cheap boot. Given its performance on the waterproof front, I would want to be paying any more than £130. There is a sale on at Cotswolds now, £110, which I would say was worth the money.
Would I recommend them?
Yes, I would say they are best kept to summer/autumn hikes. Although I have used them in winter during good weather and my feet stayed warm. I just would not pay the full £160.
I prefer having separate summer / winter boots, if you want a good all-rounder, they may do the job, but I would do a bit more research into what people say about the waterproofing.