User Review: Lowa AL-X 22 Lo Mesh
Materials: mesh, leather, rubber
Use: general outdoors, short hikes, around town
Break-in Period: none
Price Paid: $100
Very nice summer shoe for general outdoor use and hanging out around town. The only negative, in fact, would be the price. What is Lowa thinking charging $100+ for a pair of outdoorsy sneakers!??!?
In general, these are very nicely designed trail shoes. Very comfortable. This model - with the mesh - is extremely well ventilated and great for hot summer days. The design of these shoes is actually pretty complex and perhaps that's why it's so expensive. It has a kind of rubber 'exoskeleton' that wraps up around the leather/mesh fabric. This give the shoes very good stability, while keeping them light. The shoes have very little in the way of a shank. So they are quite flexible and comfy - but won't protect your feet much from below - or provide much support for long hikes with a pack. There is a bit of padding built into the 'exoskeleton' area under the heel; but not much, so these are not great shoes for prolonged running.
The fit for me was just a bit big for its marked size. Not enough for me to want to order a size smaller. But just enough so that I am most comfortable in these with a thicker sock on. The fit is especially broad in the forefoot, with a more narrow heel area. This works pretty well for my feet.
The sole design provides decent traction, but the rubber is not as sticky as some popular approach shoes.
Summary: there are lots of good outdoor cross-sport shoes out there, and this is another really nice entry into that realm. Are they worth $100+? Tough to say...