Lowa Renegade II GTX Mid
Source: tested or reviewed it for the manufacturer (keep)
You absolutely should not skimp when it comes to boots for hiking and backpacking. A good, well-made pair of boots is going to cost a little more than bargain priced boots, but it's an investment that is well worth it. This boot is made for comfort and flexibility, but still has many high-end features. These boots are ideal for light hiking. Because they are made for comfort, they are not ideal for extended backpacking.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $220
Comfortable, durable, functional. What's not to like?
- Light weight
- Comfortable, zero break-in
- Lacing system around the ankle can be a nuisance to tie with stock laces
- Stock laces are too small in diameter; they work but I'd upgrade
People must be reviewing a different boot than the Renegade II's in my closet. I have no trouble backpacking in these boots, carrying loads of around 30 pounds through steep, rough terrain. No, they don't provide much traction on wet rocks, but I've owned boots from Han Wag, Danner, etc. and none of them were able to provide wet rock traction, either.
I replaced the insoles immediately with SF Greens because that's what I do with all my boots, but otherwise I put them on out of the box and they were great -- no breaking in necessary. I have to be deliberate when lacing around my ankles to keep the laces in place which is kind of annoying but I like replacing the factory laces most of the time, anyhow.
Lowa has a great boot here, and for anything less than weeklong expeditions and backpack hunting it's an ideal choice.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $200
Great for tooling around town in the rain or for light hikes. These boots are a good lightweight hiker.
- Goretex lined keeps you dry
- Rugged, durable sole
- Good footbed
- No good on rocky terrain
I liked these boots the moment I put them on. Very well fitting, well made light hiking boot.
These are a lot lighter than the backpacking boots I was looking at — for good reason. These are not designed for backpacking, but light hiking on groomed trails. These are not a rock scrambling boot. As long as you remember that and use these boots accordingly, they will give you years of good service.
I recently took them on a relatively long (8 mile) dayhike, and while my feet were sore at the end of it, I think this is more of a conditioning issue than a problem with the boots.
I have found them to have a very good footbed, good support for my foot and ankle. Those that have issues with the performance of this boot are probably using them outside of their intended use. I had to scramble up some rocks with these and it wasn't fun. I slipped many times and I think they need to look at their sole formulation.
But other than that, I can find nothing wrong with these boots. I have not had a problem with them and don't expect to.
Source: bought it new
The sole fell apart after minimal use Not recommended.
- The sole fell apart after minimal use
I have had a number of pairs of boots over the years. These don’t even rate as boots. My sandals are much more durable.
Use: moderate dayhikes/overnites on fairly rough terrain
Break-in Period: None
Weight: ~2 pounda
Price Paid: $80
Great for the city or tooling around town but definitely not for the trail. I bought my Lowa's 2 years ago and they look as if a puppy has been chewing on them after moderate use. Aside from lacking durability, they are horrendous on rocky/rooty terrain, pretty much a given in Vermont. I busted my knee open just the other day whilst scrambling up to the ridge line. They were virtually broken in when I put them on my feet and the light weight was awesome, but those 2 qualities are not all that makes a good trail boot. Unless using in the city, I would not recommend these boots for anyone considering doing a trail hike of any sort. Very disappointed in Lowa.
These boots were great for the first few months but after about seven months (of ~30 miles/week light walking through Ohio woodland) three major seams started to give way. After 12 months I had them re-sewn by a local shoe-repair shop but then they had to be waterproofed because the Gore-tex liner was sewn through.
I'm now approaching 24 months and it's time for a second trip to the shoe-repair shop; I've got two new major seam failures and the leather at the outside ball of both feet is heavily cracked. Needless to say I am disappointed with these boot's durability.
Price Paid: 105 Euros
Don't buy these boots. I bought them only 6 months ago, they are like a piece of soap in the presence of the slightest humidity. I have used them only 7 times, of which I have fallen 4 times, every time when the stones were slightly wet. The last time was when I was in the Norwich Fjords, I nearly killed myself.
I have contacted the distributor and the fabricant but they do not want to know anything about it, they say I must get used to them. What do they mean? That I have to kill myself in order they recognize the product is useless. I am furious, I have spent 105 euros and I have no boots.
Materials: leather, Gore-tex
Use: wet weather city use, car camping, very light hiking.
Break-in Period: none required
Price Paid: $80
With this boot, you need to know what you want to use them for. It is great for running around in the city when its wet or light hiking on paved roads or trails without rocks as well as car camping. Once you take these out of their range of capabilities, you will set yourself up for disappointment. On rocky trails, you will feel every stone and the softness of the shoe will not prevent you from spraining your ankles.
That being said the softness makes for a very comfortable shoe on paved roads. So for light hiking on smooth trails and city use in wet conditions it is very comfortable and does the job, but for any trails with stones or backpacking I will always go for my Scarpa Barun GTX.
Break-in Period: None that I am aware of!
Price Paid: $175
I use these for light hikes as well as monster peaks. Mount Washington 6,288', Mt Moosilauke 4802' twice, Mount Watatic 1,832', Mount Wachussett 2,006', 4 seasons, 20 times per year, 7 years with 30-50lbs backpacks. Still going strong.
The tread is still chinky as I compared these 7-year-old boots to brand new ones and was surprised how well thay have held up. A few seams have started to give but I think I have another winter left before I retire them. They have my brand loyalty!
Materials: nubak, cordura, gore-tex
Use: urban street walking, urban winter shoes
Break-in Period: none
Weight: 2.2 lbs
Price Paid: USD 118
Bottom line: comfortable urban boot. Shines in the urban streets, useless on any real trails. Stay close to home with your Renegade II, otherwise you will be sorry.
- a good boot for urban warior, during fall and winter days, at least in NYC, Boston and anywhere in Northeast where snow and rain is a problem.
- very good waterproofing
- it's comfortable and fits well. It does not have a boot like look anymore (if that is positive for you).
- good vibram sole for light urban activity
- good ankle support on flat surfaces (but do you need ankle support on flat a flat surface)
- no break-in necessary
- and that's about it.
- too much forefoot flex
- no toe or heel rand
- ZERO torsional support
- you can feel the smallest piece of rock or roots through the sole
- you cannot even carry a lightweight (15-20lb) daypack with it. You get foot pain instantly
- soft leather blows out on trails very easily
- price USD 170. REALLY OVERPRICED.
This is my second pair of Lowa Renegades. To me, the Renegade II has been redesigned to fit the urban lifestyle. It's not an outdoors boot anymore. It's comfortable and light, but it cannot handle the smallest of challenges of a day hike on real hiking trails, and I am not talking about rugged trails. Anything little rocky or muddy and Renegade II caves in. This is dissapointing for a boot that originally costs USD 170.
I tried to use it for summer hiking in the Upstate NY, PA, MA and Vermont areas. The boots were not too hot and had a good fit, but, they have too much flex in the forefoot and have almost no lateral/torsonal support. So, the boots allowed a lot of foot movement while walking hilly terrains. Mind it, I only hiked on maintained trails. I WOULD NOT TAKE IT OUT ON A HIKE EVER AGAIN.
Now, I use the Renegade at my office. it looks fine with a pair of Khakis. Not too dorky. I have also found an outdoor use for it. It can be a good pair of shoes for mountain/trail biking.
FINALLY Lowa's all purpose all terrain advertisement for this boot is really a false advertisement. If you need a all terrain all purpose boot from lowa go with LOWA Arko GTX, though overpriced they are realatively better.
GO outdoors and enjoy the abandance.
Materials: nubuck, Gore-tex
Use: Short dayhikes to the high sierras w/60lb pack
Break-in Period: less than a week
Weight: me 185lb, pack 60lbs
Price Paid: $150 REI
The boots were great out of the box brand new. Stiff and can take the weight. Broke it in right away a week before setting out for the John Muir Wilderness, Mosquito Flats campsite. Those rocks up did some work on my feet and the boots took it. Unfortunately the Lowas too the hit for me and died on the way back.
After that little trip it wasn't the same anymore. Did a quick day hike of 16 miles round-trip on a mix of paved trail and dirt at the San Gabriel mtns. My feet are still killing me. It's as if the boots lost all strength from the massive hike. So now it's only good for gardening and putting around the town.
I got lured by the nice look of the boot and comfortable insides. It's a great boot for those living in a wet/cold envirnoment. It might be okay for ultralight hikers? It's a fast boot.
Price Paid: cca 90 USD, in Croatia
After eight years, my Slovenian-made Planika Trekking shoes asked for a change. I found a small shop while I was on a business trip, and made a purchase in 5 minutes. 20pct cash discount. Never heard about Lowa before. Now I can recommend it to everyone. Light, comfortable, waterproof, match perfectly with my requirements. And nice, if it means anything in the mountains :-)
Hope it will last another 8 years.
Break-in Period: none
Price Paid: 120 bucks or so..
These boots have treated me great! I've wandered thru South America for 3 months w/ these as my everyday footwear and have no complaints. Everything from city streets to Andean mountain trails. They kept me stable, comfortable and dry... not to mention looking cool and casual for going out on the town (who wants to carry two pairs of shoes?).
If you want a "one pair does all" this is your boot =)
Use: rough trail, light pack
Break-in Period: none
Price Paid: $165
I've had these boots for about four years...haven't wanted to give them up. Unfortunately I've worn the sole through and can't get away with them in the winter anymore.
Unbelievably comfortable (I do have orthopedic inserts), never a blister or a problem. They've worked for sprint-type short day hikes to multiday alpine treks. They're not good for heavy backpacks on rocky terrain though, the rocks poke through and bruise the feet very quickly.
Use: Everything short of mountain climbing
Break-in Period: Very short
Weight: 2.4 lbs, Men's size 14
Price Paid: under $100
Lighter than most boots without sacrificing support. Lend credence to the adage, "a pound on the foot is equal to 10 on the back." In this case the converse is true: much easier walks without all the bulk of heavy leather boots.
The newer models now have metal eyelets, which probably makes this even a better boot.
Price Paid: $200
Climbed in the Tetons and just recently to the top of Mt. Marcy with these boats and just love em.