User Review: Scarpa Men's ZG 65 XCR
Materials: Leather and Fabric with Gore-Tex XCR
Use: Sub 30 lb pack, all trail conditions, 3 season all-weather conditions, day hikes
Break-in Period: About 20 miles in rocky terrain
Weight: Reportedly 2.75 pounds average
Price Paid: $97.50
I worked at an outdoor outfitter and had access to discounts and plenty of time to try on boots (we were encouraged to do so to be able to give mini reviews to customers). These boots fit my higher arch, medium width, low volume foot beautifully once I found the right combination of footbed (Shock Doctor) and sock (Smartwool Adrenaline). They were tight in the toe for the first 20 miles or so, and my heel was just slightly shifty, but once they were worn in to my feet, both of these problems went away.
I chose them not just for the fit, but was drawn to them for certain features: large toe rand, aggressive Vibram sole with hooked heel for downhill traction, Gore Tex XCR for increased breathability and waterproofness, simple but effective lacing to toe, light weight and great ankle support. I have been nothing but satisfied with them, and tried to pass that on to my customers, but never actually sold a pair. They have a unique look that seems to turn some people off, though I really like the look. They also don't fit just anyone - I have found they fit lower volume feet best.
I have hiked Mt. Washington in them with a 29 lb pack, the AT through the Great Smokeys with a 26lb pack and numerous, less notable eastern hikes, including just plain old day hikes. With over two hundred miles on them now, only the soles seem to show any wear and they are as comfortable and waterproof as ever (I have replaced the footbeds once). At one point, they were completely covered in nasty Pennsylvania mud, but with some light laundry detergent, running water and a fabric brush (for detailing car interiors), I cleaned them up easily to look nearly brand new.
They resist scuffs really well and the extended toe rand protects not just your foot, but the boot itself. When these eventually wear out (and that does not seem to be any time soon), I will replace them with an identical pair, no question.