Zamberlan Master GT
Materials: gore-tex, leather, vibram soles
Use: long hikes on rough mountain trail
Break-in Period: after a couple hikes
Price Paid: $200
I bought these in 2007 and use them for long mountain hikes. They performed well during a 2007 summer 3-day back-pack trip through Rocky Mountain National Park, and again on 2008 summer 4-day back-pack trip through Rocky Mountain National Park.
I usually carry approx. 40-pound pack on these hikes. The boots were warm and comfortable during some light showers and on muddy trails, and hold up well in the scuffing and toe bumping that occurs on rocky trails.
I was looking for a boot with good ankle support and this boot delivered. I also wanted good arch support for my low arches. In that respect, I could have used a little more support. I'll probably put in my Superfeet blue-insole inserts in the future.
Overall, this is a quality product and well worth the investment. I plan to use them again for another backpacking trip.
Materials: Leather and Gore-Tex
Use: Long Backpacking Trips
Break-in Period: Probably around 2 weeks of Hiking.
Weight: Too much I think
Price Paid: $175
I purchased these boots from REI at a garage sale in November of 2006. I've only taken them on a couple of medium length day hikes so far, but I will say they are by far the most comfortable boots I've ever hiked in. Completely waterproof and actually kind of warm. Lots of support and stiff enough for my Petzl crampons.
My only real complaints so far would be that they are one; huge, these boots are enormous and two; heavy, they could be a little lighter I think as the sole and treads are huge and weigh a ton. Otherwise, awesome boots. I recommend to anyone who doesn't mind a little extra weight on the feet.
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Here's what other sites are saying:
For long treks and backpacking trips, these waterproof Zamberlan® boots provide excellent lateral support, comfort and freedom of movement. Split-grain leather uppers are durable and protective, yet lightweight and breathable. Gore-Tex® linings offer the best in waterproofing and breathability. Zamberlan's Z-Flex System provides necessary lateral support while allowing freedom of ankle movement and correct flexion of the foot. Flex GT midsoles give torsional rigidity, support and protection from uneven surfaces. Roomy toe boxes and comfortable heel holds provide the stability needed when navigating rough terrain. Fully gusseted tongues and articulating lace hooks make for a snug ankle fit that keeps dirt and water out. Vibram® outsoles are durable, high-quality rubber that give you traction you can rely on.