Reviews

Technical insulated boot with integrated gaiter, developed…

Rating: rated 5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $149 free s&h

Summary

Technical insulated boot with integrated gaiter, developed for winter mountaineering and suitable for use on ice and mixed terrains. Only removable insoles, no inner boots.

According to my research, the Kayland Apex Plus GTX boots proved to be a worthy companion when tackling the snowy mountains. It was appreciated for its grippy sole, compatibility with crampons, and efficient waterproofing. The Kayland Apex Plus GTX boots meet the expectations of mountaineers.

Pros

  • Very inexpensive ($149–$224 see below); retail is 320 pounds, 445 dollars
  • B3 Technical climbing boots
  • Vibram Teton soles
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • The boots are made in Romania. (I never owned anything made in Romania before.)
  • Kayland has either stopped making them or Sierra just stopped selling them. These boots are still on the Kayland website.

Picture1.pngkayland.jpg
Kayland-sole.jpg                              Do not walk on a fancy wood floor with these boots.

Kayland Apex Plus GTX Boots

Technical mountaineering boot with integrated gaiter, developed for winter mountaineering and suitable for use on ice and mixed terrains. According to my research, the Kayland Apex Plus GTX boots proved to be a worthy companion when tackling snowy mountains. It is appreciated for its grippy sole, compatibility with crampons, and efficient waterproofing. The Kayland Apex Plus GTX boots meets the expectations of mountaineers.

Features and Details:

These boot have built-in gaiters to keep snow and debris out. You can use the front and back top pull straps to assist putting these boots on. I was concerned that the straps would break, but they work.

Availability:

They are on sale for $173 at Kayland USA.

I purchased these boots from Sierra Trading Post during closeouts after reading an online review by Tom Ripley on UKClimbing.com in November 2018.

Italian designed, made in Romania © KAYLAND is a brand of M.G.M. S.P.A. - Via Trento e Trieste, 112C - 31050 Cavasagra di Vedelago (TV) Italy - Ph +39 0423 489310 - Fax +39 0423 489291 - P.IVA

Appearance:

Black and red (grumble)

The built-in gaiter is rather unique and works.

No animal products. These are vegan. The bottoms are rubber, kevlar, steel; uppers are synthetic; and the liners use Gore-Tex and plastic; laces are polypropylene.

The front and back have "ledges" to support clip-on crampons and fancy snowshoes. They work with all types of snowshoes, even the ones with straps. I do not think these work with skis. (I have not tried.)

The soles are Vibram Teton lugs. They will mark up a wood floor with black marks. I learned this at EMS on their fancy wood floor (duoh) ...

Weight:

Light (less heavy than the same size Lowa Alpine Ice GTX boots, for example)

Size:

They come in men's sizes 6-14 US. According to Tom Ripley they fit his wife really good. See the pictures. (See the website for UK or EU sizes.)

I wear a men's size 8.5. I figured on ordering a size 9 and just wearing heavy wool socks. The boots sold out very fast, so no size 9’s. Plan B: I think I purchased the last men's size 8.5 in stock. This worried me since I was ordering boots online and some of the comments were that they are small. Two weeks later...

I tried them on and they fit great!

Little to no break-in required as opposed to my classic ALICO hiking/mountaineering boots that are constructed from heavy handmade leather and required a lot of breaking in. I saw these boots on GearTrade and they are always sold out on eBay. Several US web stores have them, but at a greater price.

Crampons:

The boots fit everything I tried them with. I went to EMS and they let me check out a LOT of crampons. These boots fit: Salewa, CAMP, Grivel, Petzl, Black Diamond. They also fit PETZL Sarken Leverlock crampons.

(They even fit my old SMC 12 points with all of the old leather straps and brass buckles. Of course these boots work on your Kahtoola MicroSpikes for walking around in the house).

Comfort:

I went for a quick walk to the US post office wearing these new boots. It's night, pouring rain, and only 28°F outside. These boots are warm and dry and best of all my feet don’t hurt. I plan on taking these along this winter during my winter camping season. (I'll update this review if needed.)

Water Resistance:

No leaks. Ankle deep puddles under the leaves.

Ease of Use:

The last time I purchased technical mountaineering boots was when I went on a week-long glacier walking and roping and mountain climbing class whilst on vacation in Switzerland. I purchased a pair of Koflach Ultra boots with Lowe's Foot Fangs (the only size available in Gimmelwald shops).


boots-3.jpg                                1984—Not my boots just a picture of some Foot Fangs.

                               What is it with mountain climbers and red and black?

The Koflach and Foot Fang combo were very uncomfortable. The Koflach inner boots hurt even without the Foot Fang torture devices and they stank after a week of class on the ice. I did not pursue ice climbing after that.

Experience

No fancy ice climbing nor any peak bagging yet. Plan is for winter camping. As my energy level increases and my weight decreases, I may be persuaded to bag yet another 4000 footer in the winter.

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Thanks for the info and review, Bob. I hope you'll update us on how these boots hold up over the winter. Have fun!


6 months ago
300winmag

1. Are these boots INSULATED? 2. If insulated do they have REMOVABLE LINERS? "Winter boots" that I would buy absolutely must have a removable liners so they can be placed in the foot of my winter bag to stay warm for donning in the morning. I dread trying to make breakfast and break camp with agonizingly painful cold toes. (Don't ask) Please update this review with answers to makeitg complete.


6 months ago
Boo

Hi,


6 months ago
Boo

ONLY the liners are removable


6 months ago
Boo

The KAYLAND APEX PLUS GTX boots are insulated good to 0 degrees - I just put them in my tent and they are OK in the morning. I suggest using KAMMIK Nation Plus boots - Highly insulated waterproof and work OK with 12 point strap on crampons and snowshoes - they have removable liners. The Koflach boots are insulated and also have removable inner insulated boots and are rated for technical ice and mountain climbing.


6 months ago
300winmag

Bob, thanks for the update. Good to hear these boots have removable insulation.I like the cuff gaiter. ... For all boots I use in winter I wear US Divers 3 mm closed cell neoprene dive sox over thin polyester liners. This is the very best VBL for boots I have ever found and I've been using them for decades.


6 months ago

Looking for an inexpensive ice boot/light mountaineer…

Rating: rated 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 200CDN

Summary

Looking for an inexpensive ice boot/light mountaineer boots, this is it! Low cost, fairly light, and burly!

Pros

  • Burly
  • Light
  • True to size
  • For those who care, synthetic material

Cons

  • Poor ankle support
  • Difficult proper lacing adjustment for small calf
  • Eyelets may alter fabric in long term use

I was looking to upgrade my Koflach mountaineering double boot, which I use to ice climb. Those boots are workhorse. I've been to the top of Mt Washington in winter, Aconcagua, and a lot more. I paired them with Charlet Moser (Petzl) crampons for climbing and Petzl Vasak to hike. I still used them until last year to ice climb and lead grade 4. For a few years now, I was looking for a lighter alternative, Koflachs weigh around 5 pounds a pair, which strengthen me, but have to confess that I'm getting wiser and needed to reduce my weight on some gear.

So I tried on single boots: La Sportiva Trango Tower, La Sportiva Trango Ice Cube, La Sportiva Nepal, and Lowa Weisshorn GTX. The major problem, which refrain me to get one of those pair was the price. So I started looking for cheaper (money wise) alternatives. I looked at Mammut Guide GTX, Mammut Norwad light, Salewa Vultur, Asolo Eiger, Scarpa Mont Blanc Pro GTX, Zamberland Eiger, Kayland Apex GTX, and recently the new La Sportiva Trango Tower Extreme GTX.

Don't forget that my prerogative was the best buy for my money. Since La Sportiva Trango Towers were not available yet and Trango Ice Cube were a bit too tight and too expensive, I saw on sale the Kayland Apex GTX for 200$ Canadian. So I had them shipped after reading a great review by Tom Ripley of the UKC gear.

After a month of hiking I can tell you that I made a great buy. They were comfortable after a few hikes once I dialed in the laces right. That problem was due to the fact that I have small calf. I ordered size US10 and my left foot fit almost perfectly (my right foot is slightly smaller). The counterpart is a low ankle support. I wear US10 in Asolo boot, US10 in La Sportiva Trango, and US9.5 in Lowa Renegade shoe.
DSC00827.jpg

I used them from ranging 4°c down to -17°c using a Smartwool mid hiker sock. I found them warmer when the humidity level was low. They were very good in snow and at -17°c moving my toes let them in fair condition.

I tried on my Petzl Vasak, Charlet Moser grade 8, and Grivel Rambo first generation crampons and the all fit like a glove.

I've not been climbing with them yet, but I will upgrade my review when I do.

I have concern about the top rivet use to secured the eyelet which may in long term cause some hole in the fabric. Compare to the same eyelet on my Asolo boot, the Kaylands seem to be on the rougher side which may in long term use the synthetic leather. First image Kaykand, second Asolo eyelet. 
DSC00815.jpg


DSC00818.jpg

Overall I must say that I'm very satisfied, in term of comfort, weight, and price. Now they I have to be tested on ice climbing situation, but I suspect the boot to work as well has any other brands. So I will probably upgrade my ice tools with all that money I saved.

Kayland says:

Technical boot with integrated gaiter, developed for winter mountaineering and suitable for use on ice and mixed terrains. Extremely performing and dynamic, this model represents the perfect balance between comfort and performance, thanks to its advanced construction system and lightweight. Reduced volume and overall protection for this automatic crampons compatible, fully resolable boot.

Experience

Bought it a month ago, use it on hikes. Will upgrade the review after ice climbing.

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Good luck with the new boots, Martin. We'll look forward to hearing how they work out for ice climbing this winter.


5 months ago

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