Lowa Alpine Guide
The Alpine Guide has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best mountaineering boots for 2024.
These are interesting boots. I like them but don't love them. They're claimed to be designed for alpine climbing situations. I have used them for winter hikes and snowshoeing. I do not use them for actual winter climbing. These don't work well enough with crampons. They are good for rock scrambling and hiking though - especially in snowy conditions.
I went back and double-checked the original marketing language that Lowa wrote to describe the boots. It says something to the effect of 'can be used with crampons for glacier walking.' That's fine. You can use strap and 'newmatic' crampons with these just fine for walking on ice. But the boots are not nearly supportive enough for any real front pointing. That said, they are comfortable, the soles are aggressively lugged vibram that work very well in the snow/mud/slush/ice and are quite sticky on both dry and wet rock. They are warm (lightly insulated with 'Outlast'). They are mostly waterproof.
Another reviewer mentioned that there is a small area where the lacing ends down by the toes that leaks. I have experienced this as well in very wet conditions.
They are excellent winter hikers that should not be confused with real climbing boots.
Materials: leather, lightly insulated, vibram soles
Use: winter hiking
Break-in Period: some, but not much
Price Paid: $150
I have had these boots for about 18 months now. They are comfortable and supportive when hiking with a heavy pack, though they are a tad narrow for my American spoon-shaped dogs, they are comfortable and good for rock scrambling.
While far too soft for any extended front-pointing in crampons, they do okay on low angle glacier ice though they crank on your ankles a bit because they aren't very high or stiff. My main complaint is that the synthetic material that connects the tongue to the sides of the boots isn't very water resistant so my feet get wet after 4-6 hours in the snow.
Use: rough trail, scrambling
Break-in Period: Brief, comfy right away
Weight: don't know
Price Paid: don't recall
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