Lowa Scarab II
The Scarab II has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best trail shoes for 2023.
The Lowa Scarab II is a pure trail shoe. They are heavier than a trail runner but lighter than a light ankle-cut boot, coming in at 2 lbs. 4 oz. for the pair. The uppers are sued with mesh inserts.
The sole is fairly low profile, not too aggressive, but enough tread for most of what you would encounter on-trail save the super-slick wet rocks or roots:
I have logged many miles on these shoes, exclusively for day hikes and outdoor recreation. They are quite durable, need no time to break in, and the insole fits my foot quite well. Since the upper is mostly suede these shoes will prove to be more durable than your average trail runner, but they don't breathe all that well. Additionally, the mesh sections are thick and don't provide a whole lot in terms of ventilation.
This is great if you hike in cooler, dry conditions. If you tend to hike in hot/muggy/wet conditions, I would look at something with a little more ventilation – Roclite's these aren't. Another benefit to the thicker mesh sections is that it tends to keep the debris out better.
Lowa has a reputation for quality, which is evident even in shoes such as these which would be considered the bottom of their line. I think these shoes occupy a valuable little niche, somewhere between trail runner and light boot. Unfortunately, these are no longer made, but they deserve a good review.
Price Paid: $90
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