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Salewa Alp Trainer Mid GTX

rated 4 of 5 stars

The Alp Trainer Mid GTX has been discontinued. It was replaced by the Salewa Alp Trainer 2 Mid GTX.

photo: Salewa Alp Trainer Mid GTX hiking boot

Maximum support in a lightweight but sturdy package!


  • Lightweight
  • Unmatched ankle support
  • Variable insole

The Ozarks are a rocky place.  An up and down place.  A hot and humid place.

The Alp Trainer Mid GTX by Salewa handles all this well. Despite the "no break in" guarantee, I did wear them around the house for several days to make sure fit was good before putting a pack on the trail.

The most surprising thing about Salewa is that their shoes and boots have an insole that is adjustable. This is accomplished by having a 2-piece insole that uses a thin velcro piece to attach the pieces together. Remove the yellow piece of the insert from the main insole and the shoe allows for wider feet (or thicker socks). After using them all summer, I still do not feel the velcro under the main insole.

Using them in the heat and humidity was not an issue. The uppers breathe well. I have not run into much wet weather while wearing them, but stepping through shallow streams did not leave my feet wet. I guess that means the Goretex works so far for that; sustained wet weather may be different.

These were used for a week on the Current River section of the Ozark Trail and several smaller trips. The section is quite rocky — some loose, almost gravel like while most is just plain rocky. The Vibram soles held up well, as did the kevlar wraps on the uppers. The steel cable that anchors the heel helps tremendously when stabilizing foot roll. They are billed as hiking + 45 lbs, and seems to me to be perfect for lightweight backpacking.

So far, I would purchase these again. I expect that they will last quite a while, though, so I don't see a need for that: the build quality is excellent. Though I've only used them for one summer, I have no doubt they will last for quite a while longer.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $198 (online, no shipping or tax)

Comfortable. I wear a 13 wide in most boots and these 13 mediums are snug, but comfy. I put about 5 miles on them the first day out and it rained. My feet stayed dry through small puddles and the soles held traction on wet rocks.

I like the boots. I'd like them better if they were made in Italy, not Vietnam.


  • Comfort
  • Good grip on slippery rocks
  • Seem to be waterproof


  • Made in Vietnam. Time will tell....

True to size. Comfortable. It hasn't been really hot, but supposedly these boots will keep my feet cool. We'll see.

Have done 5 mile walks in them on all kinds of terrain and they work fine and kept my feet dry. The sole could be a bit thicker, since I could feel the odd pointed rock through them — changing out the crappy insoles all boots seem to come with for a pair of Viestur's made a real difference.  

The real bonus is that these boots are very light and very comfortable. No blisters yet either, not even any hotspots, so I should be fine.

What sucks is that they're made in Vietnam.  I used to wear Vasques Sundowners, made in Italy, but the newer ones made in Asia are crap. My current favourite hikers are Alico, still made in Italy and imho, the best buy out there.  

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $160

Lightweight, adjustable, and comfortable, with good ankle support.


  • Lightweight
  • Ankle support
  • Lacing


  • Durability?

The Alp Trainer Mid is a good combination of light weight and ankle support. I particularly like the cuff to toe lacing that allows tweaking to foot shape. Mine tend to be wide, but I like a firm heel cup and roomy toe box, and both are possible with this type of lacing.

Vibram sole is good. Midsole is a bit thin. I always replace factory insoles with Superfeet, which help with heel stability and arch support, while providing a bit of cushion in the forefoot.

Time will tell how durable these are, but so far so good!

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $150

Despite some early reservations about the fit of this boot (found toe space fine, midfoot quite narrow), I took it on a rugged Catskills hike yesterday despite minimal break-in. I wanted to test the "Blister Free" promise, and must say i found them to be generally comfortable.  

Once the grips were scruffed up and not as slippery, I found the running watery trails, slippery leaves,  deep mud and loose rocks were no match for the Alp Trainer. The reinforced heel area stopped many an ankle roll, that i had experienced from other, lesser boots. 

Let's see how they hold up over the next few months! More to follow.

Price Paid: $179

It is quite easy to get wet if it rains hard.  I don't know from where rain get inside shoes. But I find the Gore-tex material inside the shoe does not cover the inner bottom of the shoe. That means if there is a crack in the sole, the water may get inside through the crack.

Maybe it is because my socks are wet so my toe gets one blister after the 50-km trek. It will be good shoe if you don't wear them in  a rainy day.

Price Paid: $179

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