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Scarpa Bhutan GTX

rated 3.5 of 5 stars
photo: Scarpa Bhutan GTX backpacking boot

After multiple "tries" finding some hiking/backpacking boots that actually fit I purchased the Scarpa Bhutan GTX boots. I have a narrow foot and my heels are really the issue. The last pair of boots that I had that actually fit before the Bhutan boots were the original Italian made Vasque Sundowner boots back in 1996. That's a long time worrying about taping ankles, worrying about socks, researching different lacing options and using Moleskin on my heels.

I was growing sick and tired of outfitters telling me that every boot has these issues coupled with my type of foot. I was not backing down easy and learned of Scarpa and their focus on narrower, lower-volume feet. I wanted a full grain leather boot and liked the shiny leather classic look, but could not afford some of the boots like that. I also tried on the Asolo TPS 520 GV which seemed to fit well but it was like wearing lead on my feet.

I finally had to opportunity to try the Bhutan and it reminded me of the fit of my old Sundowner boots but with better soles and construction. I purchased them without a lot of expectations. I had previously had the Garmont Synchro GTX and it fit good when purchased, but it quickly became the worst blister-causing boot I had ever owned. Wearing them in the store and after miles of use is another thing.

So far I have put around 15 miles on the Bhutans and they feel great. They are light and durable at the same time. Some reviewers said they made their feet hot, but I think they are very breathable. I would recommend them to others with a low-volume foot. The Vibram soles they have on them are extremely grippy. Last weekend I hiked down a slope covered with frost covered leaves and I never lost traction.

Price Paid: $215

I bought a pair after using Keen and Vasquez for years, I have hiked, backpacked and hunted for 50 years. I THOUGHT I had broken them in after short hikes, wear to work and yard work for three months.

Went to Glacier, both my big toenails were toast after the first 10-mile day. Lucky I had my New Balance running shoes or my trip would have been finished. I took them back to Serra Trading Post with no problems. Went back to my old standby Keen and Vasquez.


  • None


  • They killed my feet after breaking them in for three months.

See Summary, as far as I'm concerned they sucked and were not worth the money!

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $175 +

These boots are the best made out there. Very strong, durable and waterproof GTX (gore-tex). I highly recommend these to any heavy hikers and backpackers!

Materials: nubuck leather
Use: long day hikes, backpacking
Break-in Period: not long, do some neighborhood walking
Weight: 3 lbs. 2 oz.
Price Paid: $165

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