The North Face Hedgehog Fastpack Mid Gore-Tex - Men's
This is a great mid level hiking boot. The boot offers…
Source: bought it new
This is a great mid level hiking boot. The boot offers a great degree of ankle support and arch support, as well as looks great too. It offers a Vibram sole, which provides durability and traction, as well as a Goretex lining that waterproofs the boot.
- Ankle support
- Arch support
- Look (style)
- Awkward lacing system
- Takes a while to break in
- Some may require insoles
I purchased these boots at Atmosphere, which is a partner under the Sport Chek brand for those Canadians out there, on sale for $100 about a year ago. Since then, they have provided me with a high degree of ankle and arch support, as well as great traction, waterproofness, and style. I have yet to find anything I personally dislike about the boots, but I have noted some things that others might find an inconvenience.
I began wearing these boots casually, on day hikes which were no longer than 5-6 hours. It took quite a few of these hikes until I felt like these boots had truly broken in and molded to me feet, but once they did, I had no further sizing issues. One thing that can happen in these boots, is the potential to tie them too tightly and have your toes crunch a bit. No biggie, as it requires a slight adjustment, but I feel some may dislike this.
After a month or two, I began to wear these boots to work, as a gate attendant at a popular provincial park in Ontario. The job required long days on my feet in the hot sun, and I quickly realized how valuable the Goretex lining in the boots was. They kept my feet dry and wicked sweat away, leaving me with happy and blister-less feet. I wore these boots through mud, rain, snow, and even the occasional puddle.
I expect in the winter months to use these boots while snowshoeing. I will most likely use a pair of gaiters to 'winterize' them a bit.
The only other downsides to this boot that I could think of is the awkwardness of the lacing system around the ankle, and the fact that the insoles do not offer any additional comfort. They are very standard, and some might have an issue with comfort as a result. Thankfully I did not.
As far as the lacing system goes, I found it to be a touch awkward, as the position of the eyelet around the ankle can sometimes feel a tad bulky, again, I didn't mind that too much.