Gear Guide: Spring 2012 Hiking Shoes

Wolverine Pulsar Shoe

Now that spring is here in full force, we thought it was time to post our picks for spring 2012 hiking shoes. When out hiking this spring you need to be prepared for different types of weather, from snow to dry and hot. Most likely if you are hiking in the mountains you encounter spring runoff, which means mud. With those things in mind, we have gathered shoes that are waterproof to thwart of the snow and water and shoes that are breathable to wear when it is hot and dry. Included are men's specific shoes, shoes that are available in both men's and women's and the last 6 shoes are women's specific. Look the guide over and then give a pair or two a try. Happy feet make a happy trip.

Wolverine Pulsar iCS Low-Cut Trail Hiker

The lightweight Wolverine Pulsar is designed for ultimate performance, comfort and fit during every outdoor adventure. Featuring patented Wolverine ICS™ (individual comfort system) technology, wearers can personalize their level of comfort for how they walk by simply adjusting the gel disc under the Pulsar’s performance OrthoLite® footbed. A mesh upper is equipped with PU Action Frame stabilizers that wrap from the heel and arch of the shoe to the lace eyelets for a secure fit. Unique, double-wrapped laces stayed tightly tied while navigating over miles of rough terrain. A Vibram® rubber lug outsole offers performance arch support and traction. Breathable GORE-TEX® waterproof lining guarantees that feet stay dry.

Features:

GORE-TEX® waterproof membrane protects in wet conditions

Breathable mesh upper for extended comfort

Bumper for ultimate protection

Action frame stabilizers for full foot support

Performance arch stabilizers

Air-light midsole, ideal for day hikes

Action frame stabilizers for a secure ankle wrap, preventing lateral movement

External heel counter for added ankle support

Rugged Vibram® rubber outsole with Wolverine Claw-Trax™ traction

Ortholite® X-40 Footbed: gel insert in the forepart for long lasting cushion comfort, air ‡ ow for cool foot, moisture wicking, performance arch, odor resistant

Toe-strike and heel-strike protection for ultimate durability and comfort

Available in men’s and women’s.

MSRP: $160.00

http://www.wolverine.com/US/en-US/Product.mvc.aspx/27353M/63753/Mens/Pulsar-Wolverine-iCS-Low-Cut-Trail-Hiker

vasque_talusVasque Talus UD

Old school charm meets new school performance in this heritage-styled boot. With leather eyelets and no toe cap, the Talus with the UltraDry membrane, offers up a lightweight classic-hiker look at a great price. Fully waterproof nubuck leather, coupled with the PU midsole for stability and support, guarantees premium fit and performance no matter the weather.

Features:

Vibram - Our longest standing partner.

Perpetuum Last - As the name suggests, the Perpetuum Last creates a fit for steady, long distance endeavors.

UltraDry™ combines management lining with waterproof components

Weight: 2lb. 9 oz. (1168g)

Outsole: Vibram® Nuasi

Last: Perpetuum

Midsole: Molded PU

Available in Men's and Women's

MSRP: $155

http://www.vasque.com/vasque-shoe/7418-vasque/7418-vasque-mens-talus-ultradry%E2%84%A2-turkishcoffee-chilipepper

northface_hypershockThe North Face Hypershock

Say goodbye to soggy shoelaces. Designed for the amphibious adventurer, these featherweight, quick-drying shoes provide comfort, traction and durability. They feature a breathable mesh upper, a HydroTrak™ outsole, and welded construction. Quickly adjust the shoes while you’re on the go using the BOA® lacing system, which tightens or loosens with a twist of the dial. Wearable without socks thanks to no exposed stitching.

Features:

Quick-drying, breathable mesh upper

Durable, welded protective mudguard

Welded, microfiber internal support system

Micro-adjustable Boa® lacing system

Compression-molded EVA footbed

Featherweight, injection-molded EVA midsole/outsole with HydroTrak™ rubber pods for increased traction

MSRP: $115.00

http://www.thenorthface.com/catalog/sc-gear/men-39-s-hypershock-boa.html?cm_vc=Search

golite_ScramLiteGoLite Scram Lite

GoLite believes that footwear should complement the design of the human body, and that feet work best when they stay flat. But they also understand that feet need protection from rocks and roots on the trail.  That’s why they created the Zero-Impact Platform. These shoes have a zero drop last which promotes a natural stride, along with a soft midsole, offering full protection from the terrain. Inspired by gravity-defying geckos, miniature lugs on their Sticky Gecko sole replicate the tiny hairs on the lizard’s feet that create surface contact and friction.

Features:

Engineered for a wet terrain approach

Men’s PreciseFit™ system sizes 7-13; 14

4 Different Color Options

Premium Nubuck Upper

Brushed Rubber Rand

Dual Density EVA Midsole

MSRP: $120

http://www.golite-footwear.com/products/view/men/search/79

chaco_torlanChaco Torlan

The Torlan is a lace-up shoe made with a Nubuck leather upper and articulated panels for exceptional fit and water drainage. Also the Torlan is built on the same LUVSEAT™ platform as the beloved Chaco sandals. Lightweight and ready for adventure, the Torlan has articulating panels for both airflow and a customized fit. The Torlan is then finished with a removable comfy ChaPU footbed, stay-­‐tied square laces, and the new Vibram™ Bulloo non-­‐marking outsole for grip in wet or dry conditions.

Features:

• Nubuck leather upper with articulating panels for airflow and fit.

• Lace-toe with webbing lacing gilleys.

• LUVSEAT™ XO3 platform.

• Lace-up fit.

• Second lace color available.

• Vibram® Bulloo Outsole. Non-marking.

• Available in Men’s and Women’s

• MSRP: $125.00

• http://www.chacos.com/US/en-US/Product.mvc.aspx/27550M/0/Mens/Torlan-Shoe?dimensions=0

treksta_kobraTrekSta Kobra II GTX

This high-tech light hiker features the Boa Lacing System, which provides unparalleled security, comfort by preventing pressure points and its micro-adjustability provides a dialed-in fit, all of which equals improved performance on the trail. You can learn more about the Boa Lacing System and its benefits here: http://boatechnology.com/technology/Overview

Features:

• NestFIT system cradles your feet, accounting for every contour as it follows the natural flow and design of the foot. Upper, insole, midsole, and outsole come together like never before.

• HyperGrip/IceLock sole provides traction in any condition.

• Lightweight, variable-density Zero-Gravity™ EVA midsole joins the sole and insole to create a a supportive whole.

• Triple-density EVA insole supports the arch, cushions key strike zones, and strengthens your stride.

• TPU shank protects against impact and supports natural foot structure.

• Boa Lacing system locks the foot securely in place.

• Gore-Tex waterproof/breathable membrane for dry feet.

• 15.6 oz. per shoe (M9)

• MSRP: $175

• http://www.trekstausa.com/p-35-treksta-mens-kobra-ii-gtx.aspx

patagonia_drifterPatagonia Drifter A/C Mid

The more traditional, award-winning Drifter A/C goes tall with the new Drifter A/C Mid for spring 2012.  An all-terrain boot with a ventilated mesh/leather upper and Vibram® EcoStep sole with 30 percent recycled rubber. Breathable components of the boot include a durable air-mesh/waterproof nubuck leather upper, a bellows tongue that sheds debris, and a polyester air-mesh lining that circulates airflow. The 15%-recycled EVA anatomical footbed provides cushioning, comfort and support; while the Bi-Fit™ 80% post-consumer recycled polyurethane waterproof insole board offers support and stability underfoot.

Features:

Breathable air mesh/durable waterproof nubuck leather upper; breathable bellows tongue to keep out debris; breathable polyester air mesh lining

15% recycled EVA anatomical footbed provides cushioning, comfort and support

Patagonia Air Cushion Plus provides shock absorption

Bi-Fit 80% post-consumer recycled polyurethane waterproof insole board provides support and stability underfoot

Board-lasted construction provides support and durability

Vibram® Trail Ecostep outsole with 30% recycled rubber provides excellent traction

Last characteristics: medium width, full toe box, medium arch/instep

510 g (1 lb 2 oz)

MSRP: $160.00

http://www.patagonia.com/us/product/patagonia-mens-drifter-a-c-mid-shoe?p=78510-0-685

Boreal_HurricaneBoreal Hurricane

The Hurricane includes the new developed Sympatex Climate Technology, that makes it completely waterproof, 100% breathable and abrasion resisting. It has been testing for almost 2 years and is a huge step forward. The upper is constructed from an innovative combination of high-tech outer material, lining and membrane. It has a TPU overlay for added lateral support and rubber toecap for protection. A extra-hydrophobic lining with H2O-finishing and high-performance Sympatex® membrane enables fast and effective transport of sweat away from the foot.

Features:

100% waterproof

Optimum breathability

100% windproof

Optimum protection against viruses and bacteria

Guaranteed functionality

Robust membrane

300% stretch

MSRP: $179.00

http://www.e-boreal.com/ing/comienzo.htm

gronell_grappasGronell Grappa Boot

This spring Sport Hansa will release the Grappa, a classic hiking and backpacking boot made by long-established Italian boot maker Gronell.  The Grappa sports a classic heavy-duty boot design that is well suited for hiking and backpacking with moderate loads over most terrain.  With a high upper made of Anfibio leather, this 4.6 pound waterproof boot was designed for great comfort and ankle protection.  The Grappa is made with Goodyear-welt construction, which means the boot’s Vibram soles are stitched to the boot’s upper, making for a very rugged, waterproof, and durable design that can be re-soled. The Grappas boots, as well as the entire line of Gronell footwear, are all manufactured in the mountains just north of Verona, Italy.

Features:

Upper: Water-repellent Anfibio oil leather

Lining: Real leather

Insole: Arch support real leather

Sole: Vibram - Goodyear stitching 2

Sizes 5-13U.K. with ½ sizes

Weight: 900 g (1/2 pair sz. 8)

MSRP: $349.00

http://www.gronell.it/gb/tradition/tradition.html

zamberlan_lagoraiZamberlan 1024 Lagorai NW GT

Handcrafted in Italy and part of the Norwegian Welted boot line, the full grain leather 1024 Lagorai NW GT is one of Zamberlan’s most capable and beautiful boots. Using Norwegian Welted construction to apply a new, lightweight PU sole to waxed Tuscan leather uppers, Zamberlan has created a truly a unique combination that includes a Gore-Tex liner. Its Vibram® NorTrack sole is a lightweight, dual-density PU platform with a tread ideal for navigating a variety of terrain. Hydrobloc waxed tuscan leather adds a layer of water-resistance to the very capable Gore-Tex liners.

Features:

Made in Italy

Upper: Hydrobloc full grain leather

Leather thickness: 2.6/2.8mm

Lining: Gore-tex

Zamberlan Z-Comfort fit footbed

Thermoplastic toe and heel

Zamberlan Vibram NorTRAK

MSRP: $440

http://www.zamberlanusa.com/catalog/index.php?lang=en&pg=prod&idprod=204&idcat=3

tecnica_dragon-x-lite-wsTecnica Dragon X-Lite W

The new Dragon X-Lite is a hybrid shoe offering hiking protection, approach precision and running performance. The TRS X-Lite sole combines the rolling rocker of the TRS with a semi-oversized profile that is super lightweight. The Tecnica Rolling System (TRS) is an energy and cushioning system that provides superior forward energy transfer, comfort and grip resulting in a faster, smoother and safer ride. Rolling, cushioning and lightness in one sweet package.

Features:

Durability. Safety. Control

Performance insoles enhance fit and comfort.

TRS X-Lite

Sizes: US 5 - 10.5

Weight: 260 gr

Colors: Violet - Lime, Dark Grey - Lime, Brown - Azure

Upper: Suede 1.4-1.6 mm

Lining: Textile;

Outsole: TRS X-Lite with Tecnigrip

Midsole: Phylon EVA

Footbed: Anatomic Ortholite®

MSRP: $115.00

http://shop.tecnicausa.com/Product/1501%2012%20DRAGONW%20XLITE%20VIO/outdoor-dragon-x-lite-w's

golite_LavaLiteGoLite Women’s Lava Lite

Built on the belief that footwear should be built on a zero drop last, the Lava Lite has the Zero-Impact Platform. Also the Lava Lite has Rock Absorber technology  which makes the shoes perform without compromise on unforgiving terrain, creating a shoe that mimics the suspension of an SUV. The closer the shock absorbers are to the ground, the better the vehicle’s stability. Rock Absorber™ technology applies the same physics to these shoes, providing a stable platform under foot with soft shock-absorbing foams close to the ground. GripstickTM rubber is an exclusive high-grip compound that provides extra traction on slick surfaces like wet rocks, snow and ice. It’s lightweight and durable for maximum performance.

Features:

Engineered for approaches and light hiking

Women’s PreciseFit™ system sizes 5.5-11

Premium Nubuck Upper

Dual Density EVA Midsole

MSRP: $115

http://www.golite-footwear.com/products/view/women/27/82/190

adidas_terrexfastadidas Terrex Fast X GTX

Featuring a breathable GORE-TEX membrane, the adidas women's Terrex Fast X GTX shoes offer 100 percent weather protection during fast-paced outdoor pursuits. This very light, technical hiker has adaptive FORMOTION™cushioning and a TRAXION™outsole to grip trails during fast hikes. Also the Terrex Fast X GTX is made with high-abrasion mesh and synthetic upper materials for breathability and durability.

Features:

Weight: 13.6 oz. (per shoe, size 7)

Outdoor-specific FORMOTION unit for enhanced motion control and downhill comfort

Synthetic upper material mix for lightweight durability and enhanced fit

Waterproof and breathable GORE-TEX lining

Speed lacing construction for fast and snug lacing; Comfortable textile lining

adiPRENE+ in the forefoot maintains propulsion and efficiency

TRAXION outsole provides the best grip and agility during fast activities

MSRP: $160

http://www.adidas.com/us/product/womens-outdoor-terrex-fast-x-gtx-shoes/QP676

scarpa_moraineScarpa Moraine Mid GTX Womens

An ideal shoe for those who prefer additional ankle support without the weight and stiffness of a boot. Dual-density compression molded EVA midsole provides comfort all day. The tongue lining made with stretch GTX XCF gives outstanding fit and comfort through the midfoot area. It also has a structured toebox with abrasion-resistant toe rand. Gore-Tex® will provide protection from spring runoff and rain while delivering maximum breathability.

Features:

Planet Friendly

29% recycled polyester mesh

40% recycled synthetic leather

100% PC recycled lining; 70% recycled stroebel

Lace and webbing is 100% Ecosensor recycled polyester

Midsole has EcoPure EVA additive to promote degradation in landfill conditions

25% recycled rubber outsole

Extended Comfort Gore-Tex®

Structured toebox

Tongue lining made with stretch GTX XCF

Upper: Suede/Nubuck leather and recycled polyester mesh

Lining: Gore-Tex® – Extended Comfort

Plate: Arch Suspension Insert

MSRP: $129.00

http://www.scarpa.com/scarpa/products/p_32009-202

zamberlan_skillZamberlan 310 Skill GT- Women’s

Designed for trekking & hiking, the 310 Skill GT features outstanding old-world workmanship and modern day technology combined to provide comfort, support and stability. The perforated leather lining in the heel and ankle areas and one-piece leather tongue and gusset grip the feet snugly to ensure a great fit. The Gore-Tex® lining and premium Hydrobloc® full-grain, single-leather upper combines to provide superior water repellency. The Zamberlan Vibram® L.H.0.7 sole with moderate gauged lugging will ensure stability while traversing uneven terrain and comfort on flat surfaces. Made with Zambelran Ladies Fit, a female-specific last to properly match the shape of a woman's foot.

Features:

Upper: Hydrobloc full grain leather

Leather thickness: 2.4mm

Gore-Tex lining

Zamberlan Z-Comfort fit footbed

Thermoplastic toe and heel

Zamberlan Z-Flex GT insole/shank

Zamberlan Vibram L.H.0.7

Weight: 560 g

MSRP: $250.00

http://www.zamberlanusa.com/catalog/index.php?lang=en&pg=prod&idprod=18&idcat=2

ahnu_montaraAhnu Montara Boot

Providing performance and style for women the Montara Boot is Ahnu's first ever mid-height light weight hiker. With Vibram outsoles and eVent waterproofing, the Montara Boot walks firmly on the performance side of the street. Lace-up versatility, waterproof oiled leather, a suede quarter panel, rubber toe and heel wraps create the Montara Boots snug, stylish, comfortable fit for the town or the trail. The Montara features Ahnu NUMENTUM™ HIKE technology engineered to center and guide the foot, promoting a balanced, even stride.

Features:

Padded Collar

eVent® breathable waterproof bootie

Nubuck upper

Rubber toe protector

Vibram® outsole for traction on variety of surfaces

Mid-cut for added security and protection

Genuine Leather Lined collar and tongue

Available in Black, Tawny Port, Astral Aura and Coffee Bean

Weight: 15oz.

MSRP: $150.00

http://www.ahnu.com/womens-montara-stability-hiking-boots/AF2128,default,pd.html

footbalance_Cushion_blue_insoleFootbalance Dynamic Blue Insoles

So we know that these are not hiking shoes but I do believe they can be a great asset to many people, and that is why we included them. Footbalance is a personalized footbed, individually custom-molded on the basis of a foot analysis to ensure perfect arch support. Footbalance footbeds support the feet in proper alignment to help reduce overpronation, counter the effects of excessive supination, and foster healthy foot function. Studies have shown that regularly wearing custom footbeds can help improve overall body alignment, which can help reduce the incidence of stress injuries. By giving the exact support needed underfoot, Footbalance footbeds customizes footwear for ultimate fit and comfort, so feet feel better every step of the way. Footbalance Cushion Blue is an all-around performance and comfort solution for multiple sports and activities. These high density 3.0 mm EVA footbeds are perfect for both recreational and performance athletes, including active outdoor enthusiasts. The high-tech polyester fabric, with a Sanitized® antibacterial treatment, wicks moisture away from the foot and provides a cool, friction-free surface to help prevent blisters and other foot problems.

Features:

Benefits - All around comfort and performance

Perfect for - A wide range of sports and All foot types

Cushioning: 3

Stiffness: 1

Surface Material: Moisture-wicking Atlanta

Weight (size 42): ≈ 1.55 oz / 44 g

http://www.footbalance.com/