Best for broad feet and wet weather
At a glance
Plusses: Comfort, stability, waterproof
Features: This high-volume shoe comes with a Gore-Tex lining to make it fully waterproof. It also has Lowa’s Monowrap frame which resists torsional twisting and cradles the foot to provide a stable platform. Lowa has tried to keep the shoe light by adding fabric lace eyelets and a single-injection PU midsole which is firm under the heel and midfoot, but allows forefoot flex. The Lowa-branded outsole is self-cleaning.
Fit: The UK8.5 (US9.5) shoe is true to size and fitted me well, with just enough wriggle room at the toe. The shoe has a slightly wider fit than other models tested and accommodated my broad feet with ease. The volume is such that I needed to lace them up tightly to ensure my ankle was locked in place.
Comfort: The mostly suede leather upper is soft and supple and there’s just the right amount of padding around the ankle and tongue, and cushioning underfoot, to provide all-day comfort.
In use: I used the shoes on several West Coast day trips, most of which involved heavy rain and I enjoyed the fact my feet remained completely dry during these downpours. Because the shoe has a reasonably high profile, even shallow wet areas can be crossed without accidentally submerging the shoe.
Their stability and support is excellent and they provide an uncompromising platform for hiking over varied terrain. It’s this feature that ensured my feet – and I – were less tired at the end of each hike.
On steep and loose downhills, the grip proved excellent, though the rubber outsole feels a little soft and is less suitable for above the bushline hikes and slope traverses where a sharp edge is needed.
Value: This is an expensive shoe that is counting on its comfort and German construction to win users over.
Verdict: A comfortable generalists all-day hiking shoe for any season.