So light on your feet you hardly know you’re wearing them, the Merrell Capra is an immediately comfortable medium-duty walking boot. Weighing just 907g a pair, they come with a fully synthetic upper of heavy duty mesh with an exoskeleton of rubber on the outside to give support and to draw the foot into the heel cup. The lacing of these boots is positive and a minimum of padding combined with a low-profile fit makes them feel secure around the ankle area. I liked the small neoprene cuff at the top of the boot; it closes neatly around the ankle and works well to keep stones and twigs out when you’re not wearing gaiters.
The Gore-Tex lined uppers are well bonded to a Vibram sole that had great grip on rock. While the sole of these boots has a reasonable heel and good lugs on the edges, I found the very open tread pattern of flared (rather than right angled) blocks not so good on really slippery tracks – but on the upside it clears mud really well.
The boots have pretty good forefoot stiffness, but they’re quite bendy across the boot forward of the arch. While this means out-of-the-box comfort, it can also mean harder work for your feet with a heavier pack on your back, especially on rough ground.
The Capra Mid is a boot to check out if you have a narrower foot and would make a good all-round walking boot for easy-to-medium tracks, preferably with a daypack or light overnight load. They’re smart looking too.