Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Reviewing the Asolo TPS 520 GV Boots

(Before Shot)

Awhile I knew that my La Sportiva boots that have taken me through so many adventures were slowly coming apart at the seems (literally). I order lots of things online, trusting that my general size dimensions will also match the general size dimensions of the gear I am buying, but not boots. No siree, you have to try those suckers on, you have to stomp around and do the little downhill test that most outdoor stores have set up nowadays.

I have always been intrigued by full leather grain boots, these are the tanks of the outdoor world, very much out of step with the lighter faster ethos that permeates today's marketplace. Clocking in at 3lbs 13oz, these boots are definitely not a part of that world but I decided to take the plunge and buy them. So how are they so far?

Well there is a break-in period. Most people that I have read online have said 100ish miles to break in which seems about right to me. The first few 7-10 mile trips were definitely taxing on the old feet. One thing I highly recommend is to waterproof the boots a few times. While the boots are already pretty waterproof, putting on a cream waterproofing agent like Nikwax actually helps to soften the leather which makes these boots feel MUCH better quicker.

However, once these boots are broken in, they will get you anywhere you need to go. I recently took them on my adventure to Mt. Pinos and these boots can kick steps into the snow with the best of them, keeping you dry in the process and can take all the dings you throw at them on the trail. If you are looking to take these on a nature walk, it is overkill. If you are looking to take these on rugged terrain, possibly backpacking, these boots will take a licking and keep on ticking.

The only downside to the boots so far is that the sole is not as sticky as my Sportivas. Sure, it is Vibram and it is really good on most surfaces, it is not so hot on wet slippery rocks and the crossing thereof. Personally I think I need to trust my boots a bit more but that slippage factor is still there, my hesitation or not. However, the boot more than makes up for it in every other category and I am happy with the boots. I think putting even more trail miles on em will make them feel even more like a nice housecoat (who even calls them that anymore, am I 80?) and I can't wait to see what adventures are in-store for me and the boots!


Overall, I am really happy with Asolos and am quickly becoming a convert. Soon, I may need to replace some of my other footwear and am already eyeing the Asolo Reston's which got rave reviews in Outside Magazine

Is that next on the horizon? Who knows but color me a fan of Asolo!


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