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Hands-on Gear Review
Cons: Expensive, heavy.
Best Uses: Backpacking, hiking through cold and snowy conditions.
If you need the most durable, most protective, most supportive boot that you can find, short of a mountaineering boot, the Asolo TPS 520 GV is what you are looking for. If you need a lot of protection and support, but don't need something quite this heavy duty, look into the Asolo Bullet, which is an excellent lighter weight choice for backpacking. For lightweight backpacking or day hikes we recommend the Lowa Renegade GTX Mid - Women's, which is our favorite all-around boot, or the Sportiva FC Eco 3.0 or Keen Targhee II Mid - Women's as comfortable, less expensive alternatives.
RELATED: Our complete review of hiking boots - women's
OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
As the heaviest, beefiest boots in this review, the Asolo TPS 520 GV offer the most amount of support and protection for your feet, if not the most memorable or catchy name. The ankle support rises high onto the ankle and a nylon shank provides underfoot stability. These will hold up to any heavy load or long hike you put them up to.
The unique sole of the TPS (which is, in fact, where it gets part of its mouthful of a name: TPS = Triple Power Structure) was designed in tandem between Vibram and Asolo. In combination with typical rubber, three key spots include dual-density polyurethane to create shock absorbers in the areas where your feet need it most. They do in fact feel bouncier in these three spots, which adds to the comfort of your legs and feet while hiking.
Even though these are the burliest and stiffest in this review, the wide, flat laces, three hook eyelets, and gusseted tongue make these by far the easiest to put on, lace, and tie. The padded tongue is quite comfy, though the rest of the boot is rather stiff and inflexible, requiring some time to break them in properly.
These are likely to last your whole life. If you can find enough occasions to to wear them out, let us know, because you deserve some type of award.
These are your classic, all-leather hiking boot.
A combination of full grain leather and Gore-Tex Performance Footwear lining makes these boots virtually impenetrable. They are also the least breathable in this review, and not ideal for wearing in heat.
These are best used on heavy duty backpacking trips over wet and variable terrain, or on hikes over snowy mountain passes, and not in hot, dry weather or on light day hikes, where they are overkill. These are the most compatible with a strap-on or instep crampon, and would be the most comfortable boots to wear if your hike necessitated kicking steps in snow.
Just shy of $300, these are expensive. But when purchasing a hiking boot that is also a lifetime investment, they can be worth the expense if they are the type you are looking for.
Asolo TPS 520 GV - Men's
— McKenzie Long
OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: June 1, 2012
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