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La Sportiva G5 Evo Review

This is a great boot for cold weather climbing and it's really fast to put on, take off, and adjust
La Sportiva G5 Evo
Credit: La Sportiva
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Price:  $849 List | $849.00 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Warm, climbs well
Cons:  Expensive
Manufacturer:   La Sportiva
By Ian McEleney ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Sep 14, 2022
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71
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 10
  • Climbing - 25% 8.0
  • Weight - 20% 6.0
  • Weather Resistance - 20% 6.0
  • Warmth - 15% 7.0
  • Hiking - 10% 7.0
  • Lacing - 10% 9.0

Our Verdict

The La Sportiva G5 Evo is an almost perfect mountain boot for cold weather ascents. It's one of our favorite boots for climbing ice, snow, and rock. It's pretty light and also one of the warmer boots in our test. This latest version, with a waterproof flap behind the zipper, keeps out water much better than its predecessor. The other thing that's on the outside of the boot is the Boa knob. We were pleasantly surprised with how much more useable this made the boots. This new ease of adjustment made for a warmer and better climbing experience.

Compare to Similar Products

 
La Sportiva G5 Evo
This Product
La Sportiva G5 Evo
Awards  Editors' Choice Award  Top Pick Award Best Buy Award 
Price $849.00 at Backcountry
Compare at 2 sellers
$700.00 at REI
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$561.63 at Amazon
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$750 List
$750.00 at Amazon
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Warm, climbs wellSuper lightweight, climbs well, simple lacesWarm, lightweight, climbs wellRemovable liner, velcro ankle strap, waterproofLight, versatile, great for rock climbing
Cons ExpensiveNo lace lock, could be warmerNo lace lock, not fully waterproofExpensive, slightly flexibleNot very warm, minimal calf support
Bottom Line This is a great boot for cold weather climbing and it's really fast to put on, take off, and adjustThis lightweight boot is our go-to choice for challenging climbs on ice, rock, and snowThis lightweight and warm boot will get you to the top of alpine climbsThis lightweight double boot is perfect for cold weather technical climbingThese light, versatile boots are good for all-around performance
Rating Categories La Sportiva G5 Evo Asolo Eiger XT GV Evo Scarpa Phantom Tech Arc'teryx Acrux AR La Sportiva Trango...
Climbing (25%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
5.0
6.0
Weight (20%)
6.0
9.0
8.0
4.0
7.0
Weather Resistance (20%)
6.0
7.0
6.0
9.0
4.0
Warmth (15%)
7.0
6.0
6.0
9.0
3.0
Hiking (10%)
7.0
6.0
6.0
5.0
8.0
Lacing (10%)
9.0
5.0
5.0
6.0
8.0
Specs La Sportiva G5 Evo Asolo Eiger XT GV Evo Scarpa Phantom Tech Arc'teryx Acrux AR La Sportiva Trango...
Style Single Single Single Double Single
Weight 1lb 15oz (875g) 1lb 10.8oz (760g) 1lb 12.6oz (810g) 2lb 2oz (965g) 1lb 13.6oz (835g)
Sizes Available 38-48 EU 40-47.5 EU 38-48 EU 7-13 US 38-48 EU
Upper Stretch Cordura with reflective aluminum lining High tenacity nylon with Schoeller Soft Shell PU Tek + S-Tech Fabric 3L Gore-Tex w/ TPU Laminate Nylon 6.6 with Honey-Comb Guard and FlexTec 3
Waterproof Lining Gore-Tex Infinium Gore-Tex Insulated Comfort HDry waterproof direct lamination membrane Gore-Tex Gore-Tex Performance Comfort
Shank 3mm Honeycomb Tech insulating carbon Carbon Fiber Carbon Fiber + EVA + Aerogel PU 9mm Insulated IBI-Thermo
Midsole 2mm polyurethane Dual color microporous midsole 2D EVA-MP CM EVA, carbon fiber 6-7mm TPU/ Dual-density micropore EVA
Sole Rubber Vibram Matterhorn Vibram Litebase with Mont compound Vibram Precision Tech Roll / Mont Vibram AR Vibram "One"

Our Analysis and Test Results

The La Sportiva G5 Evo does everything we need a mountain boot to do. They climb really well and keep your feet surprisingly warm, given how light they are. The updated Boa system allows for easy adjustments on the fly, without removing your gloves.

Performance Comparison


La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - jack in action with the g5 on a new route.
Jack in action with the G5 on a new route.
Credit: Ian McEleney

Climbing


Some boots in our test are ice climbing machines, while others are clearly designed with steep mixed terrain in mind. In our testing, the G5 Evo presented one of the most well-rounded climbing performances. We were happy to have this boot on our feet whenever we tied into the rope, so it scores highly in the climbing metric. The rigid sole and power strap were a boon on steep ice.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - the quickly adjustable velcro power strap.
The quickly adjustable velcro power strap.
Credit: Jessica Haist

On mixed ground and pure rock, climbers can loosen the power strap and enjoy a good range of motion in the ankle. The deep dive of the cuff around our Achilles tendon helped with this also.

Weight


This boot was pleasingly light, weighing in at 1lb 15oz (875g) for our test size 43. The inner boot is low cut, which certainly helps, but it seems like it's mostly space-age materials that keep this boot svelte. Sportiva somehow managed to keep the weight down while still providing a beefy outsole. Take note if you spend a lot of time on rocky approaches.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - the g5 works well with petzl crampons.
The G5 works well with Petzl crampons.
Credit: Ian McEleney

Weather Resistance


Like some other supergaiter boots, this is a tricky area. Some manufacturers are making the gaiter not waterproof and keeping water away from your foot with other strategies. The gaiter on the G5 Evo is made of waterproof fabrics and does an excellent job keeping out all types of snow in all kinds of situations.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - the top of this flap of black fabric is the 6-inch waterline.
The top of this flap of black fabric is the 6-inch waterline.
Credit: Ian McEleney

However, the zipper on the gaiter is not waterproof. What keeps water away from your foot (and the inner boot) is a flap of fabric behind the zipper. The top of this fabric is about 6 inches off the ground, and that's the waterline of this boot.

Warmth


The G5 Evo is a warm boot. We think that the only way climbers will get a warmer boot is to go with a double boot. All the fancy materials in the upper help with that, but the thick mid and outsole certainly contribute when we're standing still, in the snow, with crampons strapped to our feet.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - standing around at a cold belay? pop the boa knob open to enable...
Standing around at a cold belay? Pop the Boa knob open to enable circulation.
Credit: Ian McEleney

We also think having the Boa on the outside of the gaiter contributes to keeping your feet warm. Having the knob so accessible makes it really easy to crank the boot down tight when you're climbing, then just pop the knob open when you're not. With the G5 Evo, we spend less of the day with the boots tight, restricting circulation to our feet.

Hiking


The G5 hikes pretty well for a mountain boot. We often found ourselves leaving the power strap undone for the approach. This, in combination with the deep Achilles cut-out, allows us to walk with a fairly comfortable gait on dry hiking trails and snow-covered talus.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - the deep heel cutout makes hiking nicer.
The deep heel cutout makes hiking nicer.
Credit: Jessica Haist

Lacing


We didn't do any timed drills (though that could make for funny video), but this is one of the fastest boots to put on or adjust in our test. At the car, slide your foot in, zip up, turn the Boa knob till the forefoot is snug, and go. At the base of your route, or when the climbing gets serious, you can adjust the powerstrap, tighten the Boa a few clicks, and send.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - the external boa knob was a surprising tester favorite.
The external Boa knob was a surprising tester favorite.
Credit: Jessica Haist

A note about the Boa; a number of climbers who had experience with early versions of this system over a decade ago were dubious about its durability. Our lead tester has logged over 60 days in his La Sportiva G2SM's, which have 2 Boa laces per boot, with no issues. Our testing team has put many days on different versions of this boot, also with no problems, despite cranking hard on the knob. We appreciated the ease of operation with gloves and the ability to make quick micro-adjustments.

La Sportiva G5 Evo mountaineering boot - this boot is a great choice for steep ice on a cold day.
This boot is a great choice for steep ice on a cold day.
Credit: Ian McEleney

Should You Buy the La Sportiva G5 Evo?


With its fancy materials and design, this boot is like a message from the future of what mountain boots will be. It's light, it's warm, and it's quick to put on and adjust. If you own a pair of the previous version of the G5 that's still working, these might not be worth the upgrade, but if you're in the market for a new mountain boot, the added adjustability definitely makes these worth a try. Our testers found that this boot felt wider/higher volume in the forefoot than some other Sportiva models.

What Other Mountaineering Boots Should You Consider?


If the possibility of wet feet is unacceptable, take a look at some of the more weatherproof boots in our test, like the ultra warm and waterproof Arc'teryx Acrux AR or Lowa Alpine Ice. If you're on a tighter budget, check out the La Sportiva Trango Tower Extreme GTX, a much more affordable and very durable all-around boot.

Ian McEleney
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