Salomon Comet 3D GTX - Women's Review
Cons: bulky, wide rubber beneath heel, tongue design digs into ankle
Our Analysis and Test Results
Salomon offers technically savvy hiking footwear with aggressive tread and optimum water resistance. The Comet 3D are an ideal option for three season backpacking, particularly on uneven terrain.
The Comet 3D weigh in at 2.4 pounds. This is a mid-range weight between the lightest women's hiking boots at 1.8 pounds and the heaviest at 3.25 pounds. Unfortunately, on the trail they feel heavier than others in our review. The bulky soles are to blame for this perception of weight. The upper material and lining feel light in weight but the rubber soles aren't in balance.
The Salomon Comet 3D have stiff soles that offer some flexibility to absorb impact from rocks and roots beneath the feet. The midsole is constructed of EVA with a thermoplastic urethane shank for added support. Ortholite foot bed liners are well-padded for long days on the trail. The upper material is designed with Nubuck leather and polyester mesh. The hybrid materials on the upper flex with the lift and drop of each step. There is an imbalance in construction materials that make the underfoot feel heavy and the upper material ultra flexible.
The ankle support is excellent as the lacing system is superior to other boots in our review, but aside from the ankle support, hiking in these boots lacks overall support of the feet and back body. The La Sportiva FC ECO 3.0 GTX - Women's are also constructed of leather and mesh uppers, but have a balanced weight between the upper and sole materials.
The traction of the Comet 3D is comparable to the Editors' Choice Lowa Renegade GTX Mid - Women's. Deep lugs and a varied tread pattern shed mud and dirt from the bottom of shoes, keeping you hiking onward. Salomon's proprietary Contagrip rubber keeps the sole gripped while hiking on granite or other rock surfaces. The traction is a highlight feature of these boots. They handle rugged terrain, loose gravel and dirt, scree, and talus.
Compared to other women's hiking boots, these rated lowest in comfort. It has an uncomfortable tongue design that digs in at the ankle when the boots are laced up snug. The Lowa Renegades and Ahnu Montatas are the most comfortable that we tested.
Water Resistance and Breathability
The Comet 3D are lined with Gore-Tex waterproof/breathable membranes and have waterproof Nubuck leather uppers. The two paired together create incredible water resistance. 4.5" of ankle shaft height allowed us to walk across creeks and arrive at the other side with completely dry socks. Both the Lowa, La Sportiva, and Ahnu women's hiking boots are slightly higher in ankle shaft height and therefore offer slightly better water resistance. Like all of the boots we tested, prolonged submersion eventually leads to water absorption.
Polyester mesh combined with the leather uppers lends to increased breathability. The light weight of the upper is more breathable than the Timberland Chocorua Trail boots or the Lowa Renegade boots.
Bulky rubber soles on the bottom of these boots suitable are for rugged terrain. An abrasion resistant lining adds durability to the interior of the boots and a Nubuck leather outer proves to be durable day after day on the trail. We wore these boots through creeks, up mountains, across talus slopes, and on steep trails and they still look practically new! The outer boot handles rough terrain with grace. The mud guard not only protects the toes from impact but wraps around the boot to protect the entire base of the boot from rock damage, sticks, and other trail impacts. The durability of the Salomon Comet 3D is on par with the Editors' Choice Lowa Renegade.
The Salomon Comet 3D are too bulky for day hiking. Although the weight ranks them among the lighter boots in our review, they feel bulky on the trail. They are best suited for spring, summer, and fall backpacking. Under a mid to heavyweight pack load the wide heel provides extra stability and the ankle shaft stabilizes the ankles for support.
At $200, the Comet 3D are the second most expensive women's hiking boots. Unfortunately, they don't rate high enough in our metric ratings to justify this as a good value. The aggressive tread and ankle support are definitely worth paying more for, but overall, the shoes lack comfort on the trail. For $25 more our Editors' Choice award winning boots, the Lowa Renegade, are comfortable on the trail and offer an aggressive tread that rivals the Comet 3Ds. The Lowas rated higher across the board in all metric ratings, and with only an ounce difference between weight, we recommend them as a better value than the Salomon Comet 3D.
The Salomon Comet 3D have bulky rubber soles that widen beneath the heels, but this contrasts the lightweight uppers. Low ratings in weight and comfort contrast with the high ratings in durability and traction.
OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: September 7, 2015
100% of 1 reviewers recommend it
My feet are wide, narrow heels and I have Morton's neuroma in both feet. I have had surgery for one of them, but still have the scar tissue related … hence, I have special feet. :)
For backpacking and light mountaineering, Salomon's boots have been a godsend. The fit is good for width at the ball of your foot (ie no squishing and pain), and the heel is narrow enough to negate heel slippage & rubbing. The lacing is very adjustable and the shoe can be tightened/locked at lower ankle to keep your foot in place--much better than Keens or other "wide feet" boots that I've tried.
The stiffness of the sole is excellent for supporting the weight of a heavy pack & keeping the pebbles & stones from aggravating neuromas. I add Sole insoles to my boots (also helpful for Morton's Neuroma) & these boots are excellent. I've worn them for long section hikes (500+ miles) as well as light mountaineering (Mt Adams) & they can handle both.
The one drawback--they are not as waterproof/water resistant as you may expect. They do leak after a short time (most boots do), so I regularly treat mine. They still leak, but I deal with it--the pros of having real backpacking boots that fit wide feet make it worth the extra effort.
Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this product to a friend.
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