Wednesday, 9 January 2019

Scarpa Trek boots

I have used Scarpa boots as my main walking boots for well over fifteen years. I have probably worn a dozen pairs, and they have given sterling service. I can put on a new pair and walk for twenty miles with scarcely any breaking in.

Buying any new shoes can be problematic for me. I have metal in my ankle, which means that many shoes and boots cripple me within a few miles, if not steps. Our understairs cupboard contains three or four pairs of trainers which seemed fine in the shop and for the first few days, but once broken in caused me crippling pain as the fabric breaks in and pushes against the metal. This always seems to happen after they're too worn to take back for a refund. Yet the fit of Scarpa Trek boots have always worked for me out of the box.

Over those years Scarpa have changed the design: My first pair were vanilla Trek boots, which I think then became Trek 2, then Trek GTX. Each model had changes, some fairly large (for instance the removal of the protection on the toe box that I always quite liked). But throughout these changes, I found they boots just worked for me, more or less out of the box - I assume that they've always used the same last so the overall shape remains the same despite detail differences.

This means that once I am sure a pair fits me, I purchase three or four pairs, much to the amusement of the staff in the shop!

I am not complaining about Scarpa changing the design, nor do I expect them to keep the design static for a couple of decades just to help people like myself. In fact, it's great that there are boots that work so well for me.

If I have one complaint, it is that the upper eventually fails behind the toe box, where creases form with use. These eventually cracks and leak well before the soles wear out. I also need a pair of Sorbothane insoles, instead of the thin insoles that come with the boots. However since I get well over a thousand miles out of each pair of boots, sometimes with minimal maintenance and cleaning, these are very minor criticisms.

I last bought three pairs of boots seven or eight years ago, and my last pair are getting a little worn. I have looked online to order a new pair, and it looks as though they have been redesigned again - they're still called Trek GTX, but from the pictures it appear there are detail differences.

Hopefully they will be fine. At £170 a pair, it is going to be an interesting test!

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