Salomon's Out Path Pro GTX is a hybrid boot that combines the lightness of a walking shoe with the protection and support of a hiking boot. The result of this is a striking looking shoe that works well in a variety of terrain and conditions.
We gave the boots to our footwear buyer (and experienced hiker) Jeremy Stevens to test...
With its zip gaiter and welded upper, the Outpath Pro definitely stands out from the crowd. On the foot, they feel light and immediately comfortable with good shape and hold at the instep.
- Durable water-resistant textile upper
- GORE-TEX Performance Comfort
- Seamless construction technology
- Protective gaiter with lateral zip and snap button closure
- Precise forefoot fit
- Protective toe and heel cap
- Active Support Technology
- Contagrip sole
- EVA midsole
- 396g (single shoe size 8.5)
Salomon have engineered a flexible and protective (water-resistant) gaiter that extends from the upper of the shoe to the ankle. The gaiter zips up from just below the laces to the ankle where an elasticated snap button closure system secures it. It is welded to the upper of the walking shoe, saving weight and providing a more durable boot.
Active Support Technology (AST)
Integrated into the gaiter around the back and sides of the ankle is Active Support technology. This material cups and supports the ankle in uneven terrain while remaining lightweight.
GORE-TEX Performance Comfort
Puddles, small streams and rain are no problem for the boot. The whole of the blue walking shoe area has a waterproof GORE-TEX membrane in it and a gusseted tongue provides further shelter.
A high traction sole from Contagrip that grips well on rock and grass with a tread pattern has been specifically designed to aid the release of mud. Sitting just above the sole is an EVA midsole that delivers plenty of support and comfort.
How did it score?
Foot Protection: 8/10
Underfoot protection is very good and there is a neat toe cap. However, the lightweight uppers are relatively thin, which does mean less protection on rocky terrain or, for instance, when descending scree slopes.
These are very grippy indeed. The lugs are deep enough for grip on soft ground and they’re sure-footed on rock. Confidence-inspiring!
The midsole strikes a nice balance; it’s stiff enough to support the foot on rough terrain but still feels flexible enough to keep you nimble. The unique feature is that you can lace across the top of the ankle, inside the gaiter. This adds stability and ankle support.
Very comfortable. I wore them straight off on a day of 750m ascent/descent with no hot spots. They feel like a cross between a running shoe and a boot, with plenty of cushioning.
The GORE lining extends throughout the lower shoe. The main upper materials also won’t absorb or hold water. However, the gaiter area is not waterproof, so they won’t prevent water from entering at that height.
The durable outer and GORE lining make these effectively windproof, though the softshell gaiter is more breathable.
The upper is light, but the mesh is tightly woven rather than open – and with a GORE-TEX lining you do sacrifice some breathability in favour of waterproof protection.
Very impressive compared to many other hiking boots. These aren’t much heavier than a pair of running shoes, while still offering more protection for hiking.
Sensitivity / Trail Feel: 7/10
The stable midsole and substantial cushioning mean that this isn’t the most sensitive footwear. However, you do get more support and comfort for longer distances and harder terrain.
Excellent quality. The fusion of welded seamless uppers and stretch gaiter material is beautifully done.
They look quite space-age! The gaiter construction may be something you’d expect to see on a mountaineering boot, but it has also come into trail running footwear and is inevitably now finding its way into the more conventional hiking market. This is functional design and gives a hint of what the future might hold for outdoor footwear.
Pros and Cons
- The lightweight gaiter design with internal ‘wings’ above the ankle is a really interesting way of cutting weight, while still delivering the benefits expected of a boot with ankle support.
- The sole is super grippy.
- There is also a good amount of underfoot cushioning.
- The gaiter construction makes the Outpath Pro a little more awkward to put on than ‘standard’ boots.
- The tight-woven panels and GORE lining also mean they can run quite hot.
The Outpath Pro GTX is super versatile and could be your go-to boot for pretty much any mountain adventure below the snowline. They offer support and comfort while saving weight compared to other boots of a similar ankle height. They’d be especially good for fast-paced hiking and scrambling, and won’t hold you back if you want to up the pace and run.