/ Approach shoe options - Soloman/Merrell/Inov8/others - help!

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Si dH - on 05 Jan 2013
I want to get some new approach shoes. Criteria are; in the sale (I consider the rrp for most brands to be ridiculous), robust, with decent grip soles, and waterproof. Lightweight is good and I don't want/need high ankle protection but weight is not a massive player. Obviously I'll try on for comfort once I've narrowed it down to a few options.
I've been through 2 pairs each of Inov8 terroc 330s and 5:10 Camp 4s in recent years, and have got fed up with the lack of both waterproofness and robustness in both. These will be used for walking, scrambling and 'approaching' a variety of crags. Perhaps the occasional bit of jogging but not much.

Does anyone have experience (good or bad) with the following? Have they lasted well?

Merrell Yokota Low waterproof
Merrell Refuge Pro
Soloman Booster GTX
Soloman Exit 2 GTX
Soloman Elios 2 GTX
Soloman Exode Low GTX
Scarpa Vortex XCR
Berghaus Cuerra Cuesta
North Face Hedgehog GTX XCR III
Evolv Capitan (I've seen the review on here)
Keen Siskiyou
Inov8 terroc 345GTX (although they look just like the 330s which fell apart...)

AdCo82 on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH:

IF they fit the Refuge Pro and Scarpa Vortex seem to be decent shoes.

had a bad experience with North Face.
Co1in H - on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH: Soloman exit 2. really comfortable. Walked many many miles in them.Pretty much the same comment for all of their approach type shoes.
airbournegrapefruit on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH:

Out of those I'd go for either the Merrell Refuge, Solomon Booster or NF Hedgehog.

I've had/still have a pair of the Merrells, worn them pretty much every day for the past 6/7 months doing everything in them from walking to town, boulder hooping over the beach, working in a stables. They haven't leaked yet and I'm yet to give them a wash.

I really like the look of the Booster's and will be getting some in the next couple of weeks. They have a nice slim fitting design which I really like.

As for the Hedgehog's I like everything about them except for the rubbish colour of the sale ones. I do like the new NF Hedgehog Guide which have just come out, though again let down by the silly colours.

Hope that helps
airbournegrapefruit on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to airbournegrapefruit: Oh one bad point on the Merrell's, they are shit on wet everything!
remus - on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH: Not on your list, but after getting through a couple pairs of inov8s and a pair of guide tennies in 18 months i've been impressed with boreal flyers. They've lasted a year of near constant use and look to have another 6 months in them. They don't tick your waterproof box, though they are fairly weather resistant (more so than the inov8s and tennies.)
TobyA on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH:

> Evolv Capitan (I've seen the review on here)

Just looking at mine earlier on as I was changing out of my ice boots before driving home. They got immensely muddy using them for MTBing in England last week, but the wet snow, and now crisp dry re-frozen snow here over the last week is cleaning them up nicely. But the main thing was they still seem to be in very good nick despite them being the shoes I've worn probably the most since July when I got them, so I still rate them pretty highly. Don't think I'd want to jog in them though. More like light walking boots than heavy trainers I'd say.
TobyA on 05 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH: I also used to have the non-lined Hedgehogs. They were fine in the sense that I picked them up for about 30 or 40 euros, but they struck me as nothing more than rather average jogging shoes that looked quite nice. Like cheap Nikes or Adidas, not really what i want from approach shoes. I get hot feet so don't like waterproof liners in trainers, but the Evolv ones are pretty water resistant being leather. The tongue is sewn in but made of something much less water resistant though, so step in deep puddles and they leak there.
Si dH - on 06 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH:
Thanks all, just bought a pair of the refuge pro gtx, they seem to fit well, the lacing system is very just hope they last well!
iksander on 07 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH: I got a good-ish (£94) deal on a pair of Mammut Redburn GTX mid. I didn't really want ankle support either, but they were cheaper than the shoe version and weigh very little (less than my Raichle approach shoes), so didn't bother me
davidbeynon on 07 Jan 2013
In reply to Si dH:

In the past I have found that Merrell shoes fall to bits after 6 months, 5-10 start to go after about 8-10 months and Salomon are comparatively indestructible.

5-10 do redeem themselves a bit by having v good soles.

I haven't tried any of the others on your list.

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