UKC

REVIEW: Mammut Trovat Guide High GTX Boots

Billed as “mountain hiking boot” for “demanding leisure hikers”, Mammut’s Trovat Guide High GTX should be all the three-season-plus boot you need. And in a nutshell... it is. I’ve been wearing them for the past few months through the slow disappearance (then reappearance) of winter, and they’ve excelled in every area you’d expect them to. If you walk year round and generally prefer rugged boots to nimble approach shoes then this is an excellent footwear choice for most of your adventures on mountain terrain.

Trovat Guide High GTX in the Lakes, 145 kb
Trovat Guide High GTX in the Lakes
© Dan Aspel

The Trovat Guide High GTX is the successor to Mammut's very successful (and equally inelegantly-named) Mt Trail XT GTX. Its predecessor proved a good fit for the needs of UK hill walkers, making it a tough act to follow.  

So, what are you buying? Well, they carry a breathable, waterproof Gore-Tex membrane, they’re stiff enough to be B1 crampon compatible (the more occasional, non-technical end of things - you won’t be ice climbing in them), and they have a sturdy and sizeable surrounding rand to protect both themselves and your feet from hard and spiky parts of the landscape. But the real focus here is the level of comfort. The all-leather design means a little more maintenance than a synthetic equivalent but many people would never go back once they’ve made that choice, and a few minutes with a leather treatment cream after every wash is a small price to pay for what you get in return in terms of comfort, sturdiness and waterproofness.

"If you walk year round and generally prefer rugged boots then this is an excellent footwear choice for most of your adventures on mountain terrain"

Quality all-leather uppers, protected by a high rand all round, 213 kb
Quality all-leather uppers, protected by a high rand all round
© Dan Aspel
Not much of a heel brake, but good depth in the rest of the tread, 212 kb
Not much of a heel brake, but good depth in the rest of the tread
© Dan Aspel

The judicious use of “memo foam” filling - as well as a host of other design tweaks given press-friendly labels - has created a boot that hugs and supports the feet, quickly fading from your mind whether you’re scrambling with little to no weight on your back, or carrying 10kg+ of camping gear. This is achieved through doubled heel straps which run below and above your heel bone, as well as well-mapped support to prevent your heel and ankle from rolling or bending outwards. In short: it aims to do a lot of the hard work so that your foot muscles don’t have to.

The lacing system is also a big sell - with more than half of the fitting eyes being quickly hooked on each time you put the boots on. And this includes a hook on the tongue, aimed at holding it in a central position without fail. This makes for a solid and comfortable fit each time I’ve worn them - never too tight, never too loose.

"Lightweight they are not. You’ll feel the difference dramatically when you slip on a pair of approach shoes or more flexible, less sturdy synthetic boots"

Mammut Trovat 1, 69 kb
Mammut Trovat 2, 139 kb

In terms of faults, they’re difficult to find. The weight of 780g per boot is fairly standard for three season footwear this robust, but bear in mind that lightweight they are not. You’ll feel the difference dramatically when you slip on a pair of approach shoes or more flexible, less sturdy (and probably non-crampon compatible) synthetic boots - either of which will be just as suitable for much of the path and trail walking that British users tend to do in the Lakes, Peak or Dales. Essentially, make sure you need the performance level that these boots offer, which is more akin to a four-season winter boot than a walking shoe, otherwise you may benefit from footwear that’s lighter and more agile in the long-run. The heel brake isn’t excessively pronounced either - which should mean that steep descents on mud or wet grass are a little more precarious. However, the rest of the toothy vibram sole seems to compensate well and I didn’t notice any lack of grip in my testing.

Another downside is that these boots do not come in a women's version. For a female-specific alternative you'll have to look to the slightly less beefy Trovat Advanced High GTX.

Other than that there’s very little to nitpick. Mammut gear tends to suffer from high pricing (whether this is because of the relative strength of the Swiss Franc or the premium reputation of the brand, I can’t say), but with an RRP of £195 (possibly less if you shop around) the Trovat Guide High GTX is on a par with similar offerings from other manufacturers. For a meaty boot of this pedigree that’s not silly money. 

Mammut Trovat Guide GTX product shot, 188 kb

Mammut say:

R.I.P. MT Trail XT GTX, Mammut’s multi-award winning boot just got better. Taking the crown, with updated features is the new Trovat Guide High GTX.

The Trovat Guide High GTX is great for hiking and backpacking and uses high-quality, flexible 100% leather with all-round protective rubber rand, very adaptive 3D tongue and extremely soft, Nappa leather heel collar. The GORE-TEX Performance Comfort Footwear membrane ensures waterproofing and climate control.

Perfect heel support is provided by the patented Base Fit system, which features a doubled, sliding band and 3-zone lacing. The elastic GORE-TEX tongue construction and memo foam provide additional comfort. The proven Vibram MT Traction II sole ensures stability on all surfaces.

Other features include:  Motion Control - prevents the foot from bending over outwards thanks to a reinforced inner side; Rolling Concept - provides support on specific areas of the foot, working to reduce ankle rolling and fatigue. It also reduces the weight of the sole for more comfort; Memo Foam - premium quality foam cushioning with excellent elasticity, used for instep, shin, and ankles; FeetMap - targets zones that sweat, feel the cold and are pressure-sensitive, and locates cushioning, warming, cooling, slip and non-slip lining materials, in all the right places; Board Lasted; Strap-on crampon compatible B1

Sizes: 6.5 – 12 UK (men's sizes only)

Weight: 1560g (per pair, UK 8.5)

Price: £195

For more info see www.mammut.ch



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