I understand a lot of UL backpackers dont wear boots. When I used to fastpack, I remember we used to shuffle, jog or walk super fast. I wore Asolo boots back then, which IMO were better than the Asolo boots made nowadays. I would do this super fast walk which was almost like a fast shuffle and oftentimes we'd break into a slow run or jog.
Of course I only did this when carrying lightweight loads, not traditional pack weights and not in excessively rocky terrain.
But I was thinking about this and a possible good boot for UL and SUL fastpacking, particularly in terrain where it rains a lot or you have a lot of stream crossings would be Bates 924 boots. I own a pair and they are advertised as being like a cross between a running shoe and a boot. They look like a boot, but feel and wear more like a running shoe. These boots have excellent forefoot flexibility, unlike traditional backpacking boots. And here is the kicker...these boots have an unusual polyurethane sole that will grip wet surfaces extremely well.
To test these boots out, Ive have walked around in them in the creek behind my house that has a lot of moss covered slick rocks. I will get them soaked, then traverse across the wet rocks, hike directly up the bank of the stream (steep). And you cant slip and fall if you tried...due to the unique soles of these boots.
Which makes me think theyd be really good for stream crossings or fastpacking in wet weather. Ive never worn a boot that was so stable on wet surfaces...ever. And Ive worn them all...Asolo, Vasque, GI jungle boots, GI combat boots, work boots, everything.
I dont think these boots provide enough support for traditional backpack loads (35-40 lbs). But for UL and SUL who are covering ground, I could see them being used and I could see myself using them.
You can actually jog or run in these boots, like I said they "feel" like running shoes.
Here is a link to the boots: