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La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW
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Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 12/26/2006 17:59:05 MST Print View

Companion forum thread to:

La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW

Richard Nisley
(richard295) - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Keen Growler Alternative? on 12/26/2006 18:47:02 MST Print View

Mtn Boots

Are the Keen Growlers a viable alternative for a lighter weight, more breathable, warmer, and less costly mountaineering boot?

Is either of these boots better suited for snow camping / snow shoeing than WPB trail shoes and neoprene over boots?

Edited by richard295 on 12/26/2006 18:57:59 MST.

(dealtoyo) - F

Locale: Mt Hood
Re: La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 12/27/2006 02:01:47 MST Print View

Great article.

I've owned a pair of these boots for a couple of years and I love them. No wear issues yet. Tough, light, comfortable, and water proof.

This article is spot on, especially in regards to replacing the footbeds. I consider this an absolute must.

One footnote: As with most La Sportiva mountaineering boots, they are a little on the narrow side. If you have wide feet they might not be the boots for you.


Locale: South West US
Re: La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 12/27/2006 16:45:45 MST Print View

I just bought thses boots about a month ago for use this winter. I havn't had a chance to use them yet however this article is dead on as far as the description goes.

One thing that this article (or anywhere else on the web for that matter) left out was the a description of the fit. Depending on the manufacturer I typically wear a U.S. size 11 and have medium width and low volume foot. I bought these in a 11+ (size 45) as I thought I would need a little extra room for a thick sock. The boots fit although are slight loose. I could definetly go with an 11 (size 44.5) and still have plenty of room even with a thick sock. The toe box has plenty of volume as I can wiggle my toes up and down no problem. The lacing is very adjustable and has no problem taking up the extra volume my foot doesn't need. The first D ring locks the lace in place so once you have your laces adjusted across the top of your foot you can adjust the upper indepdently. Over all very nicely done.

To help get a better visual to the shape of the last, I took out the insole of my U.S. size 11 Salomon XA comp 2's and compared it to insole of my Trango's (size 45). They were identical in shape.

Richard, I did a small bit of hiking and backpacking last winter wearing my Salomons. They worked great for snowshoeing but walking on the snow in just the shoes left something to be desired. On steeper terrain the were wholly out of place. The extra stiffness of the Trango's allows you kick steps and in general have more stable footing in various snow conditions. The trail runners were just too flexible. I think the Keen Growler's may have the same short comings.

Doug Johnson
(djohnson) - MLife

Locale: Washington State
Re: Keen Growler Alternative? on 12/27/2006 21:48:59 MST Print View

Hi Richard,

The Keen Growlers are very different boots. The Trangos are designed for mountaineering in that they're crampon compatible with very stiff soles as well as a stiff last. They are designed for glacier and mixed climbing routes.

The Keen boots are very interesting indeed, but for different purposes. While they will accept a very flexible crampon, they won't have the stiffness for work on steep ice, especially when front pointing or using French technique. For snowshoeing and general winter travel, though, they look very good. They're more insulated, use eVENT (more breathable than Gore Tex), and have a softer sole which is better for snowshoeing in all but the most icy conditions.

But while I have several pairs of Keens, I've never used the Growler boots so I can't give any info about their field performance. But they could definitely be a viable option if you're doing winter travel without the mountaineering piece.

Happy holidays!

Michael Martin
(MikeMartin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: North Idaho
Re: Re: Keen Growler Alternative? on 12/27/2006 23:21:03 MST Print View

I agree with Doug! I've got a couple of snowshoe day trips on my Growlers. They're warm, reasonably light, comfortable, fairly grippy on snow/ice, and more breathable than I expected. They are not remotely, however, any kind of mountaineering boot.

If I had one wish, it's that they were an inch taller so that the power strap from the Karhu Karvers that Santa gave me would fit them. :-)



Douglas Frick
(Otter) - MLife

Locale: Wyoming
Re: Re: La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 12/27/2006 23:36:43 MST Print View

"I used these boots exclusively in training for a Rainier climb..."

Doug, if you did climb Rainier, what boots did you use?

Doug Johnson
(djohnson) - MLife

Locale: Washington State
Re: Re: Re: La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 12/28/2006 02:17:05 MST Print View

Hi Douglas,

Sorry if I was unclear- what I meant to say was "I used these boots to climb Rainier and also used them exclusively in all of my training for the climb."

What I meant to convey was that they have MANY miles on them on rock, glacier, and over many miles of trails.



Locale: South West US
Re: Re: Re: Re: La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 01/28/2007 22:29:17 MST Print View

Hi Doug,

Not so much a question about the boots but about the RBH Designs VB socks. How thick are they? Are the comparable to say a smartwool hiking w/medium cushion or trekking? Or is it more like their mountaineering sock. Also if you needed to could you layer another sock over the top for additional warmth with out much difficulty or would that be too bulky?



Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot REVIEW on 02/08/2007 14:44:57 MST Print View

Do you think it is possible to push the low temperature range of these boots to -10 degrees "F" if necessary and how?


(RobertM2S) - M

Locale: Lake Tahoe
Trango S EVo on 02/08/2007 18:40:38 MST Print View

Few people nowadays seem to use supergaiters, but what intrigues me is the possibility of making your own SUL supergaiter. Instead of a rubber rand, you could, perhaps, permanently glue the bottom of the gaiter to the boot, using Cuben sailcloth? Or, Momentum 90? Insulate with a lightweight insulation? "MOUNTAIN TOOLS GLACIER SUPER GAITERS & BUZZARD INSULATED SUPERGAITERS. Our SUPERGAITERS boost the warmth of your feet by trapping a layer of air around the boot upper and prohibiting cold ice, slush or water from ever touching your boot. A sticky, stretchy strong elastic 5.10 Stealth Rubber rand forms a gasket seal - just above the welt - leaving the front and heel of your boot sole exposed for hiking and climbing traction on dirt, snow and rock."

Douglas Frick
(Otter) - MLife

Locale: Wyoming
Re: Trango S EVo on 02/09/2007 15:57:55 MST Print View

>Cuben sailcloth?

I wonder how long they'd last wearing crampons over them (let alone slashing them with crampons). Outdoor Research used to make a supergaiter without the rubber rand (OR X-Gaiter; 17.8 oz with open-cell foam, 21.0 oz with closed-cell foam). They used stretchy cord under the boot to hold the gaiter to the boot, which is probably fine except for hiking. It is made from 1000d Cordura,

(RobertM2S) - M

Locale: Lake Tahoe
Trango S EVO on 02/09/2007 16:45:56 MST Print View

Anyone who occasionally slashes one boot with the crampons of the other boot is like the sky diver who occasionally forgets to deploy his or her parachute, in my arrogant opionion (IMAO). More practice is needed walking around on flat snow before heading into the hills.

Joshua Gilbert
(joshcgil2) - F

Locale: Seattle
supergaiters and crampons on 02/09/2007 17:45:34 MST Print View

I've never used supergaiters myself, but the argument that I've heard aginst them is that because they leave the sole of the boot exposed they don't provide as much insulation as you might think because of conductive heatloss through the sole of the boot, especially when wearing crampons, which being metal, are great at sucking the heat out of your feet.
It's funny, I almost never have problems with cold feet, and usually I just go with a pair of leather mountaineering boots, thick socks, and gaiters. Once, in New Hampshire, Using this footwear combination,I was trekking around on Mt. Washington and it was unseasonably warm and raining, and so my boots ended up soaked. That night the temp dropped into the single digits and my boots froze solid. Putting them on that morning was really unpleasant, but after walking around for an hour or so, they thawed out, and my feet actually felt really warm.
And seriously, everyone who has ever worn crampons (and I don't care if you are Mark Twight or Steve house) has slashed their gaiters once in a while, not that it's a good thing, but it's definitly a universal one.

Edited by joshcgil2 on 02/10/2007 15:16:07 MST.