These Boots Were Made for Walking

Boots at Fitz Roy

It’s only when you think you’ve lost something that you realise quite how much you cherish or need it. It’s sad and perhaps inevitable, but it’s true. This goes double when you’re travelling and it’s something you really, really need and can’t replace either cheaply, easily or as well, like walking boots.

Boots before
Day one with the boots

Over the last five months these boots have done everything from trek through the sweat soaked rainforest of the Lost City in Colombia, hike the famous Inca Trail, climb an active volcano and trudge the Carretera Austral’s infamous ripio in southern Chile, as we hitch hike our way south. All that, without really mentioning the incredible 8 day Torres del Paine O trek, or the walk to Faro San Isidro, the southern most major lighthouse on the American continent. Seriously, these boots have been places!

Pete at Cerro Castillo
The boots at Cerro Castillo

Managing to lose them then, albeit temporarily, from where they had been strapped to the front of my bag in the bottom of a bus really sent me into a flat spin. Fortunately some kind, considerate soul had rescued them from the bottom of the bus and brought them into the bus station where they waited for me to find them after some panicked phone calls. The look on my face, accompanied by many ‘muchisimas gracias’-es when the smiley guy behind the desk produced the right ‘bolsa plastica roja’ must have been priceless.

Look at those calves!

Anyway, boots recovered, here are the gritty, dust covered details – they’re a pair of Meindl Vitalis in their Comfort Fit and they have truly lived up to their name. They’ve not given me one blister, nor have I had bruised toes or any other trouble. Furthermore, they’re waterproof thanks to the excellent GORE-TEX lining, extremely hard wearing and more than up to all the challenges South America has thrown at them. I’m pretty sure they don’t even smell that bad…*

Boots in the Colombian jungle
The boots after 4 days in the Colombian jungle

The Meindl Comfort Sport soles are made of an extremely tough synthetic material, while not completely cutting you off from feeling the trail under you feet, which is the perfect mix to my mind. The uppers are nubuck leather, which, not having owned leather boots before, I’ll admit, had me a little worried to start with, knowing what we were likely to be up against, but they’ve been completely reliable. I sprayed them once with a waterproofing spray as protection for the uppers before we left for South America and they’ve performed admirably ever since.

Boots on the Carretera Austral
The boots on the Carretera Austral

All in all, for a nubuck leather style boot that has really been put through their paces, these have proven to be a fantastic choice for anyone planning to do serious hiking in any condition or weather.

*this may be a little bit of a lie…

These boots were given to me by the guys at Complete Outdoors, who have a fancy new site, an excellent hashtag and above all a very fine selection of gear for anyone heading out anywhere at all wild. Or, just, you know, if you like hiking gear and are a total gear nerd, like me.

Check out their boot selection and have a tasty 10% off all footwear when you use the code CC2017.

Naturally all opinions, photos and content is our own.

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