Used and Abused

La Sportiva Trango Evo B2 Boots

img_2627I have been abusing these La Sportiva Trango Evo B2 rated boots for more than a decade, and while they have been re-soled and re-randed once or twice, they have stood up well to a punishing life.

I have used them on all sorts of terrain from moorland paths and trackless fells in Dartmoor, the Peak District and the Brecons,, through loose scree and craggy ridges in Snowdonia and the Lake District, to full Scottish winter conditions in the Cairngorms.

I bought them as a lightweight boot for scrambling and backpacking (the B2 rigidity serves my needs very well) and they have been a faithful reliable piece of equipment on adventures all over the UK all year round, though in the depths of winter they are a bit chilly.  For this reason I would give them a 3 season rating.

They are a Goretex lined fabric boot with a good stiff sole but a soft, flexible ankle, so you get a great combination of underfoot stability with being able to flex and rotate the ankle.  For climbers, you can get the boot and the toe into pockets and crevices easier than you would with bigger boots with stiffer uppers.

The Goretex membrane has worked very well throughout the life of the boot, and despite having gashed the fabric outer with some crampon inaccuracy I have never had a wet foot apart from when rivers and streams have been above the height of the ankle.

The narrow last on the boot is great for climbing and scrambling, but won’t be comfortable for people with wider feet. I have had a pinch on the little toe, exacerbated by the binding when I wear a crampon. I have always found the Vibram sole to be solid and very reliable and the firm edges have been excellent on scrambles.

The only other gripe I have is for some reason La Sportiva decided it would be a good idea to have a line of stitching up the inside of the heel, causing rubbing on my heels. This is irritating but easily managed with an extra sock.  This does make my feet hotter in the warmer months but far from unbearable.

My view is that these boots are excellent for scrambling and climbing but not so much for walking and trekking.  If I were going on a trek or expedition for a week or two, these boots would stay at home.   However if I were going for a day on the Snowdon Horseshoe, they’d be the first things in the car.