The reports have just come in of five skiers dying in an avalanche in Austria. This is just the latest news on this front from what looks like another bad season. The incident took place in the Wattental valley, Tirol, and reports indicate that those involved had ignored warnings. The Guardian paper reported that: The experienced […]
If you are like me, you’ll often want to be wearing a simple, light approach shoe for a lot of your hiking instead of always using a heavy boot. In that case you should take a serious look at the Hanwag Drifter, a lightweight cross between a boot and a shoe that seems really suited for most conditions.
First, a question as to why shoes instead of boots. I know this is an emotional subject for a lot of people because boots are something that most hikers feel especially passionate about. And with good reason. Uncomfortable footwear can really ruin a good day or week in the hills.
That said, I’m been moving steadily towards lighter footwear over the years as I feel it leaves me feeling a lot more energetic. I want some support, especially when crossing rough terrain with a heavy pack, but I don’t feel that I need or want heavy boots with big shanks all of the time unless I actually need the stiffness because I’m using crampons.
Enter the Hanwag Drifter GTX
This is more of a shoe than a boot. It has the cushioned construction that you would expect to find in a running shoe. It is pretty solidly made and comes from a company that has been making mountaineering boots for ever near Munich, so its gear is regularly used in the Alps by some pretty demanding Germans.
It has a proper knobbly sole, so you needn’t worry that these will lead to slipping about on the hills as if you were wearing a pair of trainers and they use Vibram, which is pretty much the benchmark of all good boot soles.
These shoes/boots (I don’t even know what to call them) come in a normal/low cut version and also a high cut one so that you can choose your level of ankle support.
Most important of all is that they have a gore-tex lining so they keep your feet dry, which makes them suitable for winter use too.