Excellent Value For Money
6 October, 2013
I have been hiking in the Indian Himalayas for more than 30 years now. When I started we had only heavy hunters from Bata to support us. Power joggers were an upgrade later. I have even walked the mountains in my Hawaiis. On the more premium end I have worn Italian hiking boots complete with Goretex linings and Vibram soles.
When I got the Quechua Forclaz 500 recently I was a little skeptical. But these boots have impressed me a lot. They may not sound and feel premium but they are priced right and with their rubber soles they offer great traction on slippery slopes. The braking is excellent and I feel quite confident in them going down any slope.
What I like most is that they come in half size increments. For hiking boots I prefer to go for half a size larger than my usual office wear because in the mountains after you hike for the whole day your feet tend to enlarge a little.
These boots fitted my slightly wider feet quite snug. It could have been slightly wider for 100 on 100 but I am fine with what I have. The grip with these boots is pretty confident and never did I feel that I might fall because of my shoes. The rubber soles have excellent traction.
Many in India buy it as a biking boot. I am not too sure about that application. I bought it for hiking in the Himalayas and I think they are just fine for my purpose.
On the cons side, I would say the only con for these boots is that they don't feel premium - the strings and the eyelets etc feel quite cheap if you are used to $200 Italian stuff - and they are perhaps not quite water proof. I am not sure about the last point but I shall be skeptical about using anything in water that does not have Goretex lining inside (that would double the price though).
These boots are excellent if all you want to do is hike in the Indian Himalayas with moderate weight. Don't expect them to keep your feet warm in sub zero condition. But for the price they are absolutely excellent.
I have never heard the brand name anywhere other than in India. But that's not really a dampener for me. I shall be curious to see for how long they last me. Anything less than 5 week-long hikes will be a negative. If it goes beyond 5 hikes then I would say "paisa wasool".
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