I am not a marathon backpacker. My demands for a good hiking shoe do not include strapping on crampons or contouring across scree for miles. But I still tend to wear the heck out of whatever footwear I have.
Over the past few months, I’ve been putting Mammut’s Nova III Mid hiking shoe to the test. Thus far with this pair, I’ve climbed up and down steep terrain, hiked in cool and hot weather, and even inadvertently waded with them in a pond for 10 minutes. Throughout summer, they have served me well and compare to the Vasque Talus.
Mammut is a Swiss company founded over a hundred and fifty years ago. It serves rock climbers and other serious risk takers like back country skiers. I purchased an avalanche airbag and pack from the company last year for my son.
Thankfully, it also caters to more pedestrian types like me. The Nova III has been well-suited to my needs:
I may hike for a few hours or most of the day. I will inevitably be climbing and descending several hundred feet in elevation. Boots need to keep me warm and dry or cool and dry, depending on the day.
What I loved:
- Vibram hexagonal treads grip well on any kind of terrain, from rock face to dusty dirt.
- Super lightweight yet durable
- Leather endured the aforementioned pond dip. Dries well.
- Comfortable and breathable
- Color and style don’t scream “I’m a hiking boot!” and can be worn with ease and grace from trail to town
What I don’t like:
- No pull tab at the heel to help with putting on
- Toe box is big, even for those with wide feet like me. This makes descents more susceptible to toes jamming up against the front of the boot.