Finding the right pair of boots to bring along on your next adventure can be a lot like finding a partner. You want them to be tough enough in hard times, while soft enough when you need them. But more importantly, you’d rather them not break your bank account and leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere. Okay, maybe that last part applies more to the hiking boots portion of things but nonetheless.
Salomon came out swinging with their new hiking boots, the Outpulse Mid GTX. Out of the box, they were noticeably lighter than any boot I’ve used recently, but they didn’t feel any less durable than the Salomon boots I’ve come to love from the past. Full disclosure, I’ve been hiking in Salomon boots almost exclusively for the last 5 plus years, and there’s a reason for it. They’ve never let me down, they’re extremely comfortable, and I don’t have to spend miles and miles trying to break them in.
In this review, I’ll dive into the overall performance of the Salomon Outpulse Mid GTX boots, fit, traction, materials used, how they size up to other hiking boots, and so much more.
So without further ado, let’s get into it.
Quick Answer: Salomon Outpulse Mid GTX Hiking Boots
- Price: USD 160
- Weight: 13.4 oz // 380 g
- Waterproof Material: Gore-Tex Membrane to protect against all the elements
- Traction System: Salomon’s All-Terrain Contagrip Technology
- Best Use: 3-season hiking/trekking/travel
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Performance Breakdown: Salomon OUTpulse Mid GTX
We have reviewed a lot of Salomon hiking boots elsewhere on this site but for all the deep, dark details about the OUTpulse Mid GTX, read on.
Comfort and Fit
The comfort right off the bat was probably the first thing that struck me about this boot. The SensiFit upper construction is noticeable immediately, providing a locked-in feel for your foot. Combine this with Salomon’s OrthoLite insole, I was one happy hiker during this rocky trail. This boot ran pretty close to traditional shoe sizing, which is always a relief when ordering online, though I still suggest you go to a local REI or retailer and try them on first. There’s nothing worse than ordering boots the day before a big hike and them not fitting you just right!
The boots also felt like a good, regular width. I didn’t feel crammed in there, yet my feet never felt like I was slipping around while hiking down steep grades or up loose gravel.
The Lacing System
The lacing system is nothing too special, featuring a standard lacing setup with eyelets. I definitely prefer the flat lace style over the thicker ones, so this was a nice touch and helped to keep the overall weight of the boots down.
My main complaint with the lacing system would probably be its support for the ankle. I had three close calls on rolling my ankle thanks to some loose rocks, and the boots didn’t have me feeling as safe as I’d liked to have felt.
Traction and Waterproofness
Salomon uses their All Terrain Contragrip technology for the outsole of these boots, and it truly stands up to its name. It gripped wet and dry terrain like a champ and had me feeling very secure on some steeper graded terrain. I also like the fact they opted for some less severe tread, allowing for comfortable walking on sidewalks and packed-in trails.
The Gore-Tex membrane provides breathability and protection from the elements, allowing your feet to stay cool and dry when trails get a little testy. Because I love you guys, I stood in a puddle of water almost ankle-deep for about 60 seconds and can confirm the waterproofness firsthand. When I stepped out, water beaded right off the top layer of the boot and I was back on my way.
The outer synthetic that Salomon went with on this boot is also a winner in my book compared to some of the softer mesh top layers I’ve seen out there. No creases seemed to develop after about 10 miles of use for me, giving me some extra confidence in the longevity of these boots’ weather-fighting superpowers.
Durability and Weight
I’ve hiked a bit around Northwest Arkansas, as well as put some miles on around Big Bend National Park, and I got to say these things still look as good as new. They handled Arkansas’ cold wet terrain extremely well, but transitioned easily to the desert when called upon.
I also made sure to kick plenty of big rocks and test out the protective toecap, for a well-rounded review obviously, and not at all because I’m careless and drag my feet. But even that part of the boot made it out looking relatively untouched. The jagged rocks and sharp Ocotillo Cactus of South Texas also took a shot at the Salomon boots, but nothing seemed to impact the waterproofness or aesthetic of the boots, as they look as though I haven’t touched them besides some specs of sand on the bottom.
The overall weight of this boot was probably the biggest pro for me by far. For my day and weekend hikes I usually use some trail runners to keep things on the lighter side, but having the option for ultralight with some extra ankle protection is a huge bonus. Salomon really did well in my opinion of bringing the comfort I’ve come to expect from their boots and packing it down into a lighter model.
Coming in around $160 USD, the pair of hiking boots is a little on the expensive side as far as casual hiking boots go, but I would say the tradeoff for the lightweight build is reasonable. If it were up to me, I’d hike barefoot all the time, but these help get me a little closer to that feeling without losing the bottom layer of my feet. I fully believe you get your money’s worth with this pair of boots,
Alternatives To The Salomon OUTPulse
In case you maybe dont feel that the Salomon OUTPulse are the hiking boots for you, check out these other excellent options that we also tried and tested.
Merrell Moab Speed GTX Mid Hiking Boots
Price: USD 170
Weight: 24 oz // 680.39 g
Featuring the GORE-TEX waterproof membrane alongside Merrell’s Kinetic Fit contoured insoles will give you immediate comfort straight out of the box.
This boot features the Vibram traction rubber soles, a less aggressive pattern that will give you some more comfort when on your feet all day. This lace pattern on these does seem a little low in order to properly secure your ankle, but this can also be a preference thing for many.
The North Face VECTIV Fastpack Mid FUTURELIGHT Hiking Boots
- Price: USD 155
- Weight: 20.8 oz // 589.67 g
The North Face’s VECTIV Fastpack is definitely one of the lightest pairs of over-the-ankle hiking boots on the market at the moment. The new FUTURELIGHT membrane brings waterproofing and breathability to you in a noticeably lighter boot, perfect for the day hiker looking for a little more protection than a below-ankle trail runner.
With three colors to choose from, this is a great versatile boot from a trusted name in the industry. However, the aesthetic is a bit garish to our tastes.
HOKA Speedgoat Mid 2 GTX Hiking Boots
- Price: USD 170
- Weight: 26.5 oz // 751.26 g
HOKA’s have been all the talk in the running and walking shoe game recently, and they’re now making their way into the world of the great outdoors. This pair of hiking boots is a great step in the right direction (no pun intended), featuring the GORE-TEX upper and Vibram outsole. With an EVA midsole, you’re sure to experience the comfort many have come to love from HOKA’s regular line of running shoes.
Final Thoughts On The Salomon OUTPulse
Overall, I think if you’re a moderate hiker looking for a lightweight, extremely comfortable set of hiking boots, this pair should be at the top of your list. Gore-Tex weather-proofing combined with Salomon’s cushioned supportive insole make this one hard to overlook and I’m confident you’ll see what I’m talking about when you slip into them. I’ve yet to test these on a long backpacking trip where the boots would need to support some serious weight, but from all the miles I did do while carrying roughly 20 pounds of camera gear, my feet never felt fatigued or the sharp edge of a rock. So for now, that’s a win in my book!
Thanks for checking out my review of Salomon’s Oupulse Mid GTX boots, hope you’re feeling a little more comfortable in your search for your next pair of hiking boots!
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