Boot Review: AKU Stone XCR

This scrambler provides everything you need to go anywhere you want: support, grip, comfort, and waterproofing.

The Stone exemplifies the best-of-all-worlds promise of approach shoes, earning top marks in our review of scramblers (10/04). You get all-day comfort, sensitive grip on boulders, and armored construction against leather-shredding terrain. They're even waterproof for shallow creek crossings and sloppy trails. The Vibram soles excelled on mixed terrain at Idaho's Castle Rocks State Park, where the lightly lugged tread stuck to slick slabs and trails alike, and the midsole cushion supported long days with 25-plus-pound packs. Best for medium-volume feet. $149