When shoulder season comes along, it’s time to step up your game with a boot that can go the distance in any terrain. A Colorado tester pulled the Gore-Tex-lined, full-grain leather Omegas out of the box and summited a Fourteener without so much as a hot spot. “These boots are astoundingly light for how much durability, support, and protection they provide,” he said after carrying a 50-plus pound pack on a multiday trip, much of it off-trail, in brush, mud, rivers, rocks, scree, and boulder fields.
Credit the midsole’s shock-absorbing blend of durable PU and cushiony EVA, as well as a rigid, half-length TPU plate for torsional rigidity. But they’re more versatile than most big-trip boots, thanks to their low weight and low-to-the-ground feel. “I wouldn’t hesitate to wear these on a fast-and-light dayhike, either,” he says. Another tester found that the stiff Vibram soles and deep lugs maintained traction on slippery wet roots, rocks, and even light ice in the Adirondacks. Best for low-volume feet; go up a half size for comfort. $280; 2 lbs. 15 oz.; m’s 38-48; sportiva.com