La Sportiva makes some of our most beloved climbing shoes and their technical know-how has been incorporated into their range of hiking boots. It’s Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX is an example of this It’s incredibly light at just 2 pounds, and it has an extremely agile, trail-runner-like feel that matches however, stability and support are great for longer goals in difficult terrain. The boots are noticeably smaller at the forefoot and are susceptible to slippage on soft terrains like mud. However, we feel they’re ideal for everything from day-long hikes to long-distance hiking with a light backpack. Below, I’ll outline my experience using Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX. Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX. To find out how it compares against the competition take a look at our article on the most comfortable walking boots.
When I tried the La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX for the first time, it looked more like an average-height trail runner rather than a genuine hiking boot. The lightness of the boot is instantly obvious, and the boot has plenty of cushioning, both underneath and around the ankle and around the collar which gives a very comfortable and comfortable feel. The sock-like upper and single tongue assist in locking things in place and ensuring an all-around snug fit and there are no seams on the inside to prevent friction and hot spots. Like many lightweight styles, The Ultra Raptor II doesn’t have any locking eyelets which I like to keep the forefoot loose while tightening the ankle. This hasn’t been too major of a problem for me. Getting imaginative with the laces has let me get close to the shape I was looking for.
My only gripe with comfort has to do with Ultra Raptor II Ultra Raptor II runs noticeably narrow in the toe box. I wasn’t too concerned about this initiative and was able to break in the boots on the local trails of Vancouver Island before bringing them to Patagonia to test. Even after stretching slightly they still seemed a little too tight and uncomfortable in the front. I then took these boots back into Patagonia for a trip and put them on on the 12+ mile trek up to Laguna de Los Tres on the first day. This included mostly level trails, as well as a difficult and rocky climb up to the lake. As we started to descend towards the return trip I noticed certain hot spots that were prominently located on the left side of my shoe, which eventually led to blisters on my baby toe. I also noticed some minor friction above my big toe. This could be due to being in a position that combined the smaller volume design and the eyelet that is above the forefoot. It’s fair to say that La Sportiva does offer the boots in wide sizes that are specifically designed for wider feet and that could be the best option for me.
2 pounds 1.3 pounds and ounces for my sizes for men of 44.5s (nearly exactly the same as La Sportiva’s weight listed as 2 pounds. 1.2 oz. ) 1 oz. Ultra Raptor II Mid stacks quite well against the other middle-height Gore-Tex boots. To give you an example the Salomon X Ultra 4 GTX checks out a bit lighter at 1 pound 14 pounds, and La Sportiva’s Nucleo High II GTX is similar, weighing two pounds and 1.5 ounces for each pair. The boots are quite flexible and agile feeling underfoot and, if comfort were not an issue to me I would say that this Ultra Raptor would be my preferred choice for long and short days, with a lighter-weight pack.
With all the technologies focusing on the base part of the boot. It’s not a surprise that Ultra Raptor II fared well on a variety of terrains. Its FriXion XF 2.0 outsole is able to hold its grip across everything from dry singletrack to alpine terrain that is rocky, its Impact Brake System and Trail Bite heel gave me a significant confidence boost when climbing steep slopes and even on treacherous, marble-like, gravel. The only instance of traction that was not as strong was in mud. I often found myself sliding. I think that this is due to the lug design. The spacing is sufficient to prevent clogging however, the lugs with a shallow design do not seem to penetrate well into sloppier and thicker terrains. If you’re planning to walk on this kind of terrain often I’d suggest you get boots with a greater tread design such as the Salomon Quest 4 GTX or La Sportiva’s Nucleo High II GTX.
Stability and Stability
I generally prefer a more robust and more stable boot for traveling with a large backpack however, this Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX is a perfect match for me when I’m trying to get around quickly and with the least amount of weight. Its high collar has proved particularly useful in providing ankle support. I’ve never had any problems with ankle rolls or feeling out of balance. Other noteworthy attributes include the nylon shank, which provides excellent torsional support for off-camber terrain, and TPU overlays on the upper mesh, which make a comfortable, secure fitting around your heel. They also can be tightened when the shoe is laced to secure the foot securely and limit any movement in my boots.
To give you an example, I typically wear conventional sneakers for trail runs when I’m running light-speed I love the added stability provided by Ultra Raptors’ more streamlined cut, collar support, and the to-the-ankle lacing. Importantly, this extra support doesn’t affect the boot’s agility. If it weren’t for this slim toe box outline that you see that I have shown, I would not hesitate to grab an Ultra Raptor for involved fastpacking goals.
Breathability and waterproofing
I tried my Ultra Raptor II through its tests on the damp Vancouver Island trails rife with constant rain, puddles, and river crossings. The Gore-Tex lining has stood adequate to the job. In this instance, La Sportiva opted for Gore’s Extended Comfort membrane, which is specifically designed to be used in hot conditions or for high-output activities. Overall it’s done an amazing job in making my feet comfortable and permitting a good amount of airflow in temperatures that climbed to the 70s in our excursion to Patagonia. Like any boots that are waterproof hikers they’re not going to assist if you decide to submerge them over the collar (and may take a long time to dry) however, the higher laces and cuffs that go all the of the way to the ankle give plenty of protection when walking through puddles or streams. Another highlight is the gaiter-like, elastic design on the top which is very effective in blocking out any debris or falling snow.
Quality of Build and Durability
I’ve used a variety of La Sportiva boots and trail runners throughout the years and found the overall the build quality excellent The same is true of Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX. Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX. After the boots have been put through a rigorous testing schedule in Patagonia They’re not much less soiled The microfiber mudguard as well as the caps for the toes are durable and have adroitly dealt with direct impacts from rocks and roots protruding out, the mesh linings at the rear and sides are protected by TPU reinforcements and the FriXion outsole remains solid with no sign of wear or tear to date (a great surprise thanks to the rubber compound that is softer). All of the other elements are in good shape as well, such as those laces and webbed eyes and seams. In all with it the Ultra Raptor II strikes me as extremely durable and will stand up for long-term use.
Sizing and Fit
I bought my usual size 44.5 in the Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX (the identical to I have my La Sportiva TXS GTX) however, the toe box turned out to be extremely small in my case. As I said my toes were pressed against the sides of the shoes when I climbed steeply and caused a significant quantity of discomfort. I would probably have been better with the wider model of this boot that has additional 10 millimeters in the width and 5 millimeters inside the box for toes. However, aside from that the rest of the boot was comfortable. The sock-like inner is fantastic in maximizing comfort and fit, and my heel was well-supported and secure without feeling too tight. However, the boot’s shape may not suit certain feet, so I would recommend testing it out before buying.
Other versions from the La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II
I took the male Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX to Patagonia to try it out and it’s also available in the woman’s model at a similar price. In comparison to the model for men the women’s version is slightly lighter at 1 one pound 11.9 pounds and comes in a variety of colors, however, the overall design and features are the same. Like I said earlier, both shoes are also available in models with a wider width for people with larger-volume feet. La Sportiva recently released them with a leather version to provide extra durability and a more snug toe. Moving on, the bigger Ultra Raptor collection includes several low-top styles, ranging from water-proof models to Gore-Tex-equipped leathers and synthetic models (see our detailed review of the women’s non-waterproof footwear on this page).
What We Love
It is remarkably light, weighing just under 2 pounds and with a nimble trail runner-like feeling to make.
Great stability and durability for a design that is so light.
The Gore-Tex Extended Comfort liner perfectly blends breathability and waterproofing, as well as the collar’s height and gaiter that is elastic-like to the front are efficient at sealing the elements and dirt.
The quality of construction is high-end with everything from the high-end Gore-Tex liner to the soft, but tough FriXion outsole.
“What We Never Do”
The narrow toe box has caused some difficulties on steep descents and I would’ve had a better experience with the larger version.
Lugs are well-spaced but they are also shallow, leading to regular slippage of mud.
A little technical style and limited color options.
La Sportiva’s Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX is a standout in the market for hiking boots due to its remarkable durability and stability with its light trail runner-like appearance. Within the La Sportiva lineup Another option that has similar goals is their Nucleo High II GTX. The Nucleo is more expensive than its predecessor, the Ultra Raptor at $209, however, it’s also a light (2 pounds. 1.5 oz.) and lightweight offering that provides adequate support and support suitable for everyday hikes and light backpacking. The other distinctions are an extra durable leather upper and a Gore-Tex Surround liner that has Nano-Cell technology that provides ventilation not just on the upper part of the foot, but as well along the lower part of the footbed. Both boots are at the narrower end of the scale however both are offered in large sizes. In the end, we think the nucleo’s genuine leather Nucleo the more conventional choice for backpacking and hiking, and Ultra Raptor gets the edge for speedy mountain adventures.
A different La Sportiva design I’ve tested is the TXS GTX which has the impressive grip we’ve come to love of the TX approach shoe line in a mid-height hiking model. It’s slightly more heavy than their Ultra Raptor at 2 pounds 3.6 pounds, but the more lugs and the aggressive tread pattern provide it with an edge when it comes to soft terrains like snow and mud. While testing the TXS I was amazed by its superior all-around protection, as well as its extremely customizable lacing system. Similar to its predecessor, the Ultra Raptor, the TSX also comes with the Gore-Tex Extended Comfort waterproof lining and is well-constructed, and has held up to everyday wear and tear. The only drawback is its hard and uncomfortable feeling that is the result of the less padding underneath. It could be a good advantage for those who are covering more challenging terrain using a backpack however for the majority of day hikers and backpackers The Ultra Raptor II is the top choice for day-to-day ease of use.
Other than La Sportiva’s offerings, Salomon is one of the top brands in hiking footwear. the The X Ultra 4 Mid GTX is a winner for a lot of backpackers and hikers. It weighs just one 14 ounces and weighs just 1 pound, but does not hinder performance on the trail with a good stability overall with protection, as well as ankle support to hike long distances while carrying a backpack. Similar to similar to the Ultra Raptor, the Salomon is also extremely durable, with reinforced leather and a large toe cap. However, the supple build and a thinner sole provide less protection underneath the foot. La Sportiva La Sportiva is also a bit more performance-oriented overall with a more sophisticated appearance and a gaiter-like cuff. However it’s not a great choice unless you’re traveling over a lot of terrain, we’d consider that the X Ultra 4 the more appealing and well-rounded model for the majority of.
One final option to put in your consideration could be The Falcon GV by Asolo that falls in the same class with Ultra Raptor. Ultra Raptor as a lightweight (2 2 lbs. 2.6 oz.) however, it’s a seriously powerful boot. Overall it’s a well-built and comfortable straight out in the bag, and endured long trails and off easily. We had some issues with stability in the Falcon however tightening the laces provided adequate support for backpacking when carrying a loads of weight over difficult conditions (also on the way to Patagonia). At $240, the Asolo is cheaper than its rival, the Ultra Raptor II in price by just $35, without significant compromises in performance. If you don’t need the extra stability, it’s an attractive design that also compares extremely well against that of the Ultra Raptor.
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