Technical winter hiking boots open trails for explorers with cold feet. Merrell’s Thermo Freeze Mid Waterproof was designed with wet ice and slippery inclines in mind. Rigorously tested on uphill climbs and worn in freezing temperatures, numerous features pack a punch in a surprisingly lightweight model.
Here are three elements that make these winter hiking boots stand out on the trail:
400 grams M Select™ WARM lightweight, low-bulk insulation contains double the warmth of comparable winter hiking boots. The Kinetic Fit™ BASE insole features a contoured fleece lining. The molded nylon arch, EVA midsole and cushioned collar provide stability and comfort. And, bonus: the M Select™ FRESH antimicrobial agents fight smelly feet.
Merrell’s Thermo Freeze Mid Waterproof has an unparalleled fit and can be easily broken in. The boots come in half-sizes from 5 to 11 for Women and 7 to 13 for Men. Hard-to-fit explorers with exceptionally frigid toes may want to size up and pair with thick socks, though for day hikers who don’t venture into extreme conditions, it shouldn’t be necessary.
2) Weather Proofing
These boots use innovative technology to keep the elements at bay. The M Select™ DRY membrane seals out water while letting moisture escape, so your feet don’t overheat. The waterproof polyurethane-coated leather and mesh upper balance out to let your sweaty feet breathe.
The rubber toe cap protects from stumps and stones, while the wide folding tongue keeps out loose rocks, ice and dirt. The metal hook and lacing eyelet securely tie your boots, so you don’t trip on the trail (at least, not on your laces). Two pull tabs make getting in and out of the boot an easy feat that doesn’t break down the structured cuff. From toe to ankle, you’re covered.
Perhaps the most celebrated feature of Merrell’s Thermo Freeze Mid Waterproof is the Vibram® Arctic Grip® outsole. Distinguished by blue flecks on rough black rubber, the advanced cold-weather gripping system is centered on the bottom of the boot. As you can see in this video, when participants place their weight evenly on the ice, the outsoles stick to the surface. The five-millimetre lug depth digs in to difficult terrain. A nifty bonus feature is the thermochromatic ice indicator lugs that turn blue in freezing conditions.
Combined with the cushioned midsole, fleece insole and weather-proof membrane, this boot is well-equipped to tackle snowy and icy trails this winter.
Specs & Details
Weight: 1 pound 13 ounces / 784 grams
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