I just bought these shoes last week and absolutely LOVE them! This is the first time I’ve worn gortex shoes. I was a little hesitant, as all bushwalkers and runners say they can be annoying if you get water in the shoe, because the gortex stops the water getting out, and it can be much worse than regular mesh runners that drain well. I haven’t gone through rivers yet, but so far they have been nothing short of brilliant. btw the men’s equivalent is the Inov-8 Roclite 312 GTX.
I took them out on Monday for a loop in Kinglake. I hadn’t done any trails here since the Black Saturday fires, and it was good to see plenty of regrowth, but still interesting to see remnants of signage.
Kinglake is pretty dry, so I made a conscious effort to step in every puddle. It was just amazing to step in water and be COMPLETELY DRY! These shoes look like mesh, so I don’t know how the Gortex folk do it, but they do it well.
I was very slow though. It was kind of steep at times, but I really haven’t run at all this year. So to go from zero to 17km was kind of stupid. I also think these shoes slowed me down a bit due to their weight. They weigh 275 grams. I haven’t worn shoes heavier than 200g in years so I really noticed it.
Inov-8 market their shoes as being lightweight. Maybe these are lightweight for Gortex shoes, I don’t know. But I’d consider them to be normal weight runners. They also are definitely not flat like all my shoes. There’s a noticeable heel lift, and to be honest, I’m perfectly ok with that. My tarsal tunnel syndrome has not disappeared yet, and I do much better with a heel. Although I was limping for 2 days after this run, I would have done a lot worse if I wore my regular shoes that have less heel-toe differential.
So I really feel like I have stepped backwards in my shoes. But I want something I can wear for hours without irritating my TSS, and since I am slower now, I want something waterproof so my tooties don’t get cold 🙂
There were lots of wild flowers out, although my crappy phone camera couldn’t take any good shots. I’m pretty sure I wasted at least an hour standing around trying to get photos that were in focus. I say this every 2 years, but I am so glad my phone contract is up soon! This means I can get a fancy new phone with a fancy camera, bedazzle myself with its ability to take better shots that the last phone, then gradually sink into disappointment as I realise it’s still a crappy phone camera.
So since the Kinglake trails are pretty dry and gravelly, they were not the ideal surface for testing these shoes. I did find them pretty good though. Their grip is fantastic – not as intense as the Talon 190s, but functionally just as good. The Roclite 275 GTXs work great on dry surfaces and are not uncomfortable on the road like the Talon 190s.
I still needed to see some mud so on Thursday I went for a walk with LC in Mt D, specifically, Sassafras, because the Sassafras Creek track is usually muddy, even if there’s been no rain.
It was pretty muddy, but nothing like what it usually is. I walked through every single muddy bit and every single puddle, including mud baths that were ankle deep. This was great! It just felt weird that my feet stayed 100% dry.
My TSS was completely at bay while walking instead of running, so I’m glad I was A) not dressed for running and B) with a friend who would stop me from running if I got carried away.
The loop we did at Sassafras was pretty nice. I’d recommend it – There’s single trail, mud, proper gardens which are perfect in Spring, and a bit of road that leads you to… lunch 🙂