Sometimes an offer comes along that is too good to resist, and it happened to me very recently when I was contacted by Millet Sports offering me the opportunity to review some of their Solomon Range of Footwear. Typically for me the email came a week after I had splashed out nearly £100 on some new shoes. But I decided what the heck, you can never have too many shoes. And so agreed to test out the Salomon X Ultra 2 GTX hiking shoes. And I am slightly regretting it now (read on to see why).
Salomon X Ultra 2 GTX hiking shoes – Review
Let’s start off, as always, with the technical side of the shoe (more details can be found on the shoes page of the Millet Sport website). Solomon have produced a lightweight, breathable and waterproof shoe. That features their innovative “QuickLace” lacing system (more on that later) and “SensiFit” design system.
“Built with a 3D chassis and moulded midsole it locks the foot down for complete support and comfort across any surface”
- Low profile walking shoe
- Sensifit system
- Gore-TEX Performance Comfort Footwear
- Non-marking Contragrip outsole
- Protective heel and toe caps
- Advanced chassis
- EVA footbed
- Ortholite sockliner
Salomon X Ultra 2 GTX Looks
Now I should preface this by saying I like an all leather shoe usually, for simplicity of cleaning if nothing else, and these shoes do NOT match my normal style. They are styled as many running shoes etc. are these days, all geometric shapes and ridges, which is not unappealing. They look good, but the looks of these shoes isn’t really that important, no matter what I may claim on my other reviews the hills and valleys of the UK are not really a catwalk.
When the Solomon X Ultra 2 GTX box arrived, I couldn’t wait to try them out and slipped them on bare foot. This wasn’t the most comfortable start (I ALWAYS wear socks, even if they are usually low cut trainer socks). The rough fabric around the ankle didn’t feel like it would be great to walk in. However with socks on, this changed.
I have NEVER owned a pair of shoes, be they walking boots, trainers or even slippers that have been so comfortable! Now this may sound like I am pandering to the company who sent me them, but seriously they are so comfortable! On my first walk (to work sadly) I was not only shocked about the lightness of the shoe but impressed by how well they fit.
|Salomon X Ultra 2 GTX hiking shoes – Review|
Two things are important to know here:
Firstly I have wide feet, so “snug” fitting shoes are usually not comfortable, the soles are invariably too narrow and cause discomfort. With the Ultra 2’s they were snug but perfectly fitted my feet, offering support right where you would need it.
Secondly I have a really painful spot on my heel from my 25 mile challenge walk, the resultant blister had left an odd dark mark and a really painful area, that has caused pain no matter the shoe, that is until walking in these! No pain! Not one bit, and after a few weeks of wearing them the pain has completely gone, even in other shoes.
|Painful Hell after Blister healed|
The Lacing System
Another huge selling point of the Solomon shoes is the QuickLace system. What a brilliant idea, no more struggling to tie laces; no more laces coming undone and tripping you as you walk; or getting soggy and splashing you. As you can see in the photo below, the QuickLace system is a quick drawstring design that you then tuck away in the tongue pocket.
The only drawback I have found with it, is learning the best adjustment to enable the shoes doesn’t slip but also isn’t too tight. It doesn’t take many attempts to get it right though. And once you do, it is so quick and easy to put shoes on or take them off again that you’d never want to go back!
|Salomon X Ultra 2 GTX Lacing system|
So why am I regretting accepting taking these shoes for review, well two reasons; Firstly because my paid for, Mammut, walking shoes are now sitting there doing nothing; Secondly because I will have to buy more of these excellent walking shoes, when, in the future, these ones die!
I would never like to presume all feet are the same, as they most surely are not; but if you are looking for some new hiking shoes I’d advise at the very least trying out the Solomon X Ultra 2 GTX hiking shoes. They really are the most comfortable shoe I have ever owned. And I must admit I will be hard pressed to go back to any other shoes in the years to come.
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