Helly Hansen Rapide Low and Mid HTXP Leather ReviewFebruary 19, 2014
Helly Hansen’s Rapide HTXP shoes are versatile waterproof/breathable leather hikers for ambitious day hikes or backpacking with moderate loads. They have a medium-low volume fit.
- Very well constructed
- Strong support – a firm heel cup and sturdy upper hold the foot securely in place
- Good protection from rocks and stones
- Handles well under moderate pack loads
- Heavier than average
- A tad warm on hot days
- The EVA midsole is a little soft
The Rapide HTXP Leather came as a pleasant surprise, as Helly Hansen isn’t a big name in hiking footwear. The Rapides are first rate hiking footwear and very versatile, taking on rugged terrain with assurance and cruising comfortably on easy trails.
Support and Stability
The leather uppers give very good lateral support and, coupled with a secure heel cup, hold the feet firmly in place. The midsole is made of EVA foam, so there’s a little softness there that is noticeable in very robust terrain, especially when loaded down, but the Rapide excels on trails with moderate loads. The sole has a medium flex and the arch support is adequate.
Protection & Comfort
The thick midsole and lugged sole, aided by a TPU plate underfoot, ward off trail impacts gratifyingly well, and the leather uppers provide plenty of protection. The overall feel was very comfortable and sheltered. Due to the thick soles and leather uppers, weight was a bit high for this class of footwear.
The Rapide was an impeccable hiking shoe, as long as I wasn’t heavily loaded or moving into semi-technical territory. I loved it on trails, but the softness in the midsole reduced security and stability in rowdy topography. Replacing the stock footbed with a decent aftermarket option will help quite a bit.
There were no problems with the Hellytech waterproof/breathable membrane, they shed rain and didn’t fail during a ten-minute soak in a tub of water, but in hot, dry weather my feet felt a little warm, as is usually the case with waterproof membranes in footwear.
I didn’t have any problems with durability during the tests, but though EVA foam is comfortable and protective, it isn’t generally the most durable material, so long term durability of the midsole might be uncertain. The leather uppers should last a good long while, however.
Prices: Low-$120, Mid-$130