The Lowa Irox GTX Mid took the Best-in-Class honors in our test, buoyed by unparalleled durability and performance. The Lowa Irox GTX Mid is an All-Mountain Boot that can handle all conceivable conditions on the trail or mountain.
Support & Stability
The Lowa Irox GTX Mid has 5 closed grommets along the top of the foot, and 3 open grommets on the ankle, which give a strong cinching position to get the boot on tight. It’s the second-highest ankle in the test set, which affords good protection if you’re punching through snow or splashing in puddles. The outsole features a traction pattern that looks a lot like throwing stars. The tread is stable while also being grippy. There is a decent edge for climbing and scrambling, and the tow cap is solid and protective.
Quality & Construction
The Irox boots offer the top of the scale in measuring construction quality and craftsmanship. Everything is solid, and streamlined, making them the last thing you’re thinking about when you have other things on the mind. They are synthetic boots, with a tongue of median thickness. The tongue is connected at the lower-ankle level. The closed grommets at the bottom of the laces are threaded, which reduce weight and gives less drag to the profile, and the three open grommets on the ankle are attached with a solid rivet.
These are snug, comfortable boots. The breathability is the third best of the seven boots we tested, which is good for the Lowa boots because that’s a price that buys a lot more protection against harsh elements. They have a roomy, sufficient toe box and the rest of the foot isn’t too narrow. They come with a thin-but-firm insole that boasts claims of “Climate Control”.
The Lowa Irox GTX Mid comes in at a touch above our average of 2.5 pounds, but we can forgive them, on account of their protection and support. It’s a good weight considering they’re one of the best all-around performing boots, covering both trail and mountain terrain with confidence.
The Irox score well for Protection. The Sole and lower parts of the side are among the most weatherized, and the lack of any discernible stitching where the sole ends and the sides begin inspires some serious mountain confidence. These boots are second only to the La Sportivas for a climbing edge. The sides are uppers are very durable and solid, with a comfortable elastic cuff around the top of the ankle, trying to prevent any free-radicals from getting between the boot and the sock.
Scott Morris guides backpacking expeditions and hiking trips for Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides throughout the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. He is a writer, traveler, and runner. Scott tests backpacking equipment.