The Vasque Inhaler GTX boots are ideally suited for day hikes and treks with light loads on good trails and perhaps some light off trail use. The Vasque Inhaler GTX boots excel at their intention of providing a good balance of durability, protection, breathability, and weight for lightweight hiking and backpacking enthusiasts. For those hiking off trail, carrying heavy backpacking loads, and for extended rocky trails, the Vasque Inhaler GTX boots don’t provide enough protection or a firm midsole.
Comfort There was absolutely no break in required on the Vasque boots. The Inhalers were more comfortable in warmer weather than most other GoreTex boots. The toe box is roomy enough, but overall the sizing on the Vasque Inhalers seemed to run snugger than other boots of the same size. The Vasques are lighter on the feet than most other waterproof mid height hikers. Like most other boots, there was no practicable arch support in the Inhalers.
Stability & Traction The Vasque Inhalers have some support and stability in the midsole, heel cup, and ankle areas, but not as much as many heavier hiking and backpacking boots. The Inhalers would be a great choice for those seeking an overall lightweight approach to hiking and trekking but those with heavier loads should stick with a boot with more support. The midsole flexes considerably, which provides good trail feel. The outsole traction and grip in all terrain was excellent.
Durability The Inhalers have good overall craftsmanship. There were no durability problems whatsoever by the end of the test period.
Protection The Vasque boots provided good protection from toe jamming, water, and other trail hazards, but the midsole flexibility meant long rocky stretches of trail were hard on sensitive feet.
Off Trail & Snow These Vasque Inhalers faired better than many other mid hikers in the same weight class. The good grip on the soles meant the Inhalers excelled at slab walking, while the flexible soles meant they did not edge all that well on narrow rock ledges or traversing in firm snow. The Vasques had fairly good ankle support.
Other One feature of the Vasque Inhalers is a mesh that’s much more open than most other hikers. While this yields lighter weight and greater breathability, the open mesh also seemed to collect more dirt and dust than other boots.