I found the Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 i winter boots to be tailored for a frequent user who demands a robust hiking boot which can be used for scrambling, hillwalking and prolonged days hiking.
With winter fast Approaching Hi Tec have asked HikersBlog to field-test their Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 I Winter hiking boot. Straight out of the box these boots impress, with notable changes over the Eurotek such as the rubber toe rand which extends over the front of the boot and the 200 gm Thinsulate lined insulation liner, which made for a great first impression. Another noticeable factor is just how high the shank of the boot extends up the ankle at around 5 inches. The Nubuck waterproof leather upper is seam sealed to provide watertight protection from the elements and is double stitched throughout the boot.
The Nubuck leather has been treated with Hi tec’s own i- shield system for water and stain resistance. Another quality feature I discovered was the padded Thinsulate tongue, which gives the ankle added comfort and provides warmth on those cold winter days in the mountains. Looking closer at the rubber toe guard, not only does it help protect the boots from scuffs and knocks but it also serves to maintain a water tight seal. In the past I have found that there is some shrinkage of the leather especially on the toe of the boot and having this toe guard prevents water penetrating the boot. The rubber guard also extends on the heel of the boots leading up to the lace toggle and serves to further protects the boot from scuffs, knocks that often occur whilst descending screed on steep ground.
The Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 i is fitted with a molded ortholite insole, which helps with impact and cushioning whilst also having anti-microbial and anti-odour properties. The rubber guard also gives the boot a tougher structure that helps maintain the boots natural shape. The Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 I traction could be judged as having a medium depth and I found it grips well on marshland, scree and rock. Having worn the boots over several months I found the grips lost no sharpness of the rubber and keep their shape well. Hopefully we’ll get some snow this winter, as I’d love to put these boots through the paces on a snow-capped peak. I also would like the opportunity to attach a snow trek grip to this boot. Throughout the testing period I’ve worn a technical hiking sock at all times allowing for the best comfort and fit.
The higher and stiffer ankle protection the Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 I offers has helped with a torn ankle tendon I suffered last year as it offers me more support for my weakened joint. In regard of breathability I never had any issue with the v-lite sweating the foot. One problem I have with the Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 i that the top lace pull is too close to the top of the boot and when the lace is fastened it has the tendency to ride up onto the ankle, this can be easily corrected by using the top lace pull then looping back and fastening the booting on the second last lace pull. Having worn the Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 i on multi terrains such as mountains, marshlands and forest I found the Hi-Tec Altitude V 200 i provided me with traction, support, comfort and warmth.
The Christmas holidays finally brought snow to the higher peaks of the Mourne Mountains and I was eager to try out these boots in the ice and snow. With temperatures around freezing I wore the boots on a long hike 12-mile hike across frozen streams, snow drifts and packed snow. To my knowledge there’s no conventional hiking boot that’s not going to slip in the ice, that said I found the v-lite altitude to grip very well. Having braved winter conditions before I’ve learned about correct foot placement and not over-stepping, using the double tap method, i.e kicking the boot in for placement. Having slipped a number of times I was able to correct my foot placement when I had began to slip.One excellent advantage I felt the benefit of off in winter conditions was the Thinsulate lining and padded tongue which helped to keep the feet at the right temperature.
Cleaning and care
Like all hiking boots the v-lite Altitude needs regular cleaning and care. I use old toothbrushes to remove any mud or grit from the boots after each hike. Nubuck leather can be reroofed using traditional boot wax although a specialist wax such as Grangers or Nikwax can be purchased. After removing loose dirt by a brush and a damp cloth I use a suede brush to condition the Nubuck before allowing drying for waxing.
Upper material: Nubuck leather
Inner: Synthetic, Breathable,Thinsulate Insulated
Insole: Ortholite sockliner
Waterproofing: i-shield technology
Outsole: Rugged MDT rubber outsole.
High ankle protection
Thinsulate lined tongue and inner
Lacing system- laces on both boots broke after three months
Buy now from Hi-Tec
These boots are available from Hi-Tec UK:
See more at http://www.hi-tec.com/uk
Check out the boots in action in our video review: