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Reviews > Footwear > Boots > Salewa W Alpenrose Ultra Mid Gtx > Owner Review by Kathleen Waters


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MAY 5, 2018



NAME: Kathleen Waters
EMAIL: kathy at backpackgeartest dot com
AGE: 67
LOCATION: Canon City, Colorado, USA
HEIGHT: 5' 4" (1.60 m)
WEIGHT: 125 lb (56.70 kg)

Living in Colorado and being self-employed, I have ample opportunities to backpack. There are over 700,000 acres/280,000 hectares of public land bordering my 71-acre/29-hectare "backyard" in addition to all the other gorgeous locations which abound in Colorado. Over the past 15 years, my husband John and I have also had the good fortune to hike/snowshoe glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in exotic locations, including New Zealand, Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley. My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight. I use a tent (rainfly if needed). Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) excluding food and water.


Manufacturer: SALEWA
Year of Manufacture: 2016
Manufacturer's Website:
Listed Weight: 11.6 oz (330 g)
Measured Weight: 14 oz (397 g) each W's size 8
Colors Available and Reviewed: Night Black/Mineral Red
Sizes Available: US 3 - 9
Size Reviewed: US 8/UK 6/EU 39/MP 25.0


Advertised as "The Lightweight Speed Hiking Shoe"!
Feature Ortholite Performance Insoles
Gore-Tex Extended Comfort Waterproofing
Michelin Ultra Train Technical Outsoles
Uppers: Breathable Mesh/Coated Fabric
Construction: Vegan!

Warranty: 2 years from date of purchase and when used properly guaranteed to be "100% Blisterfree"
Alpenrose shoe
Copyright Salewa


Ice Cave - Lava Tube
Since I received the Salewa Women's Alpenrose Ultra Mid GTX boots (hereafter called "Alpenrose" or "boots") in October 2017, I've logged dozens of miles/kilometers - at least 90 miles (145 km) - on backpacking trips, snowshoe day hikes and daily hikes to my mailbox down my 4-mile (6.4 km) hilly dirt road.

Mostly, I spent my time on the trails in Colorado in Eagle, Summit and Fremont counties. Elevations and terrain are as follows:

Fremont County, Colorado (my home "range") - this area is in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains with elevations ranging from 5500 ft (1700 m) to 9900 ft (3000 m). The terrain is mostly rather rough with lots of mud, loose rock and huge slabs of granite rock. Vegetation is scrubby pinon pine, Gamble oak, juniper, cactus and prairie grasses (or weeds, depending on who is talking!).

Eagle and Summit, Colorado Counties - Breckenridge/Avon/Vail/Minturn - Rocky Mountain (proper!) with elevations ranging from 7400 ft (2260 m) to 11400 ft (3480 m), generally rather steep dirt or snow-packed trails winding through ponderosa pine and aspen forests.

In addition to my home-state locations, I took the Alpenrose on a road trip to New Mexico and Arizona where I wore them on a couple of very long day hikes, including the Blue Ridge Trail to Ice Cave loop near Pinetop-Lakeside, Arizona. This was a mostly hard-packed dirt with rocky sections of a hiking/biking and horse-riding trail. Elevation ranged from 6300 to 6900 ft (160 - 175 m).

Over the past seven months, we have had generally warmer than usual weather in south central Colorado. However, because Colorado is climatically "high desert" we do experience drastic temperature drops at night so even when it is in the 90s F (35 C) during the daytimes, it drops 40 degrees F (22 C) (or more) at night.
We had almost no precipitation to speak of over the winter. I had to drive a couple of hours to find snow! Colorado is in a drought situation and these boots never got even damp from outside moisture.

In Arizona last month (April 2018), it was more of the same - rather warm, dry and very, very, very windy! The day of the Ice Cave trek, however, we were blessed with partly cloudy skies and only intermittent winds at a sustained speed of 3 - 5 mph (5 - 8 kph).

So, what did I learn and think about the Salewa Women's Alpenrose Mid GTX boots? Read on!

On the face of it, the Salewa Alpenrose Women's Mid GTX boots look like a lot of other very nice hiking boots.

They don't sport any garish colors or gimmicks. I really like the sophisticated grey color paired with the pinky-purple trim!
They don't scream "look at me" which I really like. The last thing I need is people staring at my two left feet!

What they do, however, is everything a quality hiking boot should do.

The lacing system is a mix of sewn fabric loops and plastic-like eyelets with two sets of metal "speed" fasteners at the tops. The round-corded laces are long enough to double-bow but not so long as to be overly floppy and catching on things. Once secured, the laces stay put without slipping and loosening. And I only need to undo the speed-loops and loosen the top set of eyelets to get my foot into and out of the shoes.
Boots and Box!

On to the outsoles! The Alpenrose sport some very interesting- looking lugs. There are some pink-ish ones on the outer heel area and the inner forefoot to toe which actually "stick out" a bit past the shoe.

A series of angled lugs, wedges, and various sized treads in a diverse pattern creates a stickiness on slippery rocks. The spacing of the lugs allows our clay-like mud to "squish" out fairly well, too. This is important to me as when it's wet here in my neck of the woods; the mud quickly clumps up on my boots and can add pounds/kilograms to the weight of my shoes.

And Lugs!
And More Lugs!

On the "other side" of the outsoles are the insoles. And since I have rather flat feet, I often must change out the stock insoles on my footwear for a more compatible one. I
I did start off with the Alpenrose stock insole but after a couple of outings, I changed to my favorite after-market insole. This is in no way a negative on the Alpenrose. It's all about my quirky anatomy!

Since I am naturally clumsy, I wear mid-height boots whenever I am carrying a full pack to protect me from myself and a twisted ankle or bruises. The collar and the padded tongue on the Alpenrose while not overly "stuffed" provide good support and also kept debris and "sticky things" out of my boots.

There is enough padding in the heel to be comfortable but I felt better with my custom insoles. I found the heel cup to be just snug enough for keeping my foot stable without being too restrictive. I never - from the first moment I put them on - experienced any rubbing or developed any hot spots or blisters or wobbles due looseness in the shoes.

Even without custom insoles, these boots offered me fantastic arch support! They kept my feet stable on uneven rocky ground with sharp edged stones. No bruising! I have carried up to a 35 lb (16 kg) pack while wearing these boots with no undue foot fatigue even after long mountainous hikes.

I wore the Alpenrose mostly with mid-to-heavyweight wool crew or mid-calf hikers. This works best for me with most footwear to prevent any rubbing and keep my feet from sweating.


I haven't done much in the way of cleaning and maintenance of the Alpenrose boots. I've brushed off the dirt when they get ridiculously dusty but that's about it.

Since we haven't had any particularly muddy weather, I haven't even needed to do any "deep-cleaning" of the outsoles - prying mud out of the lugs. Yay for that!

Generally speaking, most of my trail shoes and boots last about 6-8 months on average. The Salewa Alpenrose boots are still in great shape with no excessive wear as of yet.

Since I have rather flat feet, I usually can tell when the trail shoes or boots I am wearing are destined to be replaced. Even if the tread looks good and the uppers still in decent shape, my left arch particularly tells me to move along to the next pair.

I follow the rule of not wearing the same trail shoes or boots two days in a row unless I have to because I am on the trail and carrying an extra pair of boots is not an option.

I also always take the insoles - stock or custom - out of the boots after every trek. This helps keep the boots less "stinky".


1.) Very lightweight
2.) Keeps my feet dry even when submerged
3.) Super grippy on all terrains from dry and dusty to wet and muddy


1.) Nothing so far


Anyone that knows me or has read any of my previous footwear reports, knows I wear trail shoes or hiking boots almost exclusively whenever I am outdoors. I live on mountainous 71 acres (29 hectares) of dirt, scrubby vegetation and rock along two miles (3 km) of dirt hilly private road. My home town is a very casual rural location where boots are an acceptable footwear choice. Fortunately, I love wearing boots!

All this boot-wearing means I wear out footwear more rapidly than most people. I ascribe to the general rule-of-thumb that 300 to 500 miles (480 - 600 km) on an outdoor shoe or boot is pretty much the maximum mileage I want to put on them.


Back in my 5K running days, I wore a pair of Salewa running shoes for daily one hour training sessions on my treadmill. These shoes were dedicated and strictly used for that purpose and indoors only. They were great for many months. Despite that favorable experience, I never even thought to try a pair of Salewa shoes for hiking and for outdoors! Silly me! I wasted a lot of time. These Alpenrose Ultra Mid shoes are a very trail-worthy addition to my footwear collection.

I can definitely recommend these shoes for all terrains, weather conditions and outdoor pursuits!

Kathleen (Kathy) Waters

This report was created with the Report Writer Version 1.5 Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.

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