Vasque Grand Traverse:
About a month ago I awoke on my 37th birthday and decided I was going to go summit a Mount Raymond. So I threw on my Vasque Grand Traverse approach shoes and figured today was as good a day as any to put these comfy and stylish neon green shoes to the test. I checked the weather, on a 30% chance of showers. So I filled my pack and set out on a 11 mile
All the way to the summit these things were great. My feet felt awesome, no blisters, traction was great. And let’s face it, I looked pretty damn good. In my head I was thinking what an awesome approach shoes. If these things can handle a summit, my short 1 mile climbing approaches will be nothing. And then disaster struck.
It began to rain, and it began to rain hard. Thundering, lightning and pretty much a torrential downpour. The trail quickly dissipated, and my footing became extremely unsure. The traction wasn’t enough to handle the thick, slippery mud. And the fact that these shoes are a low/mid top made the ankle support not ideal for the conditions. This trail is less than flat in some spots and runs on a downward sloping grade for long portions. And I did lose my footing quite a bit, even going down on my rear once.
Having said that, I believe these mis-performance issues were mostly user error. I think these shoes would be great on any short approach as I have used them quite a few times heading to the climbing crag. Even on a long ascent, so long as you don’t encounter thunderstorms. The main hike I tested these on is very hard, so much so, that I encountered no one until I was less than a mile back to my car. These shoes are great for river crossing (I’ve tried) and were short climbing approaches are required. Just want deeper traction when trudging through thick mud. But they did great the entire way up, and the ridge line of this hike is literally scrambling up a rock ridge that was wet. Because the weather came in as I was approaching the summit.
Likes: These things are light weight, comfortable and look great. They have Vibram rubber on the soles and those who climb rocks know this stuff is awesome. The inner lining is moisture wicking so my feet stayed dry (until the rain). They also are easy to remove water when they get wet I found out.
Dislikes: Laces need to be a little bit longer. I like to double knot my shoes so they don’t untie. These I can barely get a double on. I do prefer a high top shoe, but warming up to the mids.
Overall: Great shoe for short climbing approaches. Awesome for rock scrambling and river crossing. Even good for summits that aren’t deep snow or really muddy. Not awesome for thick mud, because traction isn’t super deep. Ultra comfortable, I will wear these quite a bit.
I am not currently an ambassador for Vasque. I was asked to review a couple articles as an independent blogger. I received this product for free, in return I agreed to test it and review it. In no way did this offer influence my review. The opinions expressed in this review are mine and mine alone