Make no mistake Salewa’s Mountain Trainer 2 Mid is aimed at people who will genuinely be venturing into the mountains of the UK and beyond. Think of terrain like Snowdonia and the Munros of Scotland, rocky with sections of scrambling and you have the perfect environment for these walking boots. As such, despite being lightweight walking boots these are stiff and protective, especially at the ankle and underfoot.
You can walk for miles across incredibly rocky terrain in the Mountain Trainer 2 Mid and not feel fatigue from rocks prodding your feet from underneath. The sole pattern is very aggressive with deep lugs and a pronounced heel brake. On descends the Mountain Trainer 2 is particularly impressive with vice-like grip giving you the confidence to move through the environment at speed. Ironically, despite being walking boots aimed at mountain walking, where rocks can be as predominant as mud and grass, the grip on wet rock isn't fantastic. This is a compromise worth making though if you do a lot of walking in the mountains where soft rubber would degrade incredibly quickly. They do therefore strike a good balance between durability and grip.
The ankles of the Salewa Mountain Trainer 2 come up an inch or so higher on the legs than most other lightweight walking boots. This area is also stiff to provide very good ankle support, a prerequisite for walking in the mountains. Despite this stiffness at the ankles they still feel lightweight and lively to walk in, with a nice roll from the sole and good energy from the midsole bouncing you into your next step.
The fit inside the Mountain Trainer 2 is surprisingly versatile. It starts off very spacious, especially in the toe box which is particularly comfortable with room enough for your toes to spray naturally, but the lacing, which extends towards the toe, really does allow you to optimise the fit to your foot shape. The cut of the material is such that you don’t get unwanted bunching and we would say that most foot shapes will be able to get a good comfortable fit within the Salewa Mountain Trainer 2 walking boots. On ascent, the front of the boots grip well into the terrain and the heel remains locked into the back of the boot. This inspires confidence and also helps ensure a blister-free walk.
Although initially slightly stiff feeling, the Mountain Trainer 2 does soften up somewhat after a number of miles, and it is at this point that these become among the best lightweight walking boots out there. Build quality is superb, and the attention to detail within the various areas of the boots makes these seriously durable. We've found them comfortable in walks that range from flat to precipitous climbs, and over many miles, making them a worthwhile investment.
READ NEXT: Best Lightweight Walking Boots