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The Salewa Mountain Trainer GTX aims to be the only shoe you need for scrambling, trekking and even taking on via ferrata. We put that claim to the test.

salewa mtn trainer
Overall Score
Sturdy, waterproof, suitable for many technical mountain activities
Quite heavy, stiff and warm for an approach shoe



At 540g this is a relatively heavy and extremely solid approach shoe, but there's a good reason for that. You will be able to take on a great deal more mountain activities in it than the vast majority of low cut shoes on the market. If you often find yourself on technical terrain and dislike wearing mid or high cut boots in general, the Mountain Trainer GTX could be exactly what you're looking for.

In the hand, and on the foot, the feel of the shoe is stiff - which is good for scrambling and climbing situations, but less comforting when covering long distances on maintained trails. On the plus side there's very little technical terrain that you won't be able to tackle in it, whether that's the rungs of a via ferrata route, the rough rock of scrambling ridges or the mud and snow you'll find at the bottom and top of a moderate alpine peak.

The rand is extremely thick and durable, with a rock solid toe box, while the suede leather upper adds effectively to that tough-as-nails impression. The tank-like build is reinforced by a Gore-Tex waterproof lining, and the Vibram Alpine Approach sole features an extremely generous and stiff climbing zone at the toe, and lugs specifically arranged and spaced to wrap around via ferrata metalwork.

Comfort is only moderately good, but the uncompromising stiffness of this shoe is what defines it. Salewa has nevertheless done an impressive job of making the tongue, inner material and ankle as cushioned as possible to offset the otherwise harsh and rigid nature of the Mountain Trainer. You can also alter the inner sole for either a 'medium' or 'narrow' fit. All the ruggedness makes it a warm shoe to wear, too.

There are no particular innovations on the lacing front, and the colour schemes include some pleasing blue, turquoise or gold detailing on a jet black base. Durability - as you might expect - has proved a big selling point. Scree and snow won't bother this shoe nearly as much as its competitors.


In conclusion: if you want a flexible, ultra-cushioned multi-sport shoe then look elsewhere. If it's stiff, durable and uncompromising footwear for high mountain technical activities you're after, then this is a top choice.








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