Dropping in at 1280g a pair, the Quest 4D 3 GTX walking boots are significantly heavier than some of Salomon's lightweight boot offerings, like the X Ultra Mid 3 which weighs a feathery 900g per pair. Having said that, these don't feel like heavy, cumbersome clogs when you go walking in them, which can be off putting at the very least.
Salomon are obviously adept at making a damn good walking boot but what does that extra weight over the X Ultra 3 Mid, which is an already capable boot, get you?
The Quest 4D 3 GTX is just all round more stable, more protective and generally burlier. If you want to go trekking or backpacking and prefer the feeling of a solid boot on your feet then these are some of the best out there - and that's backed up by the fact that they've been in Salomon's line-up for over six years and they're still a bestseller.
What they do perfectly is strike a middle ground between build and weight, making them suitable for most walkers - in fact the only people that won't appreciate them are fast and light converts who go dancing around the hills in trail running shoes and dog walkers who are just looking for something waterproof.
In use the Quest 4D 3 GTX feels a little stiff to start with - which is to be expected. They loosen up a tad but still retain an element of stiffness across the sole which helps them to work excellently in challenging terrain including scrambling. They feel pretty neutral to walk in, there isn't the pronounced roll that you feel in some boots and they aren't quite as springy as some of the more lightweight offerings. Having said that the balance between stability and feeling lithe and bouncy is just fine, and fatigue doesn't set in prematurely purely because of the boots.
The Ortholite insole is also fairly well cushioned and does the job, but for more customised foot support our advice is always to go for an aftermarket insole.
Salomon's Contagrip outsole has lacked grip on greasy rocks and tree roots in the past, but the version on the Quest 4D 3 seems rock solid (excuse the pun) easily competing with most other walking boots. Grip across other terrain like mud and loose gravel is nothing short of confidence inspiring.
We didn't find these quite as narrow as other Salomon footwear but you definitely need to size up from your usual size by at least half - best to try before you buy. The toe box gives the toes room to comfortably splay and the heel is effectively locked into the boot, reducing chances of blisters.
The lacing system is a highlight - it's one of the best we've used. The lower section runs so smoothly that it's super easy to tighten and there's a locking eyelet at the flex zone between the foot and ankle so the fit you've dialled in at the bottom stays the fit throughout your walk.
Material rises high on the ankle giving great protection from wet and mud, and everything in that area is anatomically shaped and cushioned, with the result being decent levels of comfort and no blisters on our walks.
If we had to pick a negative about the Quest 4D 3 GTX it would simply be that they don't offer enough springiness in the soles, but that's a personal preference borne from lazy walking technique due to several old injuries.
Overall, though this is an absolutely stonking walking boot, provided the fit is right for you, for three season use in anything from lowland fields to alpine trekking the Quest 4D 3 GTX is a properly solid option.
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