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Another classic walking boot from the Salomon stable, we test the Quest Prime GTX on the trails

salomon quest prime gtx 1
Best for...
The average Joe hiker who isn't looking to push it to extremes
Overall Score
Comfort from the off
Too soft for technical terrain

Salomon seem to be masters of creating kit that endures through many years with only minor updates when the raft of new season gear gets released. We've loved their hiking footwear in the past, not least the X Ultra 3 shoes which we recently bestowed with the accolade of best lightweight walking shoe, so we were keen to get down and dirty with the Quest Prime GTX.

We reviewed the women's version of this boot back in 2017 and curiously found it to be wide and chunky, possibly Salomon haven't perfected the women's last but the men's version is anything but, with what feels like an average toe box tapering into a narrow mid foot and average heel area. There's a bit of wiggle room up front, enough that my toes don't feel packed in like sardines.

I personally like this fit as my feet are narrower than average and very low volume so I don't find myself having to perform unhuman feats of strength to get the laces tight enough to hold my foot in place.

In fact, the Quest Prime feels immediately comfortable, with a soft and plush inner and a supple outer that takes very little wearing in. Some might find the upper too soft in technical terrain as it does have the tendency to let your foot flop around a bit, but if it's ultimate comfort you're after then this is quite possibly the boot for you.

The Ortholite insole used in the Quest Prime is softer than most which helps with all day comfort even when carrying a heavy pack. Lug depth and pattern is perfect for variable terrain and we find the Contragrip rubber decent on all but the most greasy and polished of rocks and tree roots.

The sole feels quite neutral on the transition from heel strike to toe off without much noticeable roll and there's plenty of lateral and torsional flex making the Quest Prime an overall easy boot to walk in. We'd rate them as being good for anything from gentle ambles in the countryside right up to hikes in some of the less technical UK mountain terrain like that found in the Brecon Beacons. Push much beyond that though and you might find yourself in hot water.

Two open cleat lacing points cinch up the mid height ankle, we've always found this to be handy for applying surgeons' knots to help eliminate any heel slip but find the Quest Prime good in that regard with no fancy knots needed. You get plenty of cushioning around the ankle and a good dose of support, but the tongue could do with a little more cushioning to fend off abrasion from knotted laces.

Salomon clearly aim the Quest Prime at 'the middle' and the sheer amount of people you see wearing them in the hills bears that out. The price is right, as is the performance, quality, fit and durability. If you want something to regularly scale Alpine terrain, then perhaps look for something stiffer and more technical but for the average joe keen on hiking without taking it to extremes the Quest Prime is an excellent boot at a good price.

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