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Lowa Bora GTX QC Light Hiking Boot : Hit the Trail Running

Ever since I received a pair of Lowa Bora GTX QC light hiking boots, I've been burning up the trails here in the Pacific Northwest. Whether up in the Cascade Mountains or on the hilly forest trails in the park near my Seattle home, these boots have kept my feet warm, sweat-free, and stable on many brisk hikes I've taken as I try to get in shape for ski season.

This is my second pair of Lowa hiking boots, and I'm equally impressed with the Bora GTX QC (the "QC stands for quarter-cut) as I was with my first pair. The Bora GTX QC boots were instantly comfortable, fit great, and required virtually no break-in period. I just laced them up and hit the trail.

With the rainy, and now snowy, weather we've been having, I've put the Gore Tex® waterproof lining to the test. My first hike in the Bora GTX QC boots had me slogging through a thick layer of wet maple leafs covering the trail in a low elevation forest. No problem! My feet stayed dry. Same when I splashed through mud puddles during a recent hike in the rain.

Today I tromped through several inches of fresh snow in my Lowa Bora GTX QC. My feet felt as warm and dry as if I'd been out on a summer walk. (I wish I could say the same for my face after an hour in the driving wind.) These soles of these boots have a good grip: I felt secure walking in a hilly area with slushy, slippery sidewalks.

I also think the Bora GTX QQC is a particularly attractive hiking boot; I've received several compliments while wearing them. They're not clunky-looking like boots can be, but somehow trim and stylish.

I think it's great that these boots are handcrafted in a Bavarian village in Germany. According to Lowa, their footwear is produced following the strictest environmental laws in the world. Because they put so much care into making a high-quality boot, they last longer and don't end up in a landfill after a few years. (BTW, I'm going on my fifth year hiking in another pair of Lowa boots.)

Lowa's Women's Bora GTX QC boot comes in US women's sizes 5.5 through 11 in beige or grey/silver. Also available in men's sizes.

Bottom Line: If you're looking for a light hiking boot that's attractive, high-performing, and well-made, I highly recommend Lowa's Bora GTX QC boots.--J.I. ( Nov. 'I0).   

BUY ONLINE: $175, shop at REI. Shop for men's Bora at Altrec.

Manufacturer's Site: www.lowaboots.com

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When hiking or camping, always carry the "10 Essentials":

Extra clothing, extra food and water, lighter or water-proof matches and fire starter, map in waterproof envelope, compass, pocket knife, sunscreen and sunglasses, flashlight or headlamp, first aid kit, emergency shelter.

Source: Seattle Mountain Rescue and Seattle Mountaineers.