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A top rated hiking boot
A popular pick
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  • Berghaus’ Explorer Trek Plus GTX is both beefy and lightweight, all thanks to its layered upper which is a combination of suede leather and mesh. Imbued with the Gore-Tex Performance Comfort liner, the cleat is also waterproof.
  • The main platform of the Explorer Trek Plus GTX and that which provides wearers with shock absorption and cushioning is one EVA midsole. It is constructed with the Plantar Plate—an added component that contributes to the midsole’s stability.
  • Solely responsible for the leather hiking cleat’s footing on especially rugged terrain is the Berghaus-exclusive, anti-clogging Opti-Stud outsole. Outside traction, its design and construction also provide brake assistance.

A high-cut, fairly true-to-size day hiking cleat that caters to both men and women is the Berghaus Explorer Trek Plus GTX. Both versions are offered in whole and half sizes in standard width. Providing users a snug and customized fit is the cleat’s classic lace-up closure. It works in conjunction with the Enhanced Handling System (EHS)—a feature that adds extra heel support when the laces hooked to the EHS speed hooks are tightened. 

The Berghaus Explorer Trek Plus GTX comes equipped with an in-house, hiking-specific outsole technology called Opti-Stud. Based on the Alpha Compound rubber, this outsole is designed to prevent slips and maintain traction on undeveloped terrain (whether wet or dry), thanks to its grippy treads and moderately prominent, triangular lugs. Its front and rear ends are both ridged which means users can tackle uphill slopes and downward inclines with extra grip and support. 

Apart from traction, the Explorer Trek Plus GTX’s outsole doubles as the cleat’s protective bumper. This secondary role is made possible by the outsole’s extension covering a marginal portion of the gear’s forefoot zone. 

Delivering comfort and shock absorption is the cleat’s stout midsole. This cushioning platform is made chiefly of EVA—also known as ethylene-vinyl acetate—a rubber-like compound that is known for its toughness and stress resistance. Strategically and purposely embedded within the medial section (plantar fascia) of the midsole is the Plantar Plate—Berghaus’ own take on shanks. Its inclusion contributes to the cleat’s overall stability and support. Since it is made of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU when abbreviated), this component is both resilient and wear resistant. 

More cushioning is brought forth by the cleat’s Ortholite footbed. On top of added underfoot comfort, this proprietary insole also provides a stink-free environment for wearers as it is imbued with anti-odor properties. 

Making up the Explorer Trek Plus GTX’s breathable yet tough upper is a blending of lightweight mesh and durable suede leather. It has an inner liner by Gore-Tex called Performance Comfort which makes the cleat not only waterproof but also breathable. Its ankle collar and tongue are padded on the inside to bolster the cleat’s comfort level. 

The Berghaus designers went synthetic with the cleat’s laces. The same can also be said of the lace keeper stitched to the cleat’s tongue. In place of traditional eyelets, the designers gave the Explorer Trek Plus GTX a set of metallic loops and open hooks. These lace tunnels are securely attached to the upper via rivets. 

  • This day hiking footwear has been recommended by the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award—a UK-based charitable organization that is driven to support the growth of youth and young adults through engaging outdoor activities.

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