Hiking Sandals

Made of lightweight materials. They don't have much top-of-the-foot coverage so they're mostly suitable for well-maintained trails and summer hikes. Also useful for crossing rivers and streams. They come in open and closed-toe designs. See the best hiking sandals.

Hiking Shoes

The low-cut equivalent of hiking boots. Comfort is paramount in the creation of these shoes so they often have flexible materials. Generally used for day hikes. See hiking shoes.

Hiking Boots

Mid to high-cut models designed for more aggressive hikes and backpacking. See hiking boots.

Mountaineering Boots

Specialized footwear. Often insulated and used in technical routes, ice climbing or expeditions. See mountaineering boots.

Good to know

For hikes that won't last for more than a day, go with hiking sandals or hiking shoes. Tackling trails with greater challenges will require hiking boots or mountaineering boots.



Shoes with a cuff that goes below the ankle. See low-cut hiking shoes.


Boots with an ankle-height cuff. They provide extra ankle support. See mid-cut hiking boots and mid-cut mountaineering boots.


Boots with a cuff that goes above the ankle. In the case of insulated ones, they may reach the calf. Also grants extra ankle support. See high-cut hiking boots and high-cut mountaineering boots.

Good to know

Generally, for trails that are easy to tackle, go with low-cut shoes. Go mid to high if there are more trail obstacles.

Men: 44.5oz
Men: Normal
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Shoes best for road, track and light gravel. See the best road shoes.


Shoes best for trail, off road, mountains and other unstable surfaces. See the best trail shoes.

Good to know

As long as you stick to the road or path, and if you want just one running shoe, buy a road running shoe.

Neutral / cushion / high arch

Shoes for runners who does not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.

Stability / overpronation / normal arch

Shoes for runners who needs arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a normal arch. See the best stability shoes.

Motion control / severe overproanation / flat feet

Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.

Good to know

- Rule of thumb: If in doubt, buy neutral shoes to avoid injuries.
- More about arch support in this video.
- Find your arch type by following steps from this video.

Daily running

Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.


Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.

Good to know

If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.

The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.

There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.


We spent 9.2 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what hikers think:

8 reasons to buy

  • Many owners and experts claimed that the Spantik delivered a high level of comfort, most especially on technical terrain. One reviewer also attributed its walk comfort to the toe rocker.
  • A good number of experts and consumers raved about its warmth. Some of them even swore that it’s warmer than most plastic boots.
  • The La Sportiva Spantik’s ultra-expensive price was well worth the investment, according to many happy owners.
  • Considering its bulky build, a few experts praised it for being lightweight. One of them even remarked that it’s the lightest boot she has ever worn.
  • Based on a handful of positive reviews, the Spantik had ample flexibility.
  • A couple of satisfied mountaineers commended its virtually zero break-in time.
  • Expert reviewers were deeply impressed with the amount of precision the La Sportiva Spantik provided.
  • A female expert thanked the moldable inner liner for accommodating her feet well

2 reasons not to buy

  • The boot runs small, according to a few unamused wearers. They had to go for at least half a size larger.
  • A couple of reviewers questioned the quality of the Spantik’s lacing system. One of the eyelets on the inner liner snapped too easily, according to one expert.

Bottom line

The La Sportiva Spantik is a remarkably comfortable high-cut mountaineering boot that’s surprisingly lightweight and flexible. It is designed to provide enough warmth in icy regions and precision on technical terrain. It requires zero break-in time and comes at a price that, although steep, is considered worth every penny by many. Female mountaineers also need not feel left out as the Spantik, aside from being a unisex footwear, has a moldable inner liner that can conform to the wearer’s foot. Sizing issues and reportedly sub-quality laces are among the very few complaints about the widely celebrated Spantik.



4.9 / 5 based on 69 ratings

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Expert Reviews

Experts are hikers, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

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89 / 100 based on 13 expert reviews

  • 100 / 100 by Andreas Breitfuss • Andreas Breitfuss • Level 1 expert

    It has really great features.

  • 100 / 100 by Up & Under • Andy • Level 1 expert

    La Sportiva Spantik is designed for high altitude mountaineering, somewhere in the range between six-to-seven-thousand-meter peaks. However, due to some technical design and easy comfort we have had a few people using it for Norwegian ice climbing or even Scottish winter.

  • 90 / 100 by Switchback Travel • Switchback Travel Staff • Level 3 expert

    The Spantik was a revolutionary boot when it came out almost ten years ago, and it remains a favorite among technical alpinists and cold weather mountaineers.

  • 100 / 100 by OutdoorGearLab • Luke Lydiard • Level 1 expert

    The Spantik is the boot of choice for cold weather mountaineering in the world's serious mountain ranges, such as Aconcogua and Denali.

  • 100 / 100 by OutdoorGearLab • Lyra Pierotti • Level 1 expert

    The La Sportiva Spantik is a fantastic high altitude alpine climbing boot.

  • 90 / 100 by Mountain Equipment • Chris Burke • Level 1 expert

    Mountain Equipment recommended the Spantiks to me, and I’ve been really happy with their suitability on different terrain, and the level of warmth – warmer than most other double boots, I suspect.

  • 90 / 100 by Whittaker Mountaineering • Melissa Arnot • Level 1 expert

    It keeps your feet warm up to 7,000 meters. I climbed down low on Everest as well as Ama Dablam in this boot and it really is flexible, technical, and versatile.

  • 80 / 100 by UKClimbing • Jon Griffith • Level 1 expert

    The Spantiks, while being amazing boots, did have their faults as well. They don't fit all models of crampons.

  • 80 / 100 by The Active Times • Ken Osterkamp • Level 1 expert

    The Spantik achieves the holy grail of boot design: it’s a double boot that feels like a single boot.

  • 80 / 100 by Olympus Mountaineering • Olympus Mountaineering • Level 1 expert

    For as long I spend time in alpine environment, I love wearing these boots, though, sometimes I had to wear these boots for the approach too and that was a bit tiring up.

  • 80 / 100 by AKirkpatrick • Andy Kirkpatrick • Level 1 expert

    The Spantik is the perfect expedition, winter alpine, and technical winter boot I’ve used, giving a very warm boot without all the usual compromises associated with warm feet.

  • 80 / 100 by Women's Gear Guide • Leah Fielding • Level 1 expert

    A boot made for men that shouldn’t be discounted by women climbers trying to find the best option in a limited selection. Thanks to a moldable inner boot the fit is better than most other offerings, and, frankly, it’s one of the only decent options out there for women.

  • 80 / 100 by Cascade Climbers • Dave Burdick • Level 1 expert

    For a boot as rigid, warm and burly as the Spantik, they feel surprisingly light on your feet (1150g per boot), and the Spantik bears little resemblance to the clunky, heavy feel of traditional double plastic-shelled boots.

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Updates to La Sportiva Spantik

  • The Spantik is a double boot. The inner liner and the outer boot are made using a combination of technologies that chiefly work for the insulation of the footwear. The lacing of both components is a one-handed closure system.
  • The boot’s midsole is a mix of TPU and dual-density, micropore EVA materials. There’s also a removable insole in the inner liner for extra cushioning.
  • The single-build rubber outsole is powered by Vibram Montagna and engineered with horizontal lugs. These lugs outline the majority of the outsole.

La Sportiva Spantik size and fit

The La Sportiva Spantik is a unisex mountaineering boot that comes in standard width. It is offered in whole and half sizes from 6 through 13. The inner liner is replaceable and comes in whole and half sizes from 6.5+ through 13. Both components fairly run true to size. The inner liner can go through a process called heat molding to achieve a custom fit. La Sportiva notes that their footwear is created using EU half sizes. Since they are smaller increments than US half sizes, there will be four extra sizes in every size run.


Vibram Montagna is the technology behind the La Sportiva Spantik’s traction. It is made of Vibram’s own Megragrip, a durable, long-lasting, rubber compound. It has an optimum balance between flexibility and stability for it to adapt on various grounds. Its traction works on both wet and dry terrain.

The outsole has heavy-duty lugs and a prominent arch zone. Together they allow the boot to bite securely into icy surfaces and provide enough stopping power, especially during descents.


The Spantik’s midsole is a sturdy piece of rubber made of TPU and dual-density, micropore EVA. It has crampon notches located in the heel and toe zones. TPU, or thermoplastic polyurethane, is a type of polyurethane plastic that is characterized by low-temperature flexibility. The dual-density, micropore EVA, on the other hand, is a material that is characterized by lightness and toughness.

The stock insole, which is found in the inner liner, is a fusion of thermal-structure carbon fiber and aluminum insulation. This 5mm-thick, default footbed not only provides extra warmth and cushioning but also added stability.

The midsole’s forefoot area acts as a toe rocker. This slightly angled zone improves locomotion by aiding the wearer during toe-offs. It also assists in transitions on flatter surfaces.


The outer boot has a layered upper with different insulating technologies. The PE micro-cellular, thermal-insulating, closed cell foam preserves the heat within the La Sportiva Spantik. This foam is coated with a heat-reflective, abrasion-resistant aluminum material which further improves the boot’s insulation. There’s an external coating called Lorica with Antiacqua that makes the Spantik water repellent. Stitched synthetic layering and embossed PUR leatherette also make up the boot’s upper.

The inner liner, also known as the inner boot, is made of micro-perforated, thermo-formable rubber. It can take the shape of the wearer’s foot through a process that involves oven heat. La Sportiva strongly recommends for this process to be done at a specialist shop. It is also water repellent as it is lined with the same Lorica with Antiacqua technology found in the outer boot’s upper.

The closure system promises convenience when lacing up as it is designed to be operated with one hand, with or without gloves on. The outer boot uses a washer closure mechanism to secure its laces, while the inner boot uses a Velcro-like strap.

For added protection, the designers included a Vibram rubber rand. This protective sheet of rubber extends from the Spantik’s toe box all the way to the heel zone.

Additional Info

  • British mountaineer and author Andy Kirkpatrick used the La Sportiva Spantik in several of his climbing adventures. He wrote the best-selling autobiography Psycho Vertical which was adapted into a film documentary via Kickstarter. Psycho Vertical won the Best Film Climbing award at the 2017 Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival.
  • The liners can be washed by hand with cold water. It is recommended to dry them naturally. Drying by a heat source is highly discouraged.
  • The boot is compatible with step-in crampons (automatic crampons).