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81 / 100 based on 2 expert reviews
They are legitimate hiking shoes.
With that being said, I really do enjoy the Ultra Fastpack.
- From The North Face’s lineup of lightweight footwear, the Ultra Fastpack III GTX is designed to address the challenges faced by speed hikers with agility and efficiency. It succeeds the Ultra Fastpack II GTX. Among the immediately noticeable changes from its predecessor is the updated look and construction of its ghillie lacing system. It still uses a Gore-Tex laminate for waterproofing.
- Delivering stability on the trail is the shoe’s heavy-duty midsole. It is engineered with a company-owned technology called FastFoam which lessens the energy expended by the user with every stride. Unlike its older brother, this component now comes with an ESS shank for medial support.
The Ultra Fastpack III GTX is an adequately true-to-size, low-top speed hiker for men and women. It comes in full and half sizes in standard width. Its front closure provides a customized fit.
Responsible for giving wearers ample sticking power on various backcountry surfaces is the Ultra Fastpack III GTX’s Vibram Megagrip outsole. Its A-shaped protrusions (or lugs) are positioned at different angles to provide multi-directional grip. Its front end, which covers a small area of the toe box, serves as the shoe’s bump guard.
This hiking gear has a dual-density midsole with FastFoam technology for stability and cushioning over unpredictable terrain. It has an underfoot layer made of EVA for enhanced energy return. It also has an ESS midfoot shank—a stiffening component that provides additional arch support and terrain protection.
Contributing to the amount of comfort this proprietary midsole provides is a cushioned footbed from Ortholite. Besides added cushioning, this removable insole also offers extra rearfoot support.
The Ultra Fastpack III GTX’s below-the-ankle upper is primarily made of woven mesh. Its inner liner is built with a Gore-Tex membrane, granting the gear enough elemental protection with sufficient breathability. It has a heel counter for additional heel support and a forefoot rand for extra abrasion protection. Both of these reinforcements are made of TPU (or thermoplastic polyurethane). To expedite on and off, The North Face engineers gave it not one, but two pull loops.
Its ghillie lacing system uses a synthetic lace. Its combination eyelets, which are comprised of fabric loops and regular lace holes, are durably built into the footgear’s welded eyestay.