There are a tremendous amount of boot options in today’s market, enough that it can be overwhelming. Hopefully this review can give you a little more insight into the Crispi Altitude and help you decide if it’s the best hunting boot for your next trip. I love to mess with gear and test and tweak my equipment, always searching for something better. When Crispi announced the Altitude last year, I was excited to get a pair and test them out to see how they would compare to some of the other options available today.
The Altitude GTX Boot:
The Crispi Altitude GTX, like most of Crispi’s lineup features a Gore-Tex waterproof lining, a flexible 2.5 flex rating and a Vibram polyurethane midsole that advertises as being durable and a little bit more aggressive tread than the Lapponia. The upper is made from greased Nubuck and synthetic material on the tongue and top part of the upper. It features a double stitched coated leather rand, which I really liked. It’s an 8” tall boot and comes in weighing 1.45 lbs (size 10, one boot).
After reading the specs, I anticipated this boot to be a great early to mid season archery elk and high country mule deer boot that applied some of the best of the breathability of synthetics with the durability and trusted quality of leather.
My Experience with the Crispi Altitude GTX:
My first hike in the Altitudes was a nice 4.5 miler that turned out to be closer to 9.5 miles. I took a group of folks from my church congregation on a hike to explore some of the old lander trail south of Star Valley in June. Due to the late spring we had more snow than usual in the mountains and this proved to be a great first test for the boots as we encountered a good variety of terrain, although mostly trail miles, we crossed snowdrifts, creeks, rocks, dry dirt, and plenty of mud. I purposely covered at least a half mile walking in a few inches of water that was running down the middle of the horse trail, and didn’t have any issues with leaking. I was also impressed with the lack of required “break-in” as my feet felt great after the hike.
Over the next few months, I wore the Altitude on several fly fishing and scouting trips, and found them to have better traction than the Lapponia, great feel for the trail and they excelled in easy and medium terrain types. Breathability was really good, and they stayed waterproof through every trip.
As deer season rolled around, I took the Altitude on a wet opening day into the high country. We saw one medium sized 4-point that day, but spent most of the day glassing and hiding from the rain. By afternoon it had cleared up and the hike out was great. The Altitude GTX provided good support with my 30-35 lb pack and kept me feet dry, other than some water wicking down my socks.
Later in the hunt, I took my oldest boy out to see if we could find a buck for him to shoot, and ended up taking a buck myself (story coming later). The buck was high on a ridge, and we had to navigate through some cliffs and very steep country to retrieve the deer. We loaded up our packs for the trip out, I gave my son the gear, and I took the boned out deer, cape, skull, and antlers.
Descending down through the same route we had ascended was much worse going downhill, but we took our time and tip-toed through the rocks and mud back to the friendly view of the truck. This was the first time after lacing up the Altitudes that I had wished I had worn a different boot. But, I can’t fault the boot, this was extremely steep hillside conditions with a lot of weight, and this boot lacked some of the stiffness that I would have preferred in that particular descent. However, in 99% of situations, the Altitude exceeded my expectations. The stiffness is great for all around hunting and I typically had very little fatigue in my feet due to stiffness.,
Now, because my pack-out was less than ideal, I really can’t blame the boot. The Altitude is not a stiff boot, and excels in less extreme terrain types. But on my next really steep adventure where there may be some meat on my back, I’ll wear a different boot.
Who is the Altitude GTX made for?
Overall, I was really impressed with the Altitude, and feel like it functions really well for the purpose it was designed. A lightweight, run-and-gunner for varied terrain that allows for movement, while being durable and breathable under normal hunting/backpack weight conditions. This is a great scouting and hunting boot for almost every hunt. I think for most circumstances, this is truly an amazing boot.
If you’re looking for a Crispi boot for your next mountain adventure, hit me up and I’m happy to talk about the right boot for your trip, but let’s take into account terrain, weight, and any other conditions you might run into. Needless to say the Altitude will be a mainstay in our shop selection for the coming years.
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