Lowa Jannu Mid

If walking's not exactly the calorie-burning, heart-rate-rocking fitness adventure you were hoping for, consider adding two things: a mountain and some hiking shoes. Whether you tramp up the Backbone Trail in the Santa Monica Mountains for a couple hours or tackle the John Muir Trail in the Sierras for several days, the journey will go more smoothly if you're wearing footwear designed for the task. With rock-stopping soles and burly, supportive exteriors, these four models offer great value for a variety of hiking styles and conditions. And the views aren't so bad, either.<br>
<br>
 -- Roy M. Wallack<br>
Irvine-based endurance cyclist and runner Roy M. Wallack is the coauthor of "Bike for Life: How to Ride to 100." Reach him at  <a href="mailto:roywallack@aol.com">roywallack@aol.com</a>.<br>
<br>
<b>Already broken-in</b><br>
<br>
<b>Lowa Jannu Mid:</b> Sturdy, mid-ankle, suede leather boot that can handle day hikes and backpacking on Mt. Whitney.<br>
<br>
<b>Likes: </b>Burly but doesn't feel like it. Immediately comfortable, with no break-in period, unlike many other serious hiking boots. That's due to a wide toe box, padded leather lining around the ankle and a shock-absorbing polyurethane insert under the heel. Feels lighter and faster than its 1 pound, 10 ounces (size 9.5). The stiff sole from Vibram, the world's most prestigious sole maker, offers great foot support, rock protection and fatigue resistance even if you're carrying a heavy pack on a multi-day trek.<br>
<br>
<b>Dislikes: </b>A deep-mountain boot such as this will make you cry for waterproofing when you hit stream crossings or snow. (A similar Lowa model with Gore-Tex, the Khumbu Mid GTX, is $20 more.)<br>
<br>
<b>Price: </b>$170. (888) 335-5692;  <a href="http://www.lowaboots.com">www.lowaboots.com</a>.
la-gear_jze5d3nc20080418134804

( www.lowaboots.com / June 20, 2006 )

If walking's not exactly the calorie-burning, heart-rate-rocking fitness adventure you were hoping for, consider adding two things: a mountain and some hiking shoes. Whether you tramp up the Backbone Trail in the Santa Monica Mountains for a couple hours or tackle the John Muir Trail in the Sierras for several days, the journey will go more smoothly if you're wearing footwear designed for the task. With rock-stopping soles and burly, supportive exteriors, these four models offer great value for a variety of hiking styles and conditions. And the views aren't so bad, either.

-- Roy M. Wallack
Irvine-based endurance cyclist and runner Roy M. Wallack is the coauthor of "Bike for Life: How to Ride to 100." Reach him at roywallack@aol.com.

Already broken-in

Lowa Jannu Mid: Sturdy, mid-ankle, suede leather boot that can handle day hikes and backpacking on Mt. Whitney.

Likes: Burly but doesn't feel like it. Immediately comfortable, with no break-in period, unlike many other serious hiking boots. That's due to a wide toe box, padded leather lining around the ankle and a shock-absorbing polyurethane insert under the heel. Feels lighter and faster than its 1 pound, 10 ounces (size 9.5). The stiff sole from Vibram, the world's most prestigious sole maker, offers great foot support, rock protection and fatigue resistance even if you're carrying a heavy pack on a multi-day trek.

Dislikes: A deep-mountain boot such as this will make you cry for waterproofing when you hit stream crossings or snow. (A similar Lowa model with Gore-Tex, the Khumbu Mid GTX, is $20 more.)

Price: $170. (888) 335-5692; www.lowaboots.com.

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