Friday, 20 January 2017 12:06

Haglofs Vertigo II approach shoe tested and reviewed

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The Haglofs Vertigo II is the company's latest attempt to fill that awkward crossover point between trail walking and scrambling; the approach shoe

Robust and durable enough for heavy duty hiking they also have reinforced rubber toe box and heel combined with a decent Vibram sole for when the terrain gets a bit more challenging.

haglofs vertigo 2

What Haglofs say:

Versatile waterproof leather shoes built for hiking, approaches, via ferrata and scrambling, but comfortable enough for all-day walks.

GORE-TEX®Haglöfs Vertigo II GT Shoes have been designed to keep you comfortable and protected no matter what terrain you're covering.

Their star-shaped upper design makes them flexible, to move with your feet while you stride, while the EVA midsole and PU heel wedge absorb shock and keep you stable.

They're fully waterproof and very breathable, thanks to the GORE-TEX Performance Comfort Footwear lining under their nubuck uppers.

Rubber reinforcement at the toe and heel means that they'll stand up well to the rigours of rock, and the sticky rubber sole gives you great grip over uneven terrain, wet or dry.


EVA midsole with PU heel wedge for good stability, low weight and total comfort

Star-shaped upper design flexes with your feet

Long lacing lets you get the best fit and comfort

Rubber reinforced toe and heel

Sticky rubber for reliable traction

Upper: 1.6 to 1.8 mm water repellent nubuck

Lining: GORE-TEX® Performance Comfort

Footbed: Haglöfs Custom Comfort

Outsole: Haglöfs HSH

Weight: 475g (one shoe, size UK8)

On test with My Outdoors

The design of the Vertigo II is sturdy, made from nubuck leather they are proving hard-wearing. After 3 months of fairly regular use, both in the hills and everyday use, they are showing little wear both on the sole and upper. They are a good looking shoe and the grey leather takes scuffs and stains well over the time I've been wearing them.

haglofs vertigo

The fit:- The first thing about the Vertigo shoe I appreciated is the generous fit. I have a broad foot and I find they let my feet splay evenly when used for general walking and mountain approaches. The star shaped construction and lacing system work well. One of my biggest bug-bears with approach shoes made from leather can be the creases which occur at flex points by the toe box on certain brands, which inevitably leads to weaknesses in the membrane and water ingress. The star shaped layout of the leather does allow the shoe to flex evenly and so far they are holding up really well. One feature I like about the lacing system is how it supports the top of my foot as I descend paths. It feels very evenly braced and stops any slippage well and offers some reassuring stability.

Lined with Goretex, the shoes do stay dry in damp conditions. Although they offer a reasonable amount of coverage across the heel and ankle, they are after all a shoe, so don't be fooled they will stay completely dry in boggier conditions. I've been quite happy splashing through wet paths on trails and the odd shallow stream crossing, but inevitably I got quite wet in long grass.

The Vertigo work well as a sturdy hiking shoe and a specific approach shoe on steeper climbs. They don't have a very technical fit, in that they are quite wide, so edging on more minimal toe holds takes extra care. The Vibram sole does grip on dry rock excellently, but on slimy rock they slip, as do other brands of shoe. The reinforced rubber toe and heel sections are proving very hard-wearing. The midsole is adequately stiff, allowing flex mainly at the toe. They have a good enough balance of rigidity for mountainous terrain and everyday use.

haglofs vertigo 4

Weighing almost a kilo for the pair, they are certainly not the lightest approach shoe, but this is trade off for the durability they offer. I have found after a full day of walking whilst carrying a pack my feet are fatigued more than when I wear a lighter trail shoe. This is of course down to personal preference if you want to put some miles in, as they will suit some and not others. Priced between £100-£140 in shops and online, they are reasonably priced alongside their competition and will offer a decent lifespan for the investment.


Last modified on Friday, 20 January 2017 14:18

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