Gear
Gear Guy
Q:

Are all Italian-made boots the se?

I would like your opinion on the Grigna 2800 trekking boots by an Italian company ned Armond. My main concern is the long-term quality of the boots since Armond is not a well-known brand and their boots cost about a third less than those made by more popular companies. I intend to trek to the top of Kilimanjaro this year. Ngoc Dung Phung Montreal, Quebec

A: Armond is one of those Italian boot companies that have sprouted up everywhere in the past 20 or 30 years. They don't have much presence in the U.S., but have done pretty well in Europe and Australia. They certainly make a line of footwear that at least from a specification standpoint matches up well with Scarpa, La Sportiva, or any other well-known Italian bootmaker.

The Grigna 2800 you mention is a tall mountaineering/trekking boot, with thick waterproof leather and a rubber rand that encloses most of the lower portion of the boot. It's crampon-compatible, and in overall usage I'd say is comparable to something like Scarpa's Cerro Torre ($319 U.S.). I can't find any U.S. distributors for the Grigna, so can't offer a comparable price for it.

My best advice is this: Be your own judge. Set the Grigna and a Scarpa or La Sportiva boot side by side and look them over. Check the stitching, to ensure it's clean and tight. Look at how well the pieces of the boot seem to fit together. Try some on and feel for rough spots or places that pinch inside. Make sure the sole is tightly bonded to the midsole. My guess, based on the usual high quality of Italian footwear, is that the Armond will stack up fine.

Our mission to inspire readers to get outside has never been more critical. In recent years, Outside Online has reported on groundbreaking research linking time in nature to improved mental and physical health, and we’ve kept you informed about the unprecedented threats to America’s public lands. Our rigorous coverage helps spark important debates about wellness and travel and adventure, and it provides readers an accessible gateway to new outdoor passions. Time outside is essential—and we can help you make the most of it. Making a financial contribution to Outside Online only takes a few minutes and will ensure we can continue supplying the trailblazing, informative journalism that readers like you depend on. We hope you’ll support us. Thank you.
Contribute to Outside
More Gear