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Salewa Wildfire Edge Mid GTX Shoes Reviewed

Words by Mad about Mountains

on 22/07/2020 22:28:32

I’ll be very honest with you...when the Salewa Wildfire Edge GTX landed in store my first impressions were they certainly look cool, but after reading the spec I was left baffled! Here we had a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in the footwear field. The shoe could be a comfortable walking boot in one step but after a few lace adjustments metamorphosized into a precision fit scrambling shoe. My line of thought at this point steered to how often do I go scrambling compared to hiking? The answer=minimal. A great design for the right kind of person, but still very niche.

unnamed I tried them on regardless as I do with all new products which come into store. The shoe has a stretch gaiter around the ankle. This design is to prevent scree and trail debris from entering the top. A pretty genius and weight saving design but my goodness what a fight I had squeezing my wide feet through the narrow stretchy openings. Like you get in films, tumbleweed would cartwheeled past in the time it took for me to achieve foot in shoe! However once on, they did feel wonderful. Super lightweight, and the upper suede leather material wrapped around my feet stupendously, it was like a second skin. As I moved around-walking, stepping, jumping, the boot remained fantastically close to my foot like it had been sprayed on; an extension of my own body. Or like a superhero’s suit, not that I’m speaking from experience but it’s how I imagine a superhero suit to feel; slick and at one with the wearer.

The first time I tried the Salewa Wildfire Edge Mid’s on, I wasn’t really in the market for a new pair of boots. It wasn’t until I decided last min (pre lockdown) that I was going to follow Alfred Wainwright’s C2C route from St Bees through the Lakes to Kirkby Stephen in three days, which would equate to approximately 30miles per day. We had no specific plan in place, I.e. where we were going to finish each day. It was more about setting off self supported and seeing how far we got. I will leave stories of that particular adventure for a separate blog, for this is purely about the Wildfire Edge and their performance.

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I would confidently say the boots do provide straight out of the box comfort, I did however wear them in a bit before walking in them for three gruelling consecutive days; sensible
right? And I would recommend anyone purchasing a pair of Salewa Wildfire Edge Mid’s to follow suit. The precision fit does take a little getting used to. I feel the boots do eventually mould to the users unique foot shape.

As with most of Salewa’s footwear, the Wildfire Edge Mid’s have a wide toe box (which can be reduced with lace adjustments) and a snugly fitted heel cup thanks to the 3F System. As a result I have no doubt these boots will fit a variety of foot shapes.

For three days I hiked in the Wildfire Edge Mid’s carrying about 15kg on my back across challenging and sometimes technical terrain. Apart from the boot donning dance every morning, throughout the three days the boots caused no problems. Not a single blister or sore spot! If you’re the kind of person who likes a solid platform with little flex under your foot when hiking, then maybe these aren’t suitable for you. However for me they tick all boxes: comfort Thumbs up lightweight Thumbs up waterproof Thumbs up super grip Thumbs up Paying a little attention to the grip at this point...made by Pomoca, the sticky sole compound offers fantastic friction on both wet and dry rock. The sole has an additional nifty feature; a precision climbing zone under the toes which is useful for edging and steep ascents.

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This particular version of Salewa Wildfire is indeed waterproof so I will quickly discuss my experience with the water resistant properties of the boots. Inside is a Gore-Tex extended comfort lining which claims to be durably waterproof and breathable allowing perspiration to escape from the feet and out of the lining. When I first stepped into a stream I was dubious as they feel more like trainers. Panic set in when I felt the coldness of the fresh water. So cold that I was convinced they had leaked. Anyways to my delight, similar to wearing a wetsuit the soft lining just meant my skin was closer to the outside world and elements and the boots were in fact 100% fit for purpose. It’s worth noting that the GTX sock only is ankle high and the top of the gaiter sock (2.5 inch to be exact) is not waterproof. Designed this way to reduce weight and aid breathability, as like all GTX linings they can get hot!


To conclude the Salewa Wildfire Edge Mid’s are ideal for speedy excursions across every type of terrain. They are a pleasure to wear and have become my go-to boot, especially for Mountain Rescue work. The gaiter may put people off (initially it did me) but certainly worth the perseverance! Let’s face often will you be taking them on and off in a day anyway?

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