Kurt is an avid mountaineer who tests and reviews gear so you don't have to!
The Scarpa Triolet Pro GTX is a three-season mountaineering boot designed for use on technical alpine rock and ice. It was designed for comfortable use in all but the most extreme of conditions and strives to find a balance between durability and sensitivity.
- Approximate Price: $379.00 CAN
- Use: Technical Mountaineering
- Material: Non-insulated single leather
- Inners: Non-removable
- Crampons Compatibility: Hybrid Style
- Uppers: 2.8mm water-resistant suede
- Liners: Waterproof Gore-Tex
- Insoles: Removable Pro-Fibre with added shanks for stiffness
- Outsoles: Vibram Mulax rubber with climbing zone
- Closure: Full lace with full rand
- Weight: 1.64km (size 42)
I recently had the opportunity to test the Scarpa Triolet GTX Pro and review it's aptness as an all-round boot. It has been highly regarded as an extremely comfortable and highly versatile (for beginners through advanced climbers) summer mountaineering boot with a respectable array of hi-tech features and a pricepoint, whilst not cheap, is not restrictive.
To gauge its suitability in a variety of conditions I wore the boot for a long, hot and dry approach of Toubkal, Morocco (4,167m), a warm summer climb on the glaciers of Mont Blanc (4,810m), frigid snowy conditions on the Breithorn, Switzerland (4,164m), nimble rock climbing in the via Ferrata's of the Italian dolomites, fast alpine-style ascents Longs Peak, Colorado (4,346m) and a snowy, multiday, winter ascent on Mount Rainier (4,392m).
Out of the box, the boots felt fantastic. The roomier toe box sufficiently accommodated my wider forefoot and allowed just enough wiggle room for the toes with thick woolen socks without losing dexterity or feeling cumbersome.
I expected the stiffer sole to feel clunky but was pleasantly surprised that I could perform an adequate vertical jump and not feel like an idiot in ski boots. I wore them around the house for twenty-four hours without developing any hot spots anywhere.
The very next time I donned these boots it was for a sixteen hour trek with 2500m of elevation gain in northern Africa. The temperature began at 36C and became gradually colder. Despite the heat and the extended time spent in boots that hadn't been broken in I still did not develop any hot spots or blisters.
As the terrain became increasingly vertical I found the stiff midsole helped to prevent calf fatigue and the articulated Tri-flex ankle made walking very easy.
Whether climbing the iron rungs of the via Ferrata, sending a granite trad pitch or scrambling amongst loose scree, the Triolet did not disappoint. The Vibram sole was rugged and provided ample traction whilst hiking and the high-grip outsole with the "Climbing Zone" hit the right balance between of stiff and dexterous to let you navigate mixed pitches.
When walking through sharp limestone skree the padded ankle and rugged full rand suede provided ample protection. I had no complaints at all in the area.
This boot is not built for cold weather climbing. With the right sock combination, they could spend extensive time in snowy conditions and work well for prolonged snowshoeing but once they have become wet they are no longer suitable for cold environments.
As a non-insulated single leather boot, it simply isn't suitable for extreme cold and my toes have an ugly case of frost nip to attest to that fact. While the Gore-Tex liner does extend the period at which they are adequate, know that you will always be compromising when utilizing in cold, wet snowy conditions. They simply aren't winter boots.
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The boot is compatible with semi-automatic or hybrid style crampons and I tested them with Grivel Air Tech New‑Matic's, Petzl Charlet Vasak Leverlock's and Black Diamond Sabretooth's all of which fit extremely well with no compatibility issues.
Sidenote: I found the Petzl Charlet Vasak's to be the most natural combination. For general mountaineering and glacial travel, these felt like a natural extension of my body. Even with the crampons they felt light and agile, never causing me to doubt a foot placement or prematurely fatigue.
As it is officially a technical mountaineering boot and not specifically designed for ice climbing, I felt the early onset of turf toe after prolonged periods of hard front-pointing during long ice climbs.
Most climbing accidents occur on the way down so comfort and coordination can not be compromised. I've had a long history of problems with my big toe slamming in the front of the shoe so I tried to descend as fast as possible and come to as many abrupt halts as possible.
Top Marks for This Boot!
Scarpa knocked this one out of the park. This boot is comfortable, capable and compatible. It felt equally at home on legitimate rock pitches as it did on wet glaciers. But it is important to remember what this boot is made for.
It is a three-season (see also: summer) boot and is not suitable for the extreme cold of winter ascents or multi-day use without being properly dried. As it is not insulated, do not expect it to keep your toes warm below -10˚C and certainly don't allow yourself to be in a situation where your health could be affected by this.
However, when used as a general, technical boot during summer climbing on rock or completing a snow-capped summit, you will be thankful for the comfort, durability and technical prowess demonstrated by the Scarpa Triolet GTX Pro. A great classic summer mountaineering boot for moderately difficult technical alpine rock and ice routes at altitude.
Testing the Triolet GTX Pro on a fast descent
On this occurrence, I felt neither toe pain or stress on the front of my shin, probably due to the ability to modify top of the foot and ankle lacing tension. I was pleasantly surprised at how they performed under these conditions.
The purpose of my reviews is to offer the reading audience an objective opinion, so they can make an informed decision before buying.
All my reviews, opinions, and everything expressed here are my own and based on my experience with a product. I am not affiliated with any of the brands mentioned on my blog nor do I endorse them and they do not endorse me. I am not paid for my reviews. Occasionally, I am provided free products for review, in which case I will make that abundantly clear. Anything discussed on this site is expressed as my own opinion and I reserve the right to my own opinion when discussing my experiences, products, or anything else.
Mountaineering is inherently dangerous. Any information provided is for informational purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for advice by a trained professional. Please ensure you're climbing within your skill level and receive appropriate training before embarking on any potentially dangerous activities.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2013 Kurt Morrison