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  • La Sportiva - Makalu Mountaineering Boot - Natural

La Sportiva Makalu Mountaineering Boot


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    • Natural

    55 Reviews


    Aloha Makalu.

    The La Sportiva Men's Makalu Mountaineering Boots have become among the most popular alpine footwear for everyone from casual climbers to Outward Bound students and instructors. These durable leather boots hold up to years of abuse in the mountains and provide plenty of support for hiking with a heavy load. Thanks to full crampon compatibility, the La Sportiva Makalu Mountaineering Boots make a great choice for glacier travel, and their Vibram soles provide excellent traction on snow, mud, dirt, and rock.
    • Traditional mountaineering boot for general alpine with heavy packs
    • Durable Idro-Perwanger leather upper with Vibram rubber rand
    • Dry-Best lining wicks moisture and dries quickly
    • Steel shank offers stable support with heavy backpacks
    • Aircushion midsole with anatomic MtnFlex insole for comfort
    • Skywalker sole with step-in crampon compatibility
    • Item #LSP0092

    Tech Specs

    Upper Material
    Idro-Perwanger roughout leather (3mm), Vibram rubber rand
    MtnFlex (8mm)
    SBR aircushion, Dacromet-coated full steel shank (1.5mm)
    Skywalker MPE
    Claimed Weight
    [pair, size 9] 4 lb 4 oz
    Recommended Use
    mountaineering, glacier travel
    Manufacturer Warranty
    1 year

    Tech Specs

    • Reviews
    • Q & A

    What do you think about this product?

    Have questions about this product?

    Bulletproof and versatile for guiding

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Size Bought: ??
    • Height: 5'9"
    • Weight: 145lbs

    I originally bought these in high school dirt cheap and used when I was dabbling in ice climbing in the northeast. They were stiff enough and warm enough to squeek by for a season of easy to moderate water ice but I quickly upgraded to Nepals for the next season of steeper water ice ice. They really won my heart this summer when I was working on the Matanuska Glacier in Alaska as an ice climbing guide. This job involved 3+ hours per day of walking on trails and glacial moraine as well as another 4+ hours per day in crampons. I dabbled with wearing hiking boots on the trail/moraine and switching to Nepals for more precise crampon use or hiking hours in my full shank nepals but these boots quickly became my number one choice. These things were flexible and comfortable enough for the trail and all day use, technical enough that I felt solid soloing 50 degree ice and toproping vertical glacier ice (when we got the chance to climb) and they were TOUGH AS NAILS. Guides who wore Nepals daily had utterly destroyed their boots by the end of the summer while my boots are in perfect condition. The toe of nepals routinely wore out to the point that an automatic crampon could not safely attach to the toe while the thick rubber of the makalus ate up the rocky terrain like nothin.

    Bottom line:
    If youre looking for a lightweight boot for steep technical terrain, look somewhere else.
    If you want a boot that can do almost anything in the mountains and outlive you, get these boots!!

    Amazing work boot

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: Runs small
    • Size Bought: 41
    • Height: 5'9"
    • Weight: 150lbs

    I’m an apprentice lineman and I’ve ran one pair of these boots for 2 years now. Still water proof, still has some sole left, and the toe hasn’t split. Hands down the best climbing boot for wood pole and climbing towers it stays stiff enough throughout it’s life span to be on your toes on lattice and still keeps the form of the boot. I just wish they would make it eh rated with a composite toe.

    La sportiva

      These boots are stiff and hard to break in, the cloth tabs get pulled out of the stitching and they won’t warranty them. The boots need to come with a water proof technology in them for the price and what they are meant to be used for

      Comfy boot

      • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

      Super solid boots, a really easy break in period compared to other boots I've had. Super comfortable right out of the box, and they seem really high quality so far.

      Mountain Man

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size

      My brother and dad have worn these boots for years. Got these for my brother who is always working on snow guns and is a cat driver. He loves them and they have kept his feet dry and he has traction to keep himself safe! Perfect mountain man working boots!

      4 Stars, but 4.5 Stars wasn't an option

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: Runs small
      • Size Bought: 45.5
      • Height: 6'2"
      • Weight: 210lbs

      I have had several pair of La Sportiva Makalu and Glacier boots (discontinued) and they all have a few things in common, they are water proof, sturdy, and last for several years. They ALL also begin to have issues where the toe rand and sole begin to separate. Every pair I have had has done that, but keep in mind it generally takes a while, like a year or two. I generally wear these boots year round for work, then waterproof them up a little and take them hunting in November. My only complaint is after a couple years of use they breakdown, however I have not ever found a boot to last longer than these. I would say that if you have a quality issue with these boots its a manufacture defect, these should last a long time with no issue. IF La Sportiva stops making this boot it will be a very sad day!!! (just in case I have a few new pair hidden away in the basement... hey the wife has a million pair running shoes and this is my guilty pleasure!)

      Great boot

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Size Bought: 43.5
      • Height: 5'10"
      • Weight: 185lbs

      Great boot I’m an apprentice lineman and it an all around good boot from climbing to your every day tasks. The worst part honestly is they will eventually start splitting at the toe but I’ve worn mine every day at work for alittle over two years and I wouldn’t buy a different boot for the work


      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Height: 5'9"
      • Weight: 120lbs

      these boots i bought for school and am still in the breaking in process and so far they are the best boots I've owned.

      Out of the BOX....

      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: 44
      • Height: 5'10"
      • Weight: 185lbs

      I'm an Apprentice Lineman, if it one thing we have to have it is a good pair of boots to work in and also climb in to keep the power going. Right off the bat the quality of this boot is outstanding! When you look at the material you can tell. The laces are a huge selling point for because they are ballbearing style so they will not get cut up. I will do a follow up on this review once I get some miles on them and some pole work. I can't wait to break them in and see how they are. 5 stars all the way.

      Essential All-Around Boots

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: 45.5
      • Height: 6'1"
      • Weight: 215lbs

      I have had mine for over 15 years and they have held up extremely well. Great for moderate weather climbs/ hikes. Also casual enough to wear out to the pub for post climb dinner / drinks.

      Solid high quality

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: Runs small
      • Size Bought: sz 12
      • Height: 6'0"
      • Weight: 195lbs

      I bought these 5 years ago because I needed protection for arthritic toes which can't bend up more than 50 degrees (hallux limitus, limited range of motion up). They pretty much saved my off road career. I've put on about 800 miles and they seem like they will last another few thousand (although the heel is getting a little rounded). The toes now bent a bit, that took a few years. The toes bend is comfortable way without putting pressure on the top of your toes. Very comfortable considering how unforgiving a full shank boot can be. I've also recently purchased La Sportiva Trango Cubes which are lighter but less burly. I bought size 46.5 for size 12 feet and can stick a bit more than a finger behind my heel in expedition socks. They do take a while to break in. The leather is repellant and breathable sort of like a softshell and I've used nikwax about once on them I think to refresh.

      Awesome boots for the right foot and job

        These boots fit great out of the box, but were a little tight for my foot in the toebox when sizing up a half size. I ultimately returned them because I wanted a gore-tex liner for guaranteed dryness and snythetics quick drying properties.

        Never buy boots from backcountry

        • Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
        • Fit: Runs small

        Ordered these in my size. They definitely run small and I had to send them back. I needed boots and their return policy is the worst out of any online boot dealer. Weeks without fresh boots in the woods of Washington makes me an unhappy customer. From now on zappos only!

        Not trying to start anything, but I am curious, because I have had the opposite experience. I have been trying to find both the Makalu and Karakorum boot in my size. I bought 4 different sizes at once to ensure I found the proper fit. Backcountry has provided quick response with 2 day shipping, and has provided me with return labels at no charge to ship back the boots that didn't fit. Heck, you can even return merchandise within 30 days after wearing it, and anytime if unused. I don't represent the company, I just think that good customer service is rare today, and have yet experience the contrary from backcountry. I just found your comment about backcountry's return policy being the "worst" odd, particularly when I have found it to be the best.

        I don't know why you would ding a product with one star because you had a bad experience with the seller. The review is supposed to be about the product. Also, I've found the customer service here to be the best in the business. I bought a tent that had a cut in it and they sent a return label and a new tent overnight without hesitation.

        Brought down zugspitze

          They were true to size really hard to break in though. When standing in the snow a little cold but once moving they are fine, maybe buy gaiters for more snow.These boots really performed, 9 hours guiding the climb and my feet felt great. The auto crampons fit fine and didn't really need to be messed with. The boots seem stiff but the during the climb I really didn't notice. Awesome via Ferrara boots. Hardly a scratch on them after the scree field. I'm excited to wear them on more climbs

          Mountain Addict

          • Familiarity: I've used it several times
          • Fit: Runs large

          The world of high alpine climbing is where these boots were born and bread. The stiff shank makes them an ideal candidate for adorning crampons and the tall cuff is rock solid on off camber slopes. I have put these to the test on ice, rock, and snow and they have not let me down. They also make for a stellar work boot once they get broken in. Climbing towers and ladders is no problem and they take a beating and keep my feet feeling fresh.
          I would recommend these to any mountaineer looking to upgrade from a softer boot to something more formidable.

          Tough Boots

          • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
          • Fit: True to size
          • Size Bought: 44
          • Height: 5'11"
          • Weight: 170lbs

          Use these boots to build powerlines. These are an "older style" mountaineering boot with a full steel shank. Used them everyday at work for the last 4 years. The boot really tough and works good for climbing poles. Out of the 3 pair that i have own i always end up wearing out the soles before anything else on the boot even comes close to breaking. If you are looking for a boot for mountaineering there are better choices out there, and for most people the La sportiva WLF is probably a better work boot but doesn't have a full shank.

          Tough Boots

          Put to the test...

          • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
          • Fit: True to size
          • Size Bought: 44.5
          • Height: 5'10"
          • Weight: 180lbs

          I've had these boots since 2008 and have hiked/climbed 200+ peaks, scrambled countless ridgelines and walked hundreds, if not thousands of miles. This boot is bomb! I couldn't tell you how they compare to a $500 boot because I've never had to spend that much. Online ordering a new pair right now for my summer plans...

          *just to mention a few

          Perfect fit, comfy from day 1

          • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
          • Fit: True to size

          I bought these boots for a couple of reasons:

          -wanted a great mountaineering boot, but I do not do it enough to justify $500+

          -I have a pair of step in crampons that I wanted to use on both ski boots and mountaineering boots

          -La Sportiva has never let me down

          True to past experience, the boots fit great, and we super comfy, and stick like glue even to the icy mess I climbed with them. Build quality is second to none, and I anticipate using these boots for yeas to come.

          Perfect fit, comfy from day 1
          Unanswered Question

          They stopped making the women's version of these boots. Have any females tried the men's version? If so, how do they fit? Similar or is it completely different?

          Unanswered Question

          20% off if you wear a 41 but full price for the rest of the sizes. Not cool backcountry. Moose Jaw will match the 20% on all sizes if anyone else got bummed on this so called sale

          Unanswered Question

          Going mountaineering in Lassen this weekend. I was recommended a boot with a liner but I can borrow a friend's pair of makalu. Curious if these would be warm enough at night when standing around.

          I got a pair of these used recently and love them. However they are missing the tongue piece. Any suggestions where I could find a replacement??

          Best Answer

          What size? I bought a pair of Nepal Cubes and I would just mail you the tongues, I dont use them. Or you could contact La Sportiva. If they are roughly the same tongues (Ill find this out when I get back from Vacation) Ill just send them over to you free of charge. If they are drastically different then Ill try and see if our rep knows a way to grab them for you. Shoot me an email, Ill be back in the office on Monday.

          Are these too warm for summer backpacking?...

          Are these too warm for summer backpacking? I love La Sportiva and I am looking for a good cross-over boot to use both backpacking at high altitudes in CO (usually nothing hotter than 75-80) and also crampon compatible. Thanks!

          Best Answer

          I would use this crampon on something like this . That is something that is way lighter and going to breathe better than this bigger hiking boot. Plus will be a lot nicer for when things get more technical than just an easy scramble.

          Are these boots re-soleable in the US? --...

          Are these boots re-soleable in the US? -- Thanks!

          Have you ever heard of anyone using this...

          Have you ever heard of anyone using this boot attached to skis

          I were a true size 10US. I will be wearing...

          I were a true size 10US.

          I will be wearing these as my primary work boot. I work construction and there was a gentleman on a job jobsite who wore a pair of these in the past and could not stop raving about them.

          He has since moved on and I have no way of contacting him. I just wanted to be sure on the sizing. I wear 1 pair of crew socks regardless of the weather.

          Can you help me with the size I will need?

          Thank You

          Best Answer

          I use them for construction and utility pole climbing as well. I wear a size 9EE in a handmade climbing boot (white's or hathorn hiline) but I wear a 45 (european sizing) in this shoe. Do not believe the US to european conversions charts. try them or something like them on first. A Glacier uses the Makalu last and fits similarly. they all have a heavily padded tongue and you may want an insole (spenco or superfeet) inside. Go bigger than you think you need. With a thick sock i could wear a 46 which they claim is a 12 1/2. hope this helps.

          What crampon systems are compatible with...

          What crampon systems are compatible with this boot for "general mountaineering"?

          Best Answer

          They will take fully automatic crampons. I've used Grivel G22 cramp-o-matic with them, but the boots arem't stiff enough for serious vertical ice.

          Combine these boots with Grivel Air-Tech crampons and you have a decent combo for general mountaineering. However, these boots are only suited for warmer conditions and won't be heavy enough for bigger peaks like Rainier.

          They are great heavy backpacking boots and decent for light-duty mountaineering. They'll handle everything here on the East Coast with the exception of the Presidentials in winter.

          I have been looking for a lightweight pair...

          I have been looking for a lightweight pair of mountaineering boots. These seem to be my best bet, however my size (11 US) is not available.

          I need a cool weather lightweight mountaineering boot. I will encounter plenty of loose talus and some bouldering. I have worn just your standard "work boots" in the past, but it's time to treat my feet better.

          Anyone have suggestions on a boot?

          I am planning a trip to Mt Kilimanjaro and...

          I am planning a trip to Mt Kilimanjaro and am looking for the best boot to wear for the trip. Is this the answer?

          Partisan info here: You should also consider the Salewa Mtn Trainer ( or the Salewa Rapace ( Just sayin' Have fun on Kili!!!

          These are overkill for Kilimanjaro. I wore my Asolo Fugitive GTX boots on my trip,and was just a little cold for the first few hours of the summit day. Wear the most comfortable boots you have. My buddy wore running shoes every day except summit day, when he wore his old Rocky boots (similar to my boots, but much older).

          Are these the current version of the old...

          Are these the current version of the old red boots made by La Sportiva? I don't recall the name , but they are red leather low at the ankle and compatible with step in crampons.

          Will the Black Diamond Sabre Tooth Pro or...

          Will the Black Diamond Sabre Tooth Pro or Neve Pro crampons work with these boots?

          How does the sizing run I need a size...

          How does the sizing run I need a size 11d

          Best Answer

          Please look at the La Sportiva website. Their sizing chart will be the best bet. I wear a 9.5 and the 42.5 I ordered was way too small. I returned my boots and got a 43, which the La Sportiva website said was a 9.5+. They fit perfectly and I couldn’t be happier. I hope this helps.

          I agree - go to the website for La Sportiva where they recommend going up 1/2 size, I did, and they came out perfect. If you can just order a couple of boots in different sizes then send the ones back that don't fit.

          I agree - go to the website for La Sportiva where they recommend going up 1/2 size, I did, and they came out perfect. If you can just order a couple of boots in different sizes then send the ones back that don't fit.

          Are the Makalus easily resoled?

          Are the Makalus easily resoled?

          Take them to a shoe repair place. The guy will cut the treads off (approximately 1/4") and glue on a new vibram sole. Cost for 2 boots was under $50 I believe. Much cheaper than buying a new pair at $300. Unless your boot structure is totally shot.

          I've resoled one pair twice, and the boots themselves are still going strong.

          Will these work for vertical ice?

          Will these work for vertical ice?

          I need a non insulated and crampon compatible...

          I need a non insulated and crampon compatible boot, like these. But I have a wide foot, what are the alternatives to this boot?

          To Back Country: I ask that you consider...

          To Back Country: I ask that you consider adding La Sportiva shoelaces to your inventory as they are very robust. You might also consider carrying their hobnails kit and their hobnails.

          I wear a size 11 in a hiking boot. What...

          I wear a size 11 in a hiking boot. What size would I need in the La Sportiva Trango S EVO GTX Mountaineering Boot?