For those interested in watching my initial 3 Minute Review of this boot, please check out the link in this review. I will be doing a follow up review in the fall. NOTE: My reviews are independent and I purchase all of my gear.
I have been trying to find a solid alpine boot that functions the way a climber needs it to. There is absolutely no reason why a company shouldn't produce something much lighter than most boots out there with all of the features that one would need in order to make the summit. I have climbed in Scarpa, Asolo, Five Ten, La Sportiva, Salewa, and a few other miscellaneous brands. Of them all, the Crow GTX from Salewa is hands down the best I have ever purchased for the specific purpose of alpine climbing.
THE GREAT! 1. The sole is stiff enough to support any crampon that I want to use. I currently rotate between three different models for various climbs. 2. The boot is incredibly lightweight, adaptive, and supportive for all of its climbing ability. It is not a dedicated ice-climbing boot but I would use it for a few pitches of alpine ice. 3. The heel brake is smaller than other boots but it is functional and the heel to toe drop is minimal. I am a flatfooted hiker and this boot is a godsend for me. 4. I have effortlessly climbed 5.8 in them and would happily push into harder climbs. They edged and smeared well for a boot. 5. So far, they are very durable and the fit is fantastic. I kicked steps into hard packed snow for my son during our recent climb. The toe on this boot is super hard and very well protected.
I do want to say that there is very little I don't like about the Crow GTX. As a word of caution, my pair did not require very much break-in but I took my time and made sure they were ready before I committed to any major climbs. Some people need more time to adjust so please don't go out and think you won't get a hot spot or two. As for the sizing, I went with EUR 43 (USA 10). I wear the same size in my La Sportiva Nepal Cube, which is my dedicated ice climbing boot. The Salewa feels like there is at least the same amount of room, if not a touch more, in the toe. Unfortunately the next size down was absolutely too small.
THE NOT AS GREAT... 1. Gore-Tex can cause more sweat to build up, although it wasn't as bad as some other boots I've had. On the filpside, they are waterproof. 2. The sole feels hard underfoot and I can see how the other reviewer felt they were tough on the feet while hiking well worn trails. With that in mind, some people may need better insoles with more cushion. I didn't mind it and liked how much better I connected with the rock I was climbing. 3. Colors!!! I am sure Salewa is keeping the cost down by only offering one color scheme for men and one for women, but I love me some color! But if I really had to chose, less money for a boot of this quality means more gas in the tank and the farther I can go for new adventures!
That's it for now! I will update this review and post my follow-up YouTube video in a few months. I hope this helps! Happy trails from Armchair Outdoors!