RUNNING shoe manufacturer inov-8 has taken further steps into the hiking world with a double launch of upgrades to its pioneering ROCLITE boot range.
The Lake District-based brand, founded by entrepreneur Wayne Edy in 2016, burst on to the trail running scene with a series of high-tech, grip-focused shoes using materials developed in conjunction with boffins at the University of Manchester.
More recently, it dipped a toe into hiking with popular boots using the same graphene technology as its trail shoes.
Its impressive ROCLITE range has been particularly eye-catching among hikers, and it is this collection which has just been handed an upgrade for March with a pair of launches in the shape of the ROCLITE G 345 GTX V2 which is targeted at those who like a lightweight, agile boot, and the ROCLITE PRO G 400 GTX V2 offering a tougher, more protective feel.
Both are significant upgrades to the V1 models by the same name, with new upper and midsole technologies in the V2s to improve comfort, fit, protection and support.
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The outsoles of both boots remain unchanged, featuring the exclusive use of graphene – one of the world’s strongest materials which is infused into the rubber. Both also feature waterproof GORE-TEX technology on the uppers.
“The original versions of both won ‘hiking boot of the year awards,’ but we never rest on our laurels,” explained inov-8 founder Wayne Edy.
“Instead, the team carefully listened to all the feedback and worked meticulously to make upgrades to both the uppers and midsoles.
“The improvements made to the feel, comfort and performance of the boots will help hikers tackle trails and mountains with even more confidence. I’m particularly proud that we’ve again found ways to further improve durability and make our footwear last even longer.”
The V1 models of both boots were worn by hikers who notched incredible long-distance feats. They included the UK’s James Forrest, who set a then-record time for a self-supported, continuous 328-mile hike of all 214 Wainwright’s peaks in the Lake District. His partner, Nic Hardy, recently wore the new ROCLITE G 345 GTX V2 to hike the 84-mile Norfolk Coast Path.
Nic said: “I like the V1 boots, but I love the upgraded V2 version. They are comfy straight out of the box and feel light on your feet. I wore them for three consecutive days on my Norfolk Coast Path adventure and they hit the spot perfectly.”