Classical in design, exquisite in comfort, the SL Activ is everything you’d expect from a brand with as many devotees as Scarpa. It also has the novel appeal of bearing no waterproof membrane – it’s just the full leather design and your own willingness to wax them after washes that will keep your feet snug and dry. This might seem like extra work compared to a synthetic alternative, but I’ve found the extra suppleness and comfort well worth the effort. The weight rating is rather high at 948g (UK9), but the ankle-hugging fit and keen distribution of those grams – which leads to a very pleasant rolling action on the Vibram sole when in use – helps offset it. The boot is B1 rated, so you can strap on a flexible crampon if required, and the raft of comfort touches such as foam inserts in the heel and dual densities in the sole make it a welcome ally on longer walks. Treasure its appearance straight out the box, as they’re likely to last many years and (superficially at least) the leather will never be so flawless again!
VERDICT: A classical boot, elegant in its simplicity and supreme in its comfort.
BEST FOR: All-season hiking.
Review by Dan Aspel @mountainmeeple