Walking shoes are going though a phase at the present time to become lighter, many makers are developing the thin soled fabric lightweight shoes, Inov8, Merrel, Teva amongst some. I have been somewhat sceptical about these shoes. Are they really going to make a difference? Will they last? Some people take this lightweight issue to strap on sandals, but you can go too far!
I looked into the Scarpa Spark which comes as 600g pair of walking shoes, or should I say running shoes because that’s what they really are. I got these from Go Outdoors, using both the card and their November discount they cost £72.
They come in a Waterproof version which is (slightly heavier and more expensive) or not and this takes us into another area. Waterproof fabric shoes are often fail after some use, some do last but most do not as reviews would suggest. The Goretex lined shoe may become hot and sweaty too. I opted for the non waterproof version with waterproof socks to get the best of both worlds.
The shoes are loud, not your typical olive drab colour more like lime green with a grey strapping which do look very eighties. They have a detailed though shallow tread so they are a 3 season shoe, perhaps?
Wearing them is nice, I say this because they fit well are light and easy to wear. But that’s not all.Taking them through a regular walk, then are just so light you think you have nothing on your feet. You can feel the ground underneath, the cushioning in the heel adding a comfortable landing. A completely different experience to my other shoes which are twice the weight and more.
The grip in good, as good as any other shoe I have had, and this has been reported by others too, which was one reason why this shoe stood out. On the question of seasons, with a waterproof sock then they should work all year, light shoes dry quick and are easy to clean too. So 4 season Shoes then. Not sure they have the life of olive drab shoes.
They need more use but a present I am amazed at their fit and grip.
They make you walk faster because they are really running shoes.