Polaris Shredder boots £115

Value winter footwear

BikeRadar score2.5/5

With no studs, steep and muddy hikes are tricky but everywhere else, from wet rocks and roots to bog trotting, is easy to traverse, thanks to the high traction Vibram sole. The area around the cleat is deep so you may have to shim them out to fit. Pedalling performance is on the flexible side of stiff, but that helps when hiking.

The high top, twin Velcro strap upper provides lots of ankle support, but is restrictive for pedalling - loosening one of the straps helped. Neither strap will stop water trickling down into the boot where inner meets the outer, so you will get wet feet, but at least they’ll be warm and wet. Fit is on the slim side, but thumb loops make it easy to pull them on and the cord-style laces do a good job of fitting different foot shapes.

The perforated suede uppers are an issue, water beads off initially but after a drenching they start to soak up water and the boots become really heavy. As you keep riding mud packs into the perforations, and even with a stiff brush it’s a challenge to clean them; a wipe clean outer is a must on winter boots.

This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike

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