At 1842g (pair, size 46) the Salewa Raven 2 GTX boot is relatively light. The upper is made with an abrasion-resistant microfibre, suede leather and a Gore-Tex waterproof lining with a full rubber rand. The ankle cuff is slightly lower than others and certainly more flexible. The outsole is Vibram with deep, well-spaced lugs, a big heel breast and good stiffness. That all makes this well-featured for general mixed winter terrain.
The men’s sizes are 6-12 and women’s are 3-9. You get a volume adjuster to allow a more precise fit, and the laces extend well to the toe with locking eyelets in the midfoot area. The articulated ankle cuff fits exceptionally well. The toe box is more pointed than some, so it may feel restrictive for walkers, but ideal for climbers.
The Salewa Raven 2 GTX is very comfortable on the foot, with that ankle cuff feeling particularly close and soft, and with more movement forward and to the side than others. This makes it more comfortable on level ground, but your foot does have to work a little harder when traversing slopes. The narrow toe box was fine for my narrow feet, but some may find this area is less comfy than wider designs.
The Salewa Raven 2 GTX is an excellent boot for winter walking, although the rolling action is not quite as smooth as others. The ankle cuff is not quite as supportive as others either, and the upper may be slightly less durable than some options for hard users. The narrow toe is great for scrambling, as it allows more precise foot placement. The sole lugs are ideal for soft snow, and you can fit crampons with heel clips.
The price is great for what you get, and only those who want the absolute best need pay more than this.
The Salewa Raven 2 GTX challenges higher-priced boots, but it is not the most supportive or durable and may not suit all general winter walkers.
Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine January 2017