After nearly 10 years of hard wear in my previous pair of Asolos (the full leather TPS 520), I broke down and got a new pair when the soles of the TPS were pretty much worn through in spots. Went with the more economical but still water proof Stynger. For the cost, I have to say I'm decently happy. They've stood up to gnarly terrain well and feel pretty good even when carrying a load. The fit is pretty good all told considering my feet have a pronounced V shape with a narrow heel and very wide forefoot and it's tough to find shoes/boots of any type that fit well. My shoe size varies from 7.5 dress shoes to 8.5 running shoes and I found that an 8 in Asolo fits best. I have to disagree with other reviewers who have said that the boots fit out of the box -- I felt that way about the TPS but have found that to be less true about the Stynger. I've had hot spots and even a couple blisters from the boots thus far. I'm hoping the boots will break in to my feet a bit more and the blisters will stop, but FYI if you're planning to use these for a big trip, best to get them with enough time to get used to them, break them in, or figure out whether or not they're a good fit for your feet.
This is my 3 rd pair of Asolo Styngers. I bought my first pair 7-8 years ago and- just as advertised- I was ready to hike in them "out of the box". I had a problem with the Gortex waterproof-ability, so Asolo replaced them free. The second pair fit just as well. I went for my third pair and the sizing is a little different; My foot is a true size 6.5 wide, but I will often go to a 7-7.5 shoe. I have a narrow heel and wide forefoot. The last pair of Styngers I had was a size 7 (which is either 38/39 Euro). I tried 2 pairs which were listed as 39. These were huge. I went back to the 38 (listed as a size 6.5) which were perfect. I would guess that with a normal width foot you should go 1/2 to 1 size smaller. I was able to do a 6-peak, 16.5 mile hike in them after only wearing them a few times prior for short periods as "break-in".
Incidentally, Backcountry.com sent me all 3 pairs with free shipping and returns due to the fit issues.
After researching brands and reviews and partly because the sole of my boyfriend's Asolos cracked after over 10 years of ownership, I went with this brand. Opting for the 1/2 size up helped tremendously. I shall repeat the comments of another individual who described them as "...feeling as though my feet are saftely locked inside a vault." is a description I also found to be accurate. I've been using them during trail maintenance weekends over the last 2 months or so with hiking socks and have had no issues. Biggest plus is that my toes do not feel jammed even when I carried a 40lb pack for a few miles in and out of the work site.
NO blisters or 'hot spots' whatsoever. After bagging 3 of the 7 Summits and countless other climbs/hikes--have worn MANY other boots...but keep coming back to ASOLO--and the Stynger GT in particular.
Not for extended/technical climbs (although they are crampon-compatible)...but for absolutely EVERYTHING else--there is no comparison!
I wore them on 11 trips to Iraq and two rotations through an intensive 10-day combat shooting school (read: near-constant mud/rain/muck)--and feet were the most dry/comfortable thing on me!
I even bought a second pair to keep in reserve in the event they stop making this particular model (but I hope not!).
Bottom line: These boots are amazing and BackCountry is the place to get 'em!
I adore these boots. I wear a 6-6.5 and bought a 6.5. They are a little big in the toe and after some research on various ways to lace hiking boots, the heel stays snug. I wear them every day without problems... no aches or pains, no blisters, no numb spots. I've worn them comfortably in Afghanistan, as well as on hikes in the Blue Ridge. So, so glad I had good counsel when shopping and went for the Asolos! They were ready to wear right out of the box.
This is my 2nd pair...1st pair had a defect and backcountry.com was outstanding in their customer service to take the back and get me my next pair at the same price I originally paid.
Excellent fitting boot. Downside is the break-in period that I've experienced as well only much longer in their leather hikers. But I wouldn't switch to another for this minor adjustment due to the long wear and overall performance of this boot!
Just ordered a pair of Stynger GTX for my girlfriend. She's 5'2", 105 lbs with a small low volume high arch foot. She is a true size 6 so we ordered a size 7. Way to big for her. The boot volume may be a problem too. I have 2 pairs of Asolos (summer and fall) and love them! We are going to try a size 6 and see what happens.
I wore these boots on a two week backpacking trip and they were great. there was virtually no break in period; i got a blister the first time i wore them and that was it. they're very comfortable and well padded. i carried about half my weight and never had any foot problems. they fit true to size for me (6.5)
I was very sceptical about how a boot so stiff could be comfortable, being the first hiking boot I've ever purchased, but WOW, they are sooo amazing, I wore them on our whole 4 day camping trip, cause i just didnt want to take them off! I am going to purchase a 2nd pair, just to have two!
I love these boots...now. It took some breaking in (a little longer than some of the other reviewers) and a little creative lacing, but now they're great.
I love 'em now.
I bought these boots on the recommendations of other reviews. I went with my regular size 8.5, but when I added my usual gel inserts found the boots too snug in the toe box. Also I could not stop my toes from hitting the front of the boot no matter how tight I tied the boots, even without the inserts.
I could have returned them for a size 9, but did not think that would solve my problem with not being able to tighten them enough.
Too bad as I loved the look of the boots.