Stock Code: L-ZMB-D-065
Fulfils the requirement for a lightweight desert boot. Ideal for drivers, air crew and for all those who’s role isn’t direct patrolling on the ground i.e. those who don’t require a full on combat boot. So if you’re in and around camp, possibly Camp Bastion, this is the boot for you. Hey it even looks good for just kicking around in Civvy street.
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I have used untold amounts of Military Boots during my career and I believe they are the single biggest thing that the modern soldier needs to get right when buying. I have had the LOWA Zephyr Mid TF boots for about 4 weeks now and I have to say I'm very impressed with them. The first thing that struck me was their look, normally Lowa Boots are quite conservative but these are very modern looking and a completely different style than the range of mountain boots they do.
The biggest downfall for Lowa Boots in the past has been the weight of them and this is what has put me off buying a pair in the past, but with these boots they appear to have got it spot on as they are very light indeed weighing only 1300 grams. This is one of the best part of this boot I feel as nowadays the modern soldier is carrying so much kit the last thing he needs is another 2 kg strapped to his feet!
This boot is advertised for use by aircrew and people kicking around camp, so i was expecting a boot with little or no ankle support. On seeing and wearing the boot I was pleasantly surprised as the boot had a fair amount of support and padding around the ankle. I wore these boots on a boot run and also on a tab x country and i had no problems at all with rolling my ankles and at no time did i feel that they didn't offer enough support. The boots are cut slightly higher than the ankle (like most civi walking bootsare) which should ease the pressure on the wearers shins unlike high leg boots.
The boots are made from breathable materials which is good to see bearing in mind what theatre of operations they are most likely to be worn in, the down side to this is that they are in no way waterproof. The inside of the boot has some sweat wicking mesh to keep the feet relatively dry in hot conditions which is good but i do think this would give the boot a certain amount of odour over time!!!! I would imagine that they would be quite poor at insulating the wearers feet in cold weather, so all things considered i would use these boots for Afghan summers but possibly not during the winter months.
I was quite dubious about the lacing system on the boots when i first got them as the lower half of the boot has material strips for the laces and only the top third of the boot has metal loops. I think they have done this to save some weight but i can see this as a weak point on the boot as you would only have to catch them on something sharp and there is a good chance of cutting one of the loops, also they maybe weakened by constant rubbing of the laces on the loop. Only time would tell on this but personally I would feel much happier with metal eyelets throughout.
The sole is made of rubber and the tread pattern is good for normal use but I did find that it held quite a lot of the mud on the boot, but this would go back to my point of this being a summer boot as opposed to a winter boot. The sole feels quite soft so wearing them on rocky/hard surfaces for a prolonged period of time would wear them down quite quickly, but being soft gives it a lot of flexibility which makes it very comfortable to wear and especially run in as it gives the boots a trainer feel about them much like BATES/GSG9 boots do. I do feel that the sole could be improved with the addition of a more prominent instep to make the boots more grippy when on ladders etc. The sole does come up quite high on the toe to protect the boots uppers and also I think provide some extra grip when climbing walls and things like that.
The sizing off these boots are like regular boots, but if anything they came up slightly small on me as I'm normally a size 10 and the ones I tested were a 10.5 and the fitted me fine wearing normal military issue desert socks. They were fine width wise as well and due to the materials they are made from I think they would stretch over time anyway. They were very comfortable to wear and I got no blisters/hotspots with them whatsoever and they felt like trainers when in was wearing them and a far cry from the heavy boots they normally make.
These boots are quite pricey for what they are (£125) so this may put people off but I reckon they would last definitely one 6 month tour of HARD use and maybe even two so you are going to get your money's worth. So all in all they are comparable in price to most Military Boots in the shops these days, and with Lowa Boots you are guaranteed to get quality workmanship.
Overall I would give these boots a 9 out of 10. They are a very good boot in most aspects however I think that there are some areas that the boot could be improved on as far as the sole and lacing system go. I would recommend this LOWA Zephyr Mid TF boots to anyone deploying to Afghan in the summer months, I don't think anyone serving on the frontline kicking in compound doors would have any dramas with them and I will be taking mine with me next time I go.
We are currently deployed overseas. We are a Deep Reconnaissance Platoon in the Marine Corps. We conduct Long Range Recon Missions with the challenges of different types of uneasy terrain all over the world, all while carrying 90+ lbs packs. We very strongly support your product and they have proven time and time again to outperform the standard Marine Corps issued boots as well as the competition. Your boots come highly recommended by us. They have passed our test.
- 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit / DEEP RECON PLATOON
Ordered on the 25th PM, got them delivered in Belgium the 30th AM... enough said there.
I'm not gonna talk about the quality's of this shoe - you'll find enough (video & written) reviews on the internet for that.
I am gonna advise on the size of these boots:
My previous Lowa's, totally destroyed LOWA Renegades were a UK size 10. The Zephyrs are not available at Benelux (god knows why) so i couldn't try them on for size before buying at RVOps...it was hard to make up a conclusion out of all the Zephyr-reviews out there... many stated that you should buy them a half size larger (or more) than your normal shoes due to smaller toe-space in the Zephyr.
My Renegades had a broad sole/last so a UK size 10 was right for me in that model BUT as i read somewhere, the Zephyr appears to be made on a DIFFERENT last (a women's last i read somewhere) making it a snugger fit to ensure the "feel of a sports/basketball shoe".
Therefore i went to a local adventure store and tried on a pair of LOWA Kody (also made on a narrower last than the Renegades but otherwise fairly similar in looks) in a UK size 10. My toes bumped into the front of the shoe with each step. A UK size 10.5 fitted me perfectly.
This convinced me to order the Zephyrs in a UK size 10.5, indeed a half size larger than my Renegades. The Zephyrs fit me perfectly and i'm absolutly sure a UK size 10 would have been too small.
Also: carefull about mistaking UK sizes for US sizes (and vice versa), i believe this is why some yanks where unhappy about their purchase on other websites. One guy even orderd "1" and got exactly 1 shoe, not a pair, LOL, guess he should have ordered at RVOps instead.
At RVOps, i can say i'm very much at ease and confident for online shopping: great gear, no unwanted surprises, my favorite online store!
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