Columbia Talus Ridge Mid OutDry

, February 5, 2012

Based in Edinburgh and within striking distance of the Highlands, I headed up to Scotland’s adventure playground to test a pair of Columbia’s versatile mid-weight boots, the Talus Ridge Mid OutDry.

The first thing I noticed about the boot was Columbia’s patented OutDry system. Columbia Sportswear acquired OutDry Technologies S.r.l from Nextec S.r.l in 2010, so adding a waterproof breathable system to brands including Mountain Hardwear, Sorel and Columbia itself. Instead of using a seam-sealed waterproofing system for the outermost layer, OutDry forms a waterproofing membrane that bonds to the outermost layer of the product. As a result, OutDry items don’t absorb water, so maintaining a light and breathable outer layer whether it be wet or dry. I have full confidence in this technology to ensure my feet remain bone-dry without compromising breathability or weight, and it is a system that is indispensable when facing the unpredictable weather found in the Scottish Highlands.

The feature of the Talus Ridge that most impressed me was the grip of the boots. When I put these to the test I challenged them to a typical winter in Scotland, and on a trip that I might have previously taken a pair of B2 winter mountaineering shoe. The lightweight Talus Ridge held up remarkably; while not crampon compatible, the Omni-Grip sole certainly fronted up, retaining traction on packed snow with little lateral movement. With the Talus Ridge, Columbia have managed to find  a balance between lightweight and traction control, allowing you to move faster with greater confidence.

As for other features, The Talus Ridge’s impact-absorbing and durable cushion maintained a good level of traction when scrambling over wet rocks or wading through heavy snow. Incorporated Techlite technology also provides a naturally antimicrobial and odor-resistant compound, necessary for those lengthier expeditions.

Columbia’s Talus Ridge Mid Outdry is the ideal boot for all-round adventuring, spreading itself over many disciplines and thereby not limiting its use to any one sport. These boots are not just used for Scottish conditions however; combining these boots with a rigid mountaineering boot on an Alps expedition, for example, would allow for a very comfortable mountain approach, without the arduous and less forgiving mountaineering boots.

If you are after a lightweight trail shoe with the technical specifics of a tough hiking boot, then opt for the Talus Ridge Mid with OutDry tech.

Useful Information

    • UK RRP £130 (Men’s and Women’s) | US MSRP $145 (Men’s and Women’s)  | Availability in South Africa
    • Sizes available: Men’s US 7-15 / EU 40-53  and Women’s US 5-12 / EU 36-45
    • Available in Black & Spectra Yellow / Chili Pepper & Castlerock
    • Columbia store locator
    • Environment:  Techlite moulding process reduces waste by 25-30%, compared to other cushioning technologies.
    • Columbia Corporate Responsibility

OutDry intro video