- Recommended for hikers, trekkers and the occasional trail runner
- Excellent traction on any trail condition. Plenty of upper support
- Fitted with the BOA lacing technology
- Weight: 15 oz.
Many of our present trail shoes are generally made to look like real trail shoes with hard rubber outsoles, over-sized lugs, toe bumpers, etc. But European-designed trail shoes such as the Viking from Norway are specifically made for the trails because of the greater tradition of hiking, trekking and running in Europe.
The Anaconda Boa II GTX has every technical bell and whistle, from the upper to the outsole. No cost was spared and this trail shoe is made with high-tech materials and innovations a European company has to offer.
This model has a nice water-resistant synthetic leather that works well to keep feet dry in wet conditions. The inside lining is made of GORE-TEX membranes which keeps the shoe waterproof that doesn’t allow the water to sip-in. Although the outer fabric is water resistant, the pores of the membranes lets heat and moisture out keeping the interior breathable and comfortable.
The outsoles are fairly aggressive as Viking use their own unique technology called the “Ultimate Grip Concept” (UGC) and i have personally felt the excellent traction while running on technical trails, rocky paths and slippery surfaces. The rubber studs are set in different directions to guarantee an excellent traction to almost any terrain.
Like some of North Face trail shoes, the Viking uses the BOA lacing system into their shoes. It’s a round piece of knob (the size of a 5 Peso coin) located on the sides and is connected to ultra-thin steel wires that serves as the laces.
When loosening the laces, you just pull out the knob and push the tongue of the shoe forward. Then to tighten it, push-in back the knob and rotate it clockwise and adjust its tightness. Pretty cool and simple.
FIT AND FEEL
I didn’t have a clue on how to unlock the BOA laces when i first tried it on. But once i got the gist of it, it was so simple to slip your foot on and out of the shoe and a lot convenient when adjusting the tightness of the lacing.
The fit is snug because of the exactness of the closure. There was no pressure points at all and the adjustments of the foot was even and secure.
The Anaconda was developed by one of Norway’s oldest “outdoor” shoe company—and it shows. It’s an excellent hiking/trail walking shoe but not purposely for running fast paces or long intervals.
However, it’s performance on every technical trail imaginable is above par! I was able to test run/walk this shoe on a recent trail and mountain run to Mt. Manalmon in Bulacan a few weeks ago (my story here). The trek up and down the trails was about 10kms and it was a cinch stepping up on rocky terrain, over large tree roots and rough roads.
The traction was superb and even if it was heavy, the shoe was responsive enough when stepping up and down slippery stones and other wet surfaces that you never worry of sliding out of balance.
The grip was good and the BOA laces stayed firmly as it was intended to be. It was water resistant when the shoe was half-submerged in the river and when it was totally submerged when wading across the river, it dried out quickly in a few minutes.
The weakness of the Anaconda is this shoe was way too heavy, a little booty and because of its weight, it was hard to sustain a continuous run.
However, the traction was phenomenal, it had a decent fit and adaptable to any off-road terrain.
This shoe should be more than adequate for mountaineers, hikers, trekkers, trail walkers or peak-baggers.
I would not discount this shoe for runners as it can be used for occasional trail runs, as a recovery or cross training shoe to run on non-technical trails. But then, i would not recommend this shoe for serious trail runners or for those wanting to race on trails.
I’ll still give the Anaconda plenty of credit. While most trail shoes are geared to for running and having this ‘trail look’, Viking builds trail shoes for function.
The Anaconda has the makings of a good running trail shoe but Viking simply didn’t have lightness and racing in their minds yet.