My Hi-Tec Hillside boots have finally had it, parts on the bottom have completely worn out. Not bad, they have lasted 2 years and been through a lot. Rather conveniently Hi-Tec Europe kindly sent me a pair of Bandera Lite WP to test out. So this is my initial impression post, I will do another review during the summer after they have had some good usage and another one at the end of the year.
The boots were delivered at the start of March. Taking them out of the box and they look good. But looks are secondary to how they perform. Picking them up they feel light. Putting them on initially one foot felt a slightly tight, not enough to be uncomfortable. With any footwear I tend to wear them for a few general short walks to break them in (more on that in a bit). So unboxing them and this is what I have:
I have used them for a bit for general usage to get used to them as well as a few short walks. The tightness disappeared quickly and not an issue. The first proper test was on 17th March when they went out for a walk with a film crew at Snelsmore Common and yes it was cold and full of snow.
Despite the cold, and believe me it was cold, my feet didn't feel cold or wet considering the depth of snow I was treading in, 6 inches in places. The common is a mixture of surfaces, concrete, tar, mud, bricks, leaves, tree trunks, roots, and so on. I went over the lot and not once did the boots loose grip. Taking them off after several hours and I can't even say my feet were dry and warm.
So having had these for a few weeks, although they have only had light usage they are comfortable, warm, dry and have kept excellent grip. So far I am impressed. Watch out for a follow up review in a few months time.