Hi-Tec Viper Trail Ultra WPi

Just in from Hi-Tec are the Viper Trail Ultra WPi.

They’re a beefy trail shoe, in that understated style that sees Hi-Tec outdoor footwear on as many casual feet as it does outdoor feet.
The upper is a mix of nubuck leather and mesh, the mesh being multi-layered, so no draughts or dirt will get though. The nubuck has some raised ridges to deflect some wear and tear away from the stitch lines.
The lacing is through webbing loops which will run fine if kept clean, although the tongue behind them isn’t gusseted as high as you’d expect for a water resistant shoe, a feature oddly common on Hi-Tecs.
There’s a nice smooth internal lining and a decent footbed, with the fit being very much on the roomy side with only a hint of sculpting at the heel cup.
The sole unit is thickly cushioned with a nice stiffness from the heel to the toes, where it’s much softer, a good balance I think and something I’m used to. The outsole is a Vibram model, with a tread that should work fine on most terrain. It curves up over the rounded heel which should give easy trail walking, taking the sting out of heel strikes.
It has the Ion Mask water repellancy, which does work well, if bringing it’s own issues along such as drying time after immersion. So for me, if they fit you they should be great for trail walking and general kicking about. Hi-Tec are definitely playing to their home crowd here.

Product Information

  • Weight:
  • UK Price: £75.00
  • Materials: NuBuck Leather and Mesh, Vibram Sole
  • Details: Ion Mask Water Repellant Treatment
  • Made In: China

6 thoughts on “Hi-Tec Viper Trail Ultra WPi”

  1. Hmm, quite presentable – I may have to keep an eye out for reductions on these since my stock of sale-bought, everyday Merrells is reaching its end :)

  2. They do look nice don’t they. So many trail shoes are getting very spindly and all low profile, these are chunky and proud of it.

    (I’ll get the weight added later, forgot the scales…)

  3. I did think ion mask was theoretically meant to improve drying times – indeed the major claimed benefit for this sort of shoe.

    Have they filled it with non treated foam padding or something?

  4. I’ve found that it traps the water inside, the leather ones especially took forever to dry after the got soaked inside and out a couple of times. I think it is whatever is in the middle is holding the water and the outer layers aren’t wicking it away or somnething ?
    I’ve had a couple of other models on test which are better, I’ll have an update in a while.

  5. Well there goes another smart idea :)
    (as long it wasn’t compromising – or even improving – drying speed it sounded very rational but…).

    I suppose the plasma treatment might well not penetrate all the way through thick layers. Or maybe there’s some odd reason that stops them from treating everything.

  6. I know, it’s an odd one isn’t it?

    In practice it just seems like a decent DWR to me, especially after a bit of wear and tear. That’s not a criticism though, the water doesn’t peneterate the leather, but will squeeze through mesh.

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