It's embarrassing enough to fall off a dirt bike but it would be even more embarrassing to be airlifted out of the backcounty with broken bones. That's why wearing the right gear for the ride is is so important. And anyway, after only my second dual-sport ride, my poor little Tour Master street boots were trashed. My friend's motocross boots fit okay, but they were too heavy and noisy to walk in. It was clearly time to go shopping.
Looking through the crop of serious four-season, full-height, dual-sport adventure-touring boots, I found that boots with the features I was looking for ranged from $350 to $550 in price. After a couple of months grilling the adventure motorcycling community about their choices, I decided on the TCX Infinity adventure touring boots, formerly branded Oxtar. Join me to find out more about them and about many other brands I looked at during my shopping excursion.
I ended up buying a men's boot because the pickings for women in the dual-sport and adventure motorcycling category are slim. (There are many choices for women in street boots.) All I could find were SIDI's Vertigo Lei and Fusion Lei, which are, of course, compromises, so I had to look through the men's boots for options. These boots are constructed for wider feet in larger sizes.
I never appreciated my feet so much until now! I wear somewhere between a size 8 or 9 in women's sizes, size 38-40 in Euro-sizes. Most of these boots are made in Italy, and can be special-ordered in smaller sizes, but 38 is about where it starts. Women who wear smaller than size 38 and women with narrow feet will probably not be able to wear any of the boots mentioned in this review. If you're a size 7, you might consider trying a hefty sole insert.
This review of the TCX Infinity boots is followed by a review of my shopping experience that includes descriptions of competing boots with reasons for eliminating them from my list. I hope you can find a pair to fit you!
Above is a series of photos of my first try-on of the boots. (Click to enlarge.) They were easy to put on, the buckles are very adjustable, and I like the elastic collar at the top. I also like the understated look of them. I'm wearing my Olympia Moto Sports Mesh Tech jacket and pants. The pants unzip all the way to the hip making it very easy to put on and take off your boots.The Contenders
- TCX Infinity GTX Boots $359, X-Desert $399
- Aerostich Combat Touring Boots $367
- Gaerne Balance Oiled Boots $395
- Forma Adventure Boots $299, Boulder $279, Cape Horn $299
- SIDI Discovery Rain Boots $350, Adventure Rain $400, Adventure Gore-Tex $550
- Alpinestars Toucan Boots $449
- Dainese Carroarmato Gore-Tex Boots $369
Standard on most of these boots are ski boot-type buckle closures, sturdy heel and toe cockpits, and reinforced material that protects the ankles. They're all tall boots, and most have additional padding along the front that protects you from the commonly experienced shin-to-footpeg bashing syndrome.
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