Vasque Breeze Review, An Outdoorsmans Take

The Vasque Breeze series remains a popular choice of footwear for many hikers, from professionals to amateurs. Throughout the years, the company has repeatedly updated that product for additional support and comfort. The latest reiteration comes in the form of the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot.

But, there are rumors that the newest version brings a noticeable drop in quality to the table. Are these rumors unfounded? Or is there some truth to the fact that the company changed the design for the worse? In this Vasque Breeze review, we take an in-depth look at the pair of boots and provide you with a definitive answer. 

So, if you want to know whether or not the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot is worth the asking price, then keep on reading!

What Is the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot?

Vasque Breeze III GTX Men's Boot

Image from Amazon

The Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot is a piece of outdoor footwear intended for day trips and longer overnight journeys. It can handle most trail conditions, but it thrives on moderate routes and mountainous backcountry. We found that the boots can handle most type of walking material — though it thrives on dirt, boulders, mud, and light gravel.

However, keep in mind that you should try and avoid using the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot on the pavement, sidewalks, and roads. You will not experience any discomfort when you wear them in these conditions, but it will wear the sole of the boot down at a significantly faster rate. As such, we do not recommend it for every day walking around town conditions.

The company designed the boot so that it protects against adverse trail conditions while still allowing a reasonable degree of lightweight portability. The lightweight nature of the product comes from the mesh and vents that the designers strategically place throughout the footwear. This way, the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot does not get too massive of your feet while exploring.

vasque hiking boot

Image from Amazon

The openings also lend the boots some breathability that a lot of other brands lack in their products. However, do not be deceived. The shoes are not that light. They do bring a bit of heft with them. But, in our opinion, the boots represent the right balance between too heavy and too light. If a boot is too light, then it can quickly forfeit the portability for no ankle support.

As such, the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot strikes a pretty good balance. This feature makes it ideal for people living in warmer climates like California, or the Southwest. Despite its mesh opening the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot is also waterproof. As such, it works well in wet climates that rain a lot. The outsole of the product features layers between the heel and toe of the boot.

This feature gives the hiker more stability when climbing up steep inclines. The cushioning on the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot also provides a lot of ease on the feet. We recommend them for backpacking trips since they can take a lot of weight without putting a ton of pressure on your feet. When you carry roughly thirty pounds on your back, your choice of footwear matters, as such, we think most backpackers will appreciate these boots.

Product Specifications

Now that we know a little more about the general features of the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot let us get into the nitty-gritty details of the product specifications. The company makes the upper boot material of the product out of air mesh and uses a waterproof two millimeter Nubuck leather for the rest of it. 

In addition to the air mesh, the company also provides two ventilation ports in the boots: one in the toe cap and another in the heel cap. For the footbed, the company uses dual-density E.V.A. This type of footbed works with the chassis portion of the product to prevent any compression from occurring after you hike for some time.

The toe box of the boot features an ArcTempo design which gives most toes a lot more wiggle room when you use them. The shoe mostly fits the sizes offered, but you can adjust it to a moderate degree using the lace-up enclosures. The boots also offer an ankle hook for an added level of firmness and support.

The outsole of the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot comes with Vasque Exclusive Vibram® Contact Grip, and the midsole features an all-terrain compound. These features provide the boot with ideal traction in both dry and wet conditions, so you will not slip up and down the trail. Altogether, the pair of hiking boots weigh two pounds and ten ounces.

Vasque Men's Breeze Iii GTX Hiking Shoes, Wide Black Olive/Bungee 9
  • 2.0mm waterproof nubuck leather and air mesh upper. Dual density EVA footbed. TPU Shank, All Terrain Compound Midsole...
  • Vasque Exclusive Vibram Contact Grip outsole with Megagrip Compound. Weight: 2 lb. 10 oz. (1198g).

You can get the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot in your choice of three different colors schemes: brown olive/bungee cord, gargoyle/rust, and brown olive/pesto. If you shop in the men section, then you can purchase the boots in the following sizes: seven, seven in a half, eight, eight in a half, nine, nine in a half, ten, ten in a half, eleven, eleven in a half, twelve, thirteen, fourteen and fifteen.

You can also select a width size of medium, narrow or wide. If you shop in the women section, then you purchase the boots in the following quantities: six, six in half, seven, seven in half, eight, eight in half, nine, nine in half, ten, ten in half, eleven and twelve.

Specs

Value

Upper boot material

Air mesh

Leather material

2.0 millimeter waterproof Nubuck leather

Footbed

Dual-density E.V.A.

Outsole material

Vasque Exclusive Vibram® Contact Grip

Midsole material

A.T.C. (All Terrain Compound)

Weight

Two pounds and ten ounces

Color options

Three

Options for men and women?

Yes

Men size options available

Fourteen

Women size options available

Twelve

Where Can You Purchase the Hiking Boot?

Adventurous girl wearing boots

Image by Pexels via Pixabay

You can purchase the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot on most major online retailers that offer hiking equipment. We recommend buying them from sites like Amazon, Moosejaw, Tactical Gear, and Mountain Steals. 

Alternatively, you can also purchase them from the manufacturer's website. If you want to buy them in person, then you can try shops like R.E.I. or Bass Pro Shops, which usually carry the Vasque brand.

How the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot Compares with Other Brands

In this section, we compare the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot with three other fashionable hiking boots. Specifically, we compare it with the Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boot, Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot and the Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot. 

We selected these products because users rated them highly, so they give us a good indication of the quality of the Vasque Breeze boots when we offer them at as a side by side comparison. They also offer a good alternative for customers who believe the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot is not a good option for them.


Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boot,...
  • ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY: This Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof hiking boot features Techlite lightweight...
  • HANDY FEATURES: This men's hiking boot is crafted of a waterproof full-grain leather and suede lightweight construction...
  • ADJUSTABLE FEATURES: The Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof II hiking boot features a lace-up closure for an adjustable,...

If you want some outdoor footwear that you can use both for hiking and work, then the Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot is a good option. The company makes the boots out of leather, mesh, and suede mixture. It features a rubber sole and Omni-Grip technology that gives it the right amount of traction. The mesh opening also allows for a nice amount of breathability when you use them. 

The Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boot comes in seven different colors schemes: black, dark brown/light copper, cordovan/squash, collegiate navy/rust, mud/sanguine, silver sage/faint banana, and graphite/royal. However, like any product, the boot comes with some issues.

The biggest problem is that the boot is not waterproof. Customers complained that they could feel the water in their two after walking in the tall, damp grass. As such, it does not survive well in rainy climates or similar wet environments. Also, the aluminum hooks that hold that laces together do not last long under repeated use.

Part of this problem comes from the fact that they rust over easily when you get them wet. Also, you should not expect the boots to last long. People who wore shoes often complain that the heels on the product quickly give out. Other customers note that the interior part of the shoe falls apart fast as well. In many cases, they became unwearable within six months.


Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
  • Leather, Mesh Upper
  • Vibram TC5 Outsole; Merrell air cushion in the heel absorbs shock and adds stability, 5 millimeter lug depth
  • Molded nylon arch shank

If you put comfort at the forefront of your needs, then you should enjoy Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot. The company makes the boot out of suede leather and mesh mixture. The outsole of the boot features a Vibram TC5 outsole. The comfort in the boots come from the air cushion material that the company uses.

Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot come in eight different colors schemes: earth, granite, beluga, brindle, walnut, dusty olive, bracken, and olive blue. One significant advantage we found with Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is the lightweight nature of the product.

If you find that most boots get too heavy on your feet too quickly, then this product is a good fit for you. We also find that the shoes last for a pretty long time compared to some of the other brands on this list. Under middle use, we think you can get roughly two years out of them before they start getting uncomfortable.

However, we do not agree that the boots are waterproof. If anything, they are water-resistant. The boots do keep light moisture and rain out of the inside, but if you hike through wet morning grass, then you will probably notice them getting soaked. 

The main problem with Merrell Men's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot is that it does not come with the best traction. As such, we would only recommend it for light to moderate trails. Anything more intense and you could hurt yourself by slipping the boot.


Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot
  • Our White Ledge Men's Hiking Boots have premium full-grain waterproof leather uppers, seam-sealed waterproof...
  • LOOK NO FURTHER for trail-ready performance and style. Our selection of men’s hiking boots, waterproof hiking boots,...
  • TIMBERLAND HAS YOU COVERED whether you're looking for men's boots, women's boots, or kids boots. For the best in hiking...

If you do not like the look of mesh in the boot, then you will probably approve of the all leather appearance of Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot. They are also one of the more affordable pairs of hiking boots on this list.

The Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot comes in five different color schemes: black, dark brown, wheat, brown, and brown nubuck. Where outdoor footwear succeeds is the waterproof nature of the product. While many brands claim that their boots are waterproof, most of the time they still leak a little.

The Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot is exceptional in terms of providing complete water resistance, even in heavy rain. Unfortunately, the product is not perfect. Some people complain that the toe section of the boot fits too tightly, especially if you wear them daily. Other not that the low price comes from the fact that the company makes the boots in China. 

While it may cost less this way, it does come with a lack of sustaining quality. As such, we recommend them for the occasional hiker. If you want a pair of work boots for daily use or plan on going on a long, multiple-day hike, then we recommend looking at a different brand.

Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot Pros and Cons

Person wearing boots jumping

Image by snicky2290 via Pixabay

In this section of our Vasque Breeze review, we talk about some of the things we like about the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot and some things we think could use improvement. We use both our own opinions and user reviews, so we get a more objective take on the pros and cons of the product. 

Pros

The first thing we like about the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot is the ankle support provided by the product. When you hike on tight trails, you will find your foot twisting a turning regularly to get a good position before moving. Unfortunately, many boot brands can quickly exacerbate the tension placed on the ankles, especially if they remain too firm.

Luckily, the air mesh and leather material bend well while not sacrificing support. Except for the heel on the product we also found that the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot offers some exceptional durability. After a year or so of use, there still is not any noticeable cracking, wearing or stitched seams on the product. 

We did notice that the color fads on the boots, especially when they remain in sunlight. But this feature did not bother us (in fact we kind of like the worn look). We also love the amount of traction that the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot provides. The Vasque Exclusive Vibram® Contact Grip puts in work in terms of firm footing.

Even in muddy conditions, we found very few instances of slipping and sliding. Plus they can handle the severe vertical inclines that accompany parts of the Appalachian Trail and the Grand Canyon. Another thing we love about the Vasque company is customer service. You do not need to worry about ordering the wrong size online because the company makes sure you get the right fit.

They accommodate any mistake in size and pay for the shipping necessary to replace the boot with a wearable version. Finally, the shoes also provide reasonable protection against colder weather. The boots would suit individuals who use them in the cold or enjoy a good winter hike.

They are usable in the summer, but they do sometimes get hot in sunny weather. We found that the mesh did not provide the same amount of breathability they claim to offer in the summer, but the temperature remains bearable.

Cons

Unfortunately, the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot comes with some noticeable flaws. For one thing, many brand loyalists claimed that this new version of the Vasque Breeze boot comes with a noticeable drop in quality when compared with its predecessors. We found that this drop in quality mainly comes in the form of the sole.

After excessive use, the sole on our Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot started getting worn down around the heels. While it was not enough to make the boots unusable, we saw pictures of some users boots in which the entire sole came almost entirely off the boot.

We attribute this problem to a change in sole material, but regardless Vasque should take care of it if they expect their customers to continue paying for moderately priced hiking boots. We also noticed other minor issues. For example, the vast size option often does not fit individuals with wide feet.

As such, we recommend them primarily for people with narrower feet. Many people also note that shoes are not entirely waterproof. This con comes from the mesh that the company uses on the boots. While it does keep most feet dry during light rain, it will let some water in if you step in a puddle or pool. 

We also think that the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot weighs quite a bit when compared with some of the other products on this list. While they are not too heavy, they do become noticeable on longer hikes. 

The company also uses cheap metal on the top hooks that hold the laces. A lot of customers complained that their hooks broke early and required replacing. Finally, they take a long time for breaking in until they become comfortable. You may find that it takes three or four uncomfy hikes before you get used to them.

Pros

  • Helpful ankle support on the boots
  • Parts of it last a long time
  • Provide good footing on trails
  • Great customer service
  • Protect against cold weather

Cons

  • Full-size option not big enough for some feet
  • Mesh parts of the boots let water in
  • Heavy compared with other brands
  • Cheap metal on the top hooks
  • Take a while to break-in

Conclusion

Hiking boot

Image by MabelAmber via Pixabay

In our opinion, the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot still represents a pretty dependable product. The outdoor footwear scores a lot of points for us in terms of traction and comfort. We find they can handle a lot of tight trails and they do not break your feet when you do it.

The waterproof feature on the boots does not work all the time, but for most hiking conditions you should be fine as long as it is not a downpour. However, as we noted, the shoes are not perfect.

The latest version of the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot comes with some pretty serious design flaws in terms of the sole quality and metal hooks used for the lacing. We did notice a discernible drop in quality when compared to past versions of the Vasque Breeze.

Most people probably will not notice the change in the product, but we think diehard Vasque fans will find themselves disappointed in the product. So, we urge users to proceed with a grain of salt before committing to the product. 

We give the Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking Boot a final rating of three in half stars out of five stars. We hope this Vasque Breeze review helped you decide whether or not the product fits your specific hiking needs. Good luck on the trails!

Featured image from Pixabay

James Moore
 

Hey, I'm the founder of Fishing Kayaks Guide. As a professional angler for over 10 years now, I love to hear and share experience and knowledge about kayak fishing and get connected to all of you people who are enthusiastic to hit the water.

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