www.brasher.co.uk | £70
Brasher says its Argon is ‘the shoe for warm weather walking’ and based on that I’d say it does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s not waterproof and it’s not designed to do anything more than walking, but it’s good at it. It offers a lot of support in all areas of the foot, so I’d feel happy wearing it for walks on more challenging terrain, or on longer walks, but it still manages to be quite light at 391g for one in size 6.5.
The sole is made from Brasher’s All Terrain sole unit, new from the company last year, and it’s not bad but not brilliant in slippery conditions – but they’re not what this shoe’s designed for. The mid-sole is quite rigid, which I think is why it feels much more sturdy than KEEN’s offering above. And for warm weather the upper is made of a breathable mixture of suede and mesh to get air to your feet.
I found the Argon really comfy, possibly because of the Memory Foam in the tongue and collar (the rim) that moulds to the shape of your foot. It has a loop for you to pull the shoe on at the heel but not at the tongue; the laces offer good friction. Looks-wise I think the best way to describe it would be ‘smart’ – I think I’d get away with wearing to work even if I worked in a proper office, although I’m not sure I’d want to wear it under jeans quite so much. (Mind you, my mum regularly tells me that my definition of smart is different to everyone else’s.)
Other than fit my main criteria for buying a hiking shoe is that it’s waterproof – even on a sunny walk-in to a crag you can still end up going through bog – so for me it’s worth paying a little more for a waterproof shoe if you’re already forking out. But if you know that you want hiking shoes for dry conditions, this one offers good comfort and support at a nice price.
Brasher Argon Verdict
As Brasher says, a women’s shoe for warm weather walking.