Tested: Alpinestars Tech 7 Enduro Drystar Boots
Adventure bikes are essentially big dirt bikes, and when it comes to riding them off-road, there is really only one type of boot that’s worth using: a motocross boot. Quality MX boots provide the best possible protection, while offering other benefits such as enhanced bike grip, foot support, and bike control. However, most motocross boots aren’t waterproof, which means that any time there is rain, snow, water crossings, or other wet things on a ride, you’re rolling the dice on getting wet feet. To combat this, some riders will roll the dice by giving up protection and the other benefits afforded by a motocross boot to use a waterproof touring boot. Thanks to the Alpinestars Tech 7 Enduro Drystar boots, you no longer have to roll the dice at all, because these boots are fully featured motocross boots that are also waterproof.
The Tech 7 Enduro Drystar takes the Tech 7 Enduro (T7E) and adds a Drystar breathable waterproof membrane to the boot’s construction. This makes the boot waterproof all the way up to the top of the cuff, which comes up to the bottom of the boot’s top buckle. As long as you don’t over-top the cuff, or have water running down In-The-Boot pants into your T7E Drystar boots, no amount of rain, snow, mud, or other moisture is going to cause your feet to get wet. This means the T7E Drystar’s waterproof performance is on par with the best waterproof touring boots out there. But unlike waterproof touring boots, the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar is also an awesome motocross style boot.
The Tech 7 series boots hit the sweet spot between protection, comfort, and control in a motocross boot. On the protection front, these boots have robust shin, calf, Achilles tendon, heel, foot, ankle, and hyperflexion protection, that’s well suited to the hazards posed by off-road riding. Comfort wise, Tech 7s are outstanding. After more than a year of using Tech 7 Enduro, and Tech 7 Enduro Drystar boots for all types of riding ranging from multi-day adventure rides to long days of superhard enduro rock donkey nonsense, I have zero comfort related issues. I’ve also come to really appreciate the Tech 7’s dual hinge, medial grip, foot support, and tactile feel, which all add up to a boot that has great bike control. The bottom line is that Tech 7s let you have it all: well protected and supported feet, ankles, and lower legs that will remain comfortable on all sorts of rides, all the while letting you feel connected to any sort of bike.
The word Enduro in the boot’s name means that these boots are sporting a different sole than their regular Tech 7 brethren. The enduro sole is specifically designed to provide outstanding grip on the pegs and on any off-road surface. Whether you need to make a clutch dab on a slippery wet rock, or you’re out in the desert exploring a slot canyon, the Enduro soles grip and hike quite well for a fully protected MX boot. As someone who is hiking around to get angles for shots on almost every ride, I’ve come to really appreciate how well Tech 7 Enduro boots (both Drystar and non Drystar) hike. While I wouldn’t want to hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon with them, I never think twice about making a move to get up or down some terrain feature to get an angle for a shot. Adventure riding often involves short hikes to get to some cool objective like a viewpoint or old historic site, and Tech 7 Enduros are great for making these quick excursions.
When combined with a waterproof over-the-boot pant, the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar boots are a great way to keep your feet nice and dry. About the only way you’ll get wet feet with these boots is by overtopping the cuff from stepping in water that’s too deep or running an in-the-boot pant where water can run down into the boot from your pant legs. As long as you’re cognizant of what you’re doing while wearing in-the-boot pants by doing things such as not going full send through water crossings, getting wet feet isn’t likely. However, if your inner child gets the better of you and you give said water crossing your best Moses impersonation, you’ll get to experience the one downside of the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar: once these boots are wet on the inside, they’ll take longer to dry out than a non-waterproof boot.
Temperature wise, the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar boots are slightly warmer than a regular MX boot. When paired with a good sock, this difference is very slight. That being said, I would opt for non-Drystar boots if I were setting out on a hot and dry ride in the middle of summer. For everything else, and for any ride where I know there’s a chance of encountering wet things on the ride, the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar is my go-to.
The Alpinestars Tech 7 Enduro Drystar boots are great for off-road and adventure riding. With these boots, riders can quite literally have it all: the protection, comfort, and control of a quality MX boot, and top shelf waterproof protection. Cold and wet feet have an incredible ability to really take the fun out of a ride, which is why some riders will put themselves at greater risk of getting hurt by using waterproof touring boots instead of MX boots. Yet with the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar, riders no longer have to make this gamble. Whether you’re gearing up for an afternoon ride on some muddy trails, or you’re setting out for weeks on the road and there is rain in the forecast, the Tech 7 Enduro Drystar is a great boot. For more information visit: www.alpinestars.com.
For our Tested article on the Alpinestars Tech T Boot in Issue 69: CLICK HERE