Gaerne makes some of the best off road boots available today. They also make
one of the most complete lines. They have a boot for every level of riding, from
the clean jerseys all the way to the pros. This React is third in line out of
four MX capable models we have available here at Jafrum, behind the SG 10's and
12's and just ahead of the GX-1's.
A little clarity for our overseas customers, there are technically three
versions of this boot available globally, the difference between the three being
the sole construction. In the US, we're privy to just one. The model we have
available is the version with the Goodyear Welt sole construction and the
smooth, MX style tread pattern.
The React boot is available in four color ways, including this sharp red and
white version, and in US sizes eight to thirteen. The sizing is accurate, so, if
you get your feet measured with a proper measuring device at a shoe store, you
will be able to order without adjustment. If you are a half size, order the next
size up. Remember, Gaerne is a European boot manufacturer, so these aren't going
to accommodate super wide feet, but I'm on the narrow side of E, and these fit
comfortably on me.
One of the most important characteristics of an off road boot is flexibility.
The boot should prevent your ankle from rolling when you plant off of it, but
still promote easy shifting and braking. The hinge mechanism on the React is
excellent. The hinge has a single pivot point on both the lateral and medial
sides of the boot, but the hinge is able to slide back and forth on its pivot,
so the range of motion is excellent. These stretchy panels on the front and the
back of the boot work together with the ankle system to promote mobility.
An equally important off road boot characteristic is protection. The toe, the
heel, the ankle system, and the shin plate are all made of a highly durable TPU
material, and the adjustable and replaceable straps are fitted with metal
buckles for a secure fit. On the medial side of the boot is a panel that is
designed to protect your leg from heat, and to promote grip of the bike.
Now, let's face it, if you aren't wearing your gear out, you aren't riding hard
enough, so it's important for an off road boot to not only be durable, but also
have replaceable parts. The sole is made of a dual compound material that riders
say is the longest lasting on the market, and the toe cap is reinforced and
replaceable. The insole is also replaceable, as are the straps and buckles. If
you open these buckles up, you can see the mud resistant gaitor and the moisture
wicking liner designed to help keep your feet dry.