Boreal Kovach (2015)


A 2.6mm nubuck leather upper with minimal stitching protects a Boreal Dry-Line waterproof and breathable lining to keep your feet dry. There is a full rubber rand enclosing the boot for even more protection and durability. The ankle cuff is higher than most, for more support. The outsole is a Vibram unit with widely spaced lugs that are nice and deep. 5/5


The sizes are 6-12 with no women’s option on the fit. On me the Boreal Kovach feels slightly narrower and shorter than other boots, so you might want to try a half size up from your normal sizing. The fit is quite precise, though, and this feels better for scrambling and climbing than some other models because of that. The heel area is particularly neat-fitting. 4/5


The Boreal Kovach feels good on the foot in part as it weighs 1858g (pair, size 11), which is lighter than most 3-4 season boots. The boot also comfortably hugs the foot with no firm areas even for my bony feet. The higher ankle cuff is very supportive but again without discomfort. The sole is more flexible than other 3-4 season boots we looked at, making this comfier for walking, but less ideal for snow. 4/5

In use

That comfort is great below the snowline, but it does have a softer upper and a more flexible sole unit than other 3-4 season boots, so its performance drops off when you use the edges or toe of the boot in snow or when climbing. The sole is not quite as aggressive as the best, which is not a major problem, but again it just makes the boot slightly less ideal for snow. 4/5


The Boreal Kovach is a lower-priced boot, but it has a softer upper and flex and so you are getting a less snow-orientated performance for your money. 5/5


Ideal if you want a boot that can be used with crampons occasionally and you don’t need better performance in snow. 4.4/5

Review by Graham Thompson

First published in Trail magazine December 2015