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Review: inov-8 Rocfly G 390 GTX walking boots

Written by Fiona

August 03 2023

My review of the inov-8 Rocfly G 390 GTX walking boots, which the brand calls “waterproof cushioned rockets”. There are also inov-8 Rocfly G 350 GTX shoes. This is the updated version of the non-waterproof models from 2021. In my review of the non-waterproof inov-8 Rocfly G 390 hiking bots, I questioned why the brand had not made the footwear waterproof.

Features of inov-8 Rocfly G 390 GTX walking boots

Claims from inov-8:

MORE ENERGY: G-FLY Graphene midsole foam gives 25% more energy return, for a snappy rebound with every step.

ALL-DAY COMFORT: The cushioned foam, wide-fit toe-box and plush inner all deliver outstanding comfort. Stack heights of 35mm (heel) and 29mm (forefoot) result in a comfortable 6mm drop.

UNIQUE AGILITY: A revolutionary ADAPTER-FLEX groove cuts through the outsole rubber and midsole foam, allowing the foot and boot to move more naturally.

BE PROTECTED: The waterproof GORE-TEX membrane keeps feet dry, while the durable – yet still flexible – ripstop upper material repels any dirt.

GET A GRIP: 4mm rubber lugs enhanced by the world’s strongest material – Graphene – give long-lasting tough grip over all terrains.

PERFECT FIT: Overlays on the upper connect the heel and midfoot. When the laces are tightened, this pulls in an overlay to create a secure, locked-in feel across heel and midfoot.


On test: inov-8 Rocfly G 390 GTX walking boots

When I tested the non-waterproof version of these boots a couple of years ago, I really liked the fit and comfort. However, I would rarely wear boots that are not waterproof on UK trails and hills, so it’s great to see an updated version with Gore-Tex waterproofing.

The fit is great. I have a narrow foot, which means the fore-foot feels very roomy but it’s still fine. For anyone with a medium width foot, they will like this boot.

My ankles do not slip around in the boot and the heel cup feels secure. The cuff height is mid and it is cut down at the Achilles. I can see this might not suit people with a tendency to get niggly Achilles tendons but for most walkers, it’s a comfortable style of mid-height boot.

It’s easy enough to get the boots to lace up to give a secure fit.

Walking in the boots feels like a comfy pair of trainers, only with the added ankle security for rough ground.

Sarah enjoyed wearing the boots during a Munro hike.

When I first wore inov-8 shoes more than a decade ago, they did not design deep foam soles. The shoes were all about close-to-the-ground soles. More recently, the brand has been introducing footwear with thicker foam soles. These are great if you plan to walk long-distance and like a lot of cushioning.

I think the soles are not far from being the same as some Hoka shoes and boots. (Hoka is well known for deeper soles and high levels of cushioning.)

Despite the thicker sole, it doesn’t feel like the boots sap my energy. The foam is firm enough to be responsive yet deep enough to offer comfort over many miles. A friend, Sarah, borrowed the boots for a Munro hike and she said it was like “walking on air”.

The soles are made for trails and hills, although they are not as deep lugged as some of inov-8’s footwear that is made for steeper and muddier terrain. I have found the soles to be ideal for local woodland trails and hill paths.

Sarah was very happy wearing the boots on the mountain hike and found the Rocfly G 390 GTX walking boots to be grippy even on wet and rocky scrambley sections. I’ve also found the boots to be nicely grippy on most terrain, both wet and dry.

If you plan to walk where it is steeper and muddier or with more off-path terrain, I suggest you go for the inov-8 Roclite PR G 400 walking boots.

Although lined with a Gore-Tex membrane, the boots do let in some water when it is raining. I think this is due to the mid-height ankle cuff. The ingress is not too bad but if you will be walking in heavy rain and where vegetation is soaked, you might want to add gaiters.

The boots look lovely. It’s always a bonus when a walking boot or shoe looks attractive. It would be good to see a couple of other colour choices for women.

Another wee annoyance is that the loop at the back of the boot to help you pull on the boots is not easy to use. It needs to be a bit bigger and more “loopy”.

The price is about what I’d expect.

  • I received a pair of boots from inov-8 without payment in return for an independent and honest review.

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