For my trip to Europe this summer, I had a major packing dilemma. Shoes were required for a variety of different activities including rock and alpine climbing, hiking, trail running, and biking. Instead of bringing an entire duffel bag full of footwear, I included my Tecnica Dragon X-Lite shoes to cover all but the most technical activities.
The Tecnica Dragon X-Lite is a multi-sport shoe meant to be used for hiking, climbing approaches, and even running. Unlike the current minimalist trend, the Tecnica Rolling System (TRS) X-Lite sole features an oversized profile that provides extra cushioning in the heel and mid-foot while still remaining lightweight.
The oversized profile was very much appreciated during a big hike up to La Jonction (pictured top) in Chamonix. Sitting at the top of the Montagne de la Côte ridge, surrounded by a sea of ice from the split in the Bossons and Taconnaz glaciers, La Jonction requires 1500 meters of hiking up from the valley floor to reach the spot. This means you have over 1500 meters of hiking back down again at the end of the day, where your heels will be happy for that little extra cushioning.
The very top of the same hike requires some steep scrambling, with the approach shoe style precision lacing and toe profile of the Dragon X-Lites coming in handy. A week later, I took my Tecnica multi-sport shoes to the very top of Germany, where reaching the summit of the Zugspitze requires some via ferrata style climbing. I was never worried about slipping, even when the rock was well worn and slightly wet.
Down in the valley surrounding Garmisch, the multi-sport shoes were light and fast enough to take me for multiple trail runs around the picturesque Lake Eibsee. On other days, the Dragon X-Lites provided enough cushioning, grip, and forward motion with the rolling rocker shape for hiking through gorges and up trails to summit plateaus. I even biked over 50 miles along the shores of Lake Constance wearing my Tecnica shoes.
Bottom Line: Check out the Tecnica Dragon X-Lite if you are looking for a single shoe to offer hiking protection, approach precision, and running performance.
The men’s and women’s Tecnica Dragon X-Lite multi-sport shoes retail for $115 and are available now.