A recommended winter option for clipped-in riders.
In the world of the best winter boots for mountain biking, the Scott Heater is like a half-way house between the Giro Blaze and Shimano MW7. It gets a full Gore-Tex Duratherm construction that extends all the way to the top of the boot, but utilises a flap-and-strap-style closure. The zip is fully waterproof, but it suffered from the same problems as the one on the Giro – it started to jam up after one ride. Trying to zip up this shoe when your hands are cold, and the tag is slippery, is hard work.
Underneath the cover is a gusseted tongue with some plush padding. The pull lace system is almost identical to the Giro Blaze, and you really have to pull it just as hard to get it tight.
The glass fibre composite sole is covered with Scott’s Sticki rubber, but it’s not actually that sticky; it’s only medium grip when compared to the other shoes on test. That said, the shoe did feel stable on the pedal and clipping in and out was also pretty smooth. The cleat box is narrow, but it’s open at either end, so we never had an issue with clogging. There’s a bit more meat on this sole, so off-bike grip is good too, despite it not having any toe studs.
We really liked that Scott is running a high-quality Aegis footbed in the Heater. This insole has a removable Metatarsal pad and adjustable arch support – for example, you can add a deeper insert if you have a high arch, which makes the overall fit and comfort that much better.
The Scott Heater is a lightweight shoe, which cuts weight when it’s covered with heavy clag. It’s also available in a good range of sizes and is mid-price, but what pegged it back a point is the zip. Even when the whole shoe is covered, you can just peel back the flap on the Shimano MW7 to reveal the laces if you want to make adjustments, but with the Scott Heater you have to hunt around for the zip, and when you find it, it doesn’t open easily or smoothly.