The TCX Infinity 3 GTX Boots were constructed to give adventure tourers versatile boots to handle a wide variety of conditions. While the features set includes many of the items that make for a strong touring boot, the two standout features of the Infinity 3 boots are the Gore-Tex waterproofness and the dial fastening system; these place the Infinity 3 in the premium footwear category. The grippy sole and the tall upper with its beefy shin plate impact protection, along with the elasticized gaiter over the rear of the calf to prevent rock and sand ingress, put the boot in the adventure-touring category.
The TCX Infinity 3 GTX Boots look to have top-notch construction. The outer consists of a synthetic, leather-like material across the top and the outside of the foot. Technical fabric also wraps over the top of the foot but under the protective synthetic leather flap. The boot’s fit can be adjusted from a firm embrace to a loose grip, depending on your desires, thanks to a fastening system that uses a rotary dial to adjust the tension on a wire lace to cinch the outer closed. This standout feature allows you to adjust the snugness of the fit for the type of riding you plan to do.
The synthetic leather continues up the boot behind a molded shin plate to protect from stray rocks. The shin plate utilizes two sections of hook-and-loop to allow the top opening to accommodate different-sized calves. The inner portion of the boot that will contact the bike is covered with suede for better grip. The top enclosure of the boot uses an elastic accordion section to help keep debris out of the boots for those who prefer to wear them outside of their pants. The top of the boot, however, can also be easily worn under riding pants and riding jeans.
The boot interior is kept dry by a Gore-Tex membrane, while the foot’s creature comforts are attended to by a fleece-like liner. The footbed utilizes OrthoLite padding for comfort after long hours in the saddle, whether sitting or standing. Under the footbed, the Groundtrax rubber outsole offers plenty of grip in both pavement and dirt.
Even on the first ride, the Infinity 3s felt great on the motorcycle. The sole’s rigidity felt immediately at home when standing on wide, dual-sport foot pegs. I could see myself standing for many miles without issue in these boots. As the boots wore in, shifting became progressively easier but not as tough as true off-road boots. Braking was never an issue. Unfortunately, walking is a different story. While there is a small flexible section of the outer designed to allow the boot to crease, the beefy technical fabric below it is pretty stiff, and on both boots, it folded in such a way that the crease pressed into the front of my ankle joint, right at the bend. While this isn’t painful, it is quite noticeable.
When studying a photo of the Infinity 3s on the TCX web site, the boot doesn’t appear to be folding in the same place. Additionally, the wire laces aren’t tightened down as much, meaning that the issue I‘ve encountered may be due to my narrow feet and the need to overlap the two layers of the upper more completely to achieve a snug fit. Wearing the Infinity 3s as street shoes for several days of just walking around has improved things, but the issue hasn’t gone away.
The Infinity 3s have been fairly slow to break in, but they have begun to shape themselves to my feet the more that I wear them. I see this as a sign of the sturdiness of their construction and TCX’s desire to provide as much off-road protection as possible without resorting to the external hard structures seen on off-road-specific boots.
On the road – both paved and dirt
I had the opportunity to test the boots in extremely rainy conditions by taking them for an extended ride in an atmospheric river. About 60% of my ride was at highway speeds in a heavy downpour for maximum potential water penetration. When riding at lower speeds, I rode through axle-deep puddles and put my boots down in water up to my ankles at a stop. When I arrived back at home, my feet were warm and dry, which is what one expects when wearing gear bearing the Gore-Tex badge.
My time with the TCX Infinity 3 GTX Boots has left me with mixed feelings. I would wear them for extended rides – with or without rain – no questions asked. However, if I were going on a tour that I was going to spend a good amount of time walking, I’d think twice. It could be that after I invest more time in breaking in the boots that the issue will lessen. However, given the creases that are forming in the outer, I don’t see them going away. Now what about adventure riding? As I said, being prepared for weather on a tour is where these boots shine, but as with most adventure touring boots I’ve seen, I wouldn’t take them on more than dirt/gravel roads. There’s a reason off-road boots are so stiff, and when your adventure turns into technical riding, you’ll want boots that offer more protection.
In summary, the TCX Infinity 3 GTX Boots are sturdy, well-constructed, completely-waterproof boots that excel in touring and light off-road duty. They have a clever ratcheting dial function to adjust their fit for a variety of foot sizes. Unfortunately, with my narrow feet, the amount of tightening required for a snug fit means that a fold in the boot on the front of the ankle rubs against my ankle. Although this has lessened with breaking in, I doubt it will go away completely. My advice is to try these boots on and walk in them before you buy them. The TCX Infinity 3 GTX Boots are available in European sizes 38-48 for a retail price of $420.
Shop for the TCX Infinity 3 GTX Boots here
What is an adventure motorcycle boot?
Adventure motorcycle boots are touring boots that draw their protection technology and styling from off-road/motocross boots. Typically, they offer beefier ankle protection with increased height up the leg that features padding for rock impact mitigation. The soles are usually reinforced to allow the rider to stand on the pegs for extended periods while absorbing the bumps associated with dirt and gravel roads.
What are touring motorcycle boots?
Touring motorcycle boots are designed to offer both crash and weather protection for the wide varieties of environments that can be encountered on multi-day, multi-state rides. Often, they have shorter tops, going up to mid-calf. The soles are rubberized and made for walking as much as they are for riding. Variations on the touring boot are available for different conditions. There are vented touring boots, waterproof touring boots, and surprisingly, vented/waterproof touring boots sold.
Can you walk around in motorcycle boots?
That really depends on the kind of boot. Specialized boots, like racing boots and motocross boots are not ideal for walking due to their stiffer, more protective design, but commuter and touring boots were created to be worn both on and off of a motorcycle, meaning that some can be as comfortable as street shoes while still offering protection for the rider’s ankles and other vulnerable parts of their feet.
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