I knew it was going to pour rain—and I mean pour—days before I left for Spain and the press launch of the 2018 Yamaha MT-07 (read the review here). It seemed like a great opportunity to test some waterproof boots…but I’ll admit it, I still stacked the deck in my favor. Riding on twisty, unfamiliar roads in high winds and sheets of rain would require my full attention, and I didn’t want a wardrobe malfunction—i.e. waterproof boots that turn out not to be—to distract me. So I grabbed my newest pair, the Sidi Lady Gavia Gore-Tex boots.
The Gavia is a mid-height touring boot that represents the entry point to Sidi’s Gore-Tex range. The upper is constructed of what Sidi calls Full-Grain Microfiber, which is a leather-like material that requires none of the upkeep of the real thing. Besides a full Gore-Tex membrane, which reaches all the way to the top of the entry zipper (about 1 to 2 inches below the boot top), the upper is also lined with a Teflon mesh that doesn’t completely absorb water and sweat, allowing the boot to dry quickly and preventing mold.
The Gavia also incorporates the features one would expect from a good touring boot: a hook-and-loop closure over the top of the zipper that’s actually large enough to be useful, external hard ankle protection, internal heel, ankle and toe protection, removable insoles lined with Cambrelle, which helps the foot slide in and out easily, a non-slip rubber sole, toe shifter pads, reflective panels on the rear and double stitching throughout. Fit and finish is top-notch, as with all Sidi products I’ve worn. One interesting feature we noticed is the inclusion of a small elastic panel right next to the zipper. It’s designed to allow the boot to flex over one’s anklebone when zipping up, but neither I nor Rider Senior Editor Drevenstedt (who has the men’s version of the Gavia) had any issues with a too-tight fit. It should be noted, however, that Sidi boots in general tend to be a bit narrow all around, so they might not be a good choice for those with large calves.
Fortunately, I chose wisely when I took the Gavia boots to Spain. Despite riding in an all-day downpour, my feet stayed completely dry—unlike some of my colleagues. When it was time to pack my suitcase the next morning to head home, the boots weren’t 100 percent dry, but they were 95 percent—enough to feel safe about packing them up. They aren’t as tall as we’d all like—Drevenstedt noticed some air flow under his pant hem on his recent KTM 1290 Super Adventure S test (read that review here)—but otherwise the Gavias are a solid choice for a waterproof touring boot. They are available in men’s Euro sizes 41-49 and women’s sizes 38-43, for $250.
For more information, see your dealer or visit motonation.com.