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attroll
10-06-2002, 12:13
What type of footwear do you use while hiking?

highway
10-06-2002, 15:26
This is an interesting poll, to say the least.

I started using hiking boots, then went to the hybrid ones and now I am exercising with New balance 804At sneakers and they appear to work great, for me atleast, with a below 35 pound pack. I do know I will never again use a heavy pair of hiking boots. Anyone want a pair or Montrail Moraines, size 13, cheap, at a sacrifice?

I thought about Teva Wraptors but they are heavier at 2.30 pounds than the 804s at 1.97 pounds, all in size 12. Interestingly enough the 804 replacement-the 805- weighs 1.92 pounds, a little lighter!

The only thing next is barefoot and I can't do that!

SGT Rock
10-06-2002, 16:28
Wow,

I realize it is early in the pole, but I thought there would be more lightweight shoe users out there. Given the general atmosphere out there on forums these days, I thought a lot of people had switched to trail runners.

Kerosene
10-06-2002, 18:03
I'm still a boot user, with a pair of mid-ankle Vasque GTX Clarions. I'd really love to go to a pair of trail runners, but these boots fit me extremely well. I've hiked in a pair of low-cut Nike trail boots, but my weak ankles just plain were not happy, despite my ankle-strengthening regimen. At least I don't have problems with my knees (knock on wood). Also, I found that my feet were much more beaten up by the rocks in the trail bed with the lighter boot. Maybe someday.

Peaks
10-06-2002, 18:09
When you look at footwear, there really are 2 types of hiker boots. Both are high top. One would be the traditional all leather boot, and the other the fabric-leather combination top.

I'd also retitle "sneakers" as "trail running shoes" as that's what sneakers like the new Balance 805's are called.

buttercup
10-06-2002, 18:44
I tried going the trail runner route because my ankles never bother me. But with low-cut shoes, I have to stop so often to get the rocks out of my shoes that it's just not worth it to me. (I don't own gaiters and there are so many other things I'd rather spend money to buy!) I just went back to the hiking boots and it works a lot better for me.

highway
10-07-2002, 06:18
Originally posted by Peaks


I'd also retitle "sneakers" as "trail running shoes" as that's what sneakers like the new Balance 805's are called.

My apologies, Peaks because you are right, they are not sneakers! They are designed differently than traditional sneakers and are more rigid for twist stability and have that thin plate in the instep and part of sole to keep the rocks from bruising one's feet.

Two Speed
11-22-2003, 13:26
I'm one of the "other" types; currently transitioning from boots to sandals. I'm trying to establish my limits for comfort for sandals. Starting last spring, I've been using sandals more and more. I don't begin to believe they'll work in snow (for me, anyway) but so far, they've been superior to boots. Greater mobility, less pain in my knees and feet. Oddly enough, I'm finding that sandals appear to reduce the pain in my knees when doing long downhill sections. So far, so good.

Footslogger
11-22-2003, 14:27
I wore a mid-weight boot this year from Springer to Damascus. In Damascus I bought a pair of Montrail Javas, a Goretex lined low cut trail shoe. I really liked the lighter weight feel but I have to admit that after a short while I began to feel the rocks poking up from beneath, especially in Pennsylvania. They lasted me until Bear Mountain, when the soles literally split in half. Montrail was great to work with over the phone and sent me a brand new pair. I hiked with the new pair until Glencliff,NH, when I decided to cut back over to my trusty old boots. In retrospect I believe that was a good choice because the Whites were pretty tough on my ankles and the extra support and thicker sole made a big difference.

mdionne
11-22-2003, 19:00
LL Bean's Cresta Hikers (99 bucks). Made the entire journey from Georgia to New York. Where I lost them in a hitch hike (i forgot to take them out of the trunk). They would have gone the entire way. I have a pair on right now ;)

B Thrash
11-22-2003, 23:11
The first 1000 miles in combat boots with the toes cut out and a pair of Wal-mart specials that almost crippeled me for life then after they wore out I went to a pair of Montrail Hurricane Ridge GTX for the next 750 miles, without any foot problems. The Montrail Hurricane Ridge GTX is a stretch-fit GORE-TEX shoe that solve the problem of driving my toes into the front of my shoes and causing brused black toenails. Tried the New Balance without much success, they were about as bad as the Wal-mart specials.

Moon Monster
11-22-2003, 23:43
I wore Teva Wraptors for all 2172 miles this year. I would not do that again, though. I needed serious callouses to endure it. After the callouses went away post-thru-hike, the blisters pushed me back to trail runners for subsequent hikes. Wraptors are rugged and stiff (and yes, a bit heavier than most trail runners).

c.coyle
11-23-2003, 19:32
LL Bean's Cresta Hikers (99 bucks). Made the entire journey from Georgia to New York. Where I lost them in a hitch hike (i forgot to take them out of the trunk). They would have gone the entire way. I have a pair on right now ;)

Love my leather / nylon Crestas. The Italians know how to make boots. I wish they'd make a low-cut version.

Blue Jay
11-24-2003, 08:37
This pole is clearly set up to favor hiking boots. To not include trail running shoes makes it a joke.

c.coyle
11-24-2003, 10:14
This pole is clearly set up to favor hiking boots. To not include trail running shoes makes it a joke.

Nah, no bias. I think most of us know that "sneakers" = "trail runners" in this context. If not, then 35% of repondants really do wear actual sneakers!

Also, I doubt anyone here confuses "boots" with either "sneakers" or "trail runners".

In my (admittedly much more limited than many of you) personal experience, most hikers I've run into wear boots, not "trail runners" for a number of pretty good reasons.

I'd love to know what the 7% who said "other" are wearing on their feet.

Rain Man
11-24-2003, 11:21
I'd love to know what the 7% who said "other" are wearing on their feet.

Hmmmm... maybe two of the five are the "Barefoot Sisters"??? :jump

icemanat95
11-24-2003, 13:45
I wear a lightweight boot, having put aside the leather boots for all but the earliest and latest 3-season hiking when cold or snow might be expected.

Lilred
11-27-2003, 15:30
I bought a pair of men's Timberlands for the extra width. Not a popular boot, but I've never had any blisters, let alone hot spots. Love 'em, and they are much lighter than other boots I've tried.

Dances with Mice
11-27-2003, 23:04
I'm not a thru-hiker, just a weekender & I do one week long 60 - 80 mile hike each year. I use sneakers, or more precisely, low cut, synthetic, trail runner-looking shoes that cost less than $20 from Wal-Mart. But I also use inserts that cost more than that. Never had any foot problems.

Former Easy
12-16-2003, 22:23
I use more boot than most, I hike with heavy full leather Salomon's, because I have to. I have broken both ankles back in my MX racing days and they are very weak and need support. If you have weak ankles you might want to consider heavy boots cause the rocks and roots of the trail will test your ankles to the fullest. I know as fact, had I not used heavy boots I would have had a sprained ankle or even worse broken again on many occasions.

Now heres a tip, I have never had a blister ever while hiking. I tape blister prone areas with strips of duct tape that I keep on my hiking poles every day religously. Only duct tape will do, you cannot use that white first aid tape, you have to use duct tape because of its slippery silver surface that doesn't cause friction like other tape. Also if your taping a old blister up be sure to use duct tape for the same reason.

Footslogger
12-16-2003, 22:59
Started this year with boots. Switched over to trail runners at Damascus. Went to mid-high trail shoe with a thicker sole in PA. Finally switched back to boots in Glencliff and used them all the way to Katahdin.

Truthfully liked the low cut trail shoes the best in retrospect. If it wasn't for the the typically thinner soles they'd be my first choice for the entire trail.

gravityman
12-17-2003, 13:10
II tape blister prone areas with strips of duct tape

Note : Every time I use duct tape for blisters it ruins my socks. But it does work better than any other blister prevention technique.

Just a word of warning. It gums up the sock.

Doctari
12-17-2003, 13:33
I wear a mid weight Asolo boot. I think about 3.5 Lbs for the pair, Havn't weighed them for a while.

They are now probably overkill as my pack weight is now under 22 Lbs, but they are good boots, so I probably will not change them till they wear out.

I think, , , , my next shoe/boot is one of those Trail running shoes. Will see in a few years.

Doctari.

Guest
12-17-2003, 13:37
I'm not a thru hiker. More of a weekend warrior with a week long trek thrown in once or twice a year. I use Lowa Sierra shoes and I love them! I also use the "duct tape before a blister" trick. Works great!

DebW
12-17-2003, 13:46
I use a full leather boot, currently an EMS-brand Italian made boot, which was the only thing I could find to fit my narrow heels. I can't imagine using anything but a sturdy boot in the places where I hike. Though I'm told there are places down south where the trail is dirt. Could it be true? I won't believe it til I see it.

Bunchberry
12-17-2003, 16:07
I have weak ankles, too, and I've always used full-leather hiking boots because of that and because I like being able to splash through streams without getting my feet wet. On my last trip I tried a cheap pair of Adidas trail runners, and loved 'em. Much lighter, I had much more energy and spring in my step.

Now, this was not in rocky terrain (yes, Virginia, there ARE parts of Pennsylvania without rocks!), so I'm still waiting to test the trail runners on rougher trail. For now, I'm still a booted hiker.

Bunchberry (not a thru-hiker yet)

Former Easy
12-17-2003, 20:44
Note : Every time I use duct tape for blisters it ruins my socks. But it does work better than any other blister prevention technique.

Just a word of warning. It gums up the sock.

Yes it gums them up pretty good. You have to remember to take the duct tape off also when you get into camp and not sleep with it on, this helps. I also use light sock liners so I just toss them when they get to bad (gummed up). But as I have mentioned I have NEVER HAD A BLISTER HIKING with this method. I even bought a pair of boots and went hiking immedietly with no break-in (I wouldn't recommend this for others though)

RagingHampster
12-18-2003, 10:23
I always have trouble finding a good fitting boot. I have a size 13 foot, but the ball of my foot is wide. Unfortunately the rest of my foot is normal width. This means standard width boots are either tight around the ball of my foot or a wide-sized shoe causes my heel to slop around.

I started with a pair of Vasque Clarion GTXs, and loved them. But even after treating them, the leather still soaks up water and they weigh a ton.

Then I tried Teva Guide Wraptors. These are fantastic for dayhikes, but I found that anymore than 15-20 miles on a rocky trail made my feet hurt. You could feel almost every stone.

I tried trail runners, but have yet to find a pair that fit my feet right. The one's made to put up with rocky trails also felt odd to walk in. Didn't really enjoy them.

A couple weeks ago I went to buy another pair of Clarion's, but they were on backorder in my size! :mad:, So I bought a pair of the new Vasque Zephyr GTX boots. They weigh about 3oz/pr more than the Clarion GTX's, but they have a slightly higher top, and a waffle-stomping vibram sole rather than the "SkyWalk" sole of the Clarions.

I would be interested in hereing reviews on the Vasque Fusion GTX...

Blue Jay
12-18-2003, 10:39
Vasque boots were great when they were made in Italy. You could call them anywhere on the trail and new boots would be waiting for you at the next post office. Those days are gone. By the time they moved to China all of the good shoe makers had been taken by Merrill, New Balance, Asolo, Lowa and on and on. Ask outfitters which boots are the most returned and they often say Vasque.

RagingHampster
12-18-2003, 10:55
Yeah they certainly have durability problems, as my Clarions are falling to pieces (albeit after 300-400+ miles and 2.5 years of constant use), but they fit me better than any boot I've tried.

My winter boots are Merrell Winterras. These look almost brand-new because the only wear they get is against snow, and I often have snowshoes on. They do have the same problem with soaking up water though making them heavy.

I also used my Tevas last winter for awhile with Seal Skinz. The combination worked great, but not when it got too cold out. They also had serious grip issues, and strapping crampons/snowshoes to them hurt like hell!

oyvay
01-10-2004, 14:51
I used to wear BIG, HEAVY, leather boots, but I now go the sandals route. I havn't gotten a foot rot since and chacos don't make my feet stink like tevas did(for some reason). A bonus why sandals are better for me was when I heard a thruhiker packing up one wet morning and he said, "which pair of wet socks should I wear today?" I had two pairs of dry socks with me myself. :jump Of course I had to reteach myself to step up, instead of shuffling my feet, to prevent stubbing my toes.

Kozmic Zian
02-14-2004, 15:43
Yea....Boots. If other trails (CDT,PCT) are as rugged as the AT (which they are) then I'm in for supportive boots, not sneakers. My feet have to be dry and supported, ankles, and underfoot. I usually wear boots that are hard to break in and two freekin' heavy. But, support comes with trade offs. That's what the gear business is, trade offs. Light, easy to wear boots have no break in , blister problems. Heavy boots control flex and twist and bottom intrusion better. What's important is the volume of your foot. Do you have a high volume,i.e. big, foot, or smaller, slim, low volume foot. People who are mesomorphs (heavy body, thick torso) usually have high volume feet. people who are long and slim(ectomorphs)have long, narrow, low volume feet. What's important is to find a shoe, boot, that fits your particular volume of foot. Usually high volume feet(like mine) have to buy a particular (wide) sizeing. Otherwise the boot pinches across the arch and forefoot causing unbelievable stress. Low volume folks have trouble with too much room and heel slippage among other things. So, be sure to sellect the right fit. That, I feel is more important than the 'type of footwear' i.e. (heavy boot vs. light trail shoe). Talk to the outfitter shoe/boot specialist,they usually can help with the particulars. And, for all the new guys out there, I hope this has been somewhat imformative.[/QUOTE]KZ@;)

Tinker
02-14-2004, 18:41
Any kind of running shoe that fits well. I try them on wearing very heavy socks (ThorLo hikers). When it's cold, I wear Stephenson vapor barrier socks under the socks. When it's wet, I wear the vapor barrier socks over my socks and under my gaiters. I may get Seal Skinz so I can make a sock sandwich when it's cold and wet.

Tinker

slatchley
07-07-2004, 19:57
Once again, the poll is missing a category. I interpret hiking boots to be ol' fashioned heavy hikers. I use Lowa Sapporos, which is not a sneaker and not a "hiking boot"

Hammock Hanger
07-07-2004, 20:10
I am right there with 2 Speed and Moon Monster, SANDALS.

I have over 1000 miles on my Chacos. Had to buy a new pair for this years hike. I toyed with ridge runners, sneakers, and a few other type of shoes but kept coming back to the Chacos. I have a foot problem (needle in the foot) and I know that I can wear the Chacos so why fix what isn't broke. My ankles are like elastic bands, they may bend over but snap right back. I think the use of the sandals has made my wnkles stronger. -- PS: I have taken to barefoot hiking occasionally where the terrain is doable. Sue/HH

stupe
07-07-2004, 21:48
I like big clunky hiking boots because I'm a traditionalist and they give me a feeling of confidence. I just started carrying an extra pair of shoes, Technica Pac-lites, they come in handy for apres' hike footwear and fording streams (keep your boots dry). And if you get them big enough to wear with two pair of socks, they're your backup hikers, in case your regular hikers get busted or chewed by critters ( happened to me once ) . They weigh a few ounces, I think. Got em' on sale at Paragon in NYC.

Icicle
07-08-2004, 05:17
I have Raichle boots and Teva Sandals for camp. These boots are the best boots! I hiked the West Highland way with no break in time! Also I got no blisters.

My secret for blisters is vaseline. Rub it on your feet before you put on your socks. It doesn't ruin your socks. Well it hasn't ruined mine. I don't use Thorlo's though, I use Bridgedale. Thorlo's give me a rash.

Hammock Hanger
07-08-2004, 07:32
I'm not a big fan of Throlo's myself.

I used the vaseline method at the camp I worked at. It does work well. Don't forget to between them there toes...

Sue/HH

Brushy Sage
07-08-2004, 08:38
I wear low-cut Columbia running-type shoes. Marked "other" on the poll, because I didn't see a category that fit.

Tim Rich
07-08-2004, 09:59
I'm on my second pair of original style Vasque Sundowners. The first pair lasted about 1300 AT miles (plus maybe 300 locally) and the current pair is in good shape after about 600 AT miles and another few hundred elsewhere. As a section hiker, my leather boots (and the rest of me) have a chance to dry out and recover between trips. I also wear sandals in camp and when we're traveling to and from the trail.

For me, I think the Sundowners are a reasonable tradeoff between comfort, weight and support. When I started the trail in 1989, I had a pair of heavyweight Merrels, forget the name. They were uncomfortable. During a winter section, my hiking partner decided to put our boots by the fire to thaw. I was lazy in my bag, not really wanting to get up, but when I saw that a boot had shifted a bit close to the fire and was burning, I got up pretty quick. Much of the front had been singed and had shrunk. The rest of the trip was in an even less comfortable boot, but having to toss them was a blessing in disguise.

Mags
07-08-2004, 14:30
My footwear for me has metamorphosed along with my lighter packweight.

I hiked the LT and the AT with a pair of LL Bean Cresta. Wonderful, Italian crafted leather boots. But, my packweight was also about 30lbs base weight then. Need the heavier support.

By the time I did the PCT in 2002, my base backweight was around 12 lb mark. Started the hike in Merrel Exotech trail shoes. They were great for the cooler climes of the Rockies, but were they murder on my feet in the desert. Too little ventilation!

Bought a pair of Nike Air Pegasuses, and I was in love! Light, comfy, well ventilated. The waffle pattern sole even gave them good grip. Hiked the desert and the snowy passes of the Sierra. I did use trail runner upon reaching Ashland, OR...but still liked my Nike's!

I now own three pairs of Nike Air Pegasuses. One for running, one former running pair I use for hiking, one pair to rotate into a running pair when the hiking pair or running pair needs to be rotated. Plan on using the pair on the Colorado Trail this summer. As my base pack weight is sub-10 lbs, really do not need a heavy leather boot. YMMV.

gravityman
07-08-2004, 14:46
Just a note - there is a trail pegasus also available. Same shoe essentially with a little more agressive sole and a stone shield. Also look at the Nike Air Zoom Cascades, which are a little less "smooshy" in feel. Both are available at Boulder Running Company. Oh how convient :)

Gravity man

Mags
07-08-2004, 14:49
Darn Boulder people taking over the list! :)

I actually perfer running shoes to trail shoes. Like the lighter weight. Even for trail running. FWIW, did my first marathon in Nikes, the first ultra in Nikes and hiked in my Nikes. What can I say, it is jack of all trade shoe! :)

gravityman
07-08-2004, 15:30
We are the People's Republic!

Anyway, the road shoe is 11.5 oz, verses the trail shoe at 13.8 oz.

But once you find a shoe that you love, don't change it (as I am sure you know)! We've been searching for a long time for a good trail runner with forefoot cushion and a wide toe box. Nike is the only one we've liked so far... I'm impressed with them. I run Asics though. But I might change... I really like the air cushioning verses rubber or "fancy rubber" (Asics's and NB).

Chances are, the manufacture will change it for you though :P

Gravity Man

fiddlehead
04-29-2005, 22:55
The lightest weight running shoe that FITS me the best! This changes whenever i find one that is lighter weight than the ones i'm now wearing. But FIT is Very Important! (i always buy them 1.5 to 2 sizes bigger than i normally wear) Bigger shoes mean no blisters. Right now i'm using NIke somethings that i found in a thrift store and are wicked light.

Scribe
04-30-2005, 09:15
I envy those who can wear lightweight boots or even running shoes. Unfortunately, my weak ankles won't permit me to do so. I'm stuck with heavy-duty, high-ankle-support, "waffle stompers" (Merrell's). On the plus side: they fit me like a glove, well broken in (they should be after about 10000 miles!) and they're waterproof. No wet feet, no blisters, and no sprained ankles.

I do have access to a great - and inexpensive - cobbler who keeps these in top shape (replaced the Vibram soles a few years ago, re-attached a metal shoelace loop, and waterproofed the area between the soles and the boots).

gr8fulyankee
04-30-2005, 15:48
I switch between 2 pairs of boots. I have a pair of One Sport's that are about 10 years old and have been resoled twice, and last year I bought a pair of Limmer's. Even after some odd 200 miles on these things I am still breaking them in.

The Old Fhart
04-30-2005, 17:09
...and last year I bought a pair of Limmer's. Even after some odd 200 miles on these things I am still breaking them in.Bought my first pair of Limmer custom made boots in 1980 and I still have them but they are pretty rough. Bought my second pair in 1996. I never had any trouble with them other than picking my feet up with them on. :D

Blue Jay
04-30-2005, 17:20
I envy those who can wear lightweight boots or even running shoes. Unfortunately, my weak ankles won't permit me to do so.

I only wrote this because you said you envy running shoe wearers. You can wear whatever works for you. However, weak ankles can be made strong just like any other body part, at any age. Most people exercise by running or hiking or biking, this does nothing for the side to side motion of ankles. No wonder most people have "weak" ankles. I found this out only a few years ago. If you want strong ankles take a step/aerobics/kickbox/bootcamp etc. class. Yes most of them are filled with women and for awhile you might look a little awkward, but they don't bite (well most of them anyway). You WILL strengthen your ankles, maybe for the first time in your life. Then you drop at least a ton of weight each mile you hike (1 pound x 2000 steps). Try it, what have you got to lose?

Scribe
04-30-2005, 19:50
I broke my left ankle playing basketball many years ago...apparently it didn't heal correctly. I have tried all sorts of exercises - I agree with you on the side-to-side stengthening (no problem with straight ahead) - and none of them seemed to work. My right ankle is okay, but it would look sort of strange wearing a waffle stomper on one foot and a running shoe on the other. Probably throw me off balance, too.

Crazy Larry #1
07-05-2005, 15:32
i swear by vasques sundowners....

Footslogger
07-05-2005, 15:46
However, weak ankles can be made strong just like any other body part, at any age. Try it, what have you got to lose?============================================
That was my conclusion during my thru in 2003. I started out in boots. I had ALWAYS hiked in boots and believed that at the ripe age of 53 I needed the ankle support. Broke down in Damascus and tried a pair of trail runners and have never gone back. Ankles have never been a problem. That said ...I have also gotten my base pack weight (sans food/water) to below 18 pounds.

To those hikers who believe they NEED boots I suggest that they try and lighten their loads and then TRY trail shoes. Like Blue Jay said "...what do you have to lose ??" If necessary you can always go back to the boots.

'Slogger
AT 2003

stupe
07-05-2005, 21:04
I usually wear big clunky leather hiking boots, I'm a traditionalist and feel more confident and outdoorsy in them. Red laces are a must. But for weekend summer hikes with minimal gear, I've gone in running shoes. There's advantages and disadvantages to both.
I agree with Footslogger, though, the lighter the pack, the less shoe you need.

stalo man
11-23-2005, 16:49
im using boots as well, the best i ever had:

Hanwag yukon. full leather boot.
they are also available as GTX version (called Hanwag Alaska)

Seeker
11-24-2005, 00:29
current boot is a pair of hi-tec alpenlites. feel like a pair of hitop tennis shoes.

bogey
11-24-2005, 02:50
Wow,

I realize it is early in the pole, but I thought there would be more lightweight shoe users out there. Given the general atmosphere out there on forums these days, I thought a lot of people had switched to trail runners.

but the poll doesn't offer "trail runners". I'm a literal kind of guy, and it bothers me to make new categories where they don't exist. 's why I have such a tough time in the military.

RITBlake
01-09-2006, 22:38
got sick of the blisters about 700 miles into my thru. switched to New Balance trail runners. They lasted forever, dried quickly, and never had any blister problems w/ them

http://www.supershoes.com/istarimages/p/t/pt-CM476BW%21NEW.jpg

betic4lyf
01-09-2006, 23:32
i love my montrail masai. they are pretty light, and all mesh, and above all, more than any shoe, they got the lacing down. you can make it tight, but it neve pinches, just supports. they are light in front, with most of the weight in the heel, which for their size is very well padded and supportive. they have great grip, while not tearing up the trail like most boots. they are about as light as my regular running shoes. the mesh wins. they are the only shoes that have come remotely close to making my feet not become pools. and the insoles or footbeds or whatever, are so comfortable i can not describe.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v700/betic4lyf/P9060011.jpg
beware though, you must be a superhero to wear them

RITBlake
01-10-2006, 00:14
I hiked in Montrail masai's for one week. By the time I got out of the 100 mile wilderness they were destryoed. The roots, rocks, and mud make QUICK work of the all mesh sneaker

Whistler
01-10-2006, 01:15
Shoes! I like the Montrail Masai, and also their old Diablo and Leona Divide models. Also on the meshy, but non-bulletproof end, I really like the Inov8 Flyroc 310--probably my favorite right now. Salomon Tech Amphibian are fairly durable for meshy shoes, and are very comfortable.

For more durable, but still respectably light trail shoes, I like Montrail Vitesse and have to agree with RITBlake that most New Balance 7xx and 8xx models are comfortable and hold up well.
-Mark

betic4lyf
01-10-2006, 01:35
once these go, i would probably go for a beefier model, or some running shoes. montrails are wildly comfy

Bernard Mines
01-10-2006, 03:17
I've got half a dozen pair of hiking shoes at least. But I pretty much evolved into trail runners. I think these still have a ways to go as I'd like to see one with a thicker sole and a little more of a hinged shield protecting the bottom of my foot from the rocks. They seem to last me about 500 miles or so, more if i'm lucky. No way I'd go back to heavy italian boots. Plus I think I'm more likely to twist an ankle with heavy boots then not, because more muscular fatigue. I like my tevas too, but I think they tire my foot out fairly quickly because they don't have a high enough arch support, plus your feet get really dirty. But every good shoe has its purpose. Teva's on the water. Heavy boots in snow, trail runners just happen to suit my needs the best.

Does anyone hike the trail bare footed?

RITBlake
01-10-2006, 03:43
can't go wrong w/ montrail hardrocks. Probably the most common shoe among thru hikers. Durable and light, with plenty of traction. Check out the montrail hardrock.

AVOID any of the new Solomon shoes w/ the 'innovative' new lacing system. Once you rip one of the eyelets you are out of luck. Keith had to reconfigure his shoe completly after this happened to him

Shiraz-mataz
01-10-2006, 07:53
Hey! New guy here... Thought I'd chime in on my preferred choice of footwear. I answered "Sandals/Tevas" in the poll. To be specific, my trusty Teva Terra-Fi's have been with me for years. I can't seem to wear them out either! Before the Terra-Fi's I had a pair of Terradactyls but they only lasted a couple of seasons. The little triangular plastic piece that ties the various straps together at the ankle kept twisting and fraying the fabric but the Terra-Fi has a more rigid substitute for that piece and its straps are A-OK. I almost answered "other" because I have been known to hike barefoot. It is, above everything else, the BEST way to hike! I could go on and on but may save that discussion for another thread.

Heater
01-10-2006, 08:20
Hey! New guy here... Thought I'd chime in on my preferred choice of footwear. I answered "Sandals/Tevas" in the poll. To be specific, my trusty Teva Terra-Fi's have been with me for years. I can't seem to wear them out either! Before the Terra-Fi's I had a pair of Terradactyls but they only lasted a couple of seasons. The little triangular plastic piece that ties the various straps together at the ankle kept twisting and fraying the fabric but the Terra-Fi has a more rigid substitute for that piece and its straps are A-OK. I almost answered "other" because I have been known to hike barefoot. It is, above everything else, the BEST way to hike! I could go on and on but may save that discussion for another thread.

:welcome

I have a pair of those too. (for some reason I thought they were Xterras) Really comfortable and look to be durable. I hope mine last a while. I wear them a lot of the time when I am off work.

4whim
01-10-2006, 19:59
I blistered more with tennis shoes on downhills. Found that foot slid too much forward and just chewed my feet up where toes meet ball of foot so tape wouldn't stay in there. Hiking poles most likely saved me at times as I am now 2 and half months out from having had reconstruction surgery of foot and ankle (definitely be using hiking boots from now on). 2morrow, doc appointment and think I get to boot the boot and me and the Frankenfoot can start getting serious about exercise again (now only if my foot and toes would flex,,,hmmm).

Gravy
01-10-2006, 21:09
I section hiked with a pair of montrail torre gtx's. All I had was blister after blister. So I tried a pair of montrail hurricane something or others. Once again blisters and a lack of soles through the Pennsylvania rocks.. After that I bought a pair of discount north face shoes. Three section hikes later (still with the original soles) I'm still in love with them.
Moral of the story... Find something comfy. Try not to let the price sway you one way or another.

betic4lyf
01-10-2006, 22:01
i tried hiking barefoot once, but i had problems. the trail went through an area cut through bushes, so their where all these cut up briers. it hurt so bad. it was the best when i go to mud. mud between the toes is heavenly. unfortunaly i popped a blister on my toes on a rock, so i swtiched to sandals and socks. it was so awesome i can not describe.:bse

UCONNMike
01-12-2006, 11:46
can't go wrong w/ montrail hardrocks. Probably the most common shoe among thru hikers. Durable and light, with plenty of traction. Check out the montrail hardrock.

First pair of Hardrocks made it from the Big K to Bennington, VT...then that pair went from Bennington and the way to Troutdale, VA (over 1,200 miles and they were still in pretty good shape)...then the next pair had no prob getting thru the snow in the Smokies and to the top of Springer.

The Hardrocks are work horses, they are light and tough...I would reconmend them to anyone trying to get away from big boots and into a lighter trail shoe.

MarcnNJ
01-12-2006, 12:26
Montrail Stratos XCR

KirkMcquest
01-12-2006, 12:31
If you have low arches, montrails will make your feet feel like someone went over them with a hammer. I now use Lowa's, they have a variety of models with out that presumptuous lump in the middle

longshank
01-12-2006, 12:38
If you have low arches, montrails will make your feet feel like someone went over them with a hammer. I now use Lowa's, they have a variety of models with out that presumptuous lump in the middle
How dare you sully the montrails good name, sirrrrr...

KirkMcquest
01-12-2006, 12:41
How dare you sully the montrails good name, sirrrrr...

merely providing my services, sir

MarcnNJ
01-12-2006, 12:45
If you have low arches, montrails will make your feet feel like someone went over them with a hammer. I now use Lowa's, they have a variety of models with out that presumptuous lump in the middle

I have no arches, extremely flat feet....and my Montrail's along with superfeet treat me well....

Marlton
01-13-2006, 14:28
boots and good insoles

Spiritual Pillgrim
06-25-2006, 14:16
Far and away, lowa renegades are the best boots I ever had. My 5 yr old pair died after 1,499 miles. On my 2nd pair now.