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Thread: shoe issues

  1. #1
    . stonedflea's Avatar
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    Default shoe issues

    hey y'all... i just hit damascus and i think i'll need to invest in a new pair of shoes. i have a pair of merrell siren sports. i bought them right before my shakedown hike and during my shakedown, i lost four toenails. i chalked it up to me not having enough time to break them in. (bought them a half size too big like i've heard to do.)

    i just hit damascus and i'm still having problems with them. add another toenail to my count lost, my big toenails are bruised but i don't think they'll come off, my right arch is killing me, and i've got blisters on both feet. i can tell my feet have really slowed me down these last few weeks. two weeks ago, it was all i could do to walk.

    these shoes were over a hundred bucks. i've been told that if i contact merrell, they'll probably ship a replacement pair, but i don't want another pair if they're just going to give me the same problems...

    i don't know if i should just bite the bullet and buy another pair or call them and ask for a refund/replacement. i think they had a six month warranty where i bought them, but i obviously don't have the paperwork in front of me since i'm hikin.

    have y'all ever had this problem with gear? how do you go about asking for a replacement? do they ship the new stuff up the trail or can you buy a new pair at an outfitter and get reimbursed?

    thanks in advance.
    "i ain't got a dime
    but what i got is mine
    i ain't rich,
    but Lord, i'm free."

  2. #2
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    Toenail issues with shoes are usually related to improper sizing (small toebox). You may not get a replacement for that but it doesn't hurt to try calling anyway. Most companies will bend over backwards to help AT thru-hikers since they know word of crappy customer service travels fast in the hiking community.

    Most outfitters prefer you to go direct with the company to handle problems. You may be able to get the company to ship replacements to you on the trail. It's easier if you pick a non-Post Office location. For example, I had Zappo's ship a new pair of shoes to Shaw's in Maine without any problems. It's a good idea to call the delivery location to ask if it's alright and to give them a heads up your package is being forwarded there.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Spokes; 06-04-2011 at 08:25.

  3. #3

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    You need larger shoes. No amount of money is worth ill-fitting shoes disfiguring and deforming your feet. You're not breaking in your shoes, you are breaking your feet. Get new shoes ASAP and get a much larger size. Maybe two sizes bigger.
    Some knew me as Piper, others as just Diane.
    I hiked the PCT: Mexico to Mt. Shasta, 2008. Santa Barbara to Canada, 2009.

  4. #4
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Your Merrells are dead at this point -- they'll only last 500-800 miles anyway.

    You're in Damascus, go to Mt Rogers Outfitters and let them fit you properly. Even if your shoes fit perfectly when you started, your feet will change on a long hike. They have a good selection of shoes and a lot of experience.

    Good luck. Foot problems are serious.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  5. #5
    Registered User sarman's Avatar
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    get new boots fitted for your feet. I had Salomons that worked in cold weather for me. They did not work out of Damascus when it was 85 degrees for two days. got my boots mailed to me and they were good the rest of the way to Waynesboro for my section hike. One toenail was enough for me.

  6. #6
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    i live in damascus...come see me at sundog iffin' yaunt to...
    Check out my website: www.serialhiking.com

  7. #7
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Oh, yeah, fergot about Sundog, go see them too. (Sorry, Serial...)
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by stonedflea View Post
    hey y'all... i just hit damascus and i think i'll need to invest in a new pair of shoes. i have a pair of merrell siren sports. i bought them right before my shakedown hike and during my shakedown, i lost four toenails. i chalked it up to me not having enough time to break them in. (bought them a half size too big like i've heard to do.)

    i just hit damascus and i'm still having problems with them. add another toenail to my count lost, my big toenails are bruised but i don't think they'll come off, my right arch is killing me, and i've got blisters on both feet. i can tell my feet have really slowed me down these last few weeks. two weeks ago, it was all i could do to walk.

    these shoes were over a hundred bucks. i've been told that if i contact merrell, they'll probably ship a replacement pair, but i don't want another pair if they're just going to give me the same problems...

    i don't know if i should just bite the bullet and buy another pair or call them and ask for a refund/replacement. i think they had a six month warranty where i bought them, but i obviously don't have the paperwork in front of me since i'm hikin.

    have y'all ever had this problem with gear? how do you go about asking for a replacement? do they ship the new stuff up the trail or can you buy a new pair at an outfitter and get reimbursed?

    thanks in advance.

    Lost 4 toenails??? Thats soooo hiker girl hot ... I have NEVER had any luck with Merrell shoes... Salomons all the way... Make sure you look after Swayze's feet/nails too... PA. was an A$$ Kicker for SideKick the first time thru 'til I got him his Ruff Wear Vibram boots...

  9. #9
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    Default Shoes

    Vasque Trail Runners usually have a larger toe box and often come in a true wide. Easy to break in and pretty durable. Vasque Velocity or Opportunist are both models that I wear and swear by.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hancock View Post
    Vasque Trail Runners usually have a larger toe box and often come in a true wide. Easy to break in and pretty durable. Vasque Velocity or Opportunist are both models that I wear and swear by.
    Rick brings up a good point in his post- that everyone's feet are different. I despise Vasgue Velocity shoes. To me they are the most uncomfortable shoe on the market and think there should be a Federal law banning them.

  11. #11
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    Default Vasque Velocity

    If Vasque outlawed their Velocity.....I'd have to hike barefoot! But I know what you mean I hate the new style Velocity they just don't "fit/feel" the same as the old style from 2007/2008. I can't wear North face, Merrills, nor several other name brands. As I've stated elsewhere, most shoe companies build their shoes based on a European last (last is length/width of foot bed) basically. I also wear and love New Balance but some models don't fit me. FIT, FIT, FIT that's the only important thing to remember when buying shoes. I don't care if there pink with lime green stripes (well kinda I do) as long as they fit.

  12. #12
    So many trails... so little time. Many Walks's Avatar
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    Stonedflea, you are wise to buy the larger size to get more room in the toe box. Also, talk with the outfitter about proper lacing of your shoes to keep your heel positioned so your feet won't slide back and forth. If your foot is sliding you'll be bashing your toes on the downhill causing the loss of nails. Also, dump the insoles that come with the shoes and replace them with Spenco Backpackers or Good Feet, whichever is most comfortable for you. Good insoles will help to keep your feet positioned to avoid damage. Hope you get it worked out so you can enjoy your hike!
    That man is the richest whose pleasures are the cheapest. Henry David Thoreau

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