Anyone have any experience with these boots? I am looking to start backpacking 1-2 night trips and am looking for a fairly stable, durable boot thats not too crazy. Merrell's seem to fit me best - I really like the Outland Mids, but am not sure if those are up to multi-day trips; several web sites seem to recommend the Outland Mids for day trips only... which brings me to the 'Wilderness'
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
3 1/4 lb. boots? Too heavy for me, and for most of the folks on this forum, unless you'll be mountaineering or carrying a 60-70 lb. pack. Most people these days backpack in trail runners (Merrell makes those, too). I do wear boots (I have ankle issues) but the lightest-weight ones I can find--maybe 2 lbs. per pair. The notion that you need heavy boots for multi-day trips is archaic in these days when most go out for a week with packs in the 30 lb. range. (I never did wear heavy boots even back in the days when I carried 50 lbs., so as far as I'm concerned that advice was never correct.) If you really prefer boots to shoes, I'd stick with the Outland Mids you mentioned, which are a pound lighter. If you can find something lighter, better yet.
The most important thing about footwear, of course, is that it fit you and be comfortable! Take a fully-loaded pack (or equivalent) with you and hike around the store for an hour (try to find some ramps to "hike" up and down hill). And do the same around the house for several hours before you take them outdoors, so they're still returnable (at home you can set up a slanting board for the "uphill" and "downhill" test). Properly fitting footwear should feel right from the start and not have to be "broken in."
Edited by OregonMouse (02/25/0804:29 PM)
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey
I'm too much a novice to give advice here. But I purchased a pair of Merrell Radius Mid's last summer on a whim - after my nike trailrunners soles fell off when they got wet on day hikes in NC.
They Merriel's were quite comfortable with minimul break in period. (I wore them on a 10 mile day hike the day I bought them as well as multiple days thereafter).
Merrell's are comfortable boots and shoes - but there is obviously a big difference between the wilderness and the Radius. (My radius only weigh 16oz each.) If you are asking about the brand name - Merrell makes a good solid product.
The most important thing about footwear, of course, is that it fit you and be comfortable!
Ditto to this... if the shoe fits, wear it. Literally. The first concern, heck really the only concern, is that the shoe fits you well.
As far as style of shoe, I would also agree trying to look for a lighter shoe or boot. Trail runners don't work for everyone (me being one of those people) but if they do they are fantastic. Lighter, cheaper, faster break-in time. Because of my ankles/general aches and pains, I went back to boots instead of low top trail runners, but I try to find the lightest boot I can find to help my knees out.
On the PCT I used a pair of Merrel trail runners, which I loved, even though I ended up having issues with my ankle (not a problem with the brand, just a problem with the style). They were very comfortable, and held up to 1000 miles of hiking, so I would recommend them as a brand.
Thank you everyone for the advice! The Outland Mids did fit better than everything else that I've tried on including Asolo, La Sportiva, Garmont etc, so I guess I will give them a another look. Thanks again!
Loc: Pennsylvania ~ Philadelphia
How are the outlands working out for you? I have been looking at those too. I am torn between them and the ventilator mids. I am not sure to go with gore tex and try to stay dry or get the ventilators that will dry easily when wet. (Correct me if my reasoning is wrong here)
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