I may have lucked out really
I will start with stating these are my first hiking boot investment boots. I went to the REI in Marlton NJ with my boyfriend, who is a hiker, and tried on every pair they had. The staff at the store was great, we were able to look at the different style and workout which size would be best. I walked around the store itself and used the mini rock display to see if they would stabilize my ankle enough. I tend to easily twist my ankles so it was a big concern when going on a multiple day hike.
I work in schools so I am usually on my feet all day, heavy shoes are not an option for me. I feel the weight quickly and will drag through the day. When comparing these with the other boots in stock they felt lighter then most but not so light I was worried about protecting my feet and ankles on the trail.
They also didn't make me feel like my feet were magically 4 inches wider. I felt clunky and awkward in the boots with a wider sole, these felt more true to my actual foot size. I'm not sure about other women out there but I know for me when the shoe I'm wearing has made my foot wider then I'm used to I become more clumsy and tend to trip over my own feet. These boots allowed me to feel I could use my regular spacial understanding of where my foot can fit. (if that makes sense)
They didn't allow for ankle rolling! At the store I was trying to test how much they would allow me to bend incorrectly at the ankle. I am a pretty bad ankle twister in my everyday walking or running so it is a concern. These boots did allow for range of motion within limits and on the trail saved my ankle quite a few times.
Don't be afraid to go a 1/2 size up! I compared them in the store with thick socks and all. I wear an 8- 8 1/2 shoe depending on style and manufacturer. On one foot I had the 8 1/2 on the other the 9. I went with the 9 because it was very secure around the ankle but still allowed for my toes to not feel jammed in and thinking ahead to the natural swelling I was expecting from hiking for miles.
On our backpacking trip we hiked through mud, stream crossing, rock crossings, narrow passes (from the rain) and flat paths. The only time I had questionable footing from the boots was over some algae covered rocks at a rushing stream. My feet stayed dry and I wasn't ready to throw them into the fire at the end of the day of hiking.
Some of the reviews I read about these boots mention the very little break in time and I feel they are true. I didn't have much time to break them in properly (about a week really) but I wore them 5 out of 7 days before we went on our hike and they formed quickly to my heal and toes. I didn't need any moleskin during the hike and no blisters formed during it either.
Awesome NEUTRAL Hiking Boot!
I have narrow feet, super high arches and I severely under-pronate (supinate). I had the hardest time finding hiking shoes because everything I tried on had way too much pronation control. Even if I took the insoles out, they were too built up in the midsole and would interfere with my natural gait, causing foot and knee discomfort. I wish hiking shoes were labeled as neutral or stability like running shoes are! These are true neutral shoes, allow for natural movement while still encouraging a very neutral gait (I guess because of their Numentum technology). I imagine that would make them perfect for those of you who use orthotics, too. I miraculously don't under-pronate in these boots and it still provides the stability I need when dealing with rocky terrain. Since my feet are so narrow I added some high-volume inserts for a better fit. Fit true to size, even with the inserts I didn't have to size up like with most hiking boots. I think it's because the upper is so soft it hugs my foot like a moccasin, and prevents my foot from sliding forward at all. Those with wide feet or high-volume orthotics will need to size up 1/2 size. Do note that these are lightweight hikers and not comparable to heavy duty backpacking boots. Also, the blue color is actually purple. Docked one star because the traction could definitely be better. I was willing to compromise that for comfort since I'm not on super technical trails.
Excellent for work!
I work in the rural EMS field and am required to wear black leather boots. Most of the industry standard boots are like wearing cement shoes...they're all made for men and then just sized down for women, so clunky and uncomfortable. A female colleague had recommended these (she found them on sale under $100, lucky!!) so I just went out and got them. They have been comfy from day 1...zero break-time and I wear them daily for 12hr shifts in varied terrain, weather, etc. They are very soft so I am not sure how they would stand up to hard core hiking, but that softness is what makes them immediately comfortable. They are a little bit narrower than I would have liked...I am a huge fan of the Keen oversized toebox. But I have an average/medium width foot and these are perfectly comfortable, I think again because they are so soft and mold to your foot so quickly. I can't say they're my favorite shoe ever because if Keen made a similar product in black I would have gotten those for the ruggedness and toebox. But I am not at all unhappy with these overall. I think they may be a bit overpriced for how long I anticipate them lasting with daily wear.
I followed advice and bought my boots a full size larger and late in the day. Two days later I went to the Boy Scout Jamboree at the Summit in WV. I did not break in my boots at all. We had to hike about 2.5 miles to get from our campsite to our work site. Throw in hiking to chow hall and around Jamboree and I was putting in 8-12 miles a day everyday according to my pedometer. NO blisters, NO hot spots, NO problems with these boots! I wore a thin liner sock (silk worked better than poly for me) and smartwool or REI or BSA hiking socks. And I wore a pack everyday with close to 20 pounds or more. It got to the point where my feet felt better in my boots than in any other shoe!
We also had swampy conditions in my work center. We were literally ankle deep in mud for several days, but my boots kept my feet dry and they cleaned up easily after Jamboree.
I am prepping to hike the AT and hope these boots will last for most of it. I would definitely recommend them IF you size them right for how much hiking you will be doing.
LOVE these boots!
I know you should spend time breaking in boots before a hike but I only found them a short time before I left on a week trip to Lassen with my daughter's class so I only got in 1 test hike. I LOVE them! They are super cute and comfortable once you figure out which socks to wear (I needed high enough ones to double over in the ankle after a summer of sandals and naked feet). I am also using an arch support insert. They worked climbing up Cinder Cone, which is basically all loose pumice and steep, and were great the day after it snowed and we hiked up Lassen in a mix of dirt and snow. I love that they are local (SF Bay Area) and keep my feet warm, dry and look great. What a great company! Oh, and so many compliments, even from men. I am looking forward to winter weather to take them mt biking and hiking when the weather turns.
These boots are wonderful! Comfortable right out of the box -- needed no break-in period. I have a very narrow heel and a wide forefoot, so finding shoes that fit well is a challenge, but these fit the bill perfectly. These boots are one of three different brands that I ordered and the only ones I'm keeping. I ordered a half size larger than what I regularly wear to allow for thicker socks - and I couldn't be more pleased. As to the water resistance - well, we got 3 - 4 inches of very wet, slushy snow the day the boots arrived, so they got tested right away since I had to do some snow blowing. My feet stayed perfectly dry and warm during the hour or so that I was tromping around outside. The boots shed water like a duck! I will add that I had great traction in the slippery stuff, too. Great product!
Awesome, Awesome Boots!
Originally I bought a different model of Ahnu boots with Vibram soles, but had to bring them back because I found my foot moved around too much. Turns out I bought them too large & it was no fault of the boot. I asked to try on a 1/2 size smaller & the salesperson accidentally brought me the leather pair of Ahnu boots instead, also with Vibram soles. Decided to slip them on & boy was I happy about that!! They have turned out to be my most favorite boots of all time. They are durable on top, light weight to wear on long hikes, have great traction over a variety of terrain including rocky, wet & uneven footing. I have even thought I will buy a backup pair of these boots in case the manufacturer changes anything. I want another pair of the exact same make & model from the same shipment if possible.
I purchased these boots based on the reviews and style. They weren't too manly, and still had great colors to choose from. I didn't make time before our hike to Lake Ingalls to break these boots in. (Really like keeping things in mint condition.) I figured I get tons of blisters, but with a pair of sock liners, a nice hiking blend sock, and a little moleskin on my heels, my feet are blister-free! We went on a three day hiking trip and I wore them all day. I did buy them a half size bigger so I could wear a sock liner and a pair of hiking socks. That really helped, especially after your feet swell as you hike. One of my feet is naturally a half size bigger, so instead of a 7 1/2 I tried on the 8 and it was a perfect, comfortable fit for me. Highly recommend these boots!
I adore these boots. I live in a very cold climate where there is much slush and snow. These have been great boots to own when I want more support than snow boots provide. They have been warm, completely waterproof and provide enough tread to make me feel safe on the street. I had been having some issues with plantar fasciitis and was a bit concerned because I had a trip planned to Europe that was going to require a lot of walking on cobble-stoned streets. I bought these boots to take with me and I never once thought about my feet while on this trip! I walked for hours every day on city streets and these boots provided so much comfort and warmth. I cannot recommend these boots enough! I love the color and also own a pair in the purple/blue color.
BEST BOOTS I'VE EVER HAD
I love these boots more than any other pair I've ever owned. I have worn them in all sorts of conditions, from Upstate NY blizzard to Hawaiian lava fields. They keep my feet cool in hot places, and warm in cold places, and comfortable no matter where I am. There was no "break-in" period; they were perfect immediately and have remained that way. I've never gotten a single blister from these boots despite having walked/hiked/clambered 10+ miles at a time. They have great traction and hug my feet like supportive clouds. They're so lightweight that I don't have to worry about them dragging me down on long tiring hikes, not to mention waterproof. These boots have protected my feet from mud and puddles and even fast-moving shallow creeks. Absolutely no complaints!!