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Advice on trail runners
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Nicholas Nelson

Locale: Southwest
Advice on trail runners on 12/05/2012 16:12:24 MST Print View

Sierra Trading Post has some great deals on their closeouts right now using a 35% off coupon code on the already discounted prices.

I'm looking into converting to trail runners. I was originally going to try a few pairs of inov-8's but wouldn't mind saving some money on a different brand of shoes. Are any of these shoes worth a try:

The coupon code ends tonight, so I'd have to buy them today.

Thanks for the help.

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Keen A86 on 12/05/2012 16:28:57 MST Print View

The Keen A86 received extremely high awards, and are very comfortable. The lacing winds anatomically up the side of the shoe, rather than directly on top. I think you'll be pleased.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
fit on 12/05/2012 16:34:18 MST Print View

get what fits your foot ... regardless of price

if you buy shoes without trying them on ... its a total cr@pshoot

its that simple ;)

jason quick

Locale: A tent in my backyard - Melbourne
Ignore shoe price to start with on 12/05/2012 18:15:36 MST Print View

+1 on what Eric said.

Start exploring shoes without looking at the price tag, and don't rush purely because of a sale...there will always be another. If you head out with a financial focus, you may neglect an important shoe that could potentially be the golden slipper....which will effect your hike, your mindset, your enjoyment, your safety and ultimately...your the longer run.

I can vouch for the TrailRoc 245's. I oversized by one size to allow for thick winter socks. They still feel great with thin socks on. Heaps of toe room. Has a rock plate. Very breathable. Durable enough. Light. Happy feet.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
re: Advice on trail runners on 12/05/2012 18:43:45 MST Print View

You've got to try them on!

Two ways to do that:

Local brick-and-mortar shop that has a good selection of shoes. A good running store would be a place to start. bring the socks you intend to wear. Find a pair that fits well, then go up at least a half size, maybe a whole size, to account for swelling on a nice, long hike. If you go to an REI, and they have one of those cute fake rock things to test the shoes, lace your shoes up snugly, stand on the slope part, grab the rail, jump up and land on one foot. Try to drive your foot as far forward in the shoe as possible. Do it with both feet, even if the sales person looks at you crazily! This will let you know if you're going to have toe smash on the downhill slopes while hiking.

No local store. Go to an online shoe store (Zappo's comes to mind). Pick a model that looks interesting, and order three of them: the size you think you wear, down a size, and up a size. Wear them at home, INSIDE, until you get a feel for them. Mail the rejects back. The return should be free - check before you order! Try other shoes the same way.Eventually, you'll find one that works for you.

Tip: Once you find one that fits perfectly, see if you can find what the manufacturer's LAST is for that shoe. The last is the model foot they build the shoe around. New Balance makes theirs public; not all companies do. Having found an excellent fit with a New Balance shoe, and finding the last, I only buy NB trail runners with that last. Perfect fit guaranteed!

Tip two: Don't expect other people's favorite shoe to fit you. Their feet are different from yours. You have to do the work yourself for your own feet.

Edited by grampa on 12/05/2012 18:45:45 MST.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
fit on 12/05/2012 19:56:59 MST Print View

as the two previous poster mentioned- fit is king; doesn't matter how great a shoe gets reviewed if it doesn't fit YOU

next to REI, runningwarehouse probably has the most generous return policy- 90 day unused or USED- you can run/hike/jump in them for 90 days and still return them if need be, walking around the house is often not enough to figure out whether a shoe is going to work or not

once you find a shoe that fits well, then start looking for deals- I'm on my 5th pair of Sabino Trails and the last four I've gotten at significant discount, BUT I know they work for ME and they fit ME

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Advice on trail runners on 12/05/2012 20:20:38 MST Print View

It's fit, fit and FIT. Nothing else matters!

Tip #3 to add to above: Once you've found the perfect shoe for you (hike in them for a month or two first to be sure), buy several pair. You can be sure that the manufacturer will change the model next year!