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Foot gear with best stone protection?
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Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Foot gear with best stone protection? on 06/11/2013 13:47:49 MDT Print View

I'm looking for shoes or mids that provide good protection from stone bruising. I'm finding that rocky trails are making me sore. In not too worried about weight, but I would prefer non-waterproof options. Any ideas?

Tad Englund
(bestbuilder) - F - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Foot gear with best stone protection? on 06/11/2013 14:05:07 MDT Print View

I use to wear Merrell Moab Ventilators (non-GTX), they have great protection and vent well for that type of shoe.
I now use LaSportiva Wildcats and Merrell trail Gloves but I don't think either shoe will give you rock protection like the Ventilators.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: Foot gear with best stone protection? on 06/11/2013 14:42:03 MDT Print View

I have Moab's in waterproof and non-waterproof versions. Oddly, the forefoot protection is different, with the non-waterproof having more flex/less protection. Of course it could just be the year/version they were made. Manufacturer's LOVE to ride on a successful model name and make changes that aren't always improvements, a la Patagonia Houdini and pick-your-Jam-pack-version.

Thanks for the tip, Tad, but I'm looking for something meaner. I have some Keen mids that are step in the right direction, if you don't mind the pun :)

Alex H
(abhitt) - MLife

Locale: southern appalachians or desert SW
Re: Re: Re: Foot gear with best stone protection? on 06/11/2013 15:05:27 MDT Print View

If Keens are in the right direction, I have had good experience with several pairs of Voyaguers.

janos mathiesen
(janosm) - M

Locale: phinney ridge
What works for me... on 06/11/2013 16:01:09 MDT Print View

I have recently bought a pair of Hoka Stinson Evo shoes for running and have ended up using them for hiking (up to the enchantments last weekend...). As ugly as they are and, albeit, lacking in a trail "sensitivity" they are INCREDIBLE as to protecting the body from wear and tear. Rocky terrain --- no problem, long steep descents --- no problem, etc... They are light and comfortable and supremely comfortable. They definitely prevent foot bruising. My two cents...

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
NB Minimua 1010 on 06/11/2013 16:09:23 MDT Print View

I just purchased a pair to try and "go as light as possible, but not have sore feet/heels."

After trying on some of the more crazy minimalist trail shoes like the Merrell Trail Gloves, these felt like pillows so I rolled the dice and we'll how they work out with their more substantial heel cushioning and rock plate underneath. They weigh 7.7oz per shoe.

BJ Clark
(bj.clark) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Hoka Stinson and Mafate on 06/11/2013 16:14:45 MDT Print View

I second the Hokas if foot protection is your concern. They are incredibly light and cushioned. They have let me run again on pavement and I have hiked in them as we'll. They are now my go to shoes for foot travel. Evos for running and Mafates for hiking though the Evos are more than adequate for most trails. Those who love minimalist shoes won't like these, but having thousands of miles on my feet and legs these have given me a new lease on long distance foot travel. Not cheap but worth every penny.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Patagonia Drifter A/C on 06/14/2013 18:00:23 MDT Print View

First of all, thanks to everyone for the excellent input.

I went to REI today and spent a while in the shoe section, flexing soles, asking questions and trying several models on. I found the Patagonia Drifer A/C to be an excellent blend of UL qualities with a very stiff sole: they are 17oz, well ventilated (no waterproofing), low top, low volume, and have a very aggressive tread. Time will tell, but this is the most protective lightweight shoe I have found.

Richard Reno
(scubahhh) - M

Locale: White Mountains, mostly.
Vasquez Scree 2, or Pendulum? on 06/14/2013 18:52:53 MDT Print View

My screes have great protection- maybe too much! I like the Pendulums better because they seem to have enough prote toon, while still allowing me to really feel the trail. In the long run, I'm finding that's actually more comfortable and safer. YMMV...

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Patagonia Drifter A/C on 06/16/2013 19:58:31 MDT Print View

I got a chance to put some easy miles on these new shoes today. I think my feet felt better after the hike! Zero stone bruising, excellent ventilation, no hot spots and a new one for me: with the volume of the shoes matching my feet, I had no toe bang. On steep downhills, the instep gripped my feet and they didn't go sliding forward as much as with other shoes.

This is a huge thing for my hiking future and I'm relieved if not *delighted*.