I’ve been wearing exclusively “Merrell Moab Ventilator” hiking shoes for about 3 years now. Love ’em! http://www.merrell.com/US/en/Moab-Collection
After a little over a year of hard use, about 3 days a week, the soles were showing some wear in the center, as is to be expected. (The laces were replaced once, after an accidental encounter with the moving parts of my mountain bike! No injuries, no stories to tell…)
Honestly, I didn’t *have to* replace these shoes. I *wanted* to! The materials and the durability mean I could use these for many more happy miles. The “uppers” are almost like-new, with the materials and sewing, including the eyelets, still being in excellent condition. “Why” then? Well, there are some really steep hikes in the San Francisco / Silicon Valley area and I’m accustomed to excellent traction on trails in places like the Ohlone Wilderness trek to Murietta Falls (https://alpharoaming.com/2014/03/12/murietta-falls-in-the-ohlone-wilderness/)
I have been quite happy with my 2 prior pair. MUCH better than 2 other brands I’ve owned in the past where the different layers of material in the soles started separating. I bought the same ones again, this time I chose the color “Walnut” instead of “Sand”.
Isn’t it always fun to open up “shiny new stuff?”
The comparative wear on the soles is apparent, and quite normal given the long, steep, and rocky hikes I often subject them to.
Ready for my next outing!
If I hadn’t had these twice before, I would be sure to wear them around town for a few days, or on a few short short hikes, before venturing on a long trip. It’s always good to watch for “hot spots” or other surprises. My foot is more-or-less a typical Men’s 11. Size 11.5 seems to work well for me, with some seasonal variations in my choice of socks.
Out with the old, in with the new! They’ve served me well. Cool, light, comfortable, durable, excellent traction, and even able to scare away an occasional rattlesnake! https://alpharoaming.com/2012/09/26/rattlesnake-adrenaline-rush-tie-down-peak-at-henry-coe/
I summary, they work great for me, as you can see by my repeat purchases. Comfortable right out of the box! Try them on at your nearest retail store and see if they work for you! http://www.merrell.com/US/en/Moab-Collection