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Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit

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Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 07:55AM
I can never get boots to fit properly. I have wide feet (4E) and narrow heels. Just curious if anyone has any suggestions on how to get a better fit. Would it be better to have a better fit in the toe box & a little loose in the heels or a better fit in the heels and a tight toe box. Thank for any input.
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 08:24AM
Quote
ProgMtl
I can never get boots to fit properly. I have wide feet (4E) and narrow heels. Just curious if anyone has any suggestions on how to get a better fit. Would it be better to have a better fit in the toe box & a little loose in the heels or a better fit in the heels and a tight toe box. Thank for any input.

I feel your frustration. I have wide feet, narrow heels, high instep and high arches and getting boots takes a lot of patience. I go with a better fit in the toe box ( high volume toe box) and a looser heel. You can always wear a heel cup or something else to tighten up the heel area but you don't want your toes mashed together or you will be miserable. The best thing to do is go somewhere like REI or another store that has a wide variety of boot styles and makes and has people that are very good at fitting boots. They also can give you good suggestions on how to lace your boots to get a better fit. Over the years I have also learned that if I get a boot that fits well to buy another pair because styles get discontinued and a year or so later you will be back searching for a good fit.
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 08:43AM
Thanks for the reply...I also have the high instep & arches...never heard of a heel cup but I suppose REI might sell those too. The part about buying 2 pairs is exactly what I do with tennis shoes (new balance only because of the width) since when you find a good pair they tend to not stay around next season.
avatar Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 09:32AM
I disagree with the idea of buying two pairs until you have tested the first pair under real life trail conditions on a multi-day hike in the high country where they will really put to the test. There's no way REI can properly simulate trail conditions. Another thing to be certain of is that you have the proper size shoe. I've found I require one size larger than I would in a street shoe. I agree that your emphasis should be getting the front part of your feet comfortable and then looking for comfortable heel cups. If the heel area is too loose the foot will move too much in that area and lend itself to blistering due to friction.
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 01:57PM
Quote
tomdisco
I disagree with the idea of buying two pairs until you have tested the first pair under real life trail conditions on a multi-day hike in the high country where they will really put to the test. There's no way REI can properly simulate trail conditions. Another thing to be certain of is that you have the proper size shoe. I've found I require one size larger than I would in a street shoe. I agree that your emphasis should be getting the front part of your feet comfortable and then looking for comfortable heel cups. If the heel area is too loose the foot will move too much in that area and lend itself to blistering due to friction.

I didn't mean to make it sound like you buy two pairs at once. I test a pair out first to see it they work and then buy the second pair. My mistake was hiking in a pair for several months and liked them and then not going back until more than a year later only to find they were discontinued.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/23/2014 02:04PM by parklover.
avatar Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 09:34AM
I disagree with the idea of buying two pairs until you have tested the first pair under real life trail conditions on a multi-day hike in the high country where they will really put to the test. There's no way REI can properly simulate trail conditions. Another thing to be certain of is that you have the proper size shoe. I've found I require one size larger than I would in a street shoe. I agree that your emphasis should be getting the front part of your feet comfortable and then looking for comfortable heel cups. If the heel area is too loose the foot will move too much in that area and lend itself to blistering due to friction.

Just as an aside, there are several books on proper foot care. One I like is "Fixing Your Feet" by John Vonhof.

Jim
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 10:25AM
I wouldn't buy the 2nd pair without testing the 1st pair thoroughly...I don't do that with the tennis shoes either. I will look into that book, thanks.
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 10:39AM
Any reason you're looking for specifically for boots? You mention you have a pair of New Balances that fit you--maybe check out some of their trail-runners to see if they work for you. Some people might require the additional support or protection a boot offers, but if you don't have such needs, a trail runner-type shoe may work fine for you for non-winter, on-trail Sierra hiking.
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 10:52AM
A trail runner would be fine, just going to do quite a bit of hiking but no backpacking and I would prefer low tops. I just can't take the Merrell's I have anymore because I have worn a hole in the back of the heel from all the slippage. I still have my old semi-crappy, although very comfortable feeling, Hi-Tec "mid" hikers that are 15 years old.
avatar Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 01:25PM
Which Merrell's do you own?

My feet are similar to yours, wide (4E) with narrow heels and the Merrell's Mens Moab Gore-Tex Wide-Width hiking shoes fit my feet like a glove. They're actually comfortable enough for everyday use if I ever needed to wear them around town.



Merrell.com: Merrell's Mens Moab Gore-Tex Wide-Width

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Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 24, 2014 07:33AM
Quote
plawrence
Which Merrell's do you own?

My feet are similar to yours, wide (4E) with narrow heels and the Merrell's Mens Moab Gore-Tex Wide-Width hiking shoes fit my feet like a glove. They're actually comfortable enough for everyday use if I ever needed to wear them around town.



Merrell.com: Merrell's Mens Moab Gore-Tex Wide-Width

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I currently have the Moab Ventilators (waterproof). I've actually been looking at the exact boot you just mentioned (going to REI on Saturday to try them out). From the specs they appear to be quite a bit lighter then the Ventilators. If I need to go with heel cups I see that REI also has some of those.
avatar Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 06:14PM
Quote
parklover
go somewhere like REI [...] that [...] has people that are very good at fitting boots

Meh. For the Berkeley store, it's been hit or miss. They have some knowledgeable staff, and others who've never been hiking. The older (younger) ones tend to be the former (latter).
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 08:53PM
I have been pretty lucky at the one I go to and usually get someone that knows what they are talking about. There are a few old guys that have been there for a long time and I always try to get one of them.
avatar Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 23, 2014 07:31PM
If you can afford them, custom made boots are the best. They are well worth the price. I had a pair made that lasted through 4 outsoles.

An old school trick with all leather boots is to soak them in warm water, put on the socks you will be hiking in, and then wear the boots until they are dry. The leather will shrink, or expand, where needed.
Re: Having a hard time with proper boot fit
April 24, 2014 07:23AM
A friend with similar dimensions finds relief with New Balance. Trekstas are also differently proportioned than most of the run of the mill shoes out there.

You may have to find an orthopedics place and get a custom insole to find a total solution that won't malform your foot. As someone who dissed that notion and regretted it, I'll throw it out there and encourage it - no one deserves the pain and suffering that ignoring just-doesn't-quite-fit shoes will give you....
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