Hello, I hike with my dogs 85 to 100 miles a month in the spring and summer. I am looking for a cooler hiking shoe. I am looking at the Solomon X Ultra low aero also known as the X Ultra 3 I think and the Keen Explore. I don't want water proof. With Keen's I wear a 9.5. I have always worn Keen's but hace found the Solomon X Ultra is very highly rated. Here are my questions:
Which would you recommend considering I want comfort and a cooler shoe for summer?
What do you think of the quick lace system on the Solomon?
With Solomon would I still get the 9.5 as with the Keen?
Thanks so much and looking forward to hearing back! Heading to Black Hills in July for lots of hiking too.
@nprusinski Thanks for reaching out, Norm!
Here are our recommendations:
The quick lacing system on Salomon shoes is a great system. It is simple to use, durable, and the laces tuck up and away in the tongue of the shoe. They are a bit more challenging to replace if they break, and if you need to employ a lacing technique to avoid an issue in your foot like a high arch, narrow heel, or wide instep it can be challenging. While the Salomon quick laces are uniformly snug when tightened, you cannot tighten one area of the shoe and loosen another like you can with traditional laces.
If you do go with a Salomon shoe, we recommend the same size as your Keens, if not a half size smaller if you've got any extra room in the pair you have now.
Hopefully this helps, let us know if you have any other questions!
How long a hiking shoe will last is going to depend on a lot of factors, including, but not limited to, trail conditions (rocky and rugged or hardpack dirt), terrain (dusty and dry or wet and muddy), weight (of person and any gear being carried), whether you are cleaning them regularly to remove debris, rigidity of the boot, and, most importantly, how well they fit your feet, as some examples.
The Merrell Moab Ventilator shoes are a pretty lightweight shoe, so we'd say that you could likely expect 300-500 miles out of them before they need to be replaced, depending a lot on the factors mentioned above. Given how many miles you're putting on a pair of shoes, you could likely expect to get one season, maybe two, out of them.
We recommend taking a look at this Expert Advice article, How to Clean Hiking Boots, for some tips on how to extend the life of your shoes.
Hope this helps!