When my feet hurt it send pain through the whole body. Uncomfortable shoes can turn a potentially great day into a miserable experience. I learned those things early in my adult life when I tried to save money and ended up regretting the purchases, although I had to live with my decision since I could not afford to replace my poor choices.
A few years ago I decided to save up and buy higher quality shoes, especially for hiking, walking, and/or camping. I also had learned that if you want good outdoor equipment or gear I should go to a good outdoor store. I was directed to REI.
After a lot of looking and testing (and a lot of anguish over the price - I had never spent that much on a pair of shoes) I purchased a pair of Merrell Moab Ventilator. (At the time I was not blogging so this first picture is of the current Moab Ventilator model but, it has changed very little if any.)
Merrell Moab Ventilator - photo from shoebuy.com
The Moab Ventilator fit is superb. The insole provides great support and comfort. I found the shoe, without a doubt, the most comfortable shoe I had ever owned and I still feel that way. At first I was wearing the Moab for outdoor activities like hiking and camping. Soon I was wearing it on a daily basis. I decided I would just wear them out and then get some more. Well I am still trying to wear them out! They are extremely durable.
Photo taken 1/26/2011 at the office.
Not too bad for 6+ year old shoes that get worn a lot, almost daily.
The Vibram rubber sole is possible the best on the market. The Vibram sole is used by numerous shoe manufacturers including Red Wing Shoes, Rockport, North Face, and of course Merrell. The sole is very durable. It took a long time to notice much wear in the sole and even today there is a good amount of tread left except on the heels were they get extra wear when I am driving and due to the way I walk.
I am trying to wear them out so I can justify getting a new pair.
The Merrell Moabs took me to Osprey Falls in Yellowstone
The Moabs took me to the Biscuit Basin Overlook and Mystic Falls
The shoes kept me comfortable all through Yellowstone.
I am very pleased with the performance, look, and durability of the Merrell Moab Ventilators. The finishing touches and workmanship are top notch. I will most likely purchase the waterproof Moab Ventilator soon. I would also consider any shoe with the Vibram rubber sole. One thing for sure is that quality shoes are worth the price.