Hiking through the Utah desert among the spectacular geological formations of Canyonlands and Arches national parks wasn’t part of the plan when I purchased the Merrell Women’s Moab Mid-Height Hikers. But I knew I needed to invest in the ankle support of mid-height hikers after one too many near ankle rolls in low-cut trekkers. I zeroed in on the Moab Hikers because my experience has proved that from casual winter boots to performance water shoes, Merrell delivers quality construction, durability and incomparable comfort.
These hikers didn’t disappoint. They effortlessly combine the lightweight flexibility of cross trainers with the structured protection of hiking boots. Before I took them to the Utah scrublands, I broke them in on a few moderate Colorado hikes. Surprisingly, this ended up being a formality thanks to the minimal, if not nonexistent, break-in time they required without leaving even the hint of a blister.
So to truly put these hikers to the test, there was no better place to take them than the locale after which they were named – Moab, Utah. Its undeveloped recreation areas can be unforgiving, as my fiancé and I learned on our strenuous hike of the 8-mile Syncline Loop that included a steep 1,000-foot-plus descent over rocky terrain into a canyon, and demanding scrambling on the way out, complete with a relatively welcoming stretch of slick rock to bring the exhausting route to a close.
But not once along the cairn-marked "trail" did I have to retie my laces. And even after my pack started to feel heavy around mile 6, my feet weren’t weighed down. The perfect fit of these women’s-specific hikers left no room for gravel or sand to slip in and cause friction, while the ventilating mesh construction curbed the moisture buildup that can cause blisters. Any footwear that leaves my feet blister-free after a daylong hike in 100-degree heat will continue to me by go-to choice for outdoor adventure.
Cabela’s Outfitter Journal magazine, published six times a year, educates and entertains hunters, anglers and other outdoor enthusiasts with interesting destination and how-to features, informative regional reports, eye-catching photography and more. A complete package of outdoor information, Cabela’s Outfitter Journal will get you ready for – and excited about – future outdoor adventures.
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