My wife loves me, bought me some new boots...

12:10 p.m. on October 7, 2013 (EDT)
118 reviewer rep
131 forum posts

Just got a gift from my lovely bride of 28 years.

A new pair of Zamberlan 230 SH Plus GTX light hiking boots. Pic below is a 'stock' photo in red color, she gave me the same boots but in black.

Looking forward to giving them a workout over the next several months. Not ready to retire my pair of KEEN hikers, but it might break her heart if I don't relegate my trusty KEENs to the back of the closet.

Amazingly lightweight but still very supportive, interesting combination. Anyone use this boot, or even this brand? I've never owned the brand before.


1:44 p.m. on October 7, 2013 (EDT)
1,379 reviewer rep
1,339 forum posts

I've tried Zamberlans, but I found them to have a quite narrow fit. My usual boot is a Salomon, with a narrow heel and a wider toe box.

Is the fit okay? The Keens you're using now are very wide in the forefoot. If you're switching from Keens to Zamberlans, watch out for pinched toes or blisters on the sides of your foot.

2:51 p.m. on October 7, 2013 (EDT)
118 reviewer rep
131 forum posts

Yes, definitely narrower that the very roomy toebox in the KEENs.

4:37 p.m. on October 7, 2013 (EDT)
592 reviewer rep
1,522 forum posts

WOW...A KEEN wearer going Narrow? Which Keens do you wear? I am interested in knowing how these compare. I wear keens as well and it is largley becqause they aer NOT narrow....

9:13 a.m. on October 8, 2013 (EDT)
118 reviewer rep
131 forum posts

I own 3 different pairs of KEEN walking boots/shoes. I've also got 2 pairs of Merrel's and a pair of Lowa hikers. I favor 1 pair of Merrell and 1 pair of Keens the most. I'm curious to compare these as well but it may be the weekend before I can really get to them for a test as the high school fencing season started up and I spend every afternoon volunteering at 2 different schools as a coach and armorour for the respective teams.

9:41 a.m. on October 8, 2013 (EDT)
592 reviewer rep
1,522 forum posts

WoW. I am beginning to wonder, Melensdad, if you EVER actually answer a question. Above you said you ahd your trusty KEEN hikers, I ask which ones and you say walking boots/shoes. that tells me NOTHING. Gimme a lil sumpin sumpin like, I don't know KEEN ERICSONS or KEEN PCT's or TARGHEITS (Sp).

9:51 a.m. on October 8, 2013 (EDT)
118 reviewer rep
131 forum posts

Sorry, can't recall the exact name of this pair of keen walkers, they are my favorites, maybe a photo will help identify them? I believe these are now discontinued, maybe discontinued last year?


I have a pair of Keen boots and a pair of Keen shoes too. Don't recall the names of those either. My Merrels are World Walkers, or something like that, but I don't recall the name of the Merrell trail runners I own and have no clue about the name of the 5 year old Lowas.

10:53 a.m. on October 8, 2013 (EDT)
5,732 reviewer rep
2,049 forum posts

if the shoe fits, wear it.  if it doesn't.....

i don't have experience with the brand.  i will say this - my wife has occasionally delved into outdoor gear.  i have found that when she purchases something i really don't need or want, she's OK if i decide to exchange it.   i wouldn't be shy about exchanging the boots, with a sincere thank-you, if the brand doesn't fit your feet. 

7:45 a.m. on October 9, 2013 (EDT)
940 reviewer rep
780 forum posts

I have the 760 Steeps. Great boot.

8:38 a.m. on October 19, 2013 (EDT)
118 reviewer rep
131 forum posts

Just a bit of a follow up with these boots.

The toe box is not constricting but I find then a bit snug across the metatarsal area when I'm NOT active. While I'm up and active with the boots, or when I'm actually out hiking, the boots feel great. There is more ground feel than in the Keens, which have such thick soles I feel nothing under foot. By contrast I can feel much more under foot with these 230 Crossers and that provides a level of confidence. The ground feel is more one of control than of one of detached insulation from it, which I get in my Keens.

Some of the reviews said that some users may need to replace the insole for more padding but that doesn't seem to be the case for me. Then again, these boots are all of a couple weeks old and have very few miles on them, so perhaps time and wear will alter the perception.

5:15 p.m. on November 26, 2013 (EST)
118 reviewer rep
131 forum posts

Just thought I'd update this thread.

These boots are AWESOME. Extreme comfort. The initial feeling of narrowness was not an issue after the first few days. I'm not going to write up a real review as I've never taken these on more than a day hike but overall these are the best light hikers that I've ever worn, comfortable enough for casual wear too. I love the ground feel that I get through the soles. It instills confidence on slippery rocks, gives you sure footed hold on uneven ground and rocky surfaces.

Some reviews complain that there is not enough padding, but I find them to have plenty.

June 22, 2018
Quick Reply

Please sign in to reply

More Topics
This forum: Older: "Invisible" bike helmet Newer: putting polartec neoshell through its paces
All forums: Older: Backpacking Blog-Southern Apps Dweller Newer: Testing the limits of my hammock