148 of 154 people found the following review helpful
on June 4, 2012
Size Name: 7.5 B(M) USColor Name: Tawny PortVerified Purchase
I purchased these shoes as a last minute buy, after realizing that my "vacation" was going to be a bit more arduous than I had bargained for. I have worn Merrells quite habitually in the past and have always enjoyed them, but I was on a budget and couldn't afford to drop a couple hundred on a pair of shoes (the price tag on these was even a bit of a stretch), but I figured hey, a hiking trip can go downhill really fast if your feet are not up to par (pun intended). So I bought them, and they arrived 48 hours before setting off on what would prove to be the adventure of a lifetime. I put about 6 miles of easy urban walking on them before I left, and besides a little rubbing above my left ankle, they didn't need any breaking in (I attribute this to being a casual shoe wearer, not the boot itself. I never wear shoes of this cut).
No more than two days later, I wore these boots practically to the summit of the West Spanish Peak (12,700 ft). The next day, around the crater of Capulin Volcano. The next day, up to the peak of Star Dune in the Great Sand Dunes. THE NEXT DAY, up to the top of the Kashe-Katuwe Tent Rocks. Around the Valles Caldera, Petroglyphs National Monument, and Sandia Crest. The topper - we finished our trip at El Malpais, an a'a' volcanic flow notorious for eating boots (and hands). My boots came out unscathed. By the end of our trip, many of my mates' shoes were wrecked - mine were in fairly pristine shape, with the exception of some staining from stomping in mud puddles and tromping through creeks (which my feet stayed completely dry for).
When my Ahnus die, they will hold a place in my shoe hall of fame. Then I will buy another pair. All around trusty, awesome boots. They're not quite as magenta as they were when my journey started, but hey - if they stayed pretty, I wasn't wearing them to the right places.
71 of 73 people found the following review helpful
actually own two pairs of these simply because I haven't found any I love better.
Admittedly I bought the first pair (the "Aura" color) because it was one of the few hiking shoes that didn't look like a man's shoe (brown on brown), had some spunk, supported the ankles front AND back, and I love the brand in other shoes.
It's purple with yellow accents. Oh how I fell in love at first glance.
This pair I bought for a hiking group in which my husband and I are members. So I got them for all kinds of hikes: long, short, you name it. I love that these boots truly center your foot; Vibram is the designer for Ahru on this one and it's a brand known for taking the physics of your foot into consideration rather than simply thinking of the design. First day of hiking, this is very evident. You actually wind up with less blisters due to your foot not moving back and forth as much and the waterproofing worked.
The boot is unique in that it is made to also allow sweat to evaporate while being waterproof and this is where I decided to put it through a real test.
I bought a second pair for caving. (They don't show my second pair in these choices, it is brown but has light blue accents). Same model. Same brand.
My husband and I are spelunkers and own a water cave. Foot wear is key. In a water cave sometimes you crawl, sometimes you walk for long periods on dry sharp formations, sometimes you swim, sometimes you do a little of everything like a salamander...When you are traveling in the water and you have no ability to see deep crevices ahead (falling happens all day long once the water becomes murky and you don't know what you are stepping on or in) from formations that have have occurred and broken away for thousands of years, shoes are as important as your light. Broken bones are common in caving so I look for strong ankle support, not just in front, but in back as well because I may be in a cave for 8 hours, in shoes filled with water, and have to climb up and down walls, rappel, shimmy through tight spaces, and walk over sharp objects all day long. Losing your footing means a broken ankle. And you lose your footing all day long. You have to have great support.
These not only hold up well for my hiking needs but also my caving needs. While waterproofing is impossible when walking and swimming through a cave, support and ruggedness are important and I wondered if letting the sweat out would assist in letting some of the water drain better. I will say I was in all the way up to my ankle and not one drop of water entered the shoe. These are exceptionally waterproof!
Typically my cave boots feel like they weigh about 5 pounds a piece being heavy with water and mud. These actually did the trick.
Nothing is harder on shoes than water caving but comfort is so important. While my purple ones get the rave reviews ("Those are cool. what brand is that?") from fellow hikers, the ability to support, stay intact, and last when the sharpest floors on earth tear at your shoes all day long while you pull your body through them in the darkness? Now there's a real test.
They have held up in cave after cave...while my purple pair give me feet comfort and support while hiking and looking stylish...the best of both of my worlds.
Sizing: I typically wear a size 7.5. I bought a size 8 in this shoe because I wear very heavy socks while caving and they fit great. I bought a size 7.5 in the pair I use for hiking because I wear a thinner hiking sock. They do seem to run a wee bit smaller than some shoes as I can very rarely wear a 7 but sometimes I can and an 8 is typically very loose on me but it's not that loose in these. I think if you are on the fence about sizing, I'd go a half size up.
46 of 49 people found the following review helpful
on June 21, 2014
I wear a size 7.5 in womens and the 7.5 fit me great. The boots didn't require hardly anytime to break into them. The purple color was really vibrant and got a lot of compliments. My only complaint- about a month into daily use they lost their waterproof ability! I hike 5 days a week for work in Idaho and these were my main and only boots. It was awesome in the beginning to cross rivers and jump across streams with dry feet. But about a month into my job that all changed. I think the boots got so dirty they became saturated with dirt and that compromised the waterproofness. I tried cleaning them with a toothbrush and it did nothing. Three months into owning them and the boots are no longer purple anymore-- they are brown! The inside leather is water stained and ugly. I've thought about taking them to a professional for a cleaning but where the heck does one go for that? If waterproofness is something important to you then I'd look elsewhere for a boot-- and I will too!
62 of 68 people found the following review helpful
on September 10, 2011
Size Name: 8.5 B(M) USColor Name: Tawny PortVerified Purchase
I was preparing to do a 28 mile hike in one day and knew I had to have the best of the best. I researched many boots and this boot had everything I wanted wrapped into one boot. Waterproof, good ankle support, awesome traction, a tough toe and stylish to boot. I did about 15-16 miles over a weekend to test them out and they fit perfectly to my foot and lived up to every expectation I needed. I even got caught in a horrible rain storm and they stayed dry on the inside. Highly recommended.
117 of 137 people found the following review helpful
on September 23, 2012
Size Name: 7 B(M) USColor Name: Tawny PortVerified Purchase
After much research, I purchased these for some light hiking in the Canadian Rockies. The fit is good though not as true to size as I would have liked (I purchased a 7 and should have gotten the 7.5). But what really made me want to throw them through a window is this. The FIRST TIME I laced them up in preparation for a hike, one of the speed grommets at the top (the silver ones) completely came off. I did not over-torque the laces but when I put the lace through and pulled, it popped off and flew across the room. The ankle grommets are key to hikers because they allow for the proper ankle support/fit. Since everyone was ready to go, I threaded the lace through the metal eyehole and called it good and they were the only boots I had brought with me. A week later when I got back to Washington state, I e-chatted with an Ahnu customer service rep who directed me to their website. (Gee, thanks for the tip.) The bottom line? I couldn't return them because I had USED them even though they were defective. So, my only choice now is to take them to a shoe repair shop. Grrrr...Not impressed with this lack of customer service over a quality issue.
24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2013
Size Name: 7.5 B(M) USColor Name: Astral Aura
I bought these boots because I didn't want the look of a "guys'" type boot and these were a feminine alternative.I purchased in the purple color and love everything about them from the color,speed lacing,waterproof feature,style,true-to-size fit but there is one major "flaw"...the soles on these boots are hard,not "rubbery" at all and EXTREMELY slippery on wet surfaces such as wood,grass,leaves,slush,etc. I was so disappointed with this aspect,but will keep them knowing that they can't be worn in above mentioned conditions,which I think is a HUGE concern in a hiking boot!
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on September 8, 2014
So, I have to start off by saying that this is my 5th or 6th boot I have bought in the last 2 years hoping I can find one that works for me. I have the world's most delicate feet and I need a boot that can keep up with the rest of me. My feet blister at the drop of the hat, I have high arches and very narrow feet, which makes finding a suitable boot difficult. I have tried hiking shoes, other boots, and even trail running shoes with no avail...until now!!
These boots were so comfortable when I first put them on, but I remained skeptical until I tried them out. The first hike I did in them was in Olympic National Park and was 8.6 miles long with a 3400' elevation gain (not a good first hike in the boots), but I made it. My feet had small blisters in the back of the heels, and I was about ready to give up on them. I realized the pair of wool hiking socks was causing the problem, so I got a different pair.
The second hike in these was 8 miles and 2667' elevation gain (in mud, water, rocks, etc..) and with the new socks, these boots were amazing!!! And that's in 90 degree weather! My feet had hot spots on them, on the big toe when I got done, but that's not unusual as I run half-marathons and always have problems there. The boot performed well with water, they were very well temperature controlled, and I didn't have any issues with grip or ankle rolling.
I can't recommend these boots enough and hope they will continue to work for me for many years to come. I normally wear a 7 shoe, but I got a 7.5 in these and it's been great! I highly recommend the Smartwool hiking socks to go with them for a winning combo!
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on February 20, 2012
Size Name: 8 B(M) USColor Name: BlackVerified Purchase
i walk all day as an iowa mail carrier, with alot of hills and yards all day long. i am loving these boots, and believe me ive tried many. they are very comfortable and super light weight. havent used them in super heavy rainy days,, but have with a day of sprinkle and had no wet feet. no break in needed, super soft leather. cant say enough about them...in my career shoes and gloves are key elements that can make or break my day...and these babies are the only ones that i would recommend.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 2, 2014
I've just completed the legendary Camino Frances with my daughter in these great Ahnu boots. It's the most popular ancient Camino route to Santiago, immortalized in the Martin Sheen movie, "The Way". I did not only the popular shorter section from Sarria to Santiago, but the the entire 800 km route across the North of Spain starting in St. Jean Pied de Port in France, over the Napolean Route in the Pyrennees, through Navarra, the dry, hot Meseta, and the mists of Galicia, including such highlights as Foncebadon and O Cebreiro. We took a bus around two industrial sections before Burgos and Leon.
The terrain included extremely muddy, wet sections in the Pyrenees -- I'm talking mud a foot deep, rocky steep descents especially around Acebo, paved roads, and miles and miles of dirt trails and hills. This fantastic Ahnu Montara boot was the most important part of my gear. I broke the boots in with only a few short hikes here at home in New England. Despite my extremely sensitive skin, I had very few blisters on Camino, even though we were hiking daily for hours. The boots were sooo comfortable, lightweight, and definitely waterproof. As a comparison, virtually every other Pilgrim I know had huge blisters everywhere. I would recommend, and did wear, liner socks, and put Compeed on any hot spots right away.
Another American woman I met was wearing the exact same boots on the Camino and she didn't have even ONE blister. Several friends wearing other boots made trips to the hospital for infected blisters, wrapping, open foot sores -- all common Camino complaints.
While some wear light training shoes on the Camino, if you really do the WHOLE thing and are not just day tripping I recommend ankle support and real hiking boots. On the other hand, there's no need for heavy clunky boots when these light beauties offer all the support you need. They feel like butter on your feet. I have the gorgeous purple boots, and I'm going to order another pair right now, just in case my beloved original pair every wear out.
I'm 56, and in two months of wearing these all day long I never slipped once. Other Camino-tested recommendations: Osprey Exos pack, Just Darn Tough merino socks, Black Diamond Z ultralight Z poles, lightweight merino wool shirts such as Ibex, Icebreaker and Smart Wool (they never smell even after weeks of sweat).
These boots come in an array of gorgeous colors (my other daughter has the hunter green) and although I have several other pairs of hiking shoes (low Keens with no ankle for shorter hikes, clunkier boots for some Vermont mountains in winter, trail runners), these could take the place of ALL of them.
For any and all hiking ventures, these boots are highly, highly recommended!
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on August 27, 2013
Size Name: 9 B(M) USColor Name: Dark GreyVerified Purchase
I got these boots thinking that the great reviews made them the perfect boot for my upcoming trip into Haleakala Crater for 4 days. When they arrived, I thought they fit OK, thought a little tight around the upper foot area. They are leather, so my original thought was that they would break in over some time.
I went to the gym to try them out on the treadmill. I walked for a half hour to see if they got any better. They seemed to feel better in the narrow area as long as I was moving. However, it felt like there was a seam that was rubbing below my right inner ankle. I felt around when I took them off, and it seems like it was under the special material that is supposed to wick away sweat. I even tried the boots on with two pair of socks, thinking that would help. Nope.
It could be just a defect in this particular boot, but I can't take the chance and wear a hole in my ankle for 4 days.
I returned them.