If you’re a hiking enthusiast, you know the importance of having the right gear for your adventures. And one of the most crucial pieces of equipment for any hiker is a good pair of shoes. In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at Keen hiking shoes and what makes them a top choice for many hikers.
Introduction to Keen Hiking Shoes
Keen is a well-known brand that specializes in outdoor footwear. The company was founded in 2003 in Portland, Oregon, and has since gained a reputation for producing high-quality and durable shoes for hikers, backpackers, and outdoor enthusiasts.
Benefits of Keen Hiking Shoes
One of the main benefits of Keen hiking shoes is their durability. These shoes are designed to withstand the wear and tear of rough terrain and challenging weather conditions. They’re also waterproof, making them ideal for wet and muddy trails.
Another advantage of Keen hiking shoes is their comfort. The shoes are designed with a cushioned footbed and midsole, which provides support and shock absorption. They also have a wide toe box, which allows your toes to move freely and reduces the risk of blisters and other foot injuries.
Types of Keen Hiking Shoes
Keen offers a wide range of hiking shoes for different types of terrain and activities. Here are some of the most popular options:
1. Keen Targhee III
The Keen Targhee III is a versatile hiking shoe that’s ideal for day hikes and short backpacking trips. It features a leather and mesh upper, a cushioned footbed, and a non-marking rubber outsole for traction on various surfaces.
2. Keen Durand II
The Keen Durand II is a rugged hiking shoe that’s designed for longer backpacking trips and off-trail adventures. It has a leather and mesh upper, a waterproof membrane, and a supportive midsole for comfort and stability.
3. Keen Oakridge
The Keen Oakridge is a lightweight hiking shoe that’s perfect for day hikes and easy trails. It features a breathable mesh upper, a cushioned footbed, and a non-marking rubber outsole for traction on slippery surfaces.
How to Choose the Right Keen Hiking Shoes
When choosing Keen hiking shoes, there are several factors to consider. Here are some tips to help you find the perfect pair:
1. Terrain and Activity
Consider the type of terrain you’ll be hiking on and the activity you’ll be doing. If you’ll be hiking on rocky terrain or carrying a heavy backpack, you’ll need a more rugged shoe with better support and traction.
Make sure the shoes fit well and are comfortable. Try them on with hiking socks and walk around the store to ensure a proper fit. Remember that your feet may swell during long hikes, so it’s important to have a little extra room.
Consider the weight of the shoes. Lightweight shoes are great for day hikes, but if you’ll be carrying a heavy backpack or hiking on rough terrain, you may need a more substantial shoe.
If you’ll be hiking in wet conditions, look for shoes with waterproofing features. Keen hiking shoes are designed with waterproof membranes and treated uppers to keep your feet dry.
Care and Maintenance of Keen Hiking Shoes
To ensure your Keen hiking shoes last as long as possible, it’s important to take care of them. Here are some tips:
1. Clean Them Regularly
After each hike, it’s important to clean your shoes to remove dirt and debris. Use a soft brush or cloth and mild soap to gently clean the shoes, both inside and out. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the shoes.
2. Dry Them Properly
Wet shoes can lead to discomfort and even foot injuries, so it’s important to dry them properly. Remove the insoles and laces and stuff the shoes with newspaper or a towel to help absorb moisture. Avoid exposing the shoes to direct sunlight or heat sources, as this can cause the material to warp or crack.
3. Store Them Carefully
When you’re not wearing your Keen hiking shoes, it’s important to store them properly. Keep them in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and moisture. Avoid storing them in airtight containers, as this can cause the shoes to become moldy or mildewed.
4. Treat Them with Waterproofing Spray
To keep your Keen hiking shoes waterproof, it’s a good idea to treat them with a waterproofing spray. Look for a spray that’s specifically designed for hiking shoes and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Be sure to reapply the spray regularly to maintain the shoes’ waterproofing.
5. Inspect Them Regularly
It’s important to inspect your Keen hiking shoes regularly for signs of wear and tear. Check the soles for wear and make sure the stitching is intact. If you notice any damage, it’s important to address it right away to prevent further damage.
6. Replace the Insoles
The insoles of your hiking shoes can wear out over time, which can affect the comfort and support they provide. Consider replacing the insoles every six months or so, or as needed.
By following these care and maintenance tips, you can help prolong the life of your Keen hiking shoes and ensure they’re always ready for your next adventure.