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Old 04-19-2007   #21
thecraw's Avatar
Boulder, Jackson Kayak, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 911
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Merrils are super great for 3 reasons... very light, great sticktion, and drain very quickly. Only downside is that they are lowtops, and not inherintly warm. I wouldn't really call the lowtop thing a downside as just a preference. I had to jog about 4 miles with Joe Keck (long story) up in Washington after we had to hike out of a gorge. The Merrils were like running shoes... VERY comfy and easy on the dogs...

Keen has the Hood River and from all indications they are perfect for colorado conditions. They are neoprene for warmth, they have many drain holes (in the sole no less!), have very good ways to tighten down solid and bottom line are super burly. OH, and they are STICKY as it gets.

I own both pair but have only used the Merrils so far. Either of these two and you can't go wrong.


"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body. But rather...To skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming... WOW !!!! What a ride!!!!!!"
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Old 04-30-2007   #22
rockinRio's Avatar
Thornton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 231
Keen Hood River Boot - Update -

I got my boots last week, and used them on my swiftwater rescue course (BTW Mike Mather is the M-A-N!) this weekend.


First off they are extremely comfortable, and stable. I was running up and down the river bank in dirt, moss, grass, choss, and dry/wet rocks. I was never worried about my footing.

The water was cold, and for jumping in and out it wasn't bad. However we were in the water for 20+ minutes at a time, so I ran and put on a pair of SmartWool socks. TOASTY!

The drains in the soles did a great job clearing the water out fast, super fast. The straps kept them on me feet, I never felt any slipping, nor did I feel like they were too tight.

We did strong swimmer exercises and I've always been worried about how a shoe would interfere with my kicking (was a collegiate swimmer, so I like to kick), hands down the best shoe I've kicked in. Almost felt like they weren't there (which is a good thing).

Finally we finished the class, and my buddy and I got our boats out to run Waterton. They fit great in my Nomad 8.1. I was wearing size 10. The hike out was no problem. Much better than in my NRS Kickers.

I would recommend these boots to everyone looking for a new river boot.
Keen says they size small, but I could have gone with either the 9 or 10 (Usually where 9 to 10). I chose the 10 thinking I'd be wearing socks of some kind, (I just get cold real easy) and they fit great. If you can't a store that sells the Hood River you should try on a couple of other Keen shoes to get a feel for what size you'll need to order.

You ARE a soul, you HAVE a body.

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Old 04-30-2007   #23
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 17
Chuck Taylor All-Star Hightops. $30.00
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Old 04-30-2007   #24
TimWalker's Avatar
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1992
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 205
Originally Posted by Dallas Blaney View Post
Chuck Taylor All-Star Hightops. $30.00
You old-school knockoff! How about a sketcho bootie?

For medium use I really liked the Nike ACGs, as mentioned not made any longer.

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