Boots/shoes for narrow feet

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kpeter
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Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by kpeter » Mon Dec 24, 2018 8:10 pm

My whole life I have struggled to buy shoes that fit me--men's 9 1/2 narrow (generally C width and B width heel.) I often can't get a boot that fits well, and this has led to a life long struggle with blisters.

Finding men's narrow widths in mountaineering boots or custom made boots has always been possible--but I do not like such heavy weight boots. And as I age I find I really, really don't want to put the extra weight on my feet.

For 20 years I wore (and wore out) several pair of Vasque Sundowners since they were virtually the only men's narrow boot I could find to try on in a store. Then they discontinued the narrow widths.

For the last 15 years I have been wearing women's size 11s, since women's sizes are similar to a men's narrow. But Asolo and others have discontinued women's sizes above size 10 1/2, so that option just disappeared too.

So, having worn out my 1.9 pound Asolo Fissions, I am stuck. I can buy them in 10 1/2s but not in 11s, and the last time I tried 10 1/2s my feet were destroyed for weeks.

1) Anyone have any experience recently finding men's narrows or women's size 11 hiking boots?

2) Is it finally time for me to convert to trail runners? They seem to be made in women's 11s. If this is my best option, what is your advice about converting? I worry about carrying too much weight with such light weight shoes--I am not an ultralight hiker.








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mrphil
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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by mrphil » Tue Dec 25, 2018 6:05 am

In boots (hiking and mountaineering) and approach shoes, Scarpa.

For trail runners, both the GF and I, her with narrow feet, me with preferring a slightly snugger fit, Asics.

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kpeter
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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by kpeter » Tue Dec 25, 2018 6:56 am

Thanks mrphil,

Unfortunately, I can't find any men's narrow Scarpas or any women's Scarpas equivalent to a Men's US 9 1/2, which would be European 43. Scarpa seems to stop its women's sizes at 42.5, just like the American companies stop women's sizes at 10 1/2.

At least, that is what I am finding on this Scarpa site:

https://www.scarpa.com/hiking

Maybe I'm not looking in the right place?

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freestone
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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by freestone » Tue Dec 25, 2018 9:00 am

https://www.newbalance.com/pd/mens-leat ... ck&width=B

If you have a history of blisters, by all means give trail runners a try and check out New Balance. They are one of the few manufacturers that offer a choice of widths,from narrow to extra wide. On their site, enter “narrow “ on into the search engine.
Fram...

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mrphil
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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by mrphil » Tue Dec 25, 2018 10:08 am

The Scarpas tend toward being a narrower fit as a function of general design. I've always found them even more so than Asolo. I got tired of having my feet crushed and switched over to Zamberalains, which, if you can find your size, I highly recommend.

Unfortunately, I think that the trends when considered along with larger/narrower women's sizes just don't hold enough sales for a lot of the manufacturers to keep making, en masse. But, rather than in wide sizes which just have to be big to work at all, you can do a lot for comfort and fit with sock and insert combos to take up volume these days.

Also, while they may not suit your needs and desires, quite a few of the foreign makers of military boots still produce a wide range of sizes and fits for female personnel.

I have to agree with Freestone about conversion to trail runners. If you don't need the ankle support or weather resistance, there are so many advantages, including finding a wider range of selection for women.

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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by AlmostThere » Tue Dec 25, 2018 12:59 pm

My bf always bought New Balance because they have shoes in very narrow, narrow, average, wide, very wide... he has extremely narrow feet. Then we started doing trail maintenance. He now hikes in leather boots from Red Wing, since trail work requires work boots, and does very well.

For anyone who hikes nearly every week, versus once or twice a year, I'm going to mention that trail runners contributed to the rapid destruction of my feet and these days I hike in traditional boots. Two neuromas, bunions and some weird neuropathy that only manifests at night when I'm trying to sleep after hiking all day have put an end to my habitual trail runner use. Granite filled trails are rough on the feet.

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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by TurboHike » Wed Dec 26, 2018 5:55 pm

I wear medium D width and I absolutely cannot wear any D-width Salomon shoes/boots, just too narrow for me. I think the whole product line runs narrow.

I like Oboz hiking shoes/boots, they are designed with narrow heels and wider foot boxes. I'm not sure if they offer narrow widths, but they do offer women's shoes/boots. I've never gotten blisters with my Oboz Tamaracks.

cheers.

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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by Wandering Daisy » Wed Dec 26, 2018 6:39 pm

I think many of us with narrow feet want a narrow heel, snug instep, but wide at the toes. Not sure exactly what area of your foot you need narrow. There also is a difference between "narrow" which refers to the width of your footprint, vs "low volume" which refers to an overall skinny, bony foot. You can have narrow but fat feet.

Many times blisters can be eliminated simply by wearing a sock liner. That way any foot-to-shoe rubbing is between the layers of socks, not between your skin and the sock. I am a big fan of Smartwool socks. And I wash socks in Woolite, because it makes them much smoother.

As for athletic shoes, I like Asics because they have narrow heel and instep but give plenty of toe room IF your foot is relatively low volume. New Balance shoes do not work for me, because they are narrow throughout, including toes. I wear neither boots or trail runners, but low-cut "light hikers". Then I remove the original insole and put in the green "Superfeet" insole. I find that with a low-cut hiker, I can cinch up the instep area very well, whereas, this cannot be done with boots. I like the fit of Merrell's but they do not last very long. I cannot wear Keens at all because the heel is so loose.

You may just have to spend some time trying on several brands and models of shoes and also try with different insoles and various thickness socks. You can do a lot with fit with various insole-sock combinations.

I have Morton's Neruoma in one foot and it totally went away once I started wearing shoes with wide toes and for-foot.

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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by kpeter » Thu Dec 27, 2018 12:22 am

TurboHike wrote:
Wed Dec 26, 2018 5:55 pm
I wear medium D width and I absolutely cannot wear any D-width Salomon shoes/boots, just too narrow for me. I think the whole product line runs narrow.

I like Oboz hiking shoes/boots, they are designed with narrow heels and wider foot boxes. I'm not sure if they offer narrow widths, but they do offer women's shoes/boots. I've never gotten blisters with my Oboz Tamaracks.

cheers.
Brilliant! Oboz comes in Women's 11s. And I see they claim that their women's sizes are C in front and B in the heel--exactly my foot. I will search for someone who has a pair to try on.

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Re: Boots/shoes for narrow feet

Post by TurboHike » Mon Dec 31, 2018 3:05 pm

kpeter, I hope it works out for you!

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