Karrimor Hiking Boots Review (My Opinion After 2 Years of Use)

Karrimor Hiking Boots Review (My Opinion After 2 Years of Use)

I’m not writing this Karrimor hiking boots review after only a few weeks or months of use. It’s not a first impression. It’s my honest opinion after putting my boots through their paces for around two-and-a-half years. I had my Karrimor hiking boots for a long time and I worked them hard in six different countries. My boots have pounded the pavement in the City of Durham. I wore them during a hiking trip in the Spanish mountains and they were on my feet while I walked through the streets of Amsterdam, Antwerp, and Düsseldorf. They traipsed through Dutch countryside and strolled along Portuguese beaches. They were the best pair of boots I ever had. I only threw them away after the soles became so thin their further use was impractical. Bearing in mind the lifespan of most of my footwear, I was truly amazed they lasted so long.

Why I Chose Karrimor Hiking Boots Over Other Brands

The company has a number of different footwear options available but I bought Karrimor Mount Mid Men’s Walking Boots. Before I bought my boots, I was unfamiliar with the Karrimor brand and I spent quite a long time comparing their boots to walking boots made by other manufacturers. Some of the alternative options looked pretty good too, but the Karrimor boots seemed more sturdy and I felt sure I was looking at something that was built to last.

Another thing I liked about the boots was the generous padding around the ankles. When you’re just walking the streets, having good padding around the ankles is not so important. If you’re walking in the countryside or following mountain paths, it’s quite easy to catch your ankles on a rock. If that happens it can hurt a lot so I like to have a pair of boots that’s got me covered.

Although the upper part of the boot is probably about 80% leather, there are some mesh panels as well to help your feet breath. The mesh has been treated to repel water, but if you’re going to be going to a lot of very wet places it helps if you spray them with some waterproofing spray. When I was examining the boots I was also impressed by the quality of the plastic overlay around the toes. Stubbing your toe is not usually as painful as banging your ankle, but it still hurts so the more protection the better.

However, when I want to buy a new pair of shoes or boots, the quality of the sole is one of the most important factors. In the past, I’ve made the mistake of buying shoes that had such a stiff sole that it split while walking. I’ve also bought boots that appeared to have a nice thick sole that later turned out to be hollow at the heel. When I buy something I expect it to last. A new pair of Karrimor hiking boots has a very thick sole. I pressed it, I tapped it I could see and hear it was solid. It was also easy to see it was sole that would grip the ground well.

Things I noticed While Wearing the Boots

Karrimor Hiking Boots Review (My Opinion After 2 Years of Use)
The Soles After 2 1/2 Years of Hard Work

Karrimor Mount Mid Men’s Hiking Boots don’t have holes for the laces. There are six pairs of metal hoops. I’m not sure of the correct name for these hoops but when I was in the shop I thought they were all the same. They are not. The top two hoops are more like hooks. They are open, so you can place your laces under them instead of threading them through them. Although this is not an uncommon walking boot feature, not all walking boots are easy to unlace/lace up quickly in this way.

The other thing I discovered was because metal can be pretty hard on laces, Karrimor Mount Mid Men’s Hiking Boots need to have thick, good-quality laces. The original laces were very tough. I can’t remember how long they lasted but it was a lot of months and may even have been a year. I made the mistake of replacing them with thinner laces. They only lasted a couple of weeks. After that, I tried to buy the thickest laces I could. In all honesty, none were as strong as the original laces, but they did last a number of months. The laces used in the pictures that accompany my Karrimor hiking boots review are too thin. I only used them because they were the only laces I could get at the time and I knew my boots walking days were numbered.

Another thing I noticed was, even though the boots have mesh panels that allow the feet to breathe, the boots still began to smell after a while. My answer to this was to stuff them with newspaper when I was not wearing them. It’s an old trick and it takes away the pong. More recently I learned a bar of soap can do the same thing so I started using soap instead because it gave the boots a nice smell.

I can’t say my feet ever felt unpleasantly hot when the weather was warm, so that must have been due to the vents. What I did notice was my feet always felt nice and warm in the winter.

The Condition of My Boots When I Threw Them Away

I threw the boots away because the area of the sole, under the balls of the feet, had become so thin I could feel any imperfections in the surface I was walking on and if I stepped on a stone it felt really unpleasant. Strangely enough, it was only the right boot that was affected. It must be due to the way that I walk. The area around the heel of the same boot had also lost some of its tread. There was no real wear and tear on the inside of the boot or any other problems at all. I bought them because I thought they looked sturdy and time has proved me right. When I buy another pair of hiking boots, as I will in the near future, I’m going to try and buy Karrimor. I was impressed with the pair I had and can give Karrimor hiking boots my highest recommendation.

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2 Comments

  • Malcolm Randle

    27th March 2019 at 6:26 pm Reply

    I wouldn’t buy from them now. They have really gone down hill after Sports Direct took over. First pair I had lasted a long time. Next 2 pairs both split the leather upper in the same place. Stitching on the right boot leather upper. That was after 1 year use from both for only a few hours and switching between the 2 pairs every other day. So really only 6 or 7 months of light walking. Not buying another pair of these again.

    • Steve Calvert

      27th March 2019 at 8:31 pm Reply

      Hi Malcolm. Thanks for commenting.

      To be honest, I had no idea Sports Direct owns Karrimor. I just did some checks and found out Sports Direct bought the company back in 2003. I bought my hiking boots over a decade after that and was amazed how durable they were. If the quality is no longer as good it must be a more recent thing.

      Alternatively, it may have been a problem with a particular model. There was very little leather on my Karrimor hiking boots but I know the company has some options that have leather uppers. I never wanted that kind. For a hiking boot, I prefer to have less leather involved.

      You’ve made me curious to buy another pair and see how long they last. If I do I will write a new Karrimor hiking boots review and detail my experiences (good or bad).

      To be honest, if the newer boots are not as good it does not surprise me. British products are pretty crap these days. Clarks shoes are a good example. When I was a child my Clarks shoes used to last a very long time, even though I walked 2 miles per day to school and then 2 miles home. These days, you are only paying for the name. Clarks shoes are no longer that good. I’ve noticed this reduction in quality in all sorts of things in Britain. It’s as if British manufacturers don’t want things to last. They want you to have to keep going back for more. Younger people know no different, but I’m over 50-years-old. I remember how things used to be.

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