I've found that the Keen Voyageur hiking shoes fulfill the needs of my odd feet -- feet that I always thought were normal until I started backpacking.

I have odd feet. They are short, wide at the toes, and narrow at the heel -- like duck feet. Now, I have never seen ducks wearing hiking boots, so when I began planning my first long-distance backpacking trip, I should have realized that I would have a hard time finding boots that fit. I've tried several brands of hiking boots...I've tried trail shoes...I've tried trail runners...I've tried sandals... And I have always been plagued by miles and miles of blistered misery.

Actually, the sandals worked fairly well, but there are times when I want a little more protection. When I started thinking about another long hike, I lined up my criteria and went shopping.

I wanted hiking footwear that fully covered my feet, were lightweight, had good traction, had an arch to accommodate my gaiter cord, and didn't brutalize my feet. You may think that's asking a bit much, but I found the solution with my Keen Voyageur hiking shoes.

Take a look at these pictures to see why I love my Voyageurs. You can see that the shoes fully protect my feet (just look at those hefty toe caps) at a much lighter weight than a full-sized boot. The high arch keeps my gaiter strings from getting worn through too fast, and the deep tread grips the trail -- or those slippery rocks -- so I don't have another trail accident. Also, the toe box is plenty wide enough for the front half of my feet so my toes aren't all scrunched up getting blistered.

Full coverage, arch clearance, light weight

Rugged toe caps

Deep tread

Pull loops

But the best part -- the part I love, love, love(!) about my Keen trail shoes is detailed in the picture above. See that strap that runs from the heel, through the slot, and up through the top lacing loop? That strap lets me snug the heel of the shoe against the back of my foot for a custom fit. Now, even though the main part of the shoe is wide, my heel doesn't constantly slide up and down causing friction.

I haven't yet gone backpacking with these trail shoes, but I've worn my Keen Voyageurs for miles of regular hiking. I'm happy to report no blisters! I know that all you serious hikers understand why I'm so elated. Time to plan a hiking trip....

These Thorlo hiking socks are the ones I wear with my Keen Voyageurs. They are very comfy. There is extra padding at the heel and ball, but the heel pocket is shaped and proportioned in a way that fits my narrow heel with less bulk.

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  • RoadMonkey Jan 12, 2014 @ 1:42 pm
    That's an interesting idea in trail shoes - the strap to hold the heel tight. Never seen that before. I love wearing trainers, have almost given up wearing "normal" shoes and just wear trainers all the time but I tend to wear just one brand because I KNOW that they will fit straight out of the box, you can't always be sure of that if you buy different brands each time. The fit is more important to me than the price. I have suffered the misery of corns and blisters and - NO MORE! Interesting lens. Must look out for those shoes.
  • NauticalLion Jan 08, 2014 @ 7:03 pm
    I have these shoes and I love them. I've had them for about 4 years and they still feel like new. Very well made and very comfy. And as far as hiking shoes go I really like the look too. The only negative thing I've found is that although they have good grips, the the surface of the grips can be a bit slippery if the grips don't take hold in the cracks... but it's a minor thing... I still love them and would definitely buy again.
  • libertyduckling Jan 02, 2014 @ 7:25 pm
    i need some new shoes...
  • scarlettohairy Jan 02, 2014 @ 2:01 pm
    I have the same duck feet! I really have trouble finding shoes that fit and bought a pair of Keen sandals. Love them so I should give these a try! Thanks for the great description.
  • danieldruzak Dec 31, 2013 @ 1:20 pm
    This looks like a odd pair of shoes, not sure if I would buy them. For other people they work well.
  • penny-richens Dec 29, 2013 @ 10:20 pm
    I thought maybe I was the only person who loved these shoes! They saved my feet at work, and now I wear them all the time. Seeing this reminded me I need a new pair :)
  • adventuretravelshop Dec 29, 2013 @ 6:22 pm
    Great boots! Well done on LoTD.
  • sierradawn Dec 27, 2013 @ 11:31 pm
    Congrats on Review of the Day!
  • MysticTurtle Dec 29, 2013 @ 12:47 pm
  • sierradawn Dec 27, 2013 @ 11:30 pm
    You have sold me! Great product review!
  • elynmac Dec 27, 2013 @ 3:16 pm
    I have another version of odd feet - thin in the heels, and elf toes (big toe sticks up like an elf.) Looking for shoes for elf feet! When I find them I will put up a lens! Your idea to let people know about these is such a good idea. Thank you for this thoughtfulness!
  • Snappysnapper Dec 21, 2013 @ 11:14 pm
    Great review. They look robust and very comfortable.
  • klaartje-loose Dec 19, 2013 @ 10:40 am
    Oh, you desribed my feet! (What you 'miss' is puffy ankles though ;-) )
    I am so gonna check these shoes out, it might be the perfect hiking shoe for me!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!
  • MysticTurtle Dec 22, 2013 @ 10:30 am
    Glad I could help. I hope the Keens work for you.
  • chrisilouhoo Dec 18, 2013 @ 6:15 pm
    Congrats on getting Review of the Day, this is really great, I learned a lot!
  • pamala-mitchell-7 Dec 18, 2013 @ 2:04 pm
    i love the shoes thanks for the info on them i might buy these for me ok
  • MSchindel Dec 18, 2013 @ 1:06 pm
    I'm not a hiker, but if I ever decide to try, thanks to your excellent review I know which hiking shoes to buy! Congratulations on the well deserved Purple Product Review of the Day.
  • MysticTurtle Dec 18, 2013 @ 1:18 pm
    Thank you!
  • maggie-crooks Dec 18, 2013 @ 11:32 am
    Thanks for this review. They look really comfortable.
  • Susan52 Dec 18, 2013 @ 10:17 am
    What an excellent review! I'm sure you're not the only person with "duck feet" or who simply needs that strap to snug the heel so it doesn't slip. Love the pictorial documentation. Did I say "excellent"? Thanks!
  • MysticTurtle Dec 18, 2013 @ 1:18 pm
    Thank you so much!
  • DebMartin Dec 18, 2013 @ 9:49 am
    Keen is a quality product for sure. Glad you found shoes for your "duck" feet. lol.
  • HappyBrain Dec 18, 2013 @ 7:20 am
    I've been thinking about Keen hiking boots for a while. I will definitely consider them. Thanks for the review.
  • tonyleather Dec 18, 2013 @ 7:07 am
    Great review. I shall have to investigate these hiking shoes!
  • JZinoBodyArt Dec 17, 2013 @ 7:24 pm
    Great review!
  • grammieo Dec 16, 2013 @ 7:52 pm
    Great review I will have to look for these because I too have odd feet!
  • MysticTurtle Dec 18, 2013 @ 1:19 pm
    These are my first Keens, and I love them! I'm glad I tried out different brands.
  • dellgirl Dec 16, 2013 @ 5:30 pm
    Thanks for sharing this nice review. Your description of your feet... 'short, wide at the toes, and narrow at the heel' made me chuckle. I have what has always been described as 'short-fat-feet'...huh?
  • esmonaco Dec 15, 2013 @ 11:42 am
    I'm glad that you found the right shoe for your feet, Very nice review
  • Steve_Kaye Dec 14, 2013 @ 5:17 pm
    Thanks for this review.
  • holisticwriter Dec 14, 2013 @ 10:33 am
    I have several pair of Keen shoes. They are fantastic! I don't have any actual hiking shoes though....so maybe these will be mine somewhere down the road.
  • KathyT Dec 13, 2013 @ 11:16 am
    I have odd feet, too. Wide toe-box area with my 2nd toe longer than my big toe; narrow at the heel. I'm always having trouble finding shoes that feel right. Glad you found these! I'll have to check out Keen.
  • Merrci Dec 12, 2013 @ 8:45 am
    Great lens, thanks for sharing. I've been looking at keen's. This helps a lot.
  • sybil-watson Dec 11, 2013 @ 10:29 pm
    I loved your description of your feet - my son has the same feet, kind of triangle shaped. It's great to know that these shoes are so well-made.