Thursday, September 6, 2018

Ozark Trail Men's Low Hikers

If you have been following the blog for the past couple of months than you realize that I have been walking more than usual.

At one point I lamented the difficulty in finding inexpensive, durable shoes that are comfortable.  I can whine no more.

Ozark Trail Men's low hikers from Walmart at $19.88 a pair.

First impression was that the shoes are wide.  Wide across the ball of the foot.  Wide across the heel.  They seem less wide now that I have been wearing them for a month.  I suspect that my heel has been sinking into the in-sole and is now more cradled.

Second impression was the softness of the soles.  It is easy to press a thumbnail into them.  The advantage of soft lugs is that they grip wet pavement better than harder compounds.  The downside is that they wear faster.

The designers of this footwear must have had the same concern.  The lugs are much taller than on my New Balance trail running shoes.  The Ozark Trails have lugs that average 5.3mm from the ball of the foot aft while the New Balance average 2.3mm. 

For the record, the New Balance shoes have a thicker wedge of EVA foam and a thinner "wall paper" of tread glued to them.  Not a knock on either shoe.  It works.

Everything is a trade-off.  Taller lugs means they can collect more gumbo and weight you down.  If you are RUNNING dirt trails you want the New Balance.  If you are WALKING dirt trails you should consider the Ozark Trail shoe.  You pay your money and make your choices.

The third impression is that they are well constructed.  The soles wrap up, over the uppers giving ample square-mm for adhesive.  There is the tiniest amount of adhesive squeeze-out at the sole-to-upper seam suggesting they used exactly the amount needed and took pains to apply it where it was needed. The stitching is precise and there are no loose threads.

After a month of wearing the first pair I went back to Walmart and bought two more pairs.


  1. Hmmmm. I've been thinking about a new pair of walking shoes. I'll have to give those a look. Thanks!

  2. How is the support? I've got bad arches and have found I need a little more support.

    Also, bought a pair of New Balance "work" shoes. Mine are brown without the steel toe, but that option is available. I've had good luck with them as I wear them outside for camping, mowing, yard work, etc.

    1. I think the arch support is only average but you would have to try them to make your own determination.


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