Who should buy Merrell Wilderness
The backpacking boot by Merrell is a premium-priced boot for users who love wearing all-leather footwear during their multi-day adventures. This is an excellent purchase if:
- You expect wet elements on the trail.
- Protection from a high-cut boot is preferred
The Wilderness' outsole with cushioning features
Vibram’s Roccia outsole is the Wilderness’ response to tricky and slippery ground. Based on the Newflex compound (still by Vibram), this grippy layer goes beyond traction in that it also doubles down on comfort and contributes to the footgear’s cushioning and shock absorption
Lug pattern specifically designed for outdoor adventures
Protrusions, more commonly known as lugs, cover the majority of the outsole’s surface. They are strategically positioned to give backpackers steady footing over rugged terrain. These protrusions are absent from the arch zone to make way for the outsole’s heel brake—a feature that gives wearers a level of control during descents. To minimize the occurrence of hydroplaning, Vibram engineers built this outsole with ample channels (tread voids or lug gaps) through which water may disperse.
Merrell Wilderness' shock-reducing midsole
Wilderness users got the boot’s sturdy yet cushy midsole to thank for getting a shock-protected backpacking experience. It is made of microporous rubber—a synthetic kind of elastomer that has strong resistance to heat, weathering, and degradation. The boot is also engineered with a part leather, part TPR (thermoplastic rubber) insole and a dual-density footbed for underfoot support and extra cushioning.
Durable, all-leather upper
The over-the-ankle Merrell Wilderness backpacking boot has a waterproof upper made chiefly of full-grain leather. It comes with no seams, even the usual gaps between the eyelet flaps and the (bellows) tongue are covered with a bridge material for a level of debris protection. The footwear’s interior is imbued with the Tesivel 3-bar knit lining. It provides a dry and comfortable in-shoe environment for the wearer by wicking away moisture from the inside out.
Instead of regular eyelets or grommets, the Wilderness has a set of Italian metal hardware in the form of D-rings and speed hooks. They are riveted securely to the upper. Their noticeably beveled and buffed finish makes the synthetic laces move and adjust through them fairly easily.
Merrell Wilderness upkeep
- Light dirt on the Wilderness’s surface must be brushed away using a soft bristled brush. If extremely caked with dirt or mud, it must be washed with warm water and some mild soap.
- This boot is resolable. Users can have the heavily worn sole unit replaced to extend the service life of the shoe.