Merrell Chameleon

My Merrell Chameleon Mid Ventilator GTX ( oh how I yearned for the Titanium Vanden Plas Ghia Elegance GTI variant with climate control … ) have lasted a good distance in rough conditions. It’s distance, rather than time, that is the mark of a durable boot. My dad has some fine leather hiking boots that have “lasted” 40 years, but then he hasn’t used them since 1978 

The Merrell pair I broke in with a 100Km distance/5000m ascent hike in continuous rain, and have subsequently used for ~20Km day hikes and short climbs regularly. No maintenance and they seem to be holding out. Still waterproof, no signs of heavy wear, nothing snapped off, frayed or peeling. I was surprised, to be honest. I bought them assuming the 100Km hike would largely kill them off. It largely killed me off, but the boots were fine.

Other brands may well be fine too, to be fair, it’s just a note of my experience.

I used to use Timberlands, mentioned here once or twice, and they too are durable. But, they have relatively poor grip compared to the Merrell ( or anything else with a similar Vibram sole, I imagine ), are less waterproof, and darned heavy. Fine for shortish walks but I got tired, literally, of dragging my feet in them for day hikes. They also slide like a toboggan in snow.

None of the above is worth a bean if the boots don’t fit, of course …


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