“These boots are made for walking, and that’s just what they’ll do…” ―Written by Lee Hazlewood
I purchased the Lowa Renegade GTX Mid/Stone, size 10.5 (half a size larger than I usually wear as my toes were hitting the boot when I tried the tens.)
Although in general I have great shopping experiences at REI, I have been less than thrilled with my shoe shopping experiences there.
My most recent experience was odd. As usual, I wasn’t acknowledged by anyone in the shoe department. When I finally asked someone for help and she measured my feet with the typical Brannock foot-measuring device, my right foot showed up as an 8.5 and my left, a 9.
“That’s odd,” I commented. “My entire life I have been buying size 10.”
No response from the sales person as she left to get the boots from the back. When she returned and I tried to put the boots on, they were MUCH too small so she went to the back to get a half size up.
While she was gone, I re-measured my feet because it just didn’t make sense that they could have shrunk. Then, I noticed the word, “men’s” in two places on the device. When she returned, I asked her if the device only measured in men’s sizes or if it also measured in women’s sizes. She looked at it, then said, “Oh, that’s the one for men,” then went and got purple one that was labeled, “women’s”. She re-measured and sure enough, I was a size ten.
There was more but I won’t go into the details. The bottom line is that it wasn’t the greatest customer service experience. (And sadly, not my first less-than-positive experience with this particular sales person.)
Happily, my experience in the backpack department was significantly better. Ross provided me with a great deal of information about the Osprey packs I was interested in. I’m debating between a 33 and a 44; the 33 would probably be better for the Camino since I won’t be carrying a sleeping bag but a 44 would probably be better for future trips that might require a sleeping bag.
So many things to consider.
Footnote: You can read about the shoes I ended up walking in here.
Photo Credit: Lowa Renegade by Robert