Hanagal Kenting trail running shoe review

Inexpensive hiking boots
Hanagal shoes in action

This review of Hanagal shoes, moderately ($60-70) priced hiking shoes, comes from a professor in England, who tried the relatively inexpensive hiking shoes in a few places.

Initial reaction

I received three pairs of Hanagal shoes: one a Grey suede 9.5 US/8.5 UK and the others Orange mesh 10 USm and 10.5 USw.  The sizing seemed a bit on the small side, as I could not wear the grey shoes, but could see they were of very high quality construction. The orange Kenting trail running shoes were perhaps less-well constructed, but they fit beautifully.  I was able to wear the 10.5 US women, which is my normal shoe size. I felt the shoes hugged our feet, with a soft tongue fitting comfortably over the boney parts.  Initially I was a little suspicious of the goodness-of-fit because not all shoes that fit so well are comfortable once broken in.

Where were they tested?

I walked around in the Hanagal Kenting trail running shoes in urban environments.  For instance, I wore the Hanagal boots at the UNESCO World Heritage site in Pingyao China.  I also tried them out on suburban trails (Brockwell Park, London),

Technical Specifications

Hanagal touts numerous features of these shoes:

  • VIBRAM MEGAGRIP SOLE – High performance rubber compound featuring unparalleled grip on wet and dry surfaces
  • LIGHTWEIGHT – Only 10 ounces
  • BREATHABLE and STABILIZING – Mesh upper encourages airflow that keeps your foot cool, and the TPU overlays help the upper hold your foot in place when you’re ascending or descending quickly.
  • DETAILS – Protective toe bumper in the front, reflective Hanagal logo in the back, free visor with the shoes!
  • HIGH QUALITY and 100% CUSTOMER SATISFACTION GUARANTEE – Hanagal’s mission is to bring the best technical shoes to explore nature in. 

How did they perform?

These Hanagal shoes hey held up nicely during my tests.  I have Köhler disease (navicular necrosis with bone spurs) in my right foot from tight ski boots in childhood.  Because of this, often my upper foot and ankle will ache after a day’s walking more than 10,000 steps.  With Hanagal shoes, I didn’t have any foot pain at the end of the day.  Also my right leg has a touch of jumper’s knee (misalignment of the patella) from jogging in urban environments.  Somewhat to my surprise, I found it better to work out in these shoes in the gym (including the treadmill) than I did in my standard Nike running shoes, which fit less well in the heel.  Overall, the shoes impressed me.  I’m convinced that they’re a great option for weekend wear. For me they compare favourably with Keen shoes, which are my go-to brand.

Room for Improvement?

I wouldn’t use the Hanagal Kenting Trail Running shoes for serious outdoor activity (hiking on very uneven ground, such as scree, or with a backpack).  I didn’t feel they were great for stability.  The manufacturer touts breathability heavily, but I don’t think they breathe as well as they should.   These shoes are good for a casual stroll or gym workout, but not much more intense activity than that.

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