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When heading into the great outdoors, having the right gear can make all the difference. At the top of that list is hiking boots. The best hiking boots offer a blend of support, durability, and comfort. They ensure that your feet remain protected on even the most challenging of trails.

In our blog, we delve into the top hiking boots on the market. We will provide reviews based on key factors such as grip, waterproofing, and weight.

You could be planning a short day hike or a multi-day backpacking adventure. Our guide will help you find the right pair of hiking boots to keep you steady and comfortable on your journey.


What to Look for in a Pair of Hiking Boots

When selecting the ideal hiking boots, several factors should be considered to ensure they meet your needs on the trail.

First, examine the material and construction of the boot. High-quality materials such as full-grain leather or synthetic blends can affect the boot’s waterproofing and breathability.

Second, consider the boot’s weight. Lightweight boots are preferable for faster, less strenuous hikes, while heavier boots provide added support and durability for longer treks.

Third, the sole and tread pattern should offer excellent grip to navigate various terrains safely.

Additionally, ankle support is paramount to prevent injuries on uneven trails.

Lastly, ensure a proper fit through ample toe room and a snug heel to minimize blisters and discomfort.

By focusing on these elements, you can select a hiking boot that enhances your outdoor experience.


Care and Maintenance of Your Hiking Boots

Proper care and maintenance of your hiking boots is essential to extend their lifespan and ensure optimal performance on the trail.

Start by cleaning your hiking boots after each hike to remove dirt, mud, and debris. This can degrade the materials over time. Use a soft brush and mild soap to gently scrub the exterior, paying special attention to the seams and crevices.

After cleaning, allow your hiking boots to dry naturally away from direct heat sources. These can cause the materials to crack and weaken. Once dry, apply a suitable waterproofing treatment to reinforce the hiking boot’s resistance to moisture and extend its durability.

Regularly check the soles for wear and tear, and replace them when necessary to maintain good traction and support.

By following these routine care steps, you can keep your hiking boots in excellent condition, ready for countless adventures on the trails.


How We Choose Our Hiking Boots

Selecting the right hiking boots is both an art and a science. Our process involves careful evaluation to ensure we present only the best options. We start by identifying the latest and most popular hiking boots on the market. We then assess these hiking boots based on several key criteria.

Firstly, we consider the materials used. They could be full-grain leather, nubuck, or advanced synthetic fabric. Each material offers unique benefits in terms of durability, waterproofing, and breathability.

Next, we look at the weight and design of the hiking boots. We aim to provide recommendations for both a lightweight hiking boot option suited for swift hikes and more robust models for challenging terrains.

Comfort is paramount, so we check each hiking boot for fit and cushioning, ensuring they support the foot well over extended periods.

Additionally, we consider the ankle support provided, as good support can prevent injuries on uneven paths.

Along the way, we take user reviews into account. They provide a good overview of each hiking boot’s performance in real-world conditions. Through this evaluation process, we ensure that our recommended hiking boots meet the highest standards of quality and reliability, ready to equip you for any adventure.


Columbia Hiking Boot

Why We Love It

The Columbia Hiking Boot is constructed with waterproof full-grain leather upper. This waterproof boot offers superior durability and protection against the elements, ensuring your feet stay dry even in wet conditions.

These hiking boots are enhanced with OmniShield water and stain-resistant treatment. This keeps them looking clean and new by repelling moisture and preventing stains.

For superior comfort on long hikes, these hiking boots feature a compression-molded EVA foam midsole. It provides excellent cushioning and support, reducing foot fatigue and enhancing stability on rough terrain, while reducing foot pain on long hikes.

With these high-performance attributes, the Columbia Hiking Boot delivers reliability and comfort for all your hiking adventures.

What You Should Know

Available in sizes ranging from Men’s US 5-12.

Available in 10 colours: Cordovan/Crown Jewel, Quarry/Cool Wave, Black/Poppy Red, Elk/River Blue, Ancient Fossil/Shale Mauve, Black/Golden Yellow, Marionberry/Black, Hiker Green/Caramel, Peach/Dark Sapphire, Charcoal/Scorched Coral.


Salomon Mens Speedcross 5 Hiking Boot

Why We Love It

The Salomon Men’s Speedcross 5 Hiking Boot is engineered for performance on a variety of challenging terrains, such as rocky terrain.

Built for maximum grip on loose, soft, rugged, and uneven surfaces and rough terrain, this hiking boot incorporates Mud Contagrip technology. This feature utilises deep, sharp lugs crafted from a high-adhesion compound, ensuring exceptional traction in muddy and slippery conditions.

Additionally, the Sensifit system cradles the foot from the midsole to the lacing system. It provides a secure, snug, and virtually customised fit that adapts to the unique shape of your foot. This fit not only enhances comfort but also delivers better push-off grip and braking grip. It gives you the confidence to tackle even the most demanding trails with ease.

What You Should Know

Available in sizes ranging from Men’s US 8-14.

Available in 6 colours: Magnet/Black/Magnet, Skydiver/Black/White, Black/Black/Phantom, Black/Black/Quiet Shade, Lapis Blue/Black/White, Magnet/Black/Phantom.


Merrell Womens Moab 2 GTX Hiking Boot

Why We Love It

The Merrell Women’s Moab 2 GTX Hiking Boot uses high-performance mesh and suede leather upper. It offers both durability and breathability as compared to other hiking boots.

The breathable mesh lining ensures that your feet stay cool and dry even during strenuous hikes.

The design features a bellows tongue that keeps debris out, maintaining cleanliness and comfort.

For added protection, the hiking boot includes a robust rubber toe cap for toe protection that shields your feet from rocks and roots on rocky trails and off trail travel, making a heavy pack weight more comfortable.

Comfort is further enhanced by the Merrell M Select FIT.ECO blended EVA contoured footbed. It provides superior zonal arch, heel and ankle support, for both wide and narrow feet.

Additionally, the Merrell air cushion in the heel absorbs shock and increases stability, making each step more secure.

What You Should Know

Available in sizes ranging from Women’s US 5-11.

Available in 6 colours: Sedona Sage, Smoke, Taupe, Black, Granite, Beluga.


KEEN Men’s Targhee III WP Hiking Shoes

Why We Love It

The KEEN Men’s Targhee III WP Hiking Shoes are crafted to deliver superior performance and comfort for any outdoor enthusiast, making it one of our choices of best hiking boot.

Featuring a leather upper with reinforced overlays, these men’s hiking footwear are versatile boots. They provide durability and strength, including toe protection. They withstand the rugged demands of the outdoors including rocky terrain.

The KEEN Dry waterproof membrane offers excellent protection against wet conditions. It keeps your feet dry and comfortable during your hike in this waterproof boot.

For personalised comfort, the removable EVA footbed allows for easy customisation and enhanced cushioning.

The dual-density EVA midsole delivers outstanding ankle support and shock absorption, reducing foot fatigue on lengthy treks and off trail hiking.

Additionally, the hard-wearing rubber outsole of these men’s hiking boots ensures good traction and stability across diverse terrains, making these hiking boots a reliable choice for every adventure.

What You Should Know

Available in sizes ranging from Men’s US 5-17.

Available in 10 colours: Black Olive Golden Brown, Steel Grey/Captains Blue, Bungee Cord Black, Black Olive Mineral Blue, Magnet Coral, Steel Grey/Boysenberry, Dark Earth/Allure, Goat/Crown Blue, Java/Porcelain, Weiss Boysenberry.


FAQs

What is the difference between hiking boots and trekking boots?

When comparing trekking shoes to hiking boots, several differences cater to unique hiking needs.

Trekking shoes are designed to meet rigorous requirements for challenging terrains and extended hikes. They offer enhanced durability and support for rough paths, although they tend to be more robust and heavier than standard hiking footwear, with a longer break in period. The added weight of trekking boots is a trade-off for extra protection and stability, making them ideal for multi-day or weeks-long hiking adventures in the wilderness.

Classic hiking boots are better suited for shorter, less demanding hikes. They provide ample support for day-trippers and weekend hikers who traverse well-marked trails, ensuring comfort without unnecessary bulk.

For those who do not trek for extended periods in harsh environments, a pair of high-quality hiking boots is often the best choice, balancing comfort and functionality for everyday hikes.

Is it better to have loose or tight hiking boots?

Your hiking boots or shoes should fit comfortably snug and supportive, but not overly tight. Ensure there is adequate space in the toe box to wiggle your toes, preventing cramped feet while maintaining stability.

It’s important that your foot doesn’t slide or shift around inside the boot, which can lead to blisters and discomfort.

Adjust the laces to achieve the right snugness—feet that feel numb or tingly often indicate that the laces are too tight.

By ensuring a precise fit, you enhance comfort and improve overall foot health during your hiking adventures.

Should hiking boots be heavy or light?

It all comes down to where you’re headed most of the time and choosing the right balance between weight, support, and durability.

For those who prioritise long-term comfort and minimal strain, a lightweight hiking boot is a great choice as they are typically ready to wear right out of the box. This lighter boot is perfect for day hikes and well-marked trails, offering excellent flexibility and support without weighing you down.

Heavier hiking boots provide superior protection and stability, ideal for rugged terrains and extended backpacking trips. However, they often require a break-in period to ensure maximum comfort and avoid discomfort during long hikes.

What is the difference between walking boots and hiking boots?

In general, walking boots are optimised for flat terrains like fields and forests. They are lighter weight and more flexible boots which provide maximal ankle support, offering comfort over gentle landscapes.

A traditional hiking boot is specifically designed for rugged mountain trails and loose gravel, featuring stiffer soles for added stability, durability and toe and heel protection. Most hiking boots also offer superior ankle support to protect your feet and prevent injuries on uneven and challenging terrains.

Whether you opt for walking boots which are lighter weight boots, or hiking boots with added stability depends largely on the type of terrain and the level of support you need for your outdoor adventures.

Can I wear hiking boots every day?

Most hiking boots boast numerous properties that make them an excellent choice for everyday wear. Hiking boots are designed with comfort in mind, featuring cushioned soles and supportive structures that provide exceptional ankle support. With a short break-in period, they are an ideal fit for any foot shape.

Many best hiking boots incorporate advanced waterproof technology, ensuring your feet remain dry and comfortable in all weather conditions in waterproof hiking boots.

Their robust construction and durable materials offer long-lasting wear, making them suitable for a variety of everyday activities, such as use as a trail running shoe or as a pair of running shoes.

Whether you’re navigating urban environments or exploring nature trails, hiking boots can offer a great blend of style, comfort, and practicality.

Is it okay to wear hiking boots for walking?

Hiking boots are remarkably versatile and can be used for a variety of activities beyond hiking. For example, they can be used as a trail running shoe.

Primarily designed for outdoor adventures, these shoes provide excellent ankle support and durability. This makes traditional hiking boots ideal walking, trekking, and even light trail running shoes, while preventing sore feet, ideal for any foot shape.

Thanks to their rugged construction and tailored features like waterproof materials and cushioned soles, a traditional backpacking boot offers comfort and protection in diverse environments. This makes these waterproof boots ideal walking and trail running shoes.

Whether you’re tackling challenging terrains or enjoying a leisurely walk in the park, hiking shoes deliver a perfect blend of functionality and style.


For information on other shoes see our blog post on the best soccer shoes.


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