How you should choose your hiking footwear?

Posted on March 15, 2019 by

Footwear is Hiker’s biggest asset. They shield hiker’s feet from getting strained by the roughness of treks. We thus decided to write this blog to tell you how to chose the right hiking footwear.

The shoes are normally divided into cuts – low cuts, mid-cuts, and High cuts. Please note that no shoes are ideal for all conditions. The shoes suited to one trek might be far from best for another trek.

Keep the following things in mind while deciding upon the hiking shoes:

1. Nature of trek

Treks can generally be classified into three categories – easy (strolls in local woods), tough (higher vegetation regions) and really tough (featuring extremely difficult treks and climate conditions). Low cuts shoes will do for easy treks. you will need mid-cut shoes for tough terrains and high cut shoes are necessary for really tough terrains.

2. Safety

Naturally, safety is the most important factor. And safety is directly related to the nature of the trek and shoes you are wearing. The tougher the trek, the more the need for safety from shoes. The higher cut shoes offer higher safety compared to ones with a lower cut. And thus the tougher the terrain, the higher the cut you should wear.

3. The weight of the shoes

You must carry the weight of shoes with you. Thus avoid too heavy shoes wherever possible. The general rule is the bigger the cut, the bigger and the heavier the shoes. Higher cut shoes though offering higher safety necessary in really tough terrains are just extra weight for feet in easy treks.

4. Choice of Fabric

The common options are leather and synthetic fiber. Leather shoes are more durable and better suited for longer trips but they are also more expensive. Synthetic shoes are lighter and cheaper and thus more suited to easier treks,

5.  Comfort and Breathing space for feet

your feet also need space to breathe in. Normally speaking, the breathing space is reduced with a higher cut. Leather shoes also compromise with breathing space for your feet. Breathing space becomes a key factor where treks are long. We thus recommend avoiding high end and/or leather shoes when going on easy treks.

6. Durability

Leather shoes are more durable compared to synthetic fiber ones. The higher cut shoes are likely to last longer.

7. Luggage

The less the durability of shoes, the more the number of them you will have to carry. With synthetic fiber shoes you must always carry an extra pair unless the trek is really easy and familiar.

8. Cost of shoes

It should always be the last factor affecting your decision. As safety and comfort are more important. But like we said, leather shoes are more expensive. And higher cut shoes are normally more expensive than ones with a lower cut.


Based on the above discussion, we recommend you choosing your shoes as follows:

1.    Small and easy treks – Synthetic fiber low cut hiking shoes.

2.    Long and easy treks – multiple pairs of synthetic fiber low cut hiking shoes or a pair of low cut leather shoes

3.    Small Difficult treks – Synthetic fiber mid-cut hiking shoes

4.    Long difficult treks  – Midcut leather shoes

5.    Small really difficult treks – Synthetic fiber high cut shoes or leather high cut shoes based on whether you wish to compromise on comfort or durability.

6.    Long really difficult treks – multiple pairs of leather high cut shoes.

Like we said the choice of right shoes is the most important decision for a hiker preparing for his or her next adventure. And we hope that this blog helped you in making the choice. What other factors do you consider? Do write to us in comments below

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