Have you decided to go hiking only to find that you do not have any hiking boot? When you look online you might be confused with the different types of boots that are available. It is important that you choose the right hiking boots for your trip otherwise you could have a very unpleasant hike.
The first type of hiking boots that you come across may not actually look like boots at all. Hiking shoes are low-cut shoes which look more like sneakers. However, there are a number of features they offer which places them apart from sneakers.
These shoes will have a flexible midsole which is ideal for people going on a day hike. These shoes will be heavier than a sneaker, but will offer the grip and support you need when hiking. If you are looking for a lighter day hiking boot there are certain models of hiking shoes made with light materials. It is not recommended that you use boots like these for hikes longer than a day.
Day Hiking Boots
Day hiking boots are a step up from the hiking shoe as they offer more support for the ankles. These boots range from mid-cut to high-cut. You should consider these boots if you are looking at rugged day hikes or light backpacking trips. If you are going on a backpacking trip these boots should only be used with light loads.
The boots will flex easily making them ideal for most terrains. They will also break in fairly quickly making them a good quick choice. However, they do not offer the durability and support of heavier boots.
Backpacking boots are considered the ultimate in hiking boots as they offer support for the most rugged terrain. These boots offer stiffer midsoles which might take some getting used to before you hike. The stiffness of the midsole makes them ideal for tough terrain where a strong grip is needed.
Backpacking boots should be used when taking multi-day trips and when carrying heavy loads. These boots generally have a high-cut which grips the ankle for support. These boots are also made from waterproof materials and suitable for hiking on and off the trails.
Hiking Boot Components
Once you have determined which type of hiking boot you need to buy, you should consider the components. Different components will affect the weight, durability and breathability of the boots. There are 4 aspects of the boots components that you need to consider.
The first is the boot uppers which is the body of the boot. The material is important because some materials are not as flexible as others and some materials are heavier. You will also have to consider the midsole as this is what provides cushioning for your foot. Stiffer midsoles are better for longer hikes and offer greater stability.
The internal supports of the boots also have to be looked into as they help protect the feet. The supports are located between the mid and outer soles. You last component to consider is the outer sole which offers grip. Rubber is the most common material but additives may be used to increase the durability.