Tips And Tricks On Choosing The Right Trekking Shoes

Tips And Tricks On Choosing The Right Trekking Shoes

Low-cut and lightweight, or sturdy but heavy mountaineering boots? These are some questions that come to mind when choosing the right trekking shoes. The quality of your time on the trail is greatly affected by the shoes you’ll be wearing. This means that the wrong choice might lead to blisters, sore feet and even injuries when walking on rough terrain.

In this article we’ll cover some of the key elements for what to expect when buying a new pair of trekking shoes. Before you even start shopping, you need to ask yourself some questions to determine what you need:

  • Are you going to hike on trail or off trail?
  • What’s the amount of weight you will be carrying?
  • What is the distance you will cover?

First of all, let’s go through some major categories. That way, we’ll see what features each category has.

Mountaineering boots

mountaineering boots trekking

Often confused with hiking boots, these boots are the sturdiest and heaviest on this list. Often made from synthetic materials like plastic or Kevlar or sometimes leather, these boots are made to take severe punishment from the roughest of terrains. The main difference with hiking boots is the height. Mountaineering boots are tall and stiff because of a metal or synthetic shank. This means that they provide extra support in steep and rocky terrains where more flexible boots could cause unsure stability that could result in fall or injury. Mountaineering boots are usually meant to be used with crampons which are attached to the boot when used on snow and ice.

Hiking boots

hiking boots

Traditionally, this is the go-to boot type when you’re thinking about going out on a long trek. These boots are really effective when it comes to carrying a heavy load on your back. They’re also great when hiking on dirt, mud and snow. These two factors make them ideal for jungle trekking. Hiking boots provide ankle support and warmth on cold weather hikes while keeping your feet dry and properly insulated. Always check if your boots sport some kind of waterproofing technology. Materials such as, Gore-Tex, leather or other water proof and air-permeable materials may be more expensive but they provide excellent insulation. Basically,- the things that are mostly expected out of a hiking boot are ankle support and insulation from the elements.

Low-cut trekking shoes

low cut hiking shoes

This type of shoe is the transition between a hiking boot and a trail running shoe or sneaker. Ideally, these shoes have a hard and sturdy sole which will protect your feet when walking on hard and rocky terrain. At the same time, their midsole should provide cushioning which will make the shoe more comfortable. Usually this kind of shoe is the most popular choice for day hikes, carrying a medium amount of load. This is how they hit the sweet spot between support and comfort. As with hiking  boots, they usually offer protection from the elements with gusseted tongues, waterproof linings but also offering a more comfortable choice because of the lo-cut design and softer materials used in the midsole.

Trail running shoes

trail running shoes

Trail runner shoes are the lightest option out of the 4 categories we have talked about. They are meant to feel super light on the foot. This gives you the feeling of barefoot running, but with protection from small rocks or sharp object which can be found on the trail. A trail running shoe should be flexible, adaptive and responsive.

Each year, the new models that come out from the big companies in the industry are lighter and feature more technologies and improvements. You might want to consider trail runners if you want to minimize the weight of your equipment or if you’re covering long distances thru-hiking with minimum weight. Other than that, these shoes usually offer the option of deeper lugs if you’re competing in trail running . There’s also the option of a smaller drop if you just want to casually run in the park, covering some off road distance.

No matter which trekking shoes you opt for after reading this article, we wish you luck on your trekking journey!