What Makes a Good Hiking Boot?

What Makes a Good Hiking Boot?

Hiking is becoming an increasingly popular hobby and the market for hiking is always growing, with lots of options in every category of gear and equipment to help you get active and closer to nature. It’s no surprise, therefore, that there are so many options available when it comes to choosing the perfect hiking boot.

A lot of what goes into the ideal footwear for you will depend on the activity which you are enjoying, the terrain it will be used on and the specific needs of your foot. However, whether you are looking for a low-cut climbing shoe or a wide-fit alpine boot, certain characteristics are always worth keeping an eye out for when choosing your next footwear.

Quality Materials

Often, hiking boots will come with a range of key features designed for grip and comfort. However, this shouldn’t distract from the primary requirement of the shoe – it must be strong enough to survive the trails! Whether your boot will last you two months or two years will often come down to the quality of the materials used in every area of the footwear.

The sole must be purpose-built and made of quality rubber. It must also be attached to the boot in a way that minimises the likelihood of it becoming loose over time. Beyond that, the upper material of the boot must be made of high-quality, durable materials that will survive the harsh conditions of the outdoors time after time. This lining will usually take the form of leather, but there are also some high-quality, vegan-friendly alternatives.

Trusted Brands

The growth in popularity of hiking has led to a saturation of the outdoors footwear market. However, if you’re looking for a pair of boots that will truly last the course, then the traditions of a trusted industry name can go a long way.

When it comes to soles, Vibram is the most respected brand when it comes to quality and durability, so look for companies that use these. The same goes for Gore-Tex, whose footwear lining is trusted by many outdoors professionals. There are many design options out there for hiking boots, but when it comes to quality, look for successful brands that have a history of delivering successful products. If you are interested in how we have been making quality boots since 1923, discover the LOWA manufacturing process.

A silhouette of two hikers on a mountain at sunset

Comfort Features

As mentioned above, the first thing a hiking boot must do is be strong enough to help you conquer the tricky terrain of nature’s paths. However, a good hiking boot will not only do this but also help you achieve success in supreme comfort, through a mix of quality materials and an understanding of what is required by a hiker.

A quality boot will shine through at this stage thanks to the materials and techniques used in the manufacturing process. This is particularly noticeable in the women’s footwear, as specific manufacturing techniques – such as LOWA’s specially-shaped lasts – will create a much more comfortable feel during your hike. However, this is found across all boots in the quality of the sole and upper materials. The best boots will take this even further, offering extras such as two-zone lacing, which allows for a much more tailored boot fit, and minimal seaming, to create a frictionless walking and hiking experience.

A Range of Choices

Hiking and walking can often encompass a range of outdoor activities, and many of these have very different requirements. A quality shoe for hiking through grasslands may not have the right characteristics for climbing rocky mountains, which again may not be ideal for cold alpine mountaineering. Therefore, it’s essential that you have a range of options available to you when it comes to choosing the perfect hiking boot.

This is important because it shows that the manufacturer or supplier is knowledgeable about the varying needs of the hiking enthusiast. This means that you are more likely to find a boot that is perfect for your activity, with all the features needed to help you take on your next challenge.

A person hiking through a snowy hill

These are just some of the areas to look out for what it comes to trying to find a high-quality boot. We have a wide range of hiking footwear and equipment available to suit all outdoor activities. So, if you are looking to upgrade your hiking footwear, why not browse our established collection today?