How to Find the Best Hiking Boots

How to Find the Best Hiking Boots
Outdoor enthusiasts understand the importance of properly fitted hiking boots. In addition to increased comfort while on the trail, a good hiking boot will secure the ankle, protect the foot, support the bridge, conquer terrain, withstand weather conditions and assist with pack weight. Understanding how to find the best hiking boot will ensure a safe and pleasant outdoor experience for hikers of varied ability.


Difficulty: Easy

Step 1
Choose an outdoor quest. Determine a hike and study the challenge level, duration and potential pack weight. Honestly assess your hiking skill and calculate variables such as weather conditions to assist in choosing the best hiking boots for your needs.
Step 2
Understand hiking boot classification systems. The best hiking boots are the most appropriate for your individual requirements, whether it is flexible, casual trail shoes, versatile light hiking styles, sturdy backpacking boots or heavy-duty mountaineering variations. Study the categories and select the proper type of hiking boots.
Step 3
Use hiking resources to assist with boot selection. Arrive prepared at the store. Read consumer boot reviews and study hiking articles to determine a style that might work for you. Learn about materials such as Gore-Tex and individual boot design benefits. Although brand-name hiking boots can cost a decent amount of money, the cost is well worth the investment.
Step 4
Consult a reputable hiking boot sales professional. Visit an outdoor enthusiast store such as the REI chain, where employees are educated hikers. Bring questions, shoe reviews and even your old boots to help facilitate the process.
Step 5
Have feet precisely measured. As hiking brands and styles might fit differently, verifying an appropriate fit will ensure boot comfort and function. Stop by the store in the afternoon after your feet have naturally swelled and wear hiking socks for a more accurate fitting session. Toes should not reach the front of the boot. Walk around the store and utilize an incline if available.
Step 6
Evaluate tried-and-true hiking boot brand names. Styles by Chaco, Zamberlan, Merrell and Vasque undergo extreme testing measures, ensuring a durable, quality, reliable and protective pair of boots. Consider best-selling styles and ask the sales professional for tailored recommendations.
Step 7
Purchase hiking boots. Once a style has been accurately fitted and selected, ask the details of the store's return policy should you have a negative experience. Wear them around before taking them to the trail to ensure you are satisfied with your purchase.

Tips & Warnings

Purchase only high-quality hiking boots for long-lasting comfort and function.
Utilize a blister preventative such as Body Glide when breaking in hiking boots. Never buy hiking boots without trying them on first.
Utilize a blister preventative such as Body Glide when breaking in hiking boots.
Never buy hiking boots without trying them on first.

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