Best Women’s Hiking Boots of 2021

Looking for the best hiking boots for your feet? In this blog post, we compare different styles of hiking shoes and what to consider before buying, including trail conditions, distance & more. We also include a list of the best women's hiking boots based on what we are currently wearing on the trail.

With hundreds of options available, at some point, every hiker wonders about how to choose the best women’s hiking boots that will be the most comfortable for them. From leather to mesh, to ankle stability or that barely-there feel, the market is full of different styles of hiking shoes and boots that look like they can get the job done. So, how do you choose?

The best women’s hiking boots are sturdy but not stiff and will keep you comfortable and supported without weighing you down.

To help you find your sole mate (sorry, we had to!), here are the best women’s hiking boots in a variety of categories from full-on high ankle hiking boots to low ankle hiking shoes and lightweight trail runners. We also include the top factors to consider when buying a hiking boot that will hopefully last you lots of miles of wear and tear on the trail. 

Here are the best women’s hiking boots and how to choose the right ones for you.


Best High-Ankle Hiking Boots for Women

If you’re looking for a pair of sturdy hiking boots that are suitable for all kinds of terrain, then high-top hiking boots are a good place to start. This style will provide the most stability and the most ankle support. High-cut hiking boots also tend to be more durable and rigid than a low hiking shoe or a trail runner.

Go with a high-ankle hiking boot if:

  • You’ll be hiking in variable conditions like muddy, steep or rocky terrain
  • You’re going on a multi-day hike
  • You’re carrying a heavy load on your back
  • You want more support for your ankles and knees
Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots, lightweight hiking shoes, and trail runners and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Here are the best high-top hiking boots for women.

Oboz Bridger BDry Hiking Boots

Bearfoot Theory favorite: I have had a lot of foot issues in the past, and I absolutely love Oboz women’s hiking boots. The Oboz Bridger BDry Hiking Boots are my go-to for any adventure that requires something super sturdy. They are what I took to Alaska on my 10-day group backpacking trip where we were hiking in very wet conditions. My feet stayed warm, surprisingly dry, and blister-free. They have a sturdy sole, supportive insole, and are moderately stiff which helps on uneven terrain. The Oboz Premium Collection supports Yellowstone Forever, a nonprofit devoting to ensuring Yellowstone National Park remains for generations to come.

  • Height: Over-the-ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 2 lbs, 0.4 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $180
Oboz Bridger Hiking Boots // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry

Oboz Sypes Mid Hiking Boots

Offering the same supportive O FIT insole, the Oboz Sypes is a much lighter and more flexible hiking boot than the Bridger. This is currently my favorite boot for everyday hikes. They’re comfortable right out of the box with no break-in needed. The Sypes provide superior grip, great ankle support without being too stiff, and the heel cups keep your foot in place. This model is the first in Oboz’s lineup to incorporate sustainable materials.

  • Height: Mid-ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lbs, 11.6 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $165
Oboz Sypes Lightweight Hiking Boot // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI

La Sportiva Nucleo High GTX Hiking Boots

Lightweight option: The La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX Hiking Boots are on the lighter-weight side for a high-ankle hiking boot making them a great option if you want stability without the weight. They are comfortable right out of the box with no break-in period and they provide firm ankle support without all the stiffness.

  • Height: Over-the-ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb, 9 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $199
La Sportiva Nucleo Hiking Boot // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI

KEEN Targhee III Hiking Boots

The KEEN Targhee Hiking Boots have been around for a long time and the third-generation version of these boots is waterproof and built to be tougher and lighter weight than in the past. These also come in a non-waterproof version if you prefer breathability over waterproofness.

  • Height: Over-the-ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 1 lb, 12.4 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $150
Keen Targhee Women's Hiking Boots // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / KEEN

Merrell Moab 2 Mid Hiking Boots

Budget option: The Merrell Moab 2 Mid Hiking Boots are a great budget-friendly option. They come in both normal and wide versions, making them popular for women who have wider feet. They’re not quite as high as the Bridger Premiums or the La Sportiva’s mentioned above but still provide good ankle support. These also come in a non-waterproof version.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 2 lbs (pair)
  • MSRP: $135
Merrell Moab 2 WP Hiking Boots // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / Moosejaw

Lowa Renegade GTX Mid Hiking Boots

The Lowa Renegade GTX Mid Hiking Boots are a bit of an investment, but they are very well made and will last a long time. The Lowa Renegades are waterproof and provide excellent support around the ankles for backpacking and the Vibram soles are grippy over a wide variety of terrain. They also come in three sizes: regular, narrow, and wide. These boots were inducted into the 2018 Editors’ Choice 25th Anniversary Hall of Fame by Backpacker Magazine.

  • Height: Over-the-ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 2 lbs 2 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $240
Lowa Renegade Hiking Boot // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check price: REI / Backcountry

Merrell MQM Flex 2 Mid GORE-TEX

Vegan option: The Merrell MQM Flex 2 Mid is the perfect lightweight hiking boot for anyone looking for a vegan-friendly shoe. This boot combines all the best features of a trail runner and a hiker into one and offers mid-ankle support. They’re a little stiff at first so give them a little time to break in. This shoe has a GORE-TEX® waterproof membrane and bonded InvisibleFit construction for lightweight, breathable protection. The mountain-grade Quantum Grip™ rubber outsoles offer great tread for rocky terrain. You can find the low-ankle version of this boot here.

  • Height: Mid-ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb 7 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $160

Check price: REI


Best Low-Ankle Hiking Boots for Women

Low-top hiking boots tend to be lighter and more flexible than high-top hiking boots, although they don’t provide the same ankle support. They tend to be a good option for day hikes and well-worn trails when you aren’t carrying a heavy load.

Go with a low-ankle hiking shoe if:

  • You’ll be using them for day hikes
  • You’ll be carrying only a light load on your back
  • You’ll be on well-worn and flat trails with a well-defined surface
  • You do not need ankle or knee support
Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots, lightweight hiking shoes, and trail runners and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Here are the best low-top hiking shoes for women.

Oboz Sawtooth II Low Hiking Shoes

Bearfoot Theory favorite: The Oboz Sawtooth’s have been my low-ankle hiking shoe of choice for years. They are sturdy and waterproof with a grippy bottom that gives you plenty of traction for hikes in all types of conditions and trails. These also come in a non-waterproof version.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 1 lb, 12.4 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $140
Oboz Sawtooth Low Hiking Shoes // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / Moosejaw

Merrell Moab 2 WP Low Hiking Shoes

Budget option: The Merrell Moab Low Hiking Shoes are a great budget-friendly option. Like the high ankle Merrel boot above, these come in a wide model for women with wider feet that need a little extra room. Like most of the shoes here, they are comfortable out of the box and don’t require any break-in period. They come in a non-waterproof version as well if you want something with more breathability for hot temps.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 1 lb, 12 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $125
Merrell Moab 2 Hiking Shoes // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / Moosejaw

KEEN Targhee Low Hiking Shoes

The KEEN Targhee Low’s are the low version of the Keen hiking boots mentioned above. These hiking shoes are known for providing good arch support. They also come in a non-waterproof version for more ventilation.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 1 lb, 9.2 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $140
Keen Targhee Low Hiking Shoes // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / KEEN

La Sportiva Spire GTX Low Hiking Shoe

Lightweight option: The La Sportiva Spire GTX Low Hiking Shoes are the lightest weight low ankle hiking boots in this category, yet still pack a punch with solid midsoles that provide good structure and a study, grippy outsole. The gore-tex surround keeps your feet dry, while vents channel internal heat and moisture away.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb, 8.2 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $190
La Sportiva Spire GTX Low Hiking Shoe // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / Moosejaw


Best Lightweight Hiking Shoes for Women

Imagine a shoe that’s somewhere in between a classic low-top hiking shoe and a trail runner. That’s where these lightweight hikers come in. They’re lighter and more flexible than the best women’s hiking boots and low-ankle hiking shoes on this list but are a little more rugged and durable than trail runners. They generally have mesh uppers rather than heavy-duty leather with more flexibility for movement compared to the firmness of other hiking shoes.

Go with a lightweight hiking shoe if:

  • You want something lightweight and flexible
  • You want something more durable than a trail running shoe
  • You don’t need or want ankle support
Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots, lightweight hiking shoes, and trail runners and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Here are the best lightweight hiking shoes for women.

Oboz Arete Low Hiking Shoes

Bearfoot Theory favorite: The Oboz Arete Low Hiking Shoes have become my favorite for day hikes, camping trips, walks around the neighborhood, and everyday outings. They’re comfortable right out of the box and are lightweight and breathable. The sole is durable enough for the rockiest of trails with plenty of traction and the toe caps prevent stubbing. These also come in a waterproof version. For more on these, read my full review of the Oboz Arete.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 1 lb, 5.2 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $125
Oboz Arete Low // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry

KEEN Terradora II Waterproof Low Hiking Shoes

Best for narrow feet: The KEEN Terradora II Waterproof Low Hiking Shoes are a minimalist lightweight hiking shoe that will allow you to be nimble on the trail while still providing stability and protection. The soles are grippy and durable and the toe cap guards against stubbed toes. These do run narrow, so keep that in mind while you’re shopping for the best women’s hiking shoe.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb, 5.2 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $139.95
KEEN Terradora Hiking Shoe // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / KEEN

Salomon OUTline Low GTX Hiking Shoes

The Salomon OUTline Low GTX Hiking Shoes are another great lightweight option that’s flexible yet rugged. These hiking shoes allow you to be agile on the trail while still providing protection against stubbed toes, stream crossings, and other trail obstacles.

  • Height: Ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb, 5 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $130
Salomon OUTline Low GTX // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry


Best Trail Runners for Hiking

Some folks will make the argument that trail running shoes are just as good an option for hiking. Since they’re so lightweight, many thru-hikers, like those on the John Muir Trail & Pacific Crest Trail, choose to hike in trail runners. They aren’t for everyone though as some feel that they need more ankle support when carrying a heavy backpack. Also, trail runners won’t last as long as durable hiking boots or shoes so you’ll need to replace them more often when they wear out to protect your feet from injury.

Trail runners are good if:

  • You’ll be hiking in very hot weather
  • You want very lightweight shoes
  • You want versatile shoes
  • You don’t mind having to replace them more often
  • You don’t need ankle support
Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots, lightweight hiking shoes, and trail runners and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Here are the best women’s trail runners for hiking.

Altra Lone Peak

Popular option: We know more than a few thru-hikers who swear by the Altra Lone Peak trail runners as their go-to women’s hiking shoe. Altra is known for having a wide toe box to provide plenty of room for your toes to move. They also have gaiter tabs to secure gaiters should you choose to use them to help keep dirt and debris out on the trail.

  • Height: Low Ankle
  • Waterproof: No
  • Weight: 1 lb, 2.4 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $130
Altra Lone Peak Hiking Shoe // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry / Moosejaw

Brooks Cascadia GTX Trail Running Shoes

The Brooks Cascadia GTX Trail Runners are another favorite of many a thru-hiker. And these are waterproof so if you get caught in the rain you’ll be able to keep your feet dry. These trail runners have gaiter tabs as well and the outsoles are designed to provide traction in both wet and dry conditions. They come in a non-waterproof style as well.

  • Height: Low Ankle
  • Waterproof: Waterproof and Non-waterproof available
  • Weight: 1 lb, 4.8 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $160
Brooks Cascadia GTX Trail Runners // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: Backcountry / REI

Salomon Speedcross 5 GTX Trail Running Shoes

Salomon’s trail runners are also known as a good option for hiking among the long-distance hiking crowd and the Salomon Speedcross 5 GTX Trail Running Shoes are no exception. They have the most rugged outsole of all the trail runners listed here, with a design that digs deep into mud and snow providing ultra non-slip traction. They’re also waterproof.

  • Height: Low Ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb, 4.5 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $150
Salomon Speedcross 5 GTX // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check Price: REI / Backcountry

Arc’teryx Norvan LD 2 GTX Trail-Running Shoes

Lightweight option: Arc’teryx is known for making high-quality gear that stands the test of outdoor adventures and their Norvan LD 2 GTX Trail-Running Shoe is no different. A waterproof exterior keeps your feet nice and dry and the thick toe-caps keeps them safe from rocks and other trail obstacles. They’re also super lightweight, yet still provide support and traction for a variety of terrain.

  • Height: Low Ankle
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Weight: 1 lb, 1 oz (pair)
  • MSRP: $195
Arc'teryx Norvan LD 2 GTX Trail-Running Shoes // Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots a d lightweight hiking shoes and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Check price: REI / Backcountry


How to Choose Hiking Boots

How to choose the best hiking boots (or shoes) depends largely upon what kind of hike you’ll be taking. The climate and terrain, length of the hike, how much you’re carrying, and what activities you’ll be doing are all factors in determining what sorts of hiking boots or shoes to buy.

To help you make the best decision here are a few basics to consider before you choose hiking boots.

Length & Terrain of the Hike

The length of your hike matters when it comes to footwear. So does the type of terrain you’ll encounter out there. A multi-day backpacking trip will require sturdier boots with better tread and ankle support than an easy to moderate trail on flat ground would need. We tend to wear high-top hiking boots on backpacking trips and low-top hiking shoes or lightweight hikers on day hikes.

Weather & Climate

The weather conditions and climate of the area will play a large factor in determining what kind of hiking boots or shoes to wear. If it’s cold and rainy or you’ll be trekking through streams and snow, waterproof boots are a must to not only keep your feet dry but also warm. Typically we recommend a Gortex-type boot or shoe for most mountain hiking. On the other hand, mesh paneling and ventilation is better for when you are hiking in a hot and humid climates – like in the desert, Hawaii, or Central America.

Activities You’ll Be Doing on Your Hike

Different types of boots and shoes are suitable for different types of activities. The high-top hiking boots listed above will have high ankle support and more rigid soles that don’t allow for as much flexibility in order to help you stay steady when carrying a heavy pack. Others, like low-top hiking shoes, lightweight hikers, and trail running shoes will provide less ankle stability on rocky terrain but allow for more movement.

Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots, lightweight hiking shoes, and trail runners and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

Hiking Boot Sole

Every hiking boot has a sole — three of them to be exact: an insole, midsole, and outsole. Each of these three soles help to support your foot while walking, and you can find a variety of options depending on what activity you are doing.

The insole of a shoe is that soft and cushioned portion that you feel right beneath your foot when you slide your shoe on. It can be removed and replaced with one that better suits the shape of your foot, so, make sure you know how much arch support (if any) you need and what kind of insole supports your foot best. Collapsed arches or an arch that’s too high doesn’t help evenly distribute the weight while walking and can cause wear and tear on your feet, ankles, knees, and hips. While you’re out on the trail for days at a time carrying a heavy pack, this is not a good problem to have, so make sure you do your research beforehand and even try on some different insoles in the store if you need more or less support.

The midsole is the second layer of cushion placed in between the insole and outsole to help absorb the shock of walking on hard and rocky surfaces. Most times the midsole is attached to a piece called the shank that provides extra sturdiness and is often made out of composite or steel. You won’t find this in very light and flexible trail shoes, but you will definitely find it in a hiking boot.

The outsole is the thick, rubbery outer portion on the very bottom of your shoe or boot. Most hiking boots have dense outsoles with treads (also called lugs) that make for good all-terrain footwear thanks to the traction and grip they provide on granular or slippery surfaces. You’ll want to have bigger treads for better traction – like Vibram, a patented form of treads that are found on a lot of brand name hiking boots. Hearty tread is important for multi-day backpacking adventures and trails with hard-to-walk on or slippery surfaces.

Break-In Period

A high-top hiking boot is generally constructed from heavier and sturdier materials than low-top, lighter-weight hiking shoes. Whether they are made of all leather or are a mix of leather, mesh, and suede, they are more durable, can withstand wear and tear, and are built to last longer. For this reason, the heartier the hiking boot the more time it will take to get broken in and mold to your foot.

You’ll want to break the most heavy-duty hiking boots in gradually and overtime to prevent painful blisters as they can be a little stiff at first. If you’re breaking in all leather boots, start by taking short walks around the house, the block, and eventually on short hikes about a week or two before you wear them out on the trail to soften the material. If your boot has a mixed material construction, they will be more flexible to begin with and break-in should only require a couple of short walks. And nowadays, some hiking boots don’t have a break-in period at all and are comfortable out of the box.

However, you never want the first time you wear a hiking boot to be the first day of your multi-day backpacking trip. Even if the hiking boots or shoes you purchase don’t have a break-in period, it’s important to try them out beforehand so you can work out any kinks and make sure they’re comfortable before taking them out on a multi-day trip.

Get the scoop on the best women's hiking boots, lightweight hiking shoes, and trail runners and learn how to choose the best hiking boots for you.

How Should Hiking Boots Fit?

Having the right fit and feel is of course one of the biggest parts of how to choose the best hiking boot (or shoe) for your foot. There are a few key factors to be aware of when you are trying on hiking boot and shoes:

  • As a good rule of thumb, always try your shoe on at the end of the day when your foot is the largest and slightly swollen
  • If you wear insoles, make sure to bring them along when you try on boots in-store
  • Bring your favorite pair of hiking socks along to try on with the boots or shoes you’re shopping for
  • You should have enough space in the toe box to slightly wiggle your toes
  • You want the shoe snug enough that your heel won’t lift up when hiking up and downhill, but you also don’t want your foot to feel squeezed
  • You should be able to slide a finger inside of the shoe behind your heel to make sure you have enough space for your foot to move around and to account for swelling

Also, make sure you wear wool socks that are breathable and durable enough to protect your feet and keep you comfy. A pair like Darn Tough wool hiking socks (our favorite!) will do a great job of regulating the temperature if your feet get sweaty and cold on a hike.

Some hiking boots are narrower while some are more spacious. Some provide more arch support and some work well for flat feet. If it’s your first time buying hiking boots or shoes, we highly recommend trying a few on in-store and walking around in them a bit to see what feels most comfortable to you. Shopping for hiking boots online is easier if you have an idea of what type of hiking shoe you’re looking for and what brand fit works well for you.


Have you found the best women’s hiking boots? Which ones are your favorite and why? Let us know in the comments below!

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links which means if you make a purchase, we receive a small commission at no cost to you. Any purchases you make help keep this blog going and our content free. We truly appreciate your support!

Written by Kristen Bor

Hey there! My name is Kristen, and this is my outdoor blog. I discovered the power of the outdoors in my 20s, at the time I needed it most. Now 15 years later, prioritizing that critical connection with nature continues to improve my life. My goal at Bearfoot Theory is to empower you with the tools and advice you need to responsibly get outside.

23 comments on “Best Women’s Hiking Boots of 2021

  1. Thanks for pointing out that the boots must be mixed in materials because it will be more flexible. With that in mind, I will be checking the material to choose a good pair of boots for my boyfriend. It is just the gift that I wanted to give him because I heard him one time that he would love to style himself with such footwear.

  2. Hi, what is your oppinion on tje solomons woman x ultra 3 boot? We have a 6 day hik coming up and i am unsure! The other boots you spoke about is not in SA

    1. Hi Christy, personally I’m not a huge fan of Salomon only because my mom snapped her laces on her Salomon hiking shoes and we haven’t been able to get replacement laces that work with the shoes. My mom really loved them before they broke but I’m hesitant to try them since durability is a big deal to me while in the backcountry. They do have good reviews online though and I have friends that swear by Salomon.

  3. Hi Ladies,
    Thank you so much for the information. It is challenging knowing the right/best boot to buy when your local stores do not carry a variety and therefore you rely on opinions or articles. We are planning a trip to Glacier/Banff/Jasper in early September. I’m looking for a second pair of hiking shoes to take along with my Merrel Siren Edge which performed well in the Utah National parks. We typically do easy-moderate trails up to 5 miles at any one time. I had been thinking about Brooks Cacsacdia 13 or now Keen Terradora low or mid. I don’t think I need mid or heavy hiking boots but welcome any opinions. I really want something that is lightweight (size 10.5). Thanks

    1. I loved my Brooks and still wear them regularly. Have you tried Altras at all? Keens were my first ever hiking books and I loved them. Keens traditionally have a bigger shoebox which is similar to Altras, I recommend giving them a try!

  4. Hello
    Thank you for article
    I have flat feet, narrow ankle wider foot foot
    I have tried all the ones on you mentioned
    The closest was the Oboz – they felt really hard underfoot and stiff. Do they soften with time?

  5. Thank-you for your advice on hiking shoes. We just do mild to moderate trails and comfort is very important. I think I will try to go in and try shoes on as you recommend.

  6. How often would you recommend replacing hiking boots? I bought my Keen Targhees in 2016 for a trip to Banff NP, and have used them since on trips to Shenandoah NP, various parts of New Mexico, and Grand Canyon, Zion, and Bryce NPs. I have not put a ton of miles on them since we only did day hikes on each trip, but between trips they’ve been unworn and stored in my mud room which can be damp, so I’m concerned about degradation of materials. They’re the most comfy shoes I’ve ever worn and have never bothered me, so I’m hesitant to replace unless necessary.

    1. Hi Kristen – it sounds like you’re spot on. If they’re in good condition and they’re still comfortable, there’s really no need to replace them. Once you notice that your comfort level is being affected, it’s time to replace them. This may become apparent if you notice new aches and pains or if they’re simply not as comfortable as they once were. In the event that you do decide to get a new pair of hiking boots, if your old boots are in good condition you can likely find a gear library or non-profit to donate them to. Happy hiking!

  7. Right now my favorite boots are the Lowa Lady Light boots. I’ve had numerous foot surgeries, and currently have a ruptured tendon in my right foot, that my orthopedic doctor and me have decided not to repair (apparently where it’s located, surgery could make it worse). The tendon used to ache horribly by the end of a hike, and for days afterwards. With the Lowa boots, it hasn’t bothered me at all.

    1. We’re so glad to hear that you’ve found comfortable hiking boots that work for you! Lowa makes great hiking boots.

  8. Any comments on hiking a class 1-2 Colorado 14er in approach shoes? I have a nicely broken in pair of La Sportiva TX3s that I wear on my climbing trips and local easy hikes. I am hoping these are appropriate for a 14er too and I don’t have to buy a new pair of shoes just for the 14er (only because I am not sure how often I will get to do one or something similar). Thanks!

    1. Hi Crystal! It really depends on the details of the 14er hike you have in mind, and I’m not sure how comfortable approach shoes would be for a longer more challenging hike. You might be more comfortable in something with good tread and more ankle support. If you don’t see yourself using a new pair of hiking shoes or boots for any other hikes, then maybe give your approach shoes a try on a shorter, easier 14er hike and see how it goes.

  9. My Achilles’ tendon starts hurting after about a mile or two. It never bothers me when I walk in my Brooks or Hoka. Any recommendation of a mid boot that I can use for hiking and snowshoeing?

    1. I wear Hoka mid gore for hiking and they are very comfortable! I’ve had reconstructive surgery on my left foot and the Hoka have great support and cushion.

  10. So much great info! So we’re trying to hike the Kalalua trail in Hawaii in March. Warm humid environment but with lots of streams crossing. We’ll be backpacking in for an overnight stay. Should I go heavy duty waterproof? Or lighter mesh?

    Thank you!
    AJantzen

    1. Hi Amy! Kristen recommends the lightweight and breathable Astral shoe in her Hawaii Packing Guide post-https://bearfoottheory.com/hawaii-packing-list-hikers-outdoor-enthusiasts/. It sounds like it would be great for the Kalalua Trail!

  11. Hi there! Do you have any experience or feedback on Timberlands? I wore a friends pair for some hikes in Mob and really liked them so I’m looking at getting my own pair, but am not seeing much for reviews on them. Thanks!

Leave a comment

You can leave a comment, but you wont be able to add any links.

* You can not add any links to your comment as was previously mentioned above