Figuring out the best hiking shoes and boots to wear is not simple. Your choice should be based on the parts, types, and how to care for them. Most of them offer protection, support, and style, but these are the main parts to look for:
- Sole – The boots’ bottom. It should have hard rubber since it is responsible for absorbing shock and gripping the ground. Its tough rubber will clasp slick surfaces and sink into softer surfaces. It should be stretchy and firm enough to support the foot.
- Upper – All parts above the sole. It should protect your foot from scratches, twists, and pounding. It should resist water and allow your feet to breathe. Also called the welt, it should be attached firmly to the sole.
- Inner – These are paddings and linings inside the boots for comfort and moisture protection. They provide insulation and help with dampness protection.
- Insole – This is where your foot stands, so it has to fit your foot exactly for appropriate support.
- Tongue – The cover of the opening where you insert your foot. You can adjust the tongue properly for the perfect fit.
- Scree Collar – This is the part around your ankle that prevents dirt from entering the boot
- Lacing – These are used to tighten the boot fit.
There is a wide variety of hiking shoes and boots. They are mainly dependent on the hiking you are going to do, the support you need, and how much your budget is.
Hiking shoes use light materials like nylon, suede, and leather. They are quite supple and require minimum break-in time. However, they have no support to your ankle, so you can get scratches when hiking.
If you are hiking on rough mountain terrain, I suggest wearing hiking boots. On the other hand, hiking shoes should be worn for long-distance hiking. Trail running requires your hiking shoes and boots to have extra padding, additional support, and tougher soles.
Most hikers and backpackers usually use a mid-weight boot. They are suitable for on and off-trail ground that is not that rough. It is made of synthetic material and leather. A mid-weight boot is a good choice for all trails. Be it an extended trek, short hikes, or a more challenging route; its extra stiffness will help you out.
A heavy boot should be used for rock hopping or off-trail blazing. It provides maximum support against injuries and is also water-resistant and breathable. Even though it’s sturdy, it’s not that comfortable due to its weight.
Mountaineering boots are for climbing mountains. It looks more like a ski boot than a hiking one. It is best made for hiking on ice due to the extreme support for the feet and ankles. It has a hard outer shell and sole, and extra insulation.
Nord Trail has all these types of hiking shoes and boots that you can choose from. Their products range from the hardcore adventure seeker, the weekend warriors, and the industry-standard safety boots. There are different styles for men, women, and kids. Made from the finest quality materials; you can surely expect an elevated hiking experience.