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Hiking- and Trekking boots

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Hitting the mountains with friends, with your family, your partner or simply by yourself – and of course with your hiking boots. Hiking is a wonderful thing to do, it is relaxing and an exciting way of becoming part of our nature, reaching new summits and peaks and finding adventurous new trails. It is important that your trekking boots and equipment really fit, otherwise it will become quite uncomfortable sooner or later.

YOUR TREKKING BOOT IS NOT A MOUNTAINEERING BOOT

A hiking or trekking boot is not the same as a mountaineering boot, although some people might think so. The area of use is different and so is the construction of the shoe. The mountaineering boot is extremely robust, stable and usually quite heavy. The hiking boot is also very robust and stable, but a bit more flexible, softer and weighs less. Furthermore, the trekking boots have a much softer sole than the mountaineering boots. Trekking boots are used on regular hikes, be it your local mountain or a pilgrim’s route. The mountaineering boots on the other hand are used for rougher terrain and ice climbing.

NOW, WHAT IS SO SPECIAL ABOUT A HIKING OR TREKKING BOOT?

Why use this footwear for the mountains? Trekking boots give you more stability than running shoes, for example. This is because the area around your ankle provides better support, the shoe is more stable and the sole has a profile to match the mountains.
There are hiking boots with a lower or higher leg. The lower profile is great for forest and gravel paths, but also works great as approach shoe and when going on via ferratas, whereas higher legs are better for steeper terrain.

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When it comes to the shock absorption of the shoe, there are softer models and less softer ones. Those which have more dampening are more comfortable but less cushioning means a more direct transfer of power.


Now on to the material. Hiking boots are made of either leather or synthetic leather. Both keep you relatively warm in winter, but real leather will also cool you off properly in summer. Synthetic leather, on the other hand, is faster to dry, which is a great advantage when sweating in summer. A lot of the models are equipped with waterproof GORE-TEX, which will protect you from wet socks on rainy hiking days.


Last but not least: the sole of the hiking boot. It is mostly a so-called Vibram sole. You will easily recognize these by their yellow logo on underneath the shoe. They offer the perfect combination of stability on the ground, abrasion-resistance and comfort. These soles do not wear out and are produced based on the vulcanization technology.

HIKING BOOTS FOR ALL YOUR NEEDS

Many hiking boots are crampon-compatible, meaning you can put crampons onto them. Due to the use of GORE-TEX, you do not even have to give up your adventure in wet conditions. Your feet and socks stay pleasantly dry. The climbing zone in the tip of the shoe, which many models have, is good for stability and protects your shoes from abrasion, especially when doing via ferratas. What else do you need for your next trekking trip? Definitely proper outdoor apparel and a good backpack!

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WHAT SHOULD I PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION TO WHEN BUYING TREKKING BOOTS?

Make sure you get the right size when buying your hiking boot. It is often advisable to buy the trekking boot in a slightly larger number than the conventional running shoe. If there is enough space between the toes and the toe of the shoe, pain caused by tight hiking boots will be avoided. When buying the shoe, it is also important to pay attention to the right fit. Key for a good fit are the right socks. Wearing hiking socks makes the boots fit more comfortable, cushions heels and toes, wicks away sweat and prevents blisters. This way won’t lose the joy of hiking. Also, make sure that you lace up your hiking boots thoroughly for every upcoming hike. This will give you a firmer and better grip.


Of course, there are differences between hiking shoes for kids, women and men. The models for kids and women are smaller and narrower than the ones for men. Just use the filter in our online shop to quickly find the right models. The season also plays an important role in the purchase. Most hiking shoes are developed for warmer conditions, because the season goes from spring until autumn. To ensure that you can enjoy your winter hike through snow and ice to the fullest, there are some things to consider when buying a winter hiking boot. It is important that the boot comes with an additional insulation and a thicker lining. Understandably, the shoe must be waterproof and slightly higher than usual trekking shoes, to ensure that snow does not get in. It is also recommendable to have the right accessories for the trekking boot, like a second pair of shoe laces or a shoe cream.

WHICH BRAND FITS ME BEST?

In the Sport Conrad Online store, you will find a large selection of hiking and trekking shoes from a wide range of brands. But how do you find the right brand for you? Basically, it is the characteristics of each shoe that must suit you and your hiking trips. Nevertheless, the brands differ from each other in some points such as environmental aspects and sustainability. You will find numerous hiking shoes that are marked with our WIR DENKEN UM label. Brands and products with this label profess for example:


- on responsibility throughout the supply chain
- pursue an environmental and resource-saving product
- produce in Europe

HOW DO I CARE FOR MY HIKING BOOTS?

First of all, you need the right tools, such as a care brush and shoe cream. When you are cleaning the shoes, make sure to remove the laces and insole. Start cleaning the boot carefully with a care brush and let it dry properly. After drying, apply shoe polish to the hiking boot. This procedure should be done after every long outdoor activity. With regular care and caution, the trekking shoe will last you for a long time.


Read more regarding hiking boots:


Choosing the right mountain boot: All you need to know
Forget blisters with the right pair of hiking socks
Hike with the Right: Essentials you need for your next Hike and Trekking Tour
Packing list for your next hut tour


©Hiking boots by Hanwag ©Hiking boots close-up by Cristoffer Sjöström