The best hiking boots for you are the ones that most aptly fit the terrain and vegetation that you will be hiking in. Different boots offer different levels of ankle, sole, and incline support.
Types of Hiking Boots
Hiking boots fall into a few main categories:
Beginning at the lightest end, are hiking sandals. Hiking sandals are open-toed, and offer breathability and comfort. They are fantastic in warm weather, particularly where you may be in and out of water frequently (such as in hiking slot canyons, or along a river).
Then you have hiking shoes. These offer flexible midsoles and advanced traction, but like the name connotes, they are low cut. Hiking shoes are best suited for flat terrain that is non-technical.
Day hiking boots feature a mid to high upper, more ankle support, and greater flexibility. More lacing eyelets affords you the opportunity to get a better fit. Typically these types of boots will be a more easily broken in, “wear off the shelf” type boot.
A true backpacker’s boot is higher and more rigid. These are more difficult to initially break-in, but offer the greatest stability and ankle support. They also have soles designed for heavy loads and trips that are several days long.
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