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January 02, 2017

Buying your first pair of boots could be an unnerving experience, but if you choose your hiking boots carefully, you can wear the same pair for years.

So before visiting a retail store and are presented with hundreds of options, you need to know what you are looking for and what questions you need to ask. Here’s our top three:

1. What terrain will I be trekking on?

This is probably the most important one, and it’s crucial to mention this to staff assisting you at an outdoor retailer. Your trek itinerary should indicate the type of terrain you can expect through-out each stage of the hike. The type of terrain will determine whether you’ll be needing:

  • Waterproof boots
  • Lightweight boots – as with day hikes lighter boots are best
  • High cut boots – if you’re going to be hiking on steep inclines or uneven terrain you’ll need a boot that covers your ankles for ankle support. 

2. Do they fit?

Consider these 2 factors: After a couple of hours on your feet, they could start swelling up and hiking socks are quite thick. It’s recommended to take a size up when buying hiking boots. Most hiking boots won’t feel instantly comfortable as sneakers (it’s important to break them in before taking on your big trek), but they shouldn’t pinch, cause hotspots or constrict circulation.

3. What material are the boots made of?

If you know you’ll be buying leather boots, remember that there are different types of leather: full grain leather; suede, oil pressed suede; split/action leather which is PU coated, and Nubuck (full grain leather that’s been buffed).

Also, if you’re buying synthetic upper boots, remember mesh adds more breathability.

For more information on buying the right kind of boot for you, our Hi-Tec retail staff are trained and fully equipped to answer all your hiking gear questions. Locate our stores here and start your adventures the right way.

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