When it comes to hiking, there are a number of considerations that come into play before you can confidently go off on a trip. If you’re someone who has gone on several hiking trips in the past then planning your next hiking activity should be a piece of cake. If you’re going off on your first trek, you should spend an exhaustive amount of time planning your trip and found all the information to sufficiently address the possible hazards that may come up during the hike. The choice of footwear that you use during your hike is an important decision that you need to make during the initial stages of your planning process. For years, the only alternative for serious hikers solely rested on a quality pair of bulky hiking boots. Now, thanks to a variety of available hiking trails and innovations in shoe construction, there are a number of alternative options that hikers can choose over the traditional hiking boot. Let’s run through some of the possibilities that you can consider over the traditional hiking boot.
Over recent years, several hikers have taken to using running shoes during their hikes. Some veteran hikers may balk at this break in tradition at first but a closer look at the advantages inherent in this decision is all that it takes for anyone to be convinced. There are a number of advantages that running shoes have over the traditional hiking boot. The biggest difference that separates the two options is their respective weight. More often than not, hiking boots are bulky and heavy while running shoes are relatively lightweight. Swapping your hiking boots for a lightweight pair of running shoes can result in a quicker pace, a more comfortable hiking experience, and more energy. The gains that you can make when you swap a pair of 4-pound hiking boots for a lightweight pair of running shoes are immediately evident when you begin your hike.
Apart from the difference in weight, cost also comes into play when you compare hiking boots and running shoes. Running shoes are cheaper than hiking boots by a considerable margin. Traditional hiking boots also need a specific amount of time to be broken in before they can be used in long treks. Running shoes are not hampered by this limitation. You can have a running shoe ready for leisurely treks in maintained trails right out of the box. This difference alone can be enough to convince the most traditional of hikers.
Apart from running shoes, hikers can also opt for hiking sandals for their next hiking trip. Once again, weight disparity is the biggest difference when hiking sandals and hiking boots are compared. Some hiking sandals also come with toe guards to help counteract some of the nuisances during the hike like small debris in the form of rocks, shrubbery, and other obstructions. It should be noted that hiking sandals and running shoes should only be used during casual hiking trips. For serious treks, a more traditional pair of hiking boots would be a better option.
Trail shoes can be another consideration that a hiker can make when it comes to purchasing footwear for an upcoming trip. Several hikers have noted that trail shoes combine comfort and functionality feature in a relatively effortless manner. Trail shoes are far more comfortable than hiking boots and are arguably the most versatile option when it comes hiking footwear. While there are a number of options available in terms of footwear, heavy-duty hiking boots still have a place during long and arduous hikes. Ultimately, your purchasing decision should be made after a careful consideration of your preferences and the demands of the hike that you intend to take.