Outdoor activities like hiking and trekking demand an individual to make the best choice of footwear. Well, obviously. The footwear one wears on a hiking trip can mean the difference between a comfortable and an awful experience. Hence, it becomes essential to buy the perfect hiking boots in NZ that assure great comfort and protection from all kinds of external elements.
But, are hiking boots essential to buy? Lately, there’s been a lot of debate on whether hiking boots are necessary or whether one can simply use hiking shoes or sneakers instead. While some say that hiking boots are overhyped, other outdoor experts emphasize the importance and the benefits of wearing hiking boots on rough terrains that involve a higher risk of injuries.
The only way you can hike farther comfortably while enjoying the overall experience is by wearing the right pair of shoes. Again, a good-quality hiking boot can literally make the difference and let you have the best times outdoors. As an adventure lover, you must be equipped with the right essentials while traveling. Typically, these essentials include comfortable clothing, footwear, portable shelter, sleeping bag, food, clean water, etc. that are all available in camping stores.
Coming to hiking footwear, buying the perfect boots is like a matchmaking process. This implies that the footwear you choose must be suitable for the hiking location that you are setting out for. Similarly, the materials and fit of the boots also play a key role in picking the ideal hiking boots. Your hiking boots must offer high protection and resistance against outdoor elements while being a great fit and ensuring comfort.
Hiking Boots: The different types
At present, the market is flooded with a wide range of hiking boots in NZ. Some of the most popular types of hiking boots that you’ll come across are discussed as follows:
- Regular hiking shoes – These are the most lightweight picks available in the hiking boots category featuring low-cut models. Usually, they come with flexible midsoles, making them ideal for long-distance travel on fairly even trails.
- Day hiking boots – The boots in this category come in mid to high-cut styles that are perfect for day hiking or short backpacking trips. Such boots need little break-in times but have lower durability as compared to rigid backpacking boots.
- Backpacking boots – They are the most rigid and durable boots available for multi-day treks. These backpacking boots have a high cut that wraps around the ankle, offering incredible support. Also, they have stiffer midsoles that assure great protection and comfort for hiking both on and off trails.
Why fit is important in hiking boots?
Fit is closely related to comfort in the case of hiking boots. Your hiking boots must snugly fit everywhere and should not be tight at the same time. While durability, breathability, and support are prioritized, people often overlook the fit aspect which becomes a reason for struggle and discomfort later.
Choosing the right fit for your hiking boots prevents blisters and plantar fasciitis. Furthermore, hiking boots that have proper arch support and fit your feet perfectly protect your ankle and toes while minimizing the risks of constrictions or hotspots.
Now the question arises that how to find the perfect fitted boots. Well, there are certain factors that can help you buy the best hiking boots for your next outdoor adventure. Take a look.
- Know your measurements: First things first, make sure you know the exact length and width of your feet including the foot volume which helps in determining the perfect fit. While the standard size chart can be referred to for noting the measurements, one should ensure that while their boots on, there should be a thumb’s space between the longest toe and the insoles.
- Consider socks & orthotics: This is a common mistake that most people make and end up with the wrong pair of shoes. Always wear socks before trying on or checking for boots’ sizes as it will give you the exact measurements. Also, for people who wear orthotics, it should always be considered while buying new pairs.
- Try different knot strategies: This is another tricky aspect that can mislead someone into buying the wrong-fitted boots. Quite often, the way of lacing the boots changes how it fits the same wearer. Hence, it’s best to try multiple knot strategies and confirm whether they fit comfortably in all ways or not.
- Try the boots at the end of the day: Since our feet swell slightly at the end of the day due to multiple activities, it’s the best time to try on boots. Also, if you are buying from camping stores offline, don’t take off the boots immediately. Spend some time wearing it and walk around on stairs or inclined surfaces to see if they are perfectly fitted and comfortable or not.
Now that you know why fit is important while shopping for hiking boots in NZ, make sure you don’t settle for extra loose or extra tight shoes. Keeping the above factors in mind will help you make the perfect purchase.