Last updated: August 11, 2021

When the weather gets nice again, many people head for the mountains or into nature. Whether it's an intensive mountain tour or a longer walk, you need the right footwear for hiking.

Finding the right hiking boots for men is a difficult task. That's why we will help you find the right one for you.




The Best Mens Hiking Boots: Our Picks

Buying criteria: What you should look for when buying hiking boots

To help you find the right hiking boots for men, we have listed the most important buying criteria. These should make it easier for you to make the perfect choice through the various products.

The following buying criteria will help you find the right men's hiking boots for every hiking day:

  • Material
  • Upper
  • Lacing
  • Sole
  • Sizes

n the following sections you will find the basic requirements for each aspect.

Material

Classic hiking boots for men are made of more modern materials such as leather, Gore-Tex and textiles. Both have advantages and disadvantages, but the most important thing is that excellent craftsmanship is very important:

  • The leather versions are usually heavier but very strong and are mainly used for hikes where pebbles and stones have to be passed.
  • Men's textile hiking boots are lighter and therefore more versatile. These models are now also very durable.

Both versions are usually breathable and waterproof, so special attention should be paid to the quality of workmanship. The seams of hiking boots for men are also their weakness, so they are usually sewn 2-3 times in high quality brands.

Shoes for hiking and trekking have to withstand a lot of time, so they need special care. Of course, mud, sludge, snow and dirt should be removed regularly, but that is not enough. Waterproofing should be repeated regularly. Brand manufacturers often stock sprays suitable for Gore-Tex models and grease for leather shoes.

Shaft

It should be padded at the upper edge and flexible. A prerequisite is, of course, a sock that extends along the edge of the upper. Shafts that appear robust at the beginning can normally function normally. However, if there are pressure points from the start, hikers should choose other models.

Lacing

Especially if you are going uphill, it can be nice to lower the knots on the shaft a little to leave more space above your rolling feet.

The holes can be looped from the top rather than the bottom. This will make the knot slip 1-2 cm lower. How much a centimetre can actually help is a question. But some people swear by it.

However, this leads to more friction on the laces, and the shoe holds its fit longer and does not come loose quickly. This is certainly not a bad thing.

Sole

Since men's hiking and trekking shoes are not designed for walking on asphalt roads, but for walking on mountainous, uneven and slippery terrain, a sturdy and non-slip shape is essential.

However, there are also differences and levels depending on the intended area of shoe application:

  • Lightweight men's hiking boots are easy to visit and usually have a flexible and slightly elastic sole that facilitates rolling while walking. On the other hand, men's hiking boots used in the high mountains have very hard, thick soles
  • Hard men's hiking boots: The harder the mountains and the terrain, the harder the sole.

Besides the outer sole, the indoor climate is also very important. The manufacturer's insole should be removable, washed regularly or replaced with your own / special insole. You may want to wear thick warm socks, especially in cold weather. Therefore, hiking boots for men and generally require larger sizes than normal.

Sizes

Even if you need to wear thicker socks (because the temperature is slightly lower), there should be enough room for your feet in hiking boots for men.

When buying, make sure that the toes have about 1 cm of freedom of movement at the end of the hiking boots. If you follow this simple rule of thumb, there will be no problems.

  • Try the men's hiking boots together with your hiking socks.
  • Buy the men's hiking boots one size larger than your shoes.
  • Go for a walk indoors with the men's hiking boots.

Hiking boots for men: The most important questions answered

Choosing the right hiking boots for men is not always easy. That's why we have answered the most important questions about hiking boots for men for you.

What types of hiking boots are there for men?

Basically, you can distinguish between six types of ski trousers:

  • A : For walks and everyday life, buttery soft flex, very light
  • AB : For frost and farm tracks, low mountain ranges, easy walks either without a rucksack, or with a very light rucksack, sturdy sole.
  • B: Longer hikes in low mountain ranges and light trekking tours, decent grip, solid sole construction.
  • BC: Demanding trekking tours, definitely also in high mountains with a lot of luggage, via ferrata, stiffer sole with a harder shaft.
  • C: Difficult trekking tours and high mountain tours and pathless terrain. Conditionally crampon resistant! With hard sole and firm shaft.
  • D: 100% crampon resistant mountain boots, suitable for high altitude, glacier and ice tours. With totally hard sole and stiff shaft.

What is the difference between hiking boots and trekking boots?

  • Hiking boots: These are a more robust version of hiking boots, suitable for long-distance travel and trips with heavy luggage.
    • Thanks to its strong sole and ankle-stabilising shaft, it can also easily be used for two to three days of travel.
    • Hiking boots are usually made of nylon, suede or leather and are usually equipped with an additional waterproof membrane.
    • For trekking in low mountains or foothills, the backpack should not be too heavy; you can also hike on uneven trails.
  • Trekking shoes: If you want to travel long distances and need a heavy backpack, it is recommended to use trekking shoes.
    • Just like hiking boots, it has a stable shaft.
    • In addition, the unique sole structure is ergonomic can perform rolling movements and provides good cushioning.
    • This material has also adapted to the growing demand for such footwear: Wear-resistant soles and high-quality leather (with or without a waterproof membrane) make these hiking boots indispensable partners in any terrain and weather. Even in rough terrain off the beaten track, long-term trekking with heavy or even heavy luggage is possible.
  • How do hiking boots for men have to fit?

    Whether it's heel fit, ankle support or lacing - if the shoe fits, it can only perform at its best. Here are some important tips.

    The right size is very important if you want to wear new men's hiking boots or stay in your wardrobe. With hiking boots for men, it is always important to fit absolutely comfortably and not squeeze under any circumstances. The back of the foot should sit firmly in the boot. This is called the heel fit, but there should be enough room in the toes. The best way to check that the heel is properly secured is to loosen the shoe. If the heel moves sideways at this point, the heel of this shoe is obviously too wide.

    When riding downhill, the toes should not touch the front of the shoes, so there should always be the width of a finger in front of the toes. If you choose lighter, versatile shoes, make sure you can buy them for a longer period of time in the toe area. Even if the shoes look comfortable for the first time, it is recommended to try shoes that are one size larger. Conventional shoe sizes cannot always be transferred to hiking boots for men. Hiking boots for men usually require a different size than normal shoes.

    Waterproof or breathable?

    For footwear, the stronger the waterproofness, the worse the breathability. Therefore, before buying hiking boots for men, you should consider whether you really need hiking boots with a waterproof membrane or whether waxed full-leather shoes are sufficient. On trips where the shoes cannot be completely dried, in the rain or even on long distances or when crossing wetlands, hiking boots with a waterproof inner membrane should definitely be used. In many cases, however, fully waxed all-leather shoes have water-repellent properties.

    Care for and clean men's hiking boots

    • Priming: Brush the outside well with a coarse brush and lukewarm water until the dirt is removed. To clean the inside, you can simply run the hiking boots full of water and wash them out with a dishwashing liquid.
    • Drying: Leave your hiking boots to dry in a warm, well-ventilated place, but never near a heat source (near the running heater ). Excessive heat can affect both the leather the hiking boots are made of and the sole. To speed up the process, you can stuff the men's hiking boots with newspaper. Basically, these should therefore be replaced so that mould does not take hold in the first place.
    • Care of men's leather hiking boots: By using classic shoe wax, leather can retain its natural appearance. Leather grease should be avoided. It can clog the pores and loosen stuck rubber parts. Use a cloth or soft brush to apply the wax. Usually spray the liquid care product onto the sponge and spread it with the sponge. This will make the leather soft, supple and waterproof again. Simply use a little Vaseline or wax to protect the hook and eyelets from corrosion. To care for the upper leather, use the traditional moisturiser. For all leather shoes, there is a special leather milk that can be rubbed into the hiking boots from time to time. The Gore-Tex lining does not require self-care.
    • Care of men's synthetic hiking boots: If you are walking completely without leather on your feet, you can simply wash and dry your hiking boots as shown in steps one and two. The synthetic material is easy to care for. Simply spray it with dipping spray to ensure the water repellency of hiking boots without compromising breathability.

    Conclusion

    Even now, these hiking boots for men are not as tough as wooden planks (with the exception of some classic double-stitch models): both feet and hiking boots for men need time to adapt.

    Take this time to get used to them and buy new hiking boots for men as soon as possible. This way, you won't have to take unnecessary breaks during the holidays because your feet will be squashed or bruised.

    Contributed image: unsplash.com / Joanna Nix-Walkup

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