Hiking Shoes VS Boots : What is the Difference

Choosing an appropriate pair of shoes is one of the most important facts for a hiker. You can walk a long way without any trouble or discomfort while you wear perfect footwear. If you can not select your hiking shoes properly, you will have to face a horrible hiking experience. When selecting hiking footwear, never think about the style, outfit, design, or trend. The facts you should consider when buying your hiking footwear are comfort, long-lasting, breathability, weight, material, etc.

Hiking boots and hiking shoes are the most popular types of footwear for a hiker. But many people do not know about the difference between these two. So that they are confused about which one is better for them. In this article, I will write about the details of hiking shoes and hiking boots.

hiking shoes vs boots

Hiking Boots

The main advantage of wearing hiking boots is that it will give you proper ankle support so that you feel very comfortable. Again hiking shoes are popular among many hikers because of their ability to protect your feet from hard and rough elements. Hiking boots are normally long-lasting and have better traction. These are also some reasons for using hiking boots. 

But there are some disadvantages of using hiking boots. First of all, some people do not like to wear hiking boots because of their weight. When you want to use hiking boots in the rainy season, it can create a big problem because it takes a long time to dry when wet. But modern manufacturing companies now offer many types of user-friendly and flexible hiking boots. 

For example, they make boots for all types of hikers like recreational hikers, regular hikers, and so on. For day hikers, they make lightweight, flexible, and soft boots. But for the hikers who regularly hike to mountains, walk on rocky surfaces, they make heavier and stiffer boots. But after all of these, due to less breathability and comparatively heavyweight, some hikers like to avoid it in their hiking days. If you do not feel comfortable with your footwear during hiking hours, it will cause serious pain in your feet and surrounding parts.

Hiking Shoes

If you are hiking for recreational purposes and don’t want to go to mountains or other rocky places, then you should wear hiking shoes. Hiking shoes are very lightweight and flexible. They are very breathable and are waterproof.  Hiking shoes have low-top construction. For this type of construction, hiking shoes are lightweight and give less ankle support compared with hiking boots.

Many hikers prefer to wear hiking shoes due to a more fashionable outfit and various casual designs. They think they can hike more comfortably with casual hiking shoes. But choosing the right pair of shoes does not depend on the outfit or comfort or other features. You just need to select it according to your hiking trail. As a hiker, you need both – hiking shoes and hiking boots. You should have a clear concept about when you should wear hiking boots or hiking shoes.

When Do You Need to Wear Hiking Boots?

Want to go to a muddy, wet, or rocky unstable trail? Wear hiking boots before leaving home. The hiking boots have a great protection ability.

When Do You Need to Wear Hiking Shoes?

Hiking shoes are suitable for dry weather. Many hikers also prefer to wear hiking shoes on rainy days because these shoes are easy to dry. They are also easy to pack. So hiking shoes are suitable for both wet and dry trails. But remember that, when your feet need more protection, hiking boots are recommended.


You can get an amazing hiking experience when you wear an amazing pair of footwear. So you have to select comfortable footwear to have a happy hiking experience. Hiking boots and shoes both are suitable but you should select them according to the nature of the trail, the weather, and the surrounding environment. Hopefully, this article will help you to choose the right pair of hiking footwear.

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My name is Camila Avery. I like to write and share my experiences. HeartyLook is my lovely digital home, where I can share my professional advice, home improvement ideas, solution, beauty tips, product recommendations, and honest and open opinions on anything and everything.

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