Sunday, December 14, 2014

Consider boot cuts when choosing footwear

A mid-cut hiking boot is good for rough terrain. Phot courtesy of Kj/Photoree.
When purchasing a hiking boot, an element to consider is the footwear’s cut. A boot’s cut refers to how high it goes on the ankle.

In general, there are three types of boot cuts – low, mid and high. Each offers its own advantages.

Low-cut hiking shoes are really just tennis shoes made for the trail. They are lighter than other cuts and tend to allow you to travel farther. They’re best for shorter hikes, ones which you don’t carry much of a load on your back, and if you have trick ankles. They break-in quite quickly as well.

Mid-cut hiking boots are better for rougher terrain than a low-cut shoe as they offer better protection against debris and brush and provide increased stability and support. If carrying moderate loads on your back, you’ll also want a mid-cut rather than a low-cut shoe.

High-cut hiking boots, such as mountaineering boots, cover more of the ankle than a mid-cut. Because of this, high-cuts offer even better support and are ideal for steep, uneven terrain. They’re also necessary if lugging a heavy backpack because you plan to camp out or if you’re sporting a child carrier. They take the longest break-in.

Learn about trail guidebooks available in the Hittin’ the Trail series.