The 5 Best Tried & Tried Pairs, According to Health Editors
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tried and tested.
Looking for the best hiking shoes but don’t want to spend a lot of ££ on a pair that will rub, get your feet wet, or have you slipping all over?
Lucky for you, I’m a health editor who fits sweat test kits for a living and this month, I’m working my way through hiking boots. Why? Because summer is just around the corner and like the rest of you (Thank youlockdown), I spent the last two years walking the shores of Devon and Cornwall for my summer vacation.
Spoiler alert: While I thought I’d accept the lack of sunshine and frozen cocktails, the opposite happened, and as my guide to the benefits of the UK’s best hikes and walking shows, I fell in love with the great outdoors. For our first week following the Southwest Coastal Path in 2020, it rained all week, yet thanks to my kit, I stayed warm and dry (I’ve never been more grateful for a waterproof rain coat, moisture-wicking gym am) leggings, and sturdy hiking boots).
So, without further ado, scroll through my roundup of the best hiking shoes. The shoes that support me while traveling are included in this roundup and you’ll be surprised to hear that they cost just under £20. Yes.
What did I see while testing?
Good grip, ample ankle support, 100% waterproof material and design, and comfort too – I have fairly sensitive feet so I haven’t included shoes that cause blisters or tingling in the ankle or ball of the foot. the person who walks more? Instead, read our Fashion Aid’s guide to the best walking boots.
The 5 Best Hiking Boots to Buy Now, According to Fitness Editors
1. FP Movement x Danner Edrica in Perfect Navy – £153.14 danner
first things first – just see On the design of these shoes. When I saw the limited-edition collaboration between Free People — a sister company of Urban Outfitters and one of the oldest (and coolest) athleticwear brands — and Danner — The best hiking boot brand, I couldn’t wait to try.
Taking these shoes out of the box, I immediately noticed how gorgeous both the color and the design are. They are soft to the touch, attractive, and the quality feels better. While the color combination makes me think of sunset hiking and long weekend breaks when taking them for a walk around a muddy wooded park, I found these shoes to be really functional too. They didn’t rub or cause blisters, the grip kept me from applying any mud, and they remained waterproof despite the rain.
top tip: Go half a size up, because they run short, and be prepared to break them over shorter distances if you’re aching on the balls of your feet like me. Hurry, though – they’re limited edition. – Associate Chief, Health Editor, @allyyhead
FP Movement Edrica in Perfect Navy – £153.14 | danner
2. Timberloop Trekker Hiking Boots for Women – £160 | timberland
You may have all heard of Timberland shoes, but they were an iconic 90s fashion statement, above all, right? Wrong – as these hiking boots proved.
More a city boot than a hardcore hiking option (I wouldn’t recommend them for Kilimanjaro training, but would recommend them to your local parks or for weekend loops of dog walks), I found the soles to be padded and comfortable—they didn’t rub and they were breathable. Felt it too. They also have very impressive stability credentials – just launched and specially designed for roundness, they have a “unique sole construction” which means all elements of the shoe can be easily detached and can be put into the relevant recycling streams. clean.
Cons: They don’t offer ankle support, stopping less than other options in this roundup, and they get dirty very quickly (best not for jumping through muddy puddles). That said, I was surprised at how easily the mud comes off once it’s cleaned. I’d also recommend treating with a pre-using balm, which I didn’t. – Associate Chief, Health Editor, @allyyhead
3. Sweaty Betty x Merrell Moab Speed Gore-Tex® – £125 | Merrell
OK, okay, so technically not a hiking boot, but I really rated these Sweaty Betty x Merrell hiking shoes. They had the best grip, waterproof material, and breathability of all the designs I tested, plus I found them seriously comfortable.
I was also pleasantly surprised by how lightweight they are, while still offering good arch support in-shoe. If you are someone who seriously does not like chunky or heavy shoes or prefers to travel lightly, I would go for these. Likewise, if you’re prone to injury, they’re a win-win, because they’re lightweight—so don’t cause you to overpronate or overcompensate, while offering advanced support and functionality.
I wore them for a hike around Epping Forest and really rated them. – Associate Chief, Health Editor, @allyyhead
Women’s Moab Speed GORE-TEX® – £125.00 | Sweaty Betty x Merrell
4. Women’s running shoes – £19.99 | decathlon
Spoiler alert: These are the walking boots I mentioned above that have helped me hike and walk the South West Coastal Path even in torrential downpours in both the Three Peaks, Lake, and Peak Districts.
While their support isn’t as good as, say, the SB x Merrell shoes above, I’ve had them for years and I’ve never had any complaints. I’m sure they’ll fall apart soon, but so far, they’ve been a good investment that has supported me over 100+ miles.
Key Pros: They’re affordable for all price points, and I found them to be comfortable on my heels, soft, and support my arch. I also thought they were particularly easy to do and impressively waterproof – I’ve never experienced any leaks.
That said, at only £20, they are not the highest price point or quality and certainly do start to get a bit smelly over time. However, they have seen me during many holidays and I will buy again. – Associate Chief, Health Editor, @allyyhead
Women’s running shoes – £19.99 | decathlon
5. Women’s Trailstorm™ Mid Waterproof Walking Shoe – £100.00, Colombia
When it comes to hiking I’m a very beginner and probably only use running shoes once every few years. So when I was invited on a walking vacation to the Isle of Skye this year, my main priority was to choose a hiking shoe that didn’t take away from a trainer or shoe I’d usually wear for a long time. There was no need to break till – in time.
I opted for the Columbia Trailstorm Mid Women Walking Boot and they did not disappoint. I found them to be breathable, lightweight and with a stable high collar fit, easy to wear and extremely comfortable, not to mention featuring zero break-in periods (which was really the biggest selling point for me).
As someone who suffers from rheumatoid nodules on my ankles, it was really important to find a boot that had a lightweight and flexible sole and good ankle support so as not to pound it. Spoiler alert: I came back from Skye with zero pain, so for me, the Columbia Trailstorm Boot was a success.
They held up well to many of the terrain we faced – rocks, hills, seawalls, and so on, and I can personally testify to them being impervious (I accidentally lost my entire foot during our climb) put in a swamp and it dried, so you get the picture).
Only drawbacks? I noted a lack of grip on slippery surfaces, minimal arch support, and a very narrow fit. NB: Definitely choose a size with these hiking boots. I went for my size and found the fit a little more comfortable.
I would definitely recommend these hiking boots – if not only for the comfortable ankle support and the luxury of breaking them in. —Jenny Proudfoot, Features Editor, @jenny_proudfoot
Women’s Trailstorm™ Mid Waterproof Walking Shoe – £100.00 | Colombia