When purchasing a pair of best-quality footwear for hiking or running, many people have differing opinions on what works best for such activities. Some consider trail running shoes a viable option, while others follow trends and go with hiking boots. However, we haven’t discussed here the age-old debate about better hiking boots and trail shoes. Instead, we have compared them based on their crucial features and performance to help you make the best purchasing decision.
Hikers and trail runners, especially beginners, find it challenging to choose the best quality footwear like shoes and socks for hiking or trail running. Many of them can barely decide whether to wear hiking boots or trail running shoes when they embark on the trail. In this article, we’ve discussed hiking boots vs. trail running shoes to help you find a solution for this.
Hiking Boots Vs Trail Running Shoes: Which One To Go With?
Before answering the question about which one is better than the other, first, take a brief look at how well each piece of footwear kind beats one another with its functionalities and facilities. Let’s start with how the protection factor matters in the case of both of these shoes.
Speaking of protection and ankle support, it depends entirely on the terrain you want to hike through and how much help you need for your ankles. For instance, if you’re going to stay protected from abrasion, and scratches while running on rocky, brushy trails, a pair of good-quality hiking boots would be a great choice.
Because most of these shoes are constructed from thick materials, have rugged soles, and feature high ankles. On the contrary, most trail running shoes are crafted from light fabrics, and they fail to provide the same level of protection as hiking boots. But trail running shoes reduce the risk of tripping, which many hiking boots don’t offer.
Depending on the construction, hiking boots have more robust and thicker materials than trail running shoes; they are highly durable and can withstand years of abuse compared to trail running shoes. However, proper care can extend the lifespan of your trail shoes.
When it comes to comfort, we will give hiking boots a lower score than trail running shoes. That is because the toe part is pretty narrow. So your feet don’t get much room for movement. In contrast, trail running shoes provide more flexibility and a better range of activities. Anyway, if you wear trail shoes for hours, you may experience pain as you step on a rocky surface and feel a jostling collision.
In terms of breathability, the trail running shoes win the race. They allow for optimal air circulation since they are made up of light components. They help you escape perspiration and prevent smelly feet. Conversely, many hiking boots will make your feet sweat, especially those with thick soles. They cause blisters, give you pain, and become uncomfortable to wear in hot weather.
While hiking and running on a variety of trails, every ounce counts. A study shows that foot weight plays an essential role in determining your energy expenditure. So, it’s evident that you should choose a light pair of footwear if you want to go fast. And in this scenario, hiking boots won’t deliver you as promising results as trail running shoes will. It’s because these boots are built with thick materials, which make them quite bulky, though. However, if you choose a pair of boots crafted from lightweight synthetic materials, you can avoid such a problem.
When comparing their prices, it’s tough to determine which one is better, between hiking boots and trail running shoes. Again, it depends entirely on your preferences. If you choose a pair of hiking boots or trail shoes that come at a reasonable price, they may provide you with high-quality functions and give you a comfortable wearing experience for an extended duration.
But if you choose something classy and premium, you will indeed get the best features in a pair of shoes or boots, which will give you the best performance for many years to come.
To conclude, the decision is up to you; you have to choose one footwear type according to your needs. By far, you have got an overall idea of how these two types of shoes differ from each other. If you think you can bring off the best from these two, have them both.
Otherwise, for lightweight packing, there’s no better option than having Trail Running shoes. If you can look past the weight and packability, hiking boots are great for offering maximum grip, making them best for use on various surfaces.
Robert Coleman, in one word is a multitasker. He enthusiastically works as an outdoor guide. He also has led large groups for backpacking at Bogota in Columbia. Hours of research and field experiences have helped him to stand as one of the best professional reviewers for anything related to outdoors. He improvises in using the right tool rather than packing tons of unnecessary things while outdoors.