Sometimes you need to wear boots instead of shoes, but just because you have to upgrade to boots, doesn’t mean you have to wear heavy boots. There are, in fact, many excellent lightweight hiking boots that will offer all of the protection and durability of boots, but will weigh a fraction of the amount of most boots. The benefit of that, of course, is that you will only end up using a fraction of the energy that you would have otherwise used for swinging your feet around.
Lightweight Hiking BootsWhat to consider when looking for lightweight hiking boots.
- Leather – If you want lightweight hiking boots then it’s a good idea to avoid those boots with leather exteriors. Leather is very durable, and gives a boot a great, classic look, but leather is also very heavy, and boots with full leather exteriors are rarely, if ever lightweight hiking boots.
- Height – If you want a lightweight hiking boot then it pays to get a boot with as little material on it as possible, and one definite area where you could cut is the top of the boot. A mid –height boot will provide you with plenty of ankle support, but wont weigh as much the taller, full ankle variety of boot.
Best Lightweight Hiking BootsSome of the better lightweight hiking boot choices, for both men and women.
Men's Lightweight Hiking Boots
- Scarpa Kailish GTX Boots - If you want quality, lightweight hiking boots you wont do much better than these. They won the 2008 Backpacker Magazine Editor's Choice award, and with good reason. At just 1 pound 6 ounces, or 623 grams it will seem as if you're not even wearing boots. They use a lightweight Vibram sole and a Gore Tex liner, combined with suede outer, to keep your feet both dry and comfortable over a long day of hiking.
- Salomon Quest 4D GTX Hiking Boots - These are a full height hiking boot from Salomon, whereas the Kailish boots above are a mid-length. Because of that they do weigh quite a bit more, at 2 pounds 13 ounces, or 1.27 kilograms. But if that extra ankle support is important to you, it's difficult not to take on a bit of extra weight. But other than that they're similarly designed, with a Gore Tex liner and a mostly suede upper to offer some durability.
Women's Lightweight Hiking Boots
- Scarpa Kailish GTX Boots - The winner of the 2008 Backpacker Magazine Editor's Choice award, these are a seriously lightweight pair of hiking boots. 1 pound 3 ounces, or 538 grams is hard to beat, though these are a mid-height, rather than full height boot. They use a lightweight Vibram sole, in combination with a Gore Tex liner and a suede exterior for an all around good fit that will keep your feet dry. If you want lightweight, these is it.
- Salomon Quest 4D GTX Hiking Boots - Not as lightweight as the Kailish boots above, at 2 pounds 9.5 ounces, or 1.17 kilograms, these are a full height boot that will give you ample ankle support. Other than that they're fairly similar to the Kailish boots. They keep your feet dry with a combination of Gore Tex liner and an upper that is mostly suede, with some mesh mixed in for breathability. A good choice if you want a lightweight, full height hiking boot.