Do you prefer boots or shoes?

Their are strong arguements for both, but it usually comes down to personal preference. The safety and hard-wearing reliability of boots, or the light, breathable happy-feet of trail shoes What do you prefer?

  • Boots
  • Trail shoes

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This depends very much on the nature of the hike for me. If I carry a heavy backpack on difficult terrain (mostly 3+ day hikes) , then sturdy leather boots. A half-day walk up the hill with a day-pack only then lightweight shoes.
I would rather wear heavy boots than end-up in trouble because my comfy shoes broke-down - if in doubt, going for the stronger shoe. Have seen people having to tape what’s-left-of-their-shoes to their feet on the GR20 and Torres del Paine - not nice!


Used to be sandals :smiley:

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Ah yes, the all-terrain sandal with adaptive grip and unmatched breathability. Stuff of legends! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Until this happens. I cut my toe to the bone, luckily Willem could help me patch it up.

eina! :persevere: have not tried hiking in sandals yet but after seeing that,I’ll stick to my boots,thanks:laughing:


I like to go as minimal as possible.
Vibrams and sandals.
Elevated heels can cause rolled ankles.
Zero footwear all the way.
It’s my opinion that ankle support is a bandaid for other biomechanical problems.

Do you prefer flying or driving? Do you prefer visiting the doctor or the dentist? Do you prefer eating lunch or supper?

Neither is always the answer - you most certainly don’t want to spend 3 days in knee deep snow in trail shoes, and you don’t want to complete a speed traverse of the Drakensberg in hiking boots.

For me - shoes are generally the right answer for anything South Africa has to throw at you. Shoes are lighter and give you more mobility (plus your wallet thanks you) - but I rarely carry more than 10kg total pack weight, which makes boots very impractical.

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