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Hiking Boots

I'm looking for a pair of hiking boots. The ones I have now are about 4 years old. They're a pair of Columbia ( possibly Newton Ridge) that I bought on sale. I love them because they keep my feet dry, warm and have an amazing grip that I rarely slip or slide on rocks. Where I hike is super rocky so grip/ non slip is a priority. The only problem I have with them is that my feet , the past couple of hikes, have been so sore at the end. No blisters or hot spots, just really sore.  ANy suggestions as to what I should look for? The closest REI is almost 2 hours away from me. I was hoping to avoid a road trip. Thank you! 

3 Replies

@KristenRoe so glad you reached out! Although...suggesting specific boots over the internet is really tricky, because we don't know anything about your feet! Are they narrow, medium or wide? Are they low, medium or high volume? What about your toebox and heel? So much variety in feet, and each vendor fits differently. Because your feet are so sore at the end of a hike, it's likely that's time for a new pair - sore feet often result from the breakdown/compression of the midsole of a boot, which makes your feet work harder with each step.

If at all possible, we definitely recommend a visit to your closest REI store, because an ill-footing boot will ruin pretty much any outdoor adventure. Knowing that your closest REI isn't very close, you could consider making a hiking boot fit appointment, which would give you a dedicated time to meet with a footwear employee. If that's just not feasible, you could:

  • Provide a little more information here about your feet and we can make a few recommendations
  • Call your local store, speak with a footwear employee who can ask questions about your feeet and make recommendations
  • Call our Customer Support team at 1-800-426-4840 where they can gather a few specifics about your feet and make recommendations

Hope that helps!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Hello, I hike a lot in Nothern Newengland and my favorie boots are Salomon, my current ones are an older version of their Quest GTX. I baught a pair new and they are still in great conditions after ~ 6 years of heavy use.

The weather and conditions vary wildly up here and I needed a boot that was comfortable, had ankle support, waterproof, and breathable. I've always had the fight between protection and having my feet sweat or increase breathability and comfortable feet. I have found not battle or compensation in these boots, not saying that eventually in really hot weather my feet do not sweat, but overall my feet had never been more comfortable. I've loved them from my first hike with them.

One down side I have found is that with very rocky terrain, the shoelace hooks near the ankle take a beating and may bend. Thankfully they are made of metal and I have had no serious issue but their profile seems to stick out more then other boots I have hed.


@KristenRoe 4 yrs is a long time!  My treads seem to wear out faster than that, lol.  Sometimes sock thickness and how the boot is tied makes a difference.  I've extended my comfy boots in the past by taking out the insoles and replacing them.  Depending on how thick it was to start, sometimes you can even see how worn down it is and why things hurt!  As a penny pincher, I've used supermarket insoles and had that help and in addition found that my darn tough socks that have padded soles give me a bit more shock absorbing and keep my feet a bit happier for a bit longer 🙂