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Help Figuring Out What Kind Of Hiking Shoe I'd Need

Hi REI Employees! 


So all my life, I've been an urban city type of guy. I've only started hiking recently - and by that I mean I've hiked maybe exactly 2x - Mt Washington (didn't reach the top) and in Dolly Sods (West Virginia). Both times I was grossly unprepared - I didn't have the right shoes and hiking in running sneakers made it downright difficult.


I'm in the market for a pair of hiking shoes - ones that are appropriate all year round for most parts of the AT - but particularly NY & NJ areas which to my understanding are rocky. My budget peaks at $200. I am a size 8 in normal shoes, and primarily walk with weight going to the ball of my foot. My podiatrist has said that I have high arches.


What shoes would you recommend?

3 Replies

hello, @shirochan , Mt Washington and the sod's  are two of my favorite places also, although vastly different, rock vs MUD MUD MUD! (lol)

I swear by the hoka one one

this shoe has basically transformed my hiking/backpacking career! Stable and comfortable beyond belief, and also dry extremely fast.

Free returns, so what have you got to lose?

good luck!

REI Member Since 1979

@shirochan Thanks for reaching out!

In addition to @Philreedshikes excellent suggestion, we'd like to add a couple more options for consideration as well. All of the following are fairly stiff shoes, designed to give you stability on the trail as well as some protection from rocky terrain.

We've had several folks here in the community very happy with their Oboz boots and shoes. If you'd like you can view some of those threads here and here.

Hopefully this helps, thanks!

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

Another wide footbox option is:


Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.