Newsletter, Trip Gear Reports

Best Hiking Footwear

06/11/2017 by .
Keen Uneek O2 Ltd


I recently walked the Camino de Santiago, the famous long distance path where you can do up to 25 miles a day. The hiking wasn’t particularly tough and the ground, for the most part, fairly even, so I didn’t really need ankle support.

More important was that my main boots had to be waterproof, as it rained a lot, but also lightweight. I also needed something more comfortable to wear in the evening, so I could rest my aching feet. The combination of the Zamberlan lightweight boots during the day and the Keen Uneek sandals at night worked well.

Zamberlan 104 Hike Lite Gtx® RR

Zamberlan 104 Hike Lite e1510007191800


These are lightweight low rise boots designed for easy trekking and combine a water resistant suede leather upper with a mesh collar and tongue for better ventilation. Inside they’re lined with Gore-Tex which ensures they’re waterproof and breathable. Even better the soles are Vibram giving a good grip on slippery surfaces. They’re also cushioned so after a long day’s walking, your feet don’t ache too much. Of course you can’t help stubbing your toes on the odd stone, so they’ve reinforced that part of the shoe with rubber. Fit is roomy and my toes could wiggle around, but were properly constrained on the downhills.

Zamberlan 104 Hike Lite

Weight 770g



Keen Men’s Uneek O2 Ltd

Keen Uneek O2 Ltd

Stylish yet comfortable, these are part sandal and part trainer. The clever idea is that they’re constructed of two pieces of parachute cord: one is woven into a pattern that secures your foot in place, and the other works like a lace to tighten them. The free moving cord design allows the uppers to move and adapt to the shape of your feet. Adding a cool quotient, the thick soles are bright white with black high traction grips on the underside. Other versions of these shoes have just a strap on the back but these are enclosed and the lightly cushioned heel adds extra support. Although I took them for evening use, I even managed some easy hiking, walking on the road.


Keen Men’s Uneek

Weight: 500g



Tell me more about best hiking footwear

You often get the best prices on the internet but shoe sizes tend to vary between different brands and it’s important to try your footwear before you buy. Go to a store, take the socks you’re going to wear, and walk around testing for fit. Remember that if you’re packing light, it’s important that your shoes don’t give you grief.


3 thoughts on “Best Hiking Footwear

  1. James Ruddy

    Great review. Just one thing regarding the shoptest-internetbuy approach to purchasing. This is widespread and is killing thousands of retail jobs. But how about going to a shop, trying several pairs of boots and asking for a price-match? I did this at Go Outdoors last week and got a pair of Berghaus Hillwalker 11s cut from £121 to £74, which was their 10% reduction on the best Internet price. And the staff, who couldn’t have been more helpful or knowledgeable, deserve to keep their jobs!

    1. Terry Marsh

      That’s exactly what I did a month ago. I’m as guilty as the next person of diving into online buying…but I need to get out more, even if it’s only to buy new boots.


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