Best Hiking Boots for Wide Feet – A Detailed Guide
Finding a good pair for wide-footed hikers is harder than most people realize. Many people don’t know that there are so many wide-footed people out there.
For those who have wide-footedness, buying hiking shoes can still be a challenge, especially if you’re not willing to compromise on comfort. Luckily, there are a lot of great companies out there that specialize in making hiking shoes that fit wide-footed people. We took a look at what’s available, how they perform and which ones are the best hiking shoes for wide-footed people in a variety of different categories.
Things to Consider Before Buying Hiking Boots for Wide Feet
Fit is obviously important, but there are other factors to consider when choosing the right pair of wide hiking shoes for you.
Leather is one of the most durable materials for any type of shoe, and it is still used in hiking boots. It can be stiff when new, but it needs to be broken in before wearing. Leather shoes need to be treated in order to keep them waterproof, unless they’re made with a waterproof membrane such a Gore-Tex.
Synthetic leather is gaining popularity because it has better wear properties than natural leather. It’s also lighter and more flexible than natural leather. Nylon weavings are also used to reduce the weight of synthetic leather products.
Synthetic rubber is usually made from polymers, which are long chains of molecules. These compounds are often soft and flexible, making them ideal for shoes. They’re also lightweight, so they don’t add too much weight to the shoe.
Hiking boots are usually described by their weights (light, medium, heavy) to distinguish between different types of footwear. Light hiking boots are typically used for short hikes through flat terrain, whereas heavier hiking boots are better suited for longer treks up mountainsides especialy when it’s raining outside. In order to stay warm during fall and winter time you need to wear jackets and gloves that’s why we recommend you check our articles about the best hiking jackets and the best hiking gloves.
Foot, heel, ankle, and knee supports are also important. Reinforcements in key areas may be included. Some hikers’ boots have a shank located in the sole to prevent foot rotation. Serious hikers should take into account individual needs. For example, some hikers’ boots have soles specifically made for rapid ascents and descents. If you are searching for the best performing boots, you can check out our article about Danner hiking boots.
The best outdoor footwear provides ample padding, insulation, and support. Moistures wicking liners keep feet dry and comfortable. Waterproof, breathable membranes help prevent water intrusion. Insulated booties provide warmth during cold weather hikes. Midsole cushions absorb impact and reduce foot fatigue. High quality winter boots feature traction outsole patterns designed for rugged conditions.
Your hiking preferences will affect which of these factors are most important to you. Also, high-tech materials tend to be expensive.
It’s always good to choose something that fits well, but especially so if you’re buying shoes for wide feet. Historically people with wide feet were forced to buy a shoe that was one size too big because the heel would not hold securely. As a result, they’d get painful blisters.
Luckily, there are plenty of properly fitted solutions now available. However there is no universally used size for what constitutes a “wide” fit, so one brand’s wide walking shoe might be different than another.
Best hiking boots for wide feet
Why It Made The Cut
Merrell has a good track record when it comes to sizing, and the premium quality materials and technologies they use to create their boots makes them an excellent choice for all-terrain hiking.
- Materials: Synthetic leather and mesh
- Size Range: 6.5 to 14 with half sizes
- Weight (each): 18 ounces
- No breaking in required
- Gore-Tex waterproof membrane
- High traction Vibram sole
- Unusual boot heel (see below)
- Occasional manufacturing faults
Moab stands for “Mother of All Boots,” which is a pretty bold statement. Merrell backs that statement up by offering innovative features, high quality material, and components from the leading experts in the industry.
Thanks to a synthetic upper and lining, this shoe is comfortable from day one. A padded collar and tongue provide a secure fit, keeping dirt out. There is an EVA midsole providing cushioning and absorbing shock, and a nylon shank resisting twists and turns. It also helps protect the bottom of your feet from painful impact.
The synthetic sole is made from Italian specialists Vibram. Lug soles are not particularly deep, but are extremely effective on smooth surfaces, and also work well on muddy terrain. They provide excellent grip on any type of ground, and are easy to get used to. Some people do feel a little strange at first, but quickly adapt to them.
The Merrell Moebius 2 Mid GTX is a highly recommended hiking shoe due to its versatility and affordability. However, occasional manufacturing defects have been noted, but none that we’ve seen would indicate a consistent issue.
Why It Made The Cut
The KEEN Women’s Targhee II isn’t just a small men’s boot; it has been specially developed to fit a wider female foot. It is tough, supportive, and very comfortable.
- Materials: Real leather and mesh
- Size Range: 5 to 11, with half sizes
- Weight (each): 15 ounces
- Female-focused design
- Excellent foot support and comfort
- Light and maneuverable
- Modest ankle height
- Not the most durable
KEEN is one among a very small number of brands that offer shoes exclusively for women. They do not come in a wide range of sizes, but instead utilize a ‘wider’ style of shoe. The KEEN Women‘s Targhee II Mid Hike is an example of such a shoe. It provides ample room for the feet without letting them slip about. However, KEEN recommends selecting a size larger than your usual shoe.
The upper is made of leather, which is very durable but needs a few months to get soft. They’re not uncomfortable during this time, but they do start to soften up after a while. Small mesh panels allow air circulation, although under consistent heavy use this becomes the first area to show signs of wear. The KEEN Men’s Targhee II features a Torsion Stabilization Flank and a Hee Lock to help maintain your feet position in tough terrain.
The upper material is made of durable synthetic suede and mesh fabric. A moisture-wicking lining keeps your feet dry and comfortable. The shoe features a padded collar around the ankle for added protection and support. Inside, the shoe utilizes an antimicrobial treatment to keep odors under control. A dual density foam sockliner absorbs impact and adds cushioning. The outsole is designed for traction and durability.
The composite sole is non-marker, and has multi-directional lug patterns for all-terraitory traction. The sole extends upward around the toe of the Keen women’s Targhee 2, which provides good foot protection.
Why It Made The Cut
The Columbia Men‘s Newton Ridge Plus II hiking boot is water resistant, light weight, and has a high-grade sole, all for an affordable price.
- Materials: Leather, suede, and mesh
- Size Range: 7 to 16, half sizes through 11.5
- Weight (each): 18 ounces
- Hiking or casual wear
- Good all-terrain traction
- Great value
- Modest ankle support
- Not for heavy-duty use
The Columbia Men‘s Newton Ridge Plus II hiking boots may not be the toughest pair out there, but they’re certainly not just another cheap pair of hiking boots that will break down after a few miles.
The upper is made of leather and synthetic materials, including nylon mesh lining, rubber sole, and an EVA midsole. The use of suedes results in a lightweight, flexible shoe that provides excellent traction and comfort. The use of mesh lining allows for ventilation and breathability, while the rubber sole ensures durability and traction. The EVA midsole adds cushioning and shock absorption.
The insoles of the Columbia Newton Ridge plus II are fairly ordinary, and are not removable. They provide good cushioning.
Columbia’s new Omni-Grip composite material provides surprisingly good traction on wet and slick floors. It covers the entire foot including the toes and heels, providing extra impact protection. If you want a hiking boot for casual use, the Columbia Newton Ridge plus II is available in 12 different colors.
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If you’re looking for a bargain but want the safety of a trusted name, Timberland shoes are a good choice. Timberland is probably better known for its fashionable footwear. But its hiking shoes are more than adequate for any day out on the trail. And they look great too.
The Chocoroa is an all-leathered hiking shoe with two different types of waterproofing: the 100% waterproof leather outer, and a proprietary Timberdry lining.
Most of our customer reviews cite the Chocura’s comfort and quality as its greatest strengths. It has been praised for its comfortable fit and high quality materials.
Q:How much do hiking boots for wide feet cost?
Hiking boots for men who walk on rough terrain should be in the same cost range as regular shoes. This will depend on size, material, and quality. Cheap hiking boots rarely last longer than one season. Our best choices start under $100 and go up to about $300.
Q: Should hiking boots be a half size bigger?
If you’re going to hike in boots, they need to be properly fitted so that they don’t pinch your feet. They shouldn’t be too tight, though; if they are, they’ll restrict movement and prevent you from feeling comfortable.
Q: How much toe room should you have in hiking boots?
There isn’t any specific formula or measurement for the number of inches of toe room you should be able to fit into your shoes. Most experts say you should have just a little “wiggle room.” If you can’t wiggle your toes at all, then your shoes will soon become uncomfortable.
Q: How do you know if your hiking boots aren’t wide enough?
Your walking shoes aren’t wide enough if the shoe fits tightly around the tops or sides of your feet, and your big toe is squished against the next one. But too loose shoes can also rub and cause blistered feet, so proper fit is essential. It’s a good idea not to put on your new shoes until after you’ve warmed them up, because they’ll expand slightly once they’re hot. And make sure you choose the right kind of sock for your feet.
Q: Do hiking boots stretch?
Good hiking shoes don’t usually stretch out, but natural materials may “break in” and become more comfortable after several miles. Synthetic materials and mesh tend to be less flexible than natural materials. Memory foams may compress slightly.
Wide footed people should be very careful about choosing hiking boots, because buying boots in a larger size to accomodate for wider than normal foot sizes may not fit properly and could lead to blisters and other issues. When ordering boots, test them out by wearing them with hiking socks after they’ve been worn throughout the day, when your foot will be at its widest.