Walking and Hillwalking is one of the UK most popular activities. There a unlimited amounts of walking trails , tracks ,coastal walks and special way marked rights of way . In England and Wales there are many walks that allows the walker ramble unhindered.In Scotland there is a tradition of access to most areas unless there is some Grouse shooting going on.Walking is a generic term and describes all forms of walking such as a walk down the road ,around the block or serious mountain walking in Scotland.
Hiking can be described walking as rambling and trekking.Mostly hill walking describes walking in hilly or mountain areas. Sometimes a bit of scrambling can be thrown into the mix.
Hillwalking or hiking boots are designed for protecting the feet with good quality soles for rough and rough ground.
Walking boots are very important if you plan to take up walking as it will allow you to walk good distances without injury. I have seen people go up hills in shoes with heels- they do not get very far. Hiking boots are designed to give comfort and in some case keep out the water.
The best boots will give protection to the ankles and feet over hard ground and make the walk a pleasant experience. Hiking boots come with removable insoles so you can change this. We recommend a Sorbothane insole which will last at least 15 years and cushion the heels from shock. A good fit for boot is important and usually a finger width at the heel will allow for expansion.It should not be too loose or too tight as this will result in blisters and you days walk will be over.It is also important to wear really good socks ( do not scrimp on the socks,they play a vital role in keeping your feet in good condition).
The military sometimes use a liner sock below the walking sock.This is a matter for you to decide and you can experiment with liner socks. It is thought that the liner sock helps prevent blisters as the sock moves rather than your skin.
Walking shoes are for dry days and easy paths but not so popular now as the hillwalking boots are fashionable and can be used for light and heavy duty walks. See our lowa Mountain boots.
Are you going up mountains in the winter or summer walks along the beach. There are different boots for different types of boots.It is pointless buying a mountain boot for beach walking or a light walking shoe the Alps. Ask for advice if you are not sure.
•Upper-The uppers are to protect the foot and should be a good fit.Most are water repellent and breathable and this function will allow moisture to escape from the boots keeping the feet dry and in good condition.
•Soles-Hiking boots have good groves soles for good traction on most surfaces.
•Soles absorb shocks and sharp stones from causing pain.
•Tongues-sometimes bellow tongues this is under the lacing system and keeps out dirt and water. It also keeps the laces from biting into the top of the foot.
•Linings-Linings and padded collars give warmth and comfort the the foot.
•Insoles-Insoles are shaped and give a good walking position and absorb shock. The insoles can be removed for cleaning or replacing.
•Shanks-This is plate either metal or plastic to give the boots stiffness.