Q:

Which mid-weight women’s hiking boots are best for dayhikes?

I hope you can settle a disagreement between my wife and me. We’re going on a five-day trek to Machu Picchu along the Cino Salcantay carrying day packs only. My wife has a pair of 10-year-old Vasque boots that she insists are adequate but don't look very substantial to me. Any suggestion as to what boots she should be wearing on this hike? David Palm City, Florida

Mar 3, 2008
Outside
Outside Magazine
Vasque Ion XCR Mid-Hikers

Ion XCR Mid-Hikers

A:

Oh, right, like your wife will listen to me and not you? I mean, if she likes them, then why not? You’re not carrying a lot, and you’re not going too far…about 20 miles, right? They should get her there.

That said, she might be happier with a newer generation of boot that fits better, offers more comfort, and has better water-proofness. She would probably like a pair of Timberland Cadion Mid GTX boots ($140; timberland.com), for instance. They’re made on a women’s last for a good fit, for one thing. For another, they use Gore-Tex in a liner booty to keep water out and have Schoeller fabric in the uppers for breathability. Very supportive, but comfortable.

Another really great boot is the Scarpa Mustang ($175; scarpa.com). It’s a bit heftier than the Timberland, but still very comfortable. And it has a Gore-Tex liner. It’s available in a women-specific model.

Lastly, the Vasque Ion XCR Mid-Hikers ($125; vasque.com) have the comfort of a running shoe in a decent trail boot, one that has good toe protection, a Gore-Tex liner, and well-cushioned midsoles. They can go right out of the box with no break-in needed.

So maybe you should leave this page up on her computer and hope she takes the hint. And send us a picture of your wife on the hike!

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