How Much Toe Room Do You Need in Hiking Boots
How much toe room do you need in hiking boots? This is the number one question a lot of hikers disregard whenever they purchase a pair of hiking boots.
Well, most of them think that as long as the hiking boots fit them, they are good enough to be worn even during a long hike. However, even if the pair of hiking boots feels good when you first tried it, this doesn’t mean it will stay that way once you use it for hiking.
By neglecting how much toe room you need for hiking boots, you are setting your feet up for injuries, swelling, and discomfort. This is not something that any hiker wants to gamble on because any type of issues in your feet can last for weeks or months. For injuries, they might even become permanent, limiting you from doing other physical and outdoor activities.
As such, before you decide to buy your own pair of hiking boots, you should know how much toe room you need and some other important tips when searching for hiking boots.
How Much Toe Room Do You Need in Hiking Boots?
There is no exact measurement for the toe room you would need for hiking boots. Basically, it depends on your own comfort.
If you think that the shoes are comfortable to wear and your toe has enough space to move, then it is good enough. On that note, there are still a few things to do if you want to determine if the particular boots, which you are about to purchase, have enough toe room.
1. Bring Your Trail Socks
Regular socks are entirely different with trail socks, and if you try wearing your boots without any socks, you will surely make a mistake. You are going to wear your socks while hiking, so you need to make sure that you wear them as well when you are looking for a pair of hiking boots.
The first thing that you have to do is to put on a pair of socks you would normally use while hiking, and then wear the hiking boots. Once you've worn the boots, try to move your toes and see if there is has enough room to move around.
You can also walk around the store and see if your toes are sliding in the front area of the boots. If your feet are not comfortable wearing a particular brand, look for another one.
2. Buy the Boots Before the Day Ends
Your feet get swollen at the end of the day because of all the activities that you did. It is naturally swollen, so it is the best time to try wearing hiking boots.
That is because when you are hiking, your feet will get swollen as well, and if your boots actually got tighter because of your swollen feet, then you will suffer more injuries if you keep walking.
Your foot can actually swell by almost half a size longer. Again, bring your socks with you and start fitting hiking boots.
3. Try the Toe-Tap Test
This is one of the most important things you need to do if you want to know if your boots have enough toe room. Once you have brought your thickest trail socks and your feet are already swollen, you should try the toe-tap test.
First, unlace the boots you are wearing and stand up. Tap your toe firmly to the ground behind the heel of the other foot. If you do this, the toe will reach as far as it can at the front part of the shoes, and it will slide down.
Reach down and put two fingers in the heel of the boot. You have to put the two fingers side by side, and they should fit comfortably behind the heel. If not, you need to get a bigger size. If space is too much, get a smaller size.
4. Try the Boots on a Slope
Most apparel stores will have a ramp available where you can try the boots that you want to buy. If you're going to check the toe room of your hiking boots, you should wear them and try to descend on the ramp. This will help you check how your hiking boots will work once the weight of your foot shifts forward.
Generally, it will depend on the trail where you are planning to hike. If you will opt for a path with a lot of steep descents, it is better if you can go a full size larger so that you can prevent injuries and bruises on your toe. If the trail is mostly flat or it has a lot of ascents, you can go for a half-size.
5. Push on the Front Part of the Hiking Boots
This is also one of the things that you can do to check if you have enough toe room. You can wear your hiking boots along with the thick trail socks and push down on the front part of the hiking boots.
Use two fingers to press down, and if your fingers went through the front part, it means the area in your toe is too loose. Always, make sure that your toe still has enough space to move around.
When shopping, it’s great that you are looking at the price and the other important features of the hiking boots, but you cannot ignore the sizing. Even if you managed to buy the best hiking boots, you have to make sure they would fit your feet properly, especially on the toe area.
So, how much toe room do you need in hiking boots? It will depend on several factors.
With that being said, if you know what to look for and you know how to check if the toe room is enough, then you won’t have any issues finding the right one. You cannot make a mistake here because this is an expensive investment and you cannot simply buy any kind of hiking boots just because it is comfortable to wear.