Looking for boots that can handle the conditions you’ll experience on Kilimanjaro. Knowing what to look for in a boot to suit your feet.
You’re doing a great thing by thoroughly researching your hiking boots – please read on as you need to find a pair early and wear them in before your trek!
Why you need boots, not shoes
All of the trekking routes up Kilimanjaro take you over rough and varied ground – hiking boots are definitely warranted.
Anatomy of hiking boots
Characteristics of good hiking boots
The upper boot Fit The soles
The upper boot
Fabric Weight Toe caps Insulation Ankle support
They’re tough, resilient and durable. They can withstand abrasive action much better than synthetic fibres. A good pair of leather hiking boots can last years, even decades (though you may need to replace the soles). They can be made waterproof by waxing them regularly. They’re warm in cold weather. With time they mould to your feet and become very comfortable. They tend to be more expensive than synthetic boots. They take a while to break in. The more waterproof you make them, the less breathable they become. They require more care and maintenance than synthetic boots. They’re heavier than synthetic boots.
They tend to be cheaper than leather boots (we all have a budget). They’re quicker to break in. They also require less maintenance. They’re very breathable, which helps in the prevention of blisters. They’re lightweight. They aren't waterproof. They’re not as tough and durable as leather boots. They’re not as warm as leather boots.
Water-resistant vs water-repellent vs waterproof
‘Water-resistant’ is not the same thing as ‘water-repellent’. And ‘waterproof’ is another thing altogether.
Choosing between leather and synthetic boots for Kilimanjaro
3. Toe caps
5. Ankle support
The very best ankle support
Wear your socks when choosing your boots
If you want to forget all your other troubles, wear too tight shoes.
The toe box