6 best Lowa hiking shoes

Based on reviews from 6 experts and 211 users. Learn how our rankings work or see our guide to Lowa hiking shoes. Updated Jan 2019.

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What makes your Lowa hiking shoes a Lowa? Well, it has a Pfiff.

Back in the 60s, this is how the popular footwear brand advertised their footwear. A Pfiff is described as a flair, zing, or special something that made the brand’s products extra special. These days though, that special thing is not just about the flair but more importantly about Lowa’s Simply More Philosophy which drives each aspect of design and production and serves as a catalyst for innovations.

One of the highlights of this philosophy is Lowa’s efforts to keep its surroundings as clean and pure as possible. These efforts are translated into their €500,000 investment to keep the air clean, and the leaves, meadow, and stream free of chemicals. 

Founded by Lorenz Wagner in the Bavarian Village of Jetzendorf near Munich, Germany in 1923, Lowa has withstood the tests of time. Through continuous innovation efforts, with its philosophy still at the heart of operations, the brand rose to prominence and is considered among the most trusted in the outdoor footwear industry. It is offering hiking boots, mountaineering boots, backpacking boots, and special shoes for tactical operations.

Why people love Lowa

best Lowa hiking shoes

Best Lowa hiking shoes - August 2018

The best Lowa hiking shoes are praised for their overall feel, support, and performance. Models like the Sesto GTX Lo and Arco GTX Lo are getting rave reviews from hikers. Many of them agree that these Lowa hiking shoes are worth the price they paid with all of the benefits they are enjoying.

Benefits of wearing Lowa hiking shoes

Lowa, with over 90 years of experience, has sold millions of outdoor footwear pairs. The brand credits its success on its efforts to innovate. Not only is it a leader in German-speaking countries, but it also has exported its products to the North American, Asian, and Eastern European markets. Fans of Lowa hiking shoes and boots in these regions have many good things to say, but generally, here are the reasons why they give the brand a perfect grade:

Comfort and fit

There are but only a few people who are able to find pairs of hikers that fit like a glove. To fans, their Lowa hiking shoes are all about fit and comfort that are praiseworthy. The secret is found in the materials used and the technologies incorporated in the true-to-size models.

Naturally, leather is one of the preferred upper materials used for most Lowa hiking boots, but the brand does not shy away from combining it with fabric to provide wearers with added comfort. Also worth noting, the low-cut design adds freedom during hikes. Some shoes like the Sesto GTX Lo have added comfort features like the soft padding.   

Durability

For many hikers, the price is not a problem if their footwear can keep up with their activities and last for years. As a brand trusted for many decades, wearers of Lowa hiking shoes are more confident that they will make the most out of their pairs. To prevent damages that cut the shoes’ lifespan short, features like the TPU toe heel abrasion guards were added.

The brand also uses construction methods like the board-lasted-cemented sole used on the Arco GTX Lo. Board-lasted footwear is stiffer and comes with a firm midsole, a good choice for tackling a challenging environment like hiking trails.

Support

Owners of Lowa hiking shoes are raving about the support they are afforded. With technologies like the MONOWRAP frame technology and DuraPU midsole, not only are the boots lighter, they are also more supportive.

Traction

Hiking is no easy activity because even easy and moderate trails need footwear that will provide excellent grip on all surfaces. Lowa uses different types of patented outsoles that promise excellent traction so hiking won’t be as challenging.

Protection

The protective features of Lowa hiking shoes are meant to protect the wearer and the footwear itself. For instance, using Gore-Tex fabric keeps the feet from getting wet and suffer from athlete’s foot and other similar conditions, this also prevents water from damaging the shoes. The TPU toe and heel abrasion guards also protect the wearer against scree, rocks, and other things that can injure them.

Qualities of Lowa hiking shoes

Hikers made by Lowa do not just come out as perfectly as they are in an instant. Each model comes out impressive because it is actually a product of expert craftsmanship, dependable materials, and innovative technologies.

Materials used

One of the things that set high-quality footwear from mediocre ones is the material chosen by the maker. Definitely, Lowa hiking shoes are made with the finest materials available like the following:

  • Split grain leather. Also commonly known as suede, it comes from the bottom layer of the animal’s thick hide. This leather type has high abrasion and water resistance properties which makes it a perfect material for Lowa hiking shoes. Lowa also mixed it with fabric in some models to give comfort and more breathability.
  • TPU toe and heel abrasion guards. TPU or thermoplastic polyurethane is popularly used in footwear manufacturing because of its elasticity, transparency, and oil, grease, and abrasion resistance properties. TPU toe and heel abrasion guards used on models like the Arco GTX Lo reinforces and protects the wearer’s feet from things that could cause injuries.
  • Fabric loops and open hook lacing system. The closure features of Lowa hiking shoes also greatly affect the performance of the footwear. For this activity, Lowa uses fabric loops and open hooks for a secure lockdown.
  • Waterproof lining. Waterproofing is one of the features that outdoor junkies want in their Lowa hiking shoes. Acknowledging this demand from the market, Lowa incorporated several models with a Gore-Tex waterproof lining.
  • Climate Control Footbed. The footwear should be able to provide comfort to the wearer throughout the hike. This footbed works with the moisture management system to keep the wearer dry and protects against blisters and pressure points.
  • Dual Density DuraPU. Enough footwear cushioning is a necessity for every hiker. Many Lowa hiking shoes come with cushioning features like the Dual Density DuraPU midsole. This feature doesn’t just give comfort, this also helps support the wearer throughout the hike.
  • Lowa-patented soles. The best pair of Lowa hiking shoes must provide wearers with excellent grip on different surfaces. To offer the best traction, Lowa uses patented sole units for some models in its hiking line.

Technologies

In its almost hundred years of existence, Lowa understands that it is of utmost importance to keep up with the times. For Lowa hiking shoes to come out as functional as they are, the shoemaker sees to it that their expert craftsmanship is coupled with the right technologies. Here are some techs that a few pairs have:

  • Gore-Tex. Lowa uses Gore-Tex in waterproofing its products. This waterproof and breathable fabric membrane is popularly used in the outdoor industry because of its ability to repel liquid while allowing water vapor to pass through.
  • DuraPU. Shock absorption is one of the most important things to look for in outdoor footwear. Some Lowa hiking shoes come with the Dual Density DuraPU midsole which cushions the underfoot.
  • MONOWRAP support frame. Lightweight footwear helps a lot of hikers in tackling longer trails. Making some Lowa hiking shoes lighter and more comfortable is the the MONOWRAP support frame together with the injected DuraPU and ATC footbed. The mentioned components provide wearers with a cushioned and supportive footwear.
  • Lowa Elika sole. The Lowa Elika is one of the patented sole technologies used in some of the brand’s The tread aids in the shoe’s support performance. This soft sole rubber helps in cushioning and comfort. It also has a certain stud setup that facilitates ideal roll-off motion.
  • Lowa Multicross Evo. The best Lowa hiking shoes also need to provide excellent grip on the trail. The Multicross Evo has a multifunctional tread profile that gives a good grip on a variety of terrain. There is a special tread design at the toe and heel to improve traction on uphills and downhills.

Price

To everyone who loves Lowa, the price is never a question. Lowa hiking shoes are not the cheapest in the market. In fact, a pair could cost from $150 to $250. This premium price range still does not discourage Lowa fans as the quality and performance of the footwear are well worth the money spent.

Availability

The made-in-Germany Lowa hiking shoes and other outdoor footwear are available in different locations around the world. In some countries, all of the products carried in the region are available for everyone while there are also some stores in a few countries that cater only to the Task Force.

Fans can check the offerings of Lowa stores and distributors in Austria, Australia, Bahrain, Benelux Countries, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic and Slovakia, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland and Estonia, France, Georgia, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Iran, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Malaysia, Malta, Mongolia, Nepal, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, and Switzerland.

Lowa hiking shoes - frequently asked questions

Are Lowa hiking shoes true to size?

Lowa hiking shoes run true to size, but there are wearers who feel that they are too tight for them. Check if the footwear comes in a size that fits you by referring to the company’s size guide in the UK, EU and US equivalent.

Is there a need to break-in Lowa hiking shoes?

If you are looking forward to using your new pair of Lowa hiking shoes for an anticipated hike, make sure that you at least break them in. While they are true to size and have comfort features, there are still some owners who spent a few days breaking in their footwear before a major hike.

Are Lowa hiking shoes resolable?

Resoling is the process of providing a shoe or boot with a new sole. While it seems simple, not all footwear is resolable. In the case of Lowa hiking shoes, while some models can’t be resoled, there are also a few models that meet the construction requirements like the Arco GTX Lo which is made with a cemented sole.

Resoling is a good option if you are not yet ready to give up your favorite Lowa pair but understand that this will only work for footwear with still good uppers. Also realize that the company will charge an additional fee for resoling.

How long are Lowa hiking shoes going to last?

Granted that the price of a pair of Lowa hiking shoes is not pocket-friendly, the anxiety over its length of service will hover about. First up, no matter how well-known a shoe manufacturer is for producing high-quality footwear, they could never really give a set number of years of service for each model. Second, the length of service of a pair of Lowas depends greatly on how much love and care it gets from its owner. If you want your shoes to last, make sure to take good care of it and use it only for the intended purpose.

How do I take care of my Lowa hiking shoes?

Hiking is a fun adventure that also entails walking over muddy and wet trails. This means your Lowa hiking shoes will be tortured. But, there is no reason to worry because they are made of high-quality materials and are made to overcome the natural challenges encountered on the trail. What matters though is what you do after each trip.

Most outdoor shoes are made of leather though some may come with a fabric mix. Leather needs tender love and care to maintain its excellent protective properties. In cleaning it, remember to follow these simple rules:

  1. Remove the insoles and laces of your footwear. Let the insole breathe and dry out since this also absorbs moisture.
  2. Use a leather brush or soft brush to remove mud and other dirt from the footwear. Running lukewarm water should be enough to get rid of the dirt.
  3. Air dry the shoes before storing in a cool and dry place.
  4. If and when the care instruction specified it, use waterproofing or conditioning products to protect the shoes.

Are Lowa hiking shoes built on women-specific lasts?

Lowa understands that men and women are different. Thus, they also use lasts specifically for each gender. Generally, women’s lasts are narrower in the ball of the foot, slimmer in the heel, and have a higher instep.

What makes Lowa sole technology different?

Lowa sees that polyurethane (PU) is a great shock absorber and a material that lasts longer than EVA. With a combination of PU midsole and a Lowa patented unit or Vibram sole, wearers are treated to a high-performing, durable, and comfortable sole unit.

What is the advantage of wearing low-cut Lowa hiking shoes over hiking boots?

Aside from the major price difference, a lot of sides have their opinions as to whether shoes or boots are better. For boot lovers, the extra height is appreciated since this protects them from cuts, grazes, and bruises that are commonly experienced. Mid-cut hiking boots and high-cut hiking boots are said to offer better ankle support to wearers, too.

Those who love their low-cut hiking shoes like them better because they don’t restrain the ankles. Their cuff height is good enough for a day hike. Others praise the versatility of low-cut shoes which they even wear for other activities.

Are Lowa hiking shoes covered by warranty?

Every Lowa hiking shoe goes through a series of quality checks at the factory level. However, there may be instances when the quality of the finished products are not as satisfactory. In case you notice that there are factory defects to your newly or recently-purchased footwear, you can have these repaired or replaced within a period of 12 months upon purchase.

The warranty is however not applicable for wear and tear or damages due to abuse, negligence, improper repairs, alterations, modifications, and inappropriate use. However, in general, Lowa can repair these at a cost. 

7 best Lowa hiking shoes

  1. Lowa Renegade GTX Mid
  2. Lowa Arco GTX Lo
  3. Lowa Sesto GTX Lo
  4. Lowa Renegade GTX Lo
  5. Lowa Strato Evo LL Lo
  6. Lowa Locarno GTX Lo
  7. Lowa Phoenix Mesh Lo
This shoe has recently been added to RunRepeat. There are still not enough reviews for us to assign it a CoreScore.
CoreScore
A score from 1 to 100 that summarizes opinions from users and experts. The average CoreScore is 78. More...