Made of lightweight materials. They don't have much top-of-the-foot coverage so they're mostly suitable for well-maintained trails and summer hikes. Also useful for crossing rivers and streams. They come in open and closed-toe designs. See the best hiking sandals.
The low-cut equivalent of hiking boots. Comfort is paramount in the creation of these shoes so they often have flexible materials. Generally used for day hikes. See hiking shoes.
Mid to high-cut models designed for more aggressive hikes and backpacking. See hiking boots.
Specialized footwear. Often insulated and used in technical routes, ice climbing or expeditions. See mountaineering boots.
Good to know
For hikes that won't last for more than a day, go with hiking sandals or hiking shoes. Tackling trails with greater challenges will require hiking boots or mountaineering boots.
For multi-day trips with a heavy pack. Manufacturers emphasize durability and support in the creation of backpacking boots. See backpacking boots
Designed for users who want to cover a greater distance by going fast, usually with a light pack. See speed hiking shoes.
Boots that grant insulation to the user during hikes. See winter hiking boots.
Mainly sandals. Aside from hiking they can be used for other purposes such as water activities. See multi-sport hiking sandals.
Good to know
Casual hikers can choose day hiking footwear or multi-sport sandals. More info here.
Shoes with a cuff that goes below the ankle. See low-cut hiking shoes.
Good to know
Generally, for trails that are easy to tackle, go with low-cut shoes. Go mid to high if there are more trail obstacles.
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95 / 100 based on 2 expert reviews
The waterproof and insulated Versa Boots were a life-saver, keeping my feet warm and dry as we made our away around town, trudging through wet snow.
I’ve been able to enjoy cozy warmth in these weatherproof boots everywhere I’ve taken them.
Updates to The North Face Thermoball Versa
- The North Face Thermoball Versa has components that make hiking through wet snow more bearable. It comes with rubberized hardware to grant durability. It also features a waterproof, full-grain leather upper for protection against the elements. Warmth is delivered by two Primaloft components, one in the collar and another in the vamp.
- The injection-molded sole is responsible for cushioning and traction. Underneath this unit are temperature-sensitive lugs called IcePick.
The North Face Thermoball Versa size and fit
A mid-cut winter hiking boot for men is The North Face Thermoball Versa. It reasonably runs true to size. It is offered in standard width and lengths. Its closure is a lace-up type which grants a snug fit.
The proprietary IcePick lugs harden as the temperature decreases. This set of components work with the EVA outsole to deliver traction when tackling slippery and icy ground. The front tip of the unit forms a bumper that shields the toes during accidental knocks. There are chevron patterns at the front and rear to aid during uphill and downhill maneuvers.
The EVA midsole provides ample cushioning. Sitting atop this unit is an OrthoLite Rebound footbed that offers long-term cushioning.
The North Face Thermoball Versa features a full-grain leather upper. The material has a waterproof construction to prevent wet elements from entering the boot.
What keeps the users warm during cold-weather hikes are PrimaLoft ThermoBall synthetic insulation and 100 g PrimaLoft Silver Insulation Eco, placed in the collar and vamp (the front part of the upper), respectively. Thermoball works by trapping heat inside tiny air pockets to keep the warmth. On the other hand, PrimaLoft Silver Insulation Eco delivers instant warmth in a lightweight package, ultimately granting comfort to the user in wet conditions.
The front closure consists of a lace keeper on the tongue, combination eyelets (which includes grommets and hooks) and a flat synthetic lace. A pull tab at the back helps quicken on and off.
- Thermoball is an insulation technology co-developed by The North Face and Primaloft.