Are Cowboy Boots Good For Hiking

Are Cowboy Boots Good For Hiking? (Find Out)

Have you been thinking of going on a hike with a pair of cowboy boots on? Are you confused whether this would be a good idea and would like to check other better options for a comfortable hike? Let us discuss this issue in detail.

Are Cowboy Boots Good for Hiking?

Well, a professional or avid hiker would not opt for cowboy boots for a long-distance walk.

Cowboy boots can be worn for many physical activities such as horse riding, working on a farm, or construction. They are also very stylish and can be used for fashion purposes. It is believed that cowboy boots can be versatile when it comes to usage but when hiking, they are alright if worn for short walks on easy terrains. However, they are not suitable for rough terrains and steep, slippery hikes.

Few Things To Keep In Mind When Hiking With Cowboy Boots:

  • You need to have the proper size of a cowboy boot in order to be able to move freely when hiking. Choose one that is neither too loose nor too tight for your instep.
  • You need to break in your cowboy boots before hiking in them for optimal flexibility and comfort. Once you’ve verified that they’re a perfect fit, you’re ready to tackle those lengthy drives.
  • Socks with strong arch and heel support and additional cushioning should be worn at all times.
  • When trekking in steep terrain, you’ll need hiking boots with stronger ankle support, not cowboy boots.

Why Cowboy Boots Are Not Good for Hiking

The standard design of traditional cowboy boots does not allow the comfort and protection required during hiking. The toe part is too pointy curbing the toe space. With high heels and a smooth leather insole, your comfort and protection are compromised.

You won’t want to wear them too long due to the sheer unpleasantness.

Cowboy Boots Have Poor Breathability

The breathability factor is also limited as these boots tend to collect more moisture. Additionally, they give out bad odor if not air regularly, this is highly unpleasant during hiking.

You surely don’t want to be the one in the group with stinky feet! So, cowboy boots may not be the best option for hiking.

Cowboy Boots Can Invite Pain and Sores

High heels can cause inflammation in the ligaments on the base of your toe and thicken the nerve tissues between your toes. These boots are likely to tighten your heel cords and increase the weight load onto your forefoot. If you are suffering from a flat foot, wearing boots can worsen the pain.

As a result, cowboy boots are not an ideal companion for your hikes. You will fare much better with a good pair of hiking shoes.

Cowboy Boots May Lead to Discomfort and Blisters

Cowboy boots come without laces which can cause the heel to slip and develop painful blisters. In addition, if you decide to wear a smaller size the toes will be crammed in the shoes resulting in major discomfort.

What You Need for a Good Hike

For a comfortable and injury-free hike, you have to ensure that your feet are well supported by the pair of shoes you are wearing. Your shoes should hold you securely and at the same be able to protect you from the toughest of terrains. They should be able to provide maximum grip on any kind of surface. Although people use cowboy boots in lots of parts of the world for work purposes, it is not the recommended choice of shoes for hiking.

If you are on a serious hiking mission and want yourself and your shoes to not wear out during the hike, make sure you take time to understand the factors that would make the best pair for your feet. Take your time while investing in one.

Personal Experiences Are Against Cowboy Boots

Many people have used cowboy boots for hikes but not on terrains that are too rugged or wet. You could still have a look at some of the cowboy boots that are designed for hikes nowadays, although it is not highly recommended. These specially designed cowboy boots for hiking come with anti-slip rubber outsoles for traction, broader toe space than a pointy one to make room for your toes, and comfortable arch support. Some hikers go for western work boots or cowboy work boots as they have low heels and are lightweight and waterproof.

If you really do need to use cowboy boots for hiking, here are a few points that would help you pick a decent pair.

  1. Make sure your insoles are well-cushioned for comfortable walking mile after mile.
  2. It is advised your boots have rubber soles for durability and a good grip for a safer hike.
  3. Do not use boots with high heels as they will only hinder your walk on rough surfaces and tire you out more easily.
  4. Your boots should be round-toed or flat-toed and not pointy to have enough toe room.

Hikers who usually prefer boots for hiking use other boots such as military boots or tactical boots that are specifically designed for hiking than using cowboy boots for the same. Hiking does not always take place on flat normal roads it involves slippery and dangerous road trails quite often. This means that your gear should be well equipped to meet those circumstances.

Why Cowboy Boots Are Not Suitable for Hiking

Wearing boots for a prolonged period of time is not healthy for your feet in general. They can never replace a good pair of hiking shoes no matter how good your boots are.

It is very difficult and pointless trying to customize a pair of cowboy boots to meet hiking requirements because of their stiff and strong texture. Hence if you do wish to go for long walks or hikes you might want to choose a pair that is actually designed particularly for that purpose. It will provide your feet with technical protection and support for a comfortable walk.

Moreover, injuries and damages to the body and especially the feet can be avoided by not wearing cowboy boots during a walk.

Provided below are a few better suggestions for you to take a look at if you are looking for the right pair of shoes for hiking and dropping the idea of wearing cowboy boots.

Our Top 3 Recommendations To Use Instead Of Cowboy Boots:

1. Merrell MOAB 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots

These hiking boots are highly popular amongst hikers. It has millions of buyers worldwide due to some of its specialized and effective features suitable for hiking. Additionally, the boots are lightweight and don’t become a burden when you hike for hours.

Its durable leather made with Vibram traction and supportive footbed make hiking much more comfortable.

M Select DRY technology allows moisture to escape by sealing water out and keeping your feet dry longer. A closed-cell foam tongue keeps moisture and debris from sticking to your feet. Also, it comes with a protective rubber toe cap to protect your toes from injuries, blisters, and abrasion.

The footbed is contoured with Blended EVA for additional arch and zonal heel support. It is also Merrell air-cushioned to absorb shock and for added stability. So, you can walk for miles at an end without feeling any pressure or pain in your feet or ankle.

It has 5mm lug depth and weighs 2lbs making it lightweight.

These boots are excellent for the price and have proven durability. It can be used regularly without easy wear and tear and works well on all kinds of trails and weather conditions.

Moreover, they come with a breathable mesh lining that keeps your feet fresh and well-ventilated. You don’t have to deal with sweaty feet or shoes when you end your hike in the evening.

You can surely give the boots consideration for all your light hiking needs.


  • Affordable
  • Good fit
  • Adequate ventilation


  • Not suitable for technical terrains
  • Not for heavy loads

Where To Purchase Merrell MOAB 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots?

You can purchase the Merrell MOAB 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots here on Amazon.

2. La Sportiva Spire GTX Hiking Shoes

The Spire GTX can tackle light-duty hiking around trails and forests. It is also stylish and comes with a mid-cut design to look cool and stay comfortable.

Additionally, the boot is ideal to manage medium to rugged terrain and supports your hiking passion to the fullest.

Best of all, your feet will not get sweaty and won’t stink when you open the socks. Spire GTX packs the Gore-Tex® Surround™ ventilation system to keep your feet airy and dry. Moreover, the shoe has aeration channels that improve airflow and comfort.

In addition, you also have the Nano Cell 2.0 technology to improve breathability. Therefore, you can trek all day long without having soggy socks constantly bothering your mood.

Spire GTX also comes with robust abrasion-resistant mesh outer construction to protect your toes. You don’t have to worry about hurting your toes or feet even if you walk on difficult terrains.

Moreover, you can expect world-class grip and traction, thanks to a unique trek and braking system. You will never slip or fall even if you tread on moss, water, or snow.

The boots hold the ground and don’t let go, no matter what.


  • Good water resistance
  • Excellent support
  • Robust midsole


  • Not good for rough terrains
  • Lace is not sturdy

Where To Purchase La Sportiva Spire GTX Hiking Shoes?

You can purchase the La Sportiva Spire GTX Hiking Shoes here on Amazon.

3. Salomon X Ultra Mid 4 GTX Hiking Boots

Salomon X Ultra Mid GTX boots are made for hiking around the trails. The mid-cut shoes can handle a range of terrains with decent uphill and downhill lands. Additionally, the Contagrip® MA outsole bites the earth like a shark and doesn’t let go even if it’s slippery or wet.

You can even handle snow and descents with full confidence. The grip is also multidirectional and helps you maintain balance even on dirt, mud, and loose soil. So, you can hike with complete peace of mind without thinking about what’s beneath your feet.

Best of all, the boots draw inspiration from Salomon’s trail-running collection. It is quite lightweight and helps you stay agile on the trails. You can even take on uneven terrains and not feel a thing on your feet.

Therefore, tiredness also stays away and you can hike comfortably for hours.

Moreover, the pair of shoes comes with ADV-C chassis that aligns with your out feet for super stability. However, the construction still lets you enjoy high mobility and wander wherever you want in the wild.

In addition, the higher cut at the back supports your ankle all throughout your hike for less stress.

Moreover, the boots are waterproof and you can hike happily in rain and snow. The specially-designed laces also ensure the shoes fit you comfortably and cozily.

You can put your faith in Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid GTX no matter the trail you are walking on.


  • Lightweight
  • Keeps you stable
  • Outer body waterproofing


  • Quicklaces may be complex to tie
  • Not suitable for narrow foot

Where To Purchase Salomon X Ultra Mid 4 GTX Hiking Boots?

You can purchase the Salomon X Ultra Mid 4 GTX Hiking Boots here on Amazon.

Conclusion: Final Thoughts!

Cowboy boots are not meant for hiking. They are mostly for arid environments without the things you want in a good pair of hiking shoes.

For example, cowboy boots don’t provide enough support to hike comfortably. Additionally, your feet may get wet from rain or moisture and cause more discomfort.

Moreover, your feet arch and ankle don’t have adequate reinforcements to help you hike longer. Therefore, choose a good hiking shoe and consider the options we reviewed.

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