Your hike is only as good as your boots. But if you have wide feet, you might find your selection is somewhat…narrow. There’s good news, though. Many of today’s top hiking boot manufacturers are now producing boots in wide widths. What’s more, some manufacturers make medium-width boots with a wider fit. As a result, we wide-footers have more choices than ever. So, how do you choose the best hiking boots for wide feet?
If you are looking for our best hiking shoes, we have an article for that too!
- 1 FIRST, KNOW YOUR FEET
- 2 HOW TO TELL IF YOU HAVE WIDE FEET
- 3 A WIDE LAST VS. WIDE WIDTHS
- 4 HOW WE CHOSE THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET
- 5 product comparison table
- 6 THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET
- 6.1 THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET: MEN
- 6.2 MERRELL MOAB 2
- 6.3 TIMBERLAND CHOCURA
- 6.4 SALOMON X ULTRA 3 MID GTX WIDE WIDTH
- 6.5 SKECHERS MEN’S RELMONT PELMO
- 6.6 THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET: WOMEN
- 6.7 KEEN WOMEN’S TARGHEE 2
- 6.8 KEEN WOMEN’S GYPSUM 2 WIDE WIDTH
- 6.9 TIMBERLAND WHITE LEDGE HIKING BOOT
- 6.10 MERRELL MOAB 2
- 7 LACE UP AND GO!
FIRST, KNOW YOUR FEET
You may think you know your shoe size. But do you really?
Did you know, for instance, that adults’ feet can get wider as we age? It’s true.
Also, if you gain or lose weight, that, too, can affect the width of your feet.
And check this out. Strange but true: your feet are actually larger at the end of the day than they are when you get up in the morning.
This is because your feet swell — sometimes a little, and sometimes quite noticeably — from carrying you around all day. And guess what? It happens when you’re hiking, too. The last thing you want is hiking boots that pinch and constrict toward the end of a long hike.
For this reason, consider measuring your feet at the end of the day, especially when measuring for hiking boots.
Finally, when it comes to comfort, the width measurement is just as important as the length.
But you already knew that.
HOW DO YOU MEASURE YOUR FEET?
If you’re like most adults, it’s probably been a while since you’ve had your feet measured. And that means it’s time to do it again.
You could head to your favorite shoe store and ask them to give you an update. You could also do it yourself.
First, trace both feet onto separate pieces of paper. Compare them. Is one obviously larger than the other? If so, don’t worry. This is pretty common.
In fact, the larger foot is the one you want to measure. So take that larger tracing and measure the length from the tip of the longest toe to the heel. This is your length.
Now, measure the width at the widest part of the foot. This is your width.
After that, subtract 3/16 of an inch from each measurement to account for the width of your pen or pencil mark.
Finally, find your size on a sizing chart.
HOW TO TELL IF YOU HAVE WIDE FEET
So now you know your size. Great. But what about the width?
There’s a chart for that, too.
In your search, you may come across different notations for width.
Manufacturers often use these notations:
Sellers, on the other hand, often describe shoes as N (narrow), M (medium) and W (wide). You might also see these designations as part of the model number
TWO QUICK WAYS TO TELL IF YOUR SHOE IS THE RIGHT WIDTH
The first way, of course, is to ask if the shoe feels too tight or too loose. That’s pretty easy.
But even if your shoe doesn’t feel uncomfortable, it still might not be the right width for your foot. How can you tell?
Try this. Lace the boot up normally. Now, rock forward onto the ball of your foot. Your boot should crease at the widest part of your foot.
If it creases somewhere else, the width is wrong, and it may cause you problems out on the trail.
A WIDE LAST VS. WIDE WIDTHS
As more people hit the trail, manufacturers are producing models in a greater variety of widths. But what if you’re having trouble finding specific wide-width hiking boots?
Then you might be able to get away with a regular-width boot from a brand that runs wide.
Different manufacturers use slightly different lasts, and some of those lasts are wider than others.
What is a last? You might ask.
A last is the mold around which a shoe or boot is formed. And some are larger and wider than others. So, if you know which brands and models run wider than others, you may be able to find a comfortable fit with a medium-width hiking boot.
Of course the sizing can vary for different models within the same brand, so, when in doubt, try a boot on before buying it.
BRANDS THAT RUN WIDE
There are three brands that tend to run wider than others. They are:
These brands also make a number of their hiking boot models in wide widths.
HOW WE CHOSE THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET
First, we drew on our own experience as wide-footed hikers. Because some boots have definitely worked better for us than others. We also looked at reviews from experts. Finally, we considered consumer feedback.
For our review, we concentrated on mid-range hiking boots for all-purpose hiking. Backpacking boots and walking shoes are another story for another time.
product comparison table
THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET
So, which are the best hiking boots for wide feet? There are quite a few. And the great news is, you don’t have to bust your wallet to get them.
THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET: MEN
Guys — are you looking for a great wide-width hiker? Then don’t miss these.
MERRELL MOAB 2
No two ways about it, Merrell makes great shoes. But they got their start hand-making custom hiking boots. Backpacker Magazine once called them “the best hiking boots ever made.” Your mileage may vary, but we think that’s pretty close to the mark.
The Moab 2 GTX Mid is a mid-priced hiking boot. It’s made from synthetic leather, so if you’re looking for a good vegan hiking boot, this one might fit your bill. It also has a waterproof Gore-Tex lining, and a wraparound tongue to keep out debris.
As an aside, my wide-footed son trekked all over the far north of Scotland in these in rugged, muddy, squally conditions. They, and he came back in very good shape.
A few have cited durability issues, but overall, customers and reviewers seem to agree that this is one of the best hiking boots for wide feet you can find.
This model comes in both medium and wide widths.
If you’re looking for a bargain but also want the security of a trusted brand name, Timberland boots are a good way to go.
Timberland is probably best known for its fashion boots. However, its hiking boots are more than adequate for your everyday hiking needs. And they look great, besides.
The Chocorua is an all-leather hiking boot. It has two different kinds of moisture protection: the 100 percent waterproof leather outer, and the proprietary Timberdry inner layer.
A few customers have cited durability issues, particularly with the stitching. However, most customers agree that, in addition to being some of the best hiking boots for wide feet, the Chocura is great value for money.
This model comes in both regular and wide widths.
SALOMON X ULTRA 3 MID GTX WIDE WIDTH
If you’re like me, you’ve probably admired the sleek, sporty look of Salomon running shoes. You may also have noticed that those shoes tend to run narrow.
But Salomon also makes hiking boots. And, great news, they make those hiking boots in wide widths, too.
The Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX hiking boot combines the sharp look of Salomon running shoes with the support of a hiking boot. This is another all-synthetic boot, so if you’re looking for a non-leather option, this one’s a contender.
These boots are specifically designed for wide feet. On top of that, these boots come with Salomon’s two-year warranty.
Some customers reported issues with fit and weight. However, by and large, most were pleased with their purchases.
SKECHERS MEN’S RELMONT PELMO
Most people probably think of street shoes when they think of Skechers. But if you’re looking for a comfortable, lower-priced wide-width hiking boot, this one might be worth your time.
The Relmont Pelmo is a water-resistant hiking boot made from a combination of natural and synthetic leather. It comes in both regular and wide widths.
Our recommendation comes with a couple of caveats, however.
A number of customers reported discomfort stemming from the memory foam insole. Memory foam doesn’t make the most supportive hiking insole. Add to the fact that this model is water-resistant, rather than waterproof, and you may want to do a bit of modding before using these for more serious hiking.
But for the money, this is a decent wide-width light hiking boot.
THE BEST HIKING BOOTS FOR WIDE FEET: WOMEN
Are women’s feet really that different? Maybe, maybe not. But shoe sizing conventions are. Here are our picks for the best hiking boots for wide feet, women’s edition.
KEEN WOMEN’S TARGHEE 2
I’m going to come out and say it: I love my Keen boots. The wide, rounded toe box gives my Sasquatch-feet plenty of room to spread out. On top of that, they make great shoes.
The Targhee 2 is a tough, well-made all-leather mid-rise hiking boot. It’s waterproof, and has a breathable leather lining.
The Targhee 2 is only available in a medium width. However, many Keen boots run wide, and the rounded toe box of the Targhee 2 means extra room up front.
If in doubt, of course, try before you buy. But in our opinion, it’s difficult to go wrong with a pair of Keen hikers.
KEEN WOMEN’S GYPSUM 2 WIDE WIDTH
If you’re looking for a durable, comfortable hiker specifically made for a wide foot, then the Gypsum 2 Wide Width may be your next favorite boot.
The Gypsum 2 is an all-leather hiking boot with a leather liner. They’re waterproof, too. And they come with a supportive EVA footbed.
There’s not a lot to criticize here, and customers by and large, agreed.
TIMBERLAND WHITE LEDGE HIKING BOOT
Now this is a very decent pair of discount hiking boots.
Timberland’s White Ledge is an all-leather waterproof hiker. It has a speed-lacing system, as well as a gusseted tongue to keep out dirt and debris. This is a fairly lightweight boot, and has a cushioned EVA insole for comfort and support.
Some customers reported comfort issues, particularly with the metal form in the heel. Overall, however, most agreed that this boot is excellent value for money.
The White Ledge comes in both wide and medium widths.
MERRELL MOAB 2
You might be wondering, does Merrell make its exceptional Moab 2 in women’s sizes? The answer is yes! Not only that, but they make it in both regular and wide widths.
So, what’s so great about this boot?
First, it’s waterproof. Unlike the men’s, this one is made from suede and mesh. So if you’re looking for a leather boot, this is one to consider. It also has the famous Merrell air cushion in the heel for additional comfort.
On top of that, the Moab 2 uses recycled materials in its production.
A few customers reported issues with the waterproofing, so if you’re headed for wet weather, you might consider giving them a good blast with your favorite waterproofing spray first. Overall, though, customers absolutely loved this boot.
LACE UP AND GO!
More and more, people of different shapes and sizes are finding pleasure and purpose on the trail. And hiking boot manufacturers are stepping up with hiking boots in different lengths and widths.
The best hiking boots for wide feet don’t have to be specifically wide-width boots. In many cases, we wide-footers can get away with medium-width boots that run wide. But many of us need boots in extra-wide widths. And fortunately those boots are often just a click away.
What makes a great hiking boot in your opinion? And do you have a favorite hiker that didn’t make our list?
We’d love to hear about it!
Paul Grove has been passionate about hunting for as long as he can remember. He recalls hunting squirrels with his dad’s trusty Winchester Model 63 as early as age 9. As he grew older, his hunting interests, tactics, and gear have refined. He was also fortunate enough to be born in Wisconsin, thus having unhindered access to some of the nation’s best whitetail deer hunting spots. When he’s not chasing deer or other large to massive game on public lands, he is field-testing various fishing gear in a never-ending quest to find that perfect fishing setup. Is his passion for hunting and fishing innate or acquired? Paul believes that it is more about passing down a family tradition.