It’s no revelation that the worlds of fashion and the outdoors have become increasingly intertwined over the past few years. Salomon sneakers have lined the front row at runway shows, the old guard fashion houses deal in footwear fit for muddy mountain trails, and a certain Gucci has just released a collab with The North Face.
High-performance footwear is no longer the reserve of those going off-road, and hiking sneakers now have a firm footing in the rotations of pretty much everyone. However, some of these sneakers are built better than others. And even if you’re only planning to tread city streets in them, comfort, durability, and style are still key.
As such, we recently teamed up with streetwear and sneaker retailer Footshop to line up six of the best hiking sneaker brands that are ready and waiting for taking a beating on the mountain path. Or for hitting the grocery store in. Whatever you prefer.
Fashion’s favorite performance sneaker, the Salomon ADVANCED line shows that being hike-ready doesn’t have to weigh you down. The bite is louder than the bark in the sleek silhouettes of the range, with the sneakers packing loads of tech, including the Quicklace™ System and Contagrip™ features, into an ultra-sleek frame. Consistently-good new colorways of signature ADVANCED silhouettes like the XT-4 and XT-6 keep Salomon up top.
Nike’s ACG (All Conditions Gear) is a successor to the Swoosh’s Hiking line from the ’80s, carrying the flame for weather-ready footwear and apparel. Vintage ACG has become a major grail on resale platforms but that doesn’t stop the new releases from catching our attention, too. The Mountain Fly GORE-TEX, pictured above, is a recent example and can’t be missed. A GORE-TEX membrane upper teams up with an extra-rugged sole for a sneaker that shows exactly what ACG does best.
Vans’ iconic skate sneakers probably aren’t the first footwear choice that comes to mind when thinking about hiking, but the California-born brand’s MTE line might make you think differently. Basically, MTE takes Vans’ signature shoes like the SK8-Hi and Old Skool and upgrades them for all weather. Canvas uppers get switched out for weather-resistant material, warm linings are added inside, and a heat retention layer between the sockliner and outsole is fitted.
Reebok’s Zig Kinetica Edge pretty much encapsulates what this relatively new demand for hiking sneakers is all about. The base silhouette could be your typical runner, but the sportswear giant has added bungee cord laces and a trail-ready sole and finished things off with a weather-resistant coating to give birth to your standard sneaker’s mean older brother.
adidas’ answer to Nike’s ACG line, Terrex has birthed some of the Three Stripes best releases in recent years. The brand’s prowess in pioneering footwear tech comes into its own with Terrex, and features like the advanced breathable waterproofing make it a cut above the rest. oh, and they also look great.
OK you’re right, while this one might not technically be a sneaker, Yoon Ahn’s AMBUSH have taken what started out as an iconic Converse Chuck Taylor and given it a mud-ready makeover. Available in murdered-out black and a wild blue version, this boot means serious business. Wear them proudly as you picture your poor canvas Chucks trying to make it up a mountain unscathed.
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