- Dec 06, 2018 -
Wondering when to replace your hiking boots or trail shoes? Getting the timing right can be tricky, but with all of the information below, you'll know exactly when it's time to spend the money on that new pair of hiking shoes.
If you see one or more of the signs below, it's time to replace your hiking shoes.
1. Frayed or worn laces are one of the earliest signs that your hiking boots or trail shoes are on their last leg. The friction of tightening and loosening your laces will wear them down over time. Worn-out laces are a sure sign that you should start shopping for a new pair.
2. A cracked midsole or visible compression lines in the midsole are a definite indication that your shoes need to be retired. A midsole with cracking or compression lines no longer offers the cushion or support you need to comfortably hike for long periods of time.
3. Similar to frayed laces, loose eyelets are a sign of wear that are easy to spot. If the eyelets on your shoes are loose, you won't be able to properly lace your shoes lessening their comfort and support on the trail.
4. If you have worn-out insoles and/or ankle support, you definitely need a new pair of hiking boots. Check your insole for cracks and your ankle collar for misshapen cushioning or a loose fit. Hikes will become uncomfortable as you lose more support and cushion.
5. Worn tread on the outsoles of your hiking shoes is a sign that you need to replace them. Worn outsole tread can potentially be dangerous, as you will lose the traction needed to stay upright on all kinds of terrain.
6. If you experience discomfort in different ways than when your shoes were new, you need new hiking boots. Blisters, aching feet, joint pain, back pain and "hot spots" are all signs that your shoes are too worn out to tackle another trail. While this might be #6 on our list of signs, this is the #1 reason why you should replace your hiking boots.