Yes, Doc Martens boots are suitable for hiking, but you must keep in mind that the boots are not designed for hiking and may become uncomfortable after a while. Because these boots are not breathable, they are not recommended for multi-day hikes or overnight camping trips. Consider wearing a pair optimized for hiking on lengthy and strenuous excursions.
What Are The Defining Features Of Doc Martens?
Doc Martens are mainly work boots that are designed and manufactured for use by workers in various industries. As a result, they’ve been built to be rugged and suitable for challenging workplaces. Over the years, the most compelling feature of these boots has been their ability to offer exceptional levels of comfort to staff.
Doc Martens are equipped with innovative features because demanding work environments necessarily require an increased level of protection. Notable features of the boots include a slip- and puncture-resistant sole, a breathable leather surface, an air-cushioned sole, and a welted frame. Additionally, the brand offers models with a steel toe, an extra-rugged metatarsal guard, and shock-absorbing soles for added protection.
Since the 1960s when these boots were introduced to the market, their construction has always been focused on the work environment. It is for this reason why Doc Martens are ranked highly as one of the well-made boots in the world. But, is this enough to make them great for hiking?
Since their introduction to the market in the 1960s, the construction these boots has always been geared toward the work environment. This is why Doc Martens is regarded as one of the best-made boots in the universe. However, is this sufficient to qualify them as excellent hiking boots?
What Characteristics Define Good Hiking Boots, And Do Doc Martens Possess These Characteristics?
When purchasing hiking footwear, the following factors should be considered:
Finding The Appropriate Fit
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that you will need a pair of boots that match perfectly before you start your hike. These are not the times to scrimp on your hiking shoes’ shape and size; they must be ideal. Boots that comfortably fit around the ankle and heel while still allowing enough space for your toes to wiggle are ideal.
When it comes to Doc Martens, you must understand that getting the perfect size is not a challenge, but you must first break them in. Because of the hardness of these shoes, you won’t be able to wear them until you have spent weeks loosening and acclimating to them. This is an important step that you can never miss, and it entails wearing them every day for brief periods of time until they no longer hurt your foot.
During the time when you are breaking in your shoes, thick woollen socks are important and must be worn. To soften the leather, you are expected to use the leather softener and protector offered by the firm. You can never wear these boots for extended periods of time before you have completed this rite of passage, or you will suffer from serious blisters.
Traction is a term that refers to a shoe’s ability to resist slipping. When hiking, this is a critical consideration because you do not want to be wearing slick shoes. Rather than that, you need a pair with a rugged and treaded outsole that will not slip under any circumstances.
Doc Martens has a strategic advantage in this aspect because their boots are designed to be slip-resistant. The rubber soles add to the versatility of these boots, allowing you to wear them in a variety of conditions without fear of injury.
Breathability And Comfort
Hiking is a physically exhausting exercise, and in order to navigate the terrain safely, you must wear shoes that allow for proper foot ventilation (breathability). This is because your comfort is important while hiking, since it decides how much fun you can have. Doc Martens are well-known for their comfort and durability, and once you’ve broken them in, you’ll enjoy walking in these boots.
Support And Stability
Most hikes require covering so many kilometres of walking on uneven terrain, necessitating the use of shoes that offer the best protection and stability. Doc Martens earns a key point once again, thanks to the sturdy construction of these boots. The shoes’ air-cushioned soles is a bonus, as they make walking easier in these boots.
A good pair of hiking shoes should keep your feet safe from the environmental hazard. Doc Martens has always prioritized providing workers with protective footwear. Highly necessary protection is the hard leather surface and the steel toe included in a few models. Regrettably, the brand’s heavy-duty versions lack the flexibility necessary for strenuous hikes.
The mass of your hiking boots is an important factor to consider because it influences your output. To ensure a positive experience, you should put on lightweight boots that will not drag you backwards irrespective of the distance walked. Doc Martens do not score well in this aspect because they are a little heavier than specially designed hiking boots.
What If Hiking In Doc Martens Or Not Hiking At All Is The Only Option?
Might a situation occur where you have the opportunity to go hiking, which you should seize with both hands, but your only boots is a pair of Doc Martens? Yes, we can envision that happening. Who are we to suggest you shouldn’t take advantage of the opportunity? Besides, some people have hiked in their Docs and had a good time doing so.
Docs’ most distinguishing characteristics, such as their springy soles, leather support, and durable shape and structure, make them a viable choice in the right situations.
Take a hike in your Docs if you’re in such a tight position. However, there are five things you should know before going out:
1. Restrict your hike to a stroll through the woods, not an overnight or lengthy trek through rugged terrain with a backpack.
2. Bring your most worn-in pair of Doc Martens and leave your most rigid and new pair at home. The perfect Doc Martens for you are those you’ve worn for a while, allowing them to mould perfectly to the shape of your feet. Doc Martens can see you through one end of a reasonable trail to the other comfortably and in incredible style if you break them in properly.
3. Under your Docs, put on a pair of socks that stretch above the top of the boot to prevent rubbing against your lower legs.
4. While you’re at it, consider donning a second pair of socks to avoid the formation of blisters.
5. Waterproofing your Docs in advance with M&B Dubbin with Sponge Applicator, 6.5 Ounces, Protects & Conditions, Heavy Duty Waterproof.
Here Are A Few Hints On How To Properly Break In Your Doc Martens.
Whether it’s to get you in the perfect possible condition for those rare hikes where all you have are Docs, or simply to get the most relaxed, trendy, and attitude-laden utilization of your Docs, here are some guidelines to follow:
Sizing Is Crucial For Doc Martens Boots
Sizing on Docs is generally accurate, but you should put them on before purchasing. While this is more difficult when buying online, do not accept ill-fitting Docs. The ideal fit is snug, but not oppressively so. Round down rather than up if your feet are in the categories of a ½ size. Docs are only available in whole sizes.
Put On Thicker Socks
While breaking in your Docs, put on thick socks to minimize friction and discomfort from the padding. Additionally, removing the insole would also assist with the break-in procedure. They can be abrasive and contribute to the formation of blisters.
Cycle Your Wearing
Begin by wearing your Docs for about ten minutes at home and removing them as soon as they begin to hurt. Persist not in the face of pain but remove them. For a time, the soles will be stiff, and the leather will feel snug. They will become flexible with time.
Guard Areas Of Blistering
Many people initially experience blistering with them. Defend your skin with moleskin or bandages wherever your feet ache or become blistered, most commonly in the heel. After shielding your blisters, stretch by putting on your Docs at home for 60 minutes at a time. Once more, remove them as soon as they begin to ache.
Treat Them Well
For several weeks, repeat this process of intermittent hour or two at a time break-in session. Utilize Doc Martens’ own products seldomly to clean, protect, and loosen the leather. However, any product containing lanolin, coconut oil, or beeswax will perform the similar function and will significantly increase the waterproofing aspect.
If You Want A Way To Speed Up The Process, Here Are Three To Explore:
1. Swaddle your Docs in a clean towel and use a hammer or mallet to beat the heel and sole for up to 15 minutes.
2. Take away the laces and stuff the Docs to the brim with newspaper to attempt stretching the leather slightly.
3. After applying the lanolin product made reference to above, try heating the toughest areas of your Docs with a hairdryer on low heat. Put them on and wear them till they are cool.
In conclusion, Doc Martens can be used as hiking boots and they have many amazing qualities that will make you appreciate them. However, it is worth noting that the majority of the brand’s boots would be suitable for light hiking. This is due to the fact that they were not designed for the purpose of hiking, but they will work well if the hike will not be too strenuous.
Last update on 2021-09-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API