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Best long lasting shoes for moderate walking or hiking


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Hello TrailGroovers.

what are your recommendations for best high quality long lasting trekking/hiking shoes?

i write this because I am fed up of bad quality shoes. Or maybe they aren’t tested enough.

i had bought a pair of Timberland Hiking boots which, after 3 years, started to have the sole peeling off. I used them on a tough hike (about 10 days), followed by 2.5 years of moderate non-everyday use in long drives and moderate walks. But thankfully, Timberland replaced the shoes (they had a lifetime warranty). My replacement pair, after 2.5 years of moderate use, have the leather cracking. 

Then there’s another pair of Columbia Hiking boots where too the leather started cracking and the top layer peeling off to a. Point where I couldn’t wear them anymore. My wife’s fabric based Columbia hiking shoes had their entire sole come off in a jungle walk. She had to tie the sole to the shoe with the shoe’s laces. Columbia has promised to replace the shoes (only 3 months old), but what if the trek was in more difficult situations?

my longest last pair of boots/shoes have been Dr Martens, purchased in 2000 for about UK Pounds 150/- or so. I don’t wear them everyday, but even after all these years, the leather hasn’t cracked (only beautifully wrinkled at crease points).  

Use mention that I do routinely use recommended shoe creams on my leather shoes. I must mention I live in India in a place which can get very hot, very wet, and morning grass is wet with dew. All the shoes I mention are rated for “water proof” or “goretex” etc.

whats more annoying is, in India there isn’t much choice of quality hiking shoes brands. Columbia is officially here but I have had bad experiences with their shoes. Timberland shut down and left. I try to coordinate my shoe buying when I travel over seas.

attached is the photo of the kind of timberland shoe that I have where the leather has started cracking and a top layer started peeling off.

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Aaron Zagrodnick

For me my top priority in hiking footwear is comfort - I’ve generally had good success with durability across brands, with only a few exceptions where I thought a shoe or boot wore out in an unreasonable amount of miles. That said, most of my shoes make it a year or two before either the outsole and / or the cushioning and midsole are worn out and I replace the shoe.

Most of the footwear I wear isn’t really designed to last more than about 500 miles though. I avoid leather in shoes as much as I can, but if you’re looking for a different brand to try with longevity as a focus I can say (although even in wide sizes the toebox is pretty narrow for me), boots from Vasque that I have tried have offered solid durability and all have lasted many years.

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