Caring For Your Hiking Boots

Proper boot care and conditioning is important whether you hike in dry, hot climates or wet, temperate areas. Taking a little extra time to care for your hiking boots can add years to their useful lives.

Basic Boot Care
The key to keeping your boots in good shape is to keep them as clean as possible. Dirt particles are very abrasive and over time they can damage just about any boot material. It's hard to keep your hiking boots clean while you're using them, of course, but brushing the dirt and mud off them after every hike will help keep them in good condition.

Drying your Boots
Whenever possible, dry your boots completely after each trip. To dry them, simply store them in a dry, warm area. Don't set your boots near a fire (or other heat source) to dry them more quickly, since high temperatures can damage boot materials and the cements used to hold them together. If you need to speed up the drying process, try stuffing dry newspaper inside your boots to absorb water. Replace the newspaper frequently for best results.

NOTE: If your boots are wet and dirty, it's best to dry them first, then brush the dirt off.

Washing your Boots
Most fabric boots can be washed on the outside with non-detergent soap and water to remove built-up dirt. Leather boots can also be rinsed off, but repeated washing and drying can dry out the leather over time and make it brittle.

Footwear Repair
Repairing outdoor footwear is a complex task. Older boot designs (typically involving stitched welts) and modern footwear (where a wide variety of sophisticated adhesives are used to bond thermoplastic rubber soles to leather uppers) require different repair techniques, and cobblers possessing the expertise to repair both are rare. For non-warranty repair work, Dave Page, an independent cobbler with more than 30 years of experience is a good choice. Page is an authorized repair agent for Asolo, Vasque, Vibram, Montrail, Merrell, Salomon and many other footwear makers. He services an international clientele and repairs all kinds of boots, rock shoes and footwear. You can contact his shop directly for an evaluation of your repair needs.

Dave Page, Cobbler
3509 Evanston Ave. N.
Seattle, WA 98103
(800) 252-1229
(206) 632-8686
FAX (206) 632-2613

A Note on Oil Treatments
Avoid using oil-based treatments like Mink Oil on any leather hiking boots. Oil-based products are intended to soften leathers and make them more supple, which can negatively affect the support of hiking boots. Use wax or silicone-based treatments only.

© 2002 GayOutdoors.com; All Rights Reserved.

Hiking, backpacking, camping or vacation adventures, GayOutdoors [GO] has been the LGBTQ outdoorzy community leader for the last 22 years. We are an informal group of diverse hiking enthusiasts in the United States with a shared love of the mountains who prefer hiking with friends. We invite you to join us on our hikes, to post hikes for other members to join you and to share your hiking photos, stories and advice.

Become A Member

If you find it invigorating to hike along a mountain trail with friends not knowing what’s just around the corner, to get some fresh air, to stop and soak in the views on a summit, and to soak your feet in a mountain brook after a hike, give us a try!


Powered by Ecomsolutions.net - ColdFusion Experts