If you have a passion for hiking, it is likely that you will want to get the kids involved, and why not? Hiking is a great way for your children to start exploring the world and getting closer to nature. Not to mention, it is a brilliant form of exercise.
Still, children’s feet are not fully developed and as such, they need a very good amount of protection and support. Were you aware that children’s foot bones are not entirely developed until they reach their teenage years? Wearing badly fitting or unsupportive footwear could have an adverse effect on their development so it is vital that you choose a good pair of hiking boots for when you hit the trails with the family.
Fortunately, this isn’t as difficult a task as you might first imagine. We have sourced some of the best hiking boots for toddlers that will keep your little one’s feet protected and comfortable. We have also put together some handy buying information to make your choice even easier.
Is It A Good Idea To Go Hiking With A Toddler?
In this modern-day, too many children are cooped up inside the house with a screen in front of their faces. This is something that a lot of parents are growing more and more concerned about, and rightly so. Childhood obesity is on the rise and many children are growing up without a decent knowledge of the world that they live in.
One of the best ways to tackle these problems is to get your kids out into the world. We’re not trying to teach you to suck eggs here but you would be astounded at how many parents don’t realize this.
Hiking is a fantastic way to explore the world and of course, your mini-me isn’t going to be able to manage some of your favorite demanding trails, but that isn’t to say that they cannot get started with something a little more kid-friendly.
Toddlers may still be having a nap during the day and if they are pushed into an intense hike when they are tired, you will likely find yourself carrying them home. However, it is entirely possible and great fun to go hiking as a family. You just need to make sure that you are prepared, and of course, have the correct footwear!
- Make sure that, once you have booted your toddler up, you allow them to go at their own pace. You might be used to hiking ahead of the crowd but having your toddler with you is a great opportunity to take it slowly; you might even notice things that you never have before.
- You should be aware that your toddler will likely want to take frequent breaks so be prepared to do this. However, if they appear to want to keep going, then let them do this; with their perfect hiking boots, anything is possible.
- While you won’t be able to throw your toddler into the most challenging trails at a young age, it is a good idea to choose trails that have some points of interest. You might choose one with a very small water crossing or another thing that will keep it fun for your child.
- There may be times when carrying your child is unavoidable. However, you should try to limit this as much as possible as they will quickly become used to it. You want to get as much wear out of their new hiking boots as possible.
- Allow your toddler to help in choosing their hiking boots. It can be helpful to give them a choice of a few that you have pre-agreed. If they feel like they are involved in the process, they will be much more excited to get the boots on and get outdoors.
The Best Hiking Boots For Toddlers
Hopefully, you should now feel confident that hiking is an excellent family activity and are ready to choose some boots for your little one. However, with so many choices out there, it can soon become confusing. Check out our fantastic selection of hiking boots for toddlers.
1. Kids Hiking Boots
Kids are definitely going to want to have a choice of colors when it comes to choosing their hiking boots and with these, there is a huge range. If anything, you’ll have a hard time picking your favorite!
The boots feature a strong and durable rubber sole which is sure to withstand whatever your little one puts it through. On top of this, it will also give you the assurance that they won’t be taking a tumble thanks to the anti-skid grip. This is thanks to the unique lug pattern that makes this ideal for use on all types of terrain. If all of that isn’t enough then the shock-absorbing ability of these soles is sure to get you excited.
These hiking boots are made from a blend of suede and artificial leather which is tear-resistant because we all know how much pressure kids can put on a pair of shoes.
Inside, there is a beautiful plush lining that will keep your kids’ feet warm and cozy. But the boots are also extremely breathable.
The boots offer a tremendous amount of heel and ankle support to prevent your child from injuring themselves, even when on rougher ground.
Getting your kid to put on their own shoes can be a nightmare but with the easy-to-use elastic laces and hook and loop system, your child will find getting their hiking boots on and off easier than ever.
2. Mishansha Boys Girls Water Resistant Hiking Boots
Much like the previous boots, these come in an excellent range of colors, giving you and your child a style choice. These are unisex boots which is often the case with children’s footwear.
If you know that you will be heading to a wetter trail then it is vital to protect the feet and these waterproof boots are an ideal way to do this. Not only this but should the ground be slippery, the diverse pattern on the tough rubber outsole will deliver an excellent amount of traction.
These boots offer protection on all levels and boast a TPR toe cap which will prevent your child from injuring their toes, especially if you are on a trail where the ground is more rugged or littered with obstacles.
They are crafted with artificial leather which is just as flexible and comfortable as its genuine counterpart but also extremely easy to clean. The boots are lightweight which is essential in a child’s shoe and won’t make them feel as though they are weighed down.
To enable your child to take their boots on and off easily, there is an easy-to-use hook and loop fastening system which will require very little adult assistance.
3. Biacolum Boys Girls Shoes
One of the first things that catch your eye about these boots is that they look more like a sneaker than a hiking boot. If your child is reluctant to wear a more restricting boot, this can make a wonderful alternative. They will still get the same degree of support and comfort but without encasing the ankle.
These shoes are also incredibly stylish and come in an excellent choice of colors. Your child won’t have any issues putting the shoes on thanks to the hook and straps on the instep. There is no need to tie the laces each time you use the boots and with their elasticated design, they will stretch as your child puts their foot into the shoe.
The shoes are of impressive quality and are made using genuine leather which is known for its durability and awesome comfort. Furthermore, the internal part of the shoe ensures that your child won’t experience any pain or discomfort while wearing it.
There is a cushioned foam insole and a breathable lining making these shoes ideal for all types of weather. What’s more, the upper is entirely waterproof. If you plan on heading out in wetter weather, there will be nothing stopping you.
4. Gubarun Snow Boots
For those who live in colder climates or for anyone planning to take the family on a winter hike, these cute little snow boots will offer all the protection and comfort that your child will need.
If your little one gets cold feet while out hiking, this can instantly put them off the activity and make them want to head home. But with these warm, snug snow boots, your child’s feet will be unbelievably cozy.
This is a much higher boot that serves two purposes; it gives excellent ankle support as well as protecting from the cold weather. They are made from a durable synthetic material and come in an exciting selection of designs; from bright pink to camo blue, kids will have fun choosing their favorite pair.
The boots deliver excellent support and traction from the outsole which is made from tough rubber and have a unique texture that allows for superior grip. They are totally slip-resistant and suitable for use on a variety of terrain types.
Inside the boots, there is a furry lining designed to keep their tootsies warm and snug regardless of how much snow is falling.
How To Choose The Right Hiking Boots For Your Toddler
We are confident that the boots we have looked at in this guide are some of the best that money can buy. However, it is always a good idea to look closely at the various features of the boots to make sure that they will be fit for their purpose. We would always recommend this when looking at adult hiking boots but with the delicate feet of children, this becomes even more important.
Type Of Fastening
As adults, we are typically accustomed to buying hiking shoes with complex lacing systems and these do offer additional support. But for kids, these lacing systems can be nothing but troublesome.
If you purchase hiking boots with laces, you will either find yourself spending a lot of time attempting to tie them and a writhing toddler is not the easiest person to put shoes on at the best of times.
Many kids hiking boots come with easy-to-fasten closures such as a hook and loop or velcro closure. These are much quicker and are a great way to encourage your child to put on and take off their own shoes. As your child gets older, you can think about introducing laced hiking boots.
You should also consider the position of any straps as these can contribute to how supportive the boots are. For example, an adjustable velcro strap around the ankle on a high boot will keep the shoe secure and a strap across the instep is always a good idea.
The only way to work out whether a pair of hiking boots will fit your child comfortably is to try them on. It is always a good idea to measure your child’s feet to get an idea of size but many hiking boots need to be a size bigger.
Once the boots are on, you should be able to fit your pinky finger comfortably between the back of your toddler’s foot and the boot. The finger should slide in without effort and snugly. If there is any additional room, the boots are likely too big and if it is a tight squeeze, you should switch to the next size up.
Some parents are tempted to purchase boots that are a little large with the idea that ‘they will grow into them.’ While this might be acceptable with some types of shoes, hiking boots should always fit perfectly.
If they do not then the foot will move around inside the shoe and this can cause chafing and a lack of support.
Weather And Conditions
If you are going to be hiking in hot weather then you will need to make sure that your toddler’s hiking boots are breathable. If too much moisture builds up inside the boots this can cause them to chafe which can result in blisters and swelling. This can be painful for an adult but for a child, it can be extremely distressing.
Conversely, if you are planning on hitting a snowy trail, you will need to ensure that the boots are insulated and windproof. Finding waterproof boots is also an excellent idea for these types of conditions. Once water gets inside the boot it can be very uncomfortable and difficult to dry.
Adult hiking boots can be very pricy but fortunately, the kid’s counterparts tend to come in at a much lower price. Of course, there are those that are very high-end and could cost you an arm and a leg. However, it is important to think about how much use the child will get out of the boots.
Children’s feet are constantly growing and investing hundreds of dollars in a pair of hiking boots that they might only wear a handful of times could see you out of pocket. Of course, you do not want to buy badly-made boots that are too cheap but there are plenty of toddler hiking boots that won’t break the bank and will still give your child everything they will need.
High Or Low Boots?
Much like adult hiking boots, the children’s equivalent typically comes in one of two designs; high cut or low cut. The best way to decide on the right cut is to think about where the boots will be worn.
If you are going to be going easy and using very gentle or flat trails then a low cut boot will be more than sufficient and will provide enough support for your feet. In contrast, if you plan to get your child used to more rugged terrain, perhaps a mountain hike then a higher boot will give them much better ankle support.
If you have spent your life out on the trails, exploring everything that the world has to offer, you will likely want to pass this love on to your children. But one of the most important things is that your kid has the right protective footwear since their little feet are still growing and are very delicate.
There are many hiking boots for toddlers on the market and these come in some super-cute designs as well as being comfortable and supportive. When purchasing your toddler’s hiking boots, you must be sure to check that they are suitable and will meet your expectations, so do take the time to look at the quality and practicalities before you buy.