Best Wide Toe Box Shoes For Hiking
Looking for wide toe box shoes for hiking? Perhaps you need wide toe box shoes, but have a narrow heel. Whether you are beginner section hiker or an experienced through backpacker, it is important to find a comfortable hiking shoe that fits well and will hold up to the cruelty of the trail. In this buying guide for wide toe box hiking shoes and boots, we have compiled a list of the best hiking shoes and hiking boots for wide feet.
Compare Wide Toe Box Hiking Shoes
Why Does a Wide Toe Box Matter?
I suffer from a bunion on my left foot which causes my toes to point sharply to the left. This results in a lot of toe rub in the toe box on a downward trek and leads to a lot of pain by the end of the day. The challenge of finding the best hiking shoe for wide feet can be really difficult especially if you have a wide front foot with a narrow heel.
Finding a good fitting shoe for a bunion or wide front foot isn’t always as easy as buying a wide hiking shoe. In fact, it’s often common for those who suffer from a wide foot in the front of the foot to have a narrow heel. Therefore, just buying a wide hiking shoe doesn’t necessarily solve your problem. A hiking shoe that is too wide in the heel can lead to shifting on the trail and blisters after a long day.
While many manufacturers claim to produce a “wide shoe” the toe box is often still too narrow which leads to cramping and pain on the trail. A shoe that is too narrow in the toe box causes your toes to be cramped and forced into a wedge. After hours of hiking up and down a trail and jamming your toes against the end of your toe box results in painful, sore feet and toes. However, a shoe that truly has a wide toe box will allow the natural splay during your trekking and will decrease the discomfort as well as risk for long term deformity to your feet.
We did all the research for you! Here are the best wide toe box hiking shoes we found. Some of them come in “wide” sizes, while others do not, but were found to be extremely wide in the toe box and very form fitting for those suffering from wide or flat feet. You can compare the features and prices to see which one best suites your needs. Click the star ratings to read what others are saying about the hiking shoe.
I’ll be upfront right here and now and say that Salomon is my #1 pick! Overwhelmingly, the reviews back up our opinion as well. I was introduced to Salomon last year as a gift from my husband before our 18 day trip to California. As I mentioned previously, I suffer from a bunion on my left foot, however, I have a narrow middle foot and heel. Finding a womens wide toe box narrow heel shoe can be a challenge. Salomon’s Quest 4D 3 GTX Hiking Boot does not come in a wide or extra wide hiking boot, however, the design of the shoe still makes it a perfect boot for someone who needs a wide toe box and narrow heel.
- Designed with a wide toe box even in regular sizes. You will find if you read the reviews this is a consistent comment.
- The Advanced Chassis system is sculpted to hold your feet in place and prevent slippage on the trail.
- The EVA molded Ortholite® sock liner creates a cushioned and customized fit over time with minimal compression, breathability, moisture management system.
- Waterproof Gore-TEX (GTX) Technology to keep your feet dry but allow maximum breathability
- SENSIFIT™ technology envelopes foot for a very custom and precise fit
- Gusseted tongue helps keep the debris out.
- Protective rubber toe cap.
- Mud guard.
- Very lightweight hiking boot at just over 1 lb.
- Among the more expensive wide toe box hiking shoe. Buying last year’s model while still available can save you some money.
- Some complaints with durability in the 2 GTX model
- Quest 4D 3 GTX is very new to the market with fewer reviews over its older counterpart. Some report the toe box in the newer men’s Quest 4D 3 GTW to be more narrow than the previous 4D 2 GTX model.
If you are looking for ultra light hiking shoes with a low cut, again, Salomon has one of the best lightweight hiking shoes on the market. Salomon’s women’s X Ultra Prime CS Waterproof and the men’s XA Pro 3D Wide trail runners both have the same great SENSIFIT™ technology that allows Salomons to envelop the foot and create an almost customized fit.
The best wide toe box shoe for women in the low top category goes to the X Ultra Prime CS Waterproof W. This hiking shoe again gets high marks for the wide toe box and previously mentioned comfort, flexibility, and customized fit. The Women’s X Ultra Prime series also brings to the table great breathability for a waterproof trekking shoe. Whether you are trekking through the streams of the Smoky mountains or a Slot Canyon in Utah, these lightweight waterproof hiking shoes will do the trick.
- Moderate pricing
- Great lightweight womens hiking shoe
- Contragrip technology provides excellent traction on the trail
- Gortex technology making these low top trail shoes waterproof
- Same great breathability as other Salomon shoes
- Stylish look makes them great for both trail and every day wear
- Waterproof Gore-TEX (GTX) Technology to keep your feet dry but allow maximum breathability
- SENSIFIT™ technology envelopes foot for a accurate fit
- Protective rubber toe cap.
- Mud guard.
- Less ankle support being a low top hiking shoe
In the men’s category, ironically, the Ultra Prime CS Waterproof shoe is considered narrow and didn’t receive the same high marks for those needing a wide toe box as the women’s. In this case, we chose the Men’s XA Pro 3D Wide Trail Runners for their lightweight construction, comfort, and roomy toe box. We also love the Salomon quick lace system available on both the men’s and women’s Salomon XA Pro 3D shoes.
- Quick lacing system is both convenient and allows for more customized fit throughout the shoe
- Comes in wide size for those needing not only a wide toe box, but a more wide shoe from toe to heel
- SENSIFIT™ technology for accurate fit
- Mud Guard
- Protective Toe Cap
- Same great Salomon breathability as other Salomon shoes
- Not waterproof. We were disappointed that the low top Salomon men’s waterproof hiking shoe received such poor reviews with regard to narrowness and discomfort for those in need of a wider toe box
The Vasque Breeze III GTX Hiking boot consistently ranked well in reviews for it’s wide toe box. Similar to the Salomon’s, the consistent remarks were that they Vasque Breeze III was very roomy in the toe box with a narrow heel. We remind you, again, the shoes in this review are not all necessarily billed as a wide shoe, rather they are shoes that would be comfortable for those in need of a wide toe box to accommodate a bunion, bunionette, or even a wide flat foot. If you have a wide heel, Vasque Breeze III GTX boots may not be for you.
- Excellent grip and traction with it’s Best in Class grip with Vibram Megagrip compound
- Waterproof protection with GTX technology
- Highly breathable. Feet stay dry and comfortable even in hot temperatures.
- Out of the box comfort
- Roomy wide toe box
- Great heel cup and cushioned foot bed with EVA foam
- While consistently ranked high for roomy toe box, some with overall wide feet found the heels to be too narrow
- Tend to run a bit small so may need to size up by at least one half
- Some complaints of clunkiness and weight, but overall typical for a hiking boot of this caliber.
Next in our review of hiking shoes with a wide toe box are the very popular Keen Targhee WP Mid Boots. Both the men’s and women’s Targhee II and III models rank well for roominess in the toe box. These hiking boots are available in both regular and wide sizes.
- Lightweight hiking shoe with consistent reviews mentioning the wide toe box
- Keen’s all terrain grip ranked very well among hikers and outdoor enthusiasts
- Keen’s offer their own proprietary waterproof membrane system known as KEEN.Dry® which keeps water out, but allows vapors out creating a breathable environment
- Durable Leather mud shield
- Easy lace adjustment due to speed hooks
- Heel stability
- Unique probiotic CLEANSPORT NXT™ technology system creates a natural odor control environment
- Great value hiking shoe for budget conscience looking for a more sturdy day hiker or light load backpacking adventure
- Some reviewers complain of poor ankle support, however, it is superior to a low cut boot and adequate for day hiking or a light load backpacking trek
- Runs at least 1/2 size small and even Keen recommends purchasing a 1/2 size larger than your usual shoe size
- Merrells Moab gets high marks as being a great lightweight boot with comfortable fit right out of the box
- The regular and wide versions both provide wide toe boxes. Some reviewers found they needed to size up 1/2 a size, but most felt comfortable ordering their normal shoe size
- Moab utilized their M-Select Technology in their Waterproof hiking boot.
- Moab hiking shoes are comprised of a solid construction with an upper suede leather mesh for comfort and breathability
- The tongues are gusseted to help keep moisture and debris
- Solid outer rubber toe cap
- The Vibram sole is great for grip on those technical trails with a 5 mm lug depth
- Merrell air cushion in the heel absorbs shock and adds stability
- Merrell Moab receive overwhelmingly positive reviews on every review site we read. The only consistent complaints were that they may not be entirely waterproof in all situations.
- As with so many of our other reviewed hiking shoes, Merrell’s run a tad small and it may be advisable to size up 1/2 a size. Keep in mind they do come in regular and wide versions.
Xero’s Daylite Hiker is the first of our reviews in the minimalist hiking shoe category. What is a minimalist shoe? According to husband and wife owners, Steven Sashen, CEO and Lena Phoenix, CFO of Xero shoes, our feet are meant to move, stretch, and flex. The minimalist shoe is designed to offer that natural “barefoot” flexibility and movement while still providing support for your feet.
- Very comfortable and great natural foot to your foot, the flexibility is great for allowing the toes to naturally splay providing superior comfort for those in need of a wide toe box
- Superior ability to “feel” the trail
- Extremely lightweight shoe weighing a mere 9 OUNCES EACH
- Backed by a 5000 mile warranty
- Removable insole for an the choice between an even more “barefoot” feel or more support
- Not fully water proof, but VERY WATER RESISTANT according to the manufacturer
- Consistent comment (and consistent with the manufacturer) is that the Xero Daylite Hiker runs a FULL SIZE SMALLER than your normal shoe size.
Here is what the ladies liked about the this Oboz hiking shoe.
- Over and over again the reviewers said these shoes were “Very comfortable right out of the box”
- Perfect for those needing a wide toe box but a narrow heel
- Billed as a very versatile hiker that crosses over well into a daily shoe due to it’s stable and cushioned midsole and excellent traction
- Waterproof and breathable upper
- Lightweight weighing only 13.8 oz.
- The “sawtooth” classic Oboz sole helps in great grip and mud shedding
- The “O”-Fit insole with EVA cushioning provides underfoot support as well as a sculpted arch to place the foot in a neutral position
- Very few negative reviews, but the consistent review is that they seem to run small so, again, may need to consider a 1/2 size above your normal shoe size
- A few complained that they are clunky
Our final selection in the men’s category is the Lowa Men’s Renegade GTX Mid Hiking boot. This boot ranks well again for those looking for a wide toe box and narrow heel. Lowa provides sizes in narrow, regular, and wide making it the most versatile in terms of size of all the shoes we reviewed.
- Lightweight boot for such a sturdy more rugged mid hiking boot
- Wide range of sizes from narrow, to regular, to wide making it one of the most versatile hiking boots on the market for those in need of a wider toe box
- Receives high marks for out of the box straight to the trail comfort
- Eploys the VIBRAM® sole technology for excellent grip and traction
- Utilizes a MONOWRAP® Support Frame to create secure fit
- Excellent waterproofing due to the GORE-TEX® lining technology
- As with any boot of this caliber, breathability isn’t great though manageable
- Probably the biggest draw back is the price point on these European hiking boots being on the upper spectrum of all the boots we’ve reviewed
- Durability has been questionable based upon some reviews
Do you have a favorite wide toe box shoe? Let us know your suggestions.
In the market for a new cooler? Check out our Ultimate Guide to the Best Rotomolded Coolers on the market.
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For some tips on gear for day hiking with kids check out this article.
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