Here's a run-down if the most technologically advanced shoes on the market in which to hit the great outdoors
Feats with your feet: 6 shoes to enjoy outdoors
Wellness trips, hiking up some of the world’s incredible and unspoilt trails and going solo is what travel trends are all about this year. The cold months are just about behind us, and as we make our way towards the summer, many will be in the throes of planning breaks, adventures and excursions. Seeing those remote and picturesque parts of the globe will probably entail being outdoors. So while you gear up, count those steps and traverse those mountains, you will want to maintain a level of comfort, too. We have put together a list of technologically advanced footwear for you to consider including in your backpacks or on your feet when you head to the great outdoors.
In Salomon’s spring/summer hike range, the brand has a focus on the consumer who enjoys hiking, trail running and other outdoor activities. Salomon has created a collection that allows its customers to be agile enough to trek across the mountains in a fast and light fashion. The Outpath, which is a shoe that weighs less than 400 grams, is perfect for the adventurous type. The tech in the upper mesh of the shoe has been designed to resist abrasion, making it strong and durable.
If you’re taking your hiking more seriously this season, then you can upgrade to the Outpath Pro GTX. This waterproof shoe is built for the technical trails and features a gaiter that will keep out unnecessary dirt. Plus, it offers ankle support, which is beneficial for when you find yourself in rocky and unsteady terrains.
Available at Salomon, Dubai Outlet Mall, from Dh680
Columbia’s Redmond Mid Waterproof range includes some impressive technology, called Techlite, in its design, which features lightweight midsoles for impact absorption and cushioning. The brand also uses FluidFoam technology, which helps with increased flexibility and support on those trickier routes. Another design element worth highlighting is Omni-Grip, which is a solution for advanced traction that makes this shoe sturdy, comfortable, practical and an all-round good hiking shoe for almost any environment. The lifespan of the shoe will depend on the distance you are covering and how frequently you are using it, but they should withstand one to two years of use.
Available at Columbia outlets and Sun & Sand Sports outlets throughout the UAE, from Dh349
3. The North Face
Another good shoe on the market is the Ultra Fastpack III Mid GTX from The North Face. This breathable, mid-cut hiking boot has a fully woven upper material that offers you a lot more support and protection. The brand also made use of the Vibram Megagrip for conditions that might be slippery or uneven. When you are on a hike, at some point you are bound to encounter wet or hot conditions, and that is where its Gore-Tex feature fits in well. The breathable material will keep your feet well ventilated on the inside, but dry when you’re in areas with lots of moisture or water, which is perfect for cold, wet environments.
Available at The North Face, Dubai Mall, from Dh588
4. On running
On Running’s shoes were created with the ultimate trail runner in mind. Their Cloudventure range features a Grip-Rubber profile – something that is said to be useful for the ascents. Another standout design spec is the CloudTec cushioning to aid with descents. These shoes have eleven individual pods built in for stability and that differentiates them from other brands, in that it helps with horizontal landing protection. If you’re going the distance, these are going to keep you comfortable for a good amount of time. Available for men and women, there are four types in the collection, all with varying forms of performance in mind: Cloudventure, Cloudventure Midtop, Cloudventure Waterproof and the Cloudventure Peak.
Available at Adventure HQ, Namshi, Yas Cycles, Besport and Trisouq.com. Prices range from Dh695 to Dh850
5. Under Armour
Under Armour’s new Sonic and Phantom shoes feature its HOVR system, which gives trail runners and walkers the necessary cushioning both on and off-road. HOVR places comfort at the forefront of this shoe, and what the company calls the “ultimate energy return”. A neat addition built into the shoes is a Bluetooth chip that connects to the MapMyRun app. This is a good way to track all the details of your outdoor experience: pace, cadence and shoe lifespan, while being able to monitor your progress can also help get you into the trail-running community.
Available at Under Armour outlets throughout the UAE, Sonic shoes cost Dh629, Phantom shoes cost Dh734
Timberland’s new sleek FlyRoam Go shoes are designed for urban adventurers who like getting around on foot. The design includes the Areocore Energy System and OrthoLite soles, which offer the necessary support and durability to hop about. Environmentally conscious readers will be pleased to know that their durable outer sole is made of 34 per cent recycled rubber.
Available at Timberland stores throughout the UAE, from Dh545