WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN BUYING NEW FOOTWEAR
Trekking and hiking footwear should fit comfortably, without rubbing. Make sure that your heel sits securely and that your toes have enough space. Check to see if the heel fits properly by trying the shoe on first with the laces undone. If it’s loose at the sides, the heel is too wide. There should be a finger’s width of space between your toes and the tip of the shoe – an import aspect during descents to stop your toes hitting the front of the shoe.
In particular, if you are buying lightweight, multifunctional shoes with a more flexible textile upper, you will often find that you need a slightly longer fit to ensure that your toes don’t get bruised at the front of the shoe. Even if a shoe feels comfortable when you try it on in the shop, always try the next half size up to compare, just to be on the safe side. Our stiff alpine boots should not be too narrow at the toes, to prevent frostbite from occurring. Hanwag alpine boots feature the triple-adjustment Vari-Volume system to make sure they fit with one or two pairs of thick or thin socks. This way you can adapt your footwear for all conditions.
However, approach shoes and boots worn expressly for climbing should fit snugly and not be too long. For more ambitious mountaineering, direct and sure-footed rock contact is more important than greater comfort on descents.