Doc Martens are a never-changing fashion staple that several users also consider for hiking, so in this guide, we will be looking at Doc Martens for hiking.
These iconic leather boots have a zealous following of wearers who would say anywhere that there’s no better shoe on the market than a classic Docs.
However, even though they look amazing in the city, there’s a question to be answered: are Doc Martens good for hiking?
Do you really think it’s a good choice to use Doc Martens for hiking?
Anyway, in my opinion, and to answer these questions in a short way, Doc Martens are okay for hiking, but they are not perfect for it.
DMs are rather long-lasting, but the leather on Dr. Martens is strong, so it can lead to blisters and discomfort on the tracks.
DMs are also weighty, and they don’t breathe well as you hike. So, I will say that a pair of purpose-built hiking boots in the mountains is your best bet.
Tips for Hiking in Doc Martens
Before you use Doc Martens for hiking, it will be wise to break them in first and do some other things to have a better experience.
Breaking in Doc Martens Hiking Boots
The most important thing to do before lacing up and heading into the mountains is to break in your Dr. Martens boots for hiking.
You can start by wearing them around the house for a few weeks and down to the shops for a few hours.
Do this until the leather begins to stretch and become more supple. This goes the same way with any brand-new pair of boots.
Tie the Lace Properly
When hiking, your laces should be secure and specifically close around the ankle because you should ensure that there is as little movement inside your Docs as possible.
This will help pull the boot onto your heel because that way it won’t slip when you take a step.
However, be careful so that you do not tie your Dr. Martens laces so tight that they start feeling uncomfortable to hike in. So, I suggest you find a happy balance.
Wearing Thick Socks with Dr. Martens
On a demanding hike, you will get the cushion and protection your feet need by wearing a thick pair of wool-rich socks.
The moisture-wicking is controlled by the wool, and it also offers abrasion resistance to prevent blisters from forming.
And if you want to make sure that the friction from movement does not affect your feet, just wear two pairs of socks.
Applying Waterproof Treatment To Doc Martens
There’s a great chance that your Docs have lost some of their waterproofing characteristics, particularly if you’ve owned them for a long time.
However, you can add some additional waterproofing to your Dr. Martens boots by using a standard boot wax or spray, such as the one from Meindl.
Although you shouldn’t expect this to stop water from getting in where the leather meets the soles, it will definitely bead off the water rather than soak in.
Doc Martens Hiking Boots
The best Dr. Martens for hiking are used to make a model known as the Dr. Martens Santo Boots.
However, sadly, this model is no longer made. The hiking boot sole and grip formation, which were best suited for rough terrain, were actually what made the Santos boots special.
Keep in mind that Doc Martens does not exactly make a hiking boot, but they do have a boot that has the grip to hike in.
The Dr. Martens Combs Casual boots come with both a rugged Tract outsole and chunkier hiking boot laces that you can pull quite tight around your ankles.
The Best Doc Marten Boots for Hiking
In my humble opinion, the 1460 boot is my choice for the best Dr. Martens boot for hiking.
And this is so, given the fact that it comes with a waterproof coating and light insulation that is perfect for colder weather.
It also comes with the GripTrax traction sole, which helps with staying solid on less complex trails.
So, even though the boots are still manufactured from leather, which, as you know, is not the most breathable or perfect material for hiking, the 1460 boot is the best option that Docs has to offer when it comes to a boot that could be ideal for hiking.
What Boots Are Good for Hiking?
When it comes to the best boots for hiking, they are just the ones that feel the best on your feet.
And they provide you with the protection and traction that you need on the terrain.
The perfect hiking footwear is a pair of custom-built hiking boots or hiking shoes, which is just a general rule.
However, there are people who would rather wear lightweight track running shoes on hikes.
There are a great number of shoes out there that are ideal for hiking, but I can’t really list them all here.
But I will strongly suggest that you consider checking out brands such as Lowa, Hoka, La Sportiva, Merrell, Salomon, Keen, Oboz, and Vasque if you need a first-rate pair of hiking boots.
Hiking boot manufacturers make their shoes to fit specific types of hikers and hiking styles, so with little or no time, you will find a pair that is right for your needs.
Are Doc Martens Good for Walking All Day?
Doc Martens are ideal for a full day of walking in the city inasmuch as they are thoroughly broken in.
However, it takes a long time to break in Docs, given the fact that tough leather was used to make them, so you shouldn’t expect your boots to be extremely comfortable until that happens.
With that being said, if you are in search of a boot that is ideal for all-day walking on tracks, even if they are completely broken in, then I won’t say that Dr. Martens is an excellent option.
Compared to a proper hiking boot, Docs are really no match comfort-wise due to the fact that they are heavy and lack breathability.
With all that being said, you will see that Doc Martens are not the most perfect choice for hiking, thanks to their weight, questionable ankle protection, tendency to rub, and lack of waterproofing.
They are also not as poor a choice compared to hiking in jeans.
If need be, you can wear Docs on a hike as long as it is not a major distance or in specifically demanding weather or terrain.
So, this is to say that I don’t recommend purchasing a pair, particularly for hiking.
However, if you insist on hiking with your Docs, just don’t wear them for anything too strenuous; break them in first; wear long, thick socks; and waterproof them.
That being said, this will now be the conclusion of this guide on Doc Martens for hiking.