HIKING SHOES: Hiking Boots vs Trail Runners? My Guide to Hiking Footwear (plus VIVOBAREFOOT review)

Today’s video is all about hiking shoes: hiking boots vs trail runners, what specific hiking footwear I wear, and how to choose shoes for a particular hike. If you’ve ever wondered how to choose hiking shoes, this video is hopefully going to help you find the perfect shoes for hiking. I also go over the type of “barefoot shoes” that I wear and give a review of VIVOBAREFOOT footwear. Let’s dive in!

VIVOBAREFOOT Magna Trail Shoe: (newer version)
Bedrock Sandals:
Danner Hiking Boots and Shoes:
Tons of other hiking boot options:
Tons of other hiking shoe/trail running options:

◦ 11 Hiking Snack Ideas:
◦ 6 Tips for Beginner Hikers:



DISCLAIMER: This video description contains affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a small commission if you click on the items mentioned. You are under NO obligation to do so. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Thank you for your support of my channel!

Amanda Outside: Sharing backpacking, camping, and hiking tips so you can get outside more… and eat great food while you’re at it!

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  • I’m planning on snowshoeing for the first time this year. What are your thoughts on using the VivoBarefoot Tracker boots with snowshoes? Thanks!

  • I believe there is just two main factors:
    a.) Are you an extreme hiker on extreme terrain, where you find yourself exhausted and stumbling? Get boots.
    b.) Do you hike easy trails and quit early with energy to spare? Get shoes.
    The other question is goretex or not:
    a.) Are you doing high mileage and ultralighting with only 2 socks in your pack? Get goretex. The fine dust collecting in your all day socks will kill your skin.
    b.) Are you switching socks during long hike? No gore tex. Also, short hikers(less than 4 hrs)

  • fantastic shoes!! find those shoes in my size is a very dilemma!!!i'm a man and i were a size 5..did you have the same problem?

  • new subbie here !! 😄reccomend hiking socks?

  • Wow i'm in love with those boots. 💖
    I love the minimalist design, natural leather and the silly toe box designs – they look very comfortable and it seems like it would be a good driving shoe too.
    I have an old car with a manual transmission so the more i feel the pedals the better.

    Thank you!

  • Thanks for this review . I love the shoes .wich neopren shocks you use?

  • Hi Amanda, thanks for your video. When ordering on Vivo website, I used their foot measurement system. For the Tracker II FG shoe, they advised me to choose one size larger. Did you have the same issue? I'm not sure anymore which size should l choose. Thanks for your help!

  • What would consider for wet roots and rocks in the Adirondacks or White Mountains. I find a boot gives a stable platform when just a toe or heel is on the edge of the mess under my feet. Trail runners with their flexible soles just bend and slip off the wet roots.

  • Nice video
    Next week I will walk 100 km (62 miles) barefoot in 24 hours
    Greetings from Belgium!

  • Great information. Thank you for sharing.

  • Thank you for this review 🙂 I have a qst: how is the grip in this shoes on wet rocks/slippery surface? I have never tried vivobarefoot before, but I have Zero shoes – they are comfy and really good shoes, but too slippery on wet rocks/montain terrain. I would like to try vivo

  • You're awesome! I wear boots for work all the time and I dislike wearing boots so much. These magna trail shoes look amazing and i'm definitely going to have to try them out. I appreciate you for making this video and your camp cooking videos ! Keep them coming!

  • Not sure if you’ll see my comment. I really want to buy the vivobarefoot trackers! I’m worried though about the insulated insole being way too hot. Can this be replaced with a regular insole for summer months?

  • I’ll definitely have to check these shoes out! I love being barefoot since I was a child too! When I get home I have to take off my shoes or sandals to touch the ground cause I love it. It refreshes ne. The only weird one from the house lol

  • Hah. We are of the same mind. Barefoot boots and runners depending…. but honestly I've been obsessed with my Bedrocks as well. If it's warm enough they're all I wear now. It's kinda weird and wonderful.

  • I am a new subscriber to your channel (AOC brought me here!), and I've watched several videos so far. (I'm prepping for a car camping trip & I haven't been out in YEARS.) Anyway, I was noticing that when you get to your campsites, you put or have these cute sandals on. They caught my eye, so I'm glad I found this footwear vid! I will def be investigating the Bedrocks. Thank you!

  • Ash

    Have you ever tried Lems shoes?

  • I'd love to see more imagery as you are talking, I find it helps me retain more information because I feel more visually stimulated. I love what you are doing and it was refreshing to have a video with an actual woman versus all first suggested videos on YouTube with men talking or computer voiced. I wish you all the best and that you also can be amoung them. As I had to search specifically for a female speaker and as female myself, I found your suggestion more relatable.

  • thanks so much. i just bought a pair of the Vevo boots! they say buy same size as normal boots as they are made bigger, so fingers crossed! i cant get half size up in the uk. really excited to try them! thanks so much! first barefoot shoes! 😀

  • Do you know of any stores that sell the version of the magma trail shoe you have. I can’t find it anywhere in the internet. Thank you .

  • Hey there Amanda!! I'm curious to know your thoughts on the sizing for the magna trails? I've watched some other reviews that say when it came to those, they ran big. What is your experience with that? Were they true to size for you or did you find you needed to size down? I'm hoping to purchase these to bring on a hiking trip in about a week and half and don't want to end up having to return them. Any insight would help immensely!!☺

  • So happy to know you live in Utah like me.

  • I wore a pair of Adidas trail running shoes to do 90 miles of the Pacific Coast Trail up to Mt. Whitney and back down, so I have a love of trail running shoes as my hikers….even with a heavy backpack on. I wear hiking books now, because I am older and feel like I get a bit more ankle support, mainly for the steeper down hill sections, but I still love my running shoes for going up and down the hills on my property and for shorter hikes.

  • Super useful information! Thanks!

  • Do you wear socks with your Vivobarefoots? I know that they say you don't have to but I was wondering if they caused any more blistering or irritation without the sock.

  • Hiking boots are definitely not waterproof. Careful. They tend to keep moisture trapped in

  • 1. Trail Runners are a shoe used by people who run/jog on trails.
    2. Hiking shoes are used by people who walk a trail.
    3. Hiking boots are used to walk an arduous trail or off-trail.

    – Synthetic hiking shoes/boots are best suited for summer months.
    – Leather hiking boots are best suited for spring/autumn and winter months when it’s more wet, sloshy, muddy and cold.
    – GORE-TEX is best suited for winter months.
    – Moisture in your shoes/boots is best controlled with socks.

    At the end of the day, you can wear whatever you damn well please to hike, as long as you’re willing to accept the consequences.

  • And don't forget sun screen on the tops of your feet if you opt for sandals.

  • Great info, thanks! My husband swears by trail runners over hiking boots (except for during winter hiking), and he got me some La Sportivas for Christmas so I'm going to see if I become a convert like him. 🙂

  • You mentioned a type of socks that you wear in the water. I couldn't catch the name of it.

  • M H

    Hey I love the two vivo shoes you mentioned. But they are completely out of stock! Is there anywhere else to get them, or some in-stock minimalist shoes? Thanks!

  • Great vid, real leather boots it is.. Thanks : )

  • Where is your jacket from. I love it

  • very practial and helpful, thank you

  • You should also try on your footwear with the socks you intend to wear on the trail.

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