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The Best Footwear for Jungle Hiking

written by: DulceCorazon • edited by: Cheryl Gabbert • updated: 7/12/2010

The jungle requires more than just your regular walking or hiking shoes. There are certain factors that you need to consider when picking a jungle hiking boot. Here are some tips on the best footwear for jungle hiking.

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    Jungle trails may contain rocks, muddy puddles and protruding roots and plants. The adventurous hiker will frequently need to maneuver around a lot of obstructions. Here are a few types of footwear that can make your jungle experience worthwhile.

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    The US Army Jungle Boots

    The best footwear for jungle hiking is still a pair of jungle boots. These US Army Jungle Boots are specifically designed for the use of their troops to give them more efficiency in the jungle. They are usually the toughest and most durable jungle boots you can use. Aside from being durable, these boots are also made up of high quality materials that prevent moisture and accumulation of mud. You just have to find the one that offers you the best fit.

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    Salomon 3D Fastpacker Mid GTX

    This type of jungle shoe is lightweight and very comfortable to the feet. It can also handle the jungle terrain which is often moist and rough. Its best features include a breathing technology that prevents moisture and fungus growth. Its shell is made up of waterproof materials and it has a special design that protects your feet from twisting during your jungle adventure.

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    Qualities of Jungle Footwear to Look For

    Here are some recommended qualities to look for if you want the best footwear for jungle hiking.

    Lightweight

    A good jungle hiking boot should be lightweight enough to allow you the maneuverability you need to travel through the jungle. There will be a lot of hanging vines and roots that may trap your feet. It would be easier to untangle your feet from these obstructions if you have lightweight footwear. It will also give you more balance, allowing you to move freely and not worry about the extra weight provided by your shoes. Shoes designed like tennis shoes offer this kind lightweight maneuverability.

    Comfortable

    The jungle is not a very comfortable place, and traversing it is not comfortable either. The best you can do to keep yourself and your feet comfortable is to use a pair of hiking shoes that provide adequate ventilation and waterproofing. Keeping your feet dry and well ventilated is very important in the damp environment that a jungle forces upon you. Any kind of minor discomfort in the jungle, which is usually far from medical facilities, may lead to serious injury if not taken cared of immediately. Blistering, soreness, and fungus development may be caused by poorly ventilated and not waterproofed hiking shoes. Being comfortable is one of your primary concerns when picking the best jungle hiking footwear.

    Tough

    Your comfortable and lightweight jungle hiking shoes won't do any good if they succumb to wear-and-tear quickly. Your feet will need to be equipped with something durable and sturdy to survive the harsh environment of a jungle. Shoes designed like army boots provide the appropriate toughness and protection for your feet. Look for footwear that doesn't let mud accumulate in its soles. Look also for footwear with high laces so you can keep pests and debris from entering your feet. Army boots may be a little too uncomfortable for civilians, so you should look for footwear that offers similar durability and protection without the hardness.

    Arch and Heel Support

    You may think you've found the perfect jungle hiking footwear that is comfortable, lightweight and tough, but it may not be designed to offer the proper support for your feet. If you are hiking the whole day, comfortable, lightweight and tough shoes may not be enough to keep your feet from experiencing fatigue. Look for something that offers a full fitting form for your feet. This will minimize muscle aches, fatigue, and blistering.

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    References

    KAUA'I Explorer: Footwear

    Travels.com: Recommendations for Jungle Hiking Shoes