If superb cushioning, in-boot comfort and a bright and funky look are your kind of thing, the Hoka One One walking boots might well suit you.
Hoka are well known for their lightweight, deep-soled and highly cushioned running footwear. Many Hoka shoes are also made in bright colours and noticeable designs.
I think you either love the brand or you don’t and I rather like them. I often wear Hoka trainers for tarmac running and I have found them to offer a lot of cushioning and comfort.
I think they wear out quite quickly – they are lightweight and maybe that’s why the soles and uppers wear flat and thin – but I still do like the brand.
Now Hoka has brought out a mid-height walking boot for people who like to move fast on trails. These are not mountain hiking boots. Rather, they are boots that are meant for a mix of trails, paths, easygoing hills and pavements.
Hoka One One Tor Speed 2 WP features
- Fabric uppers
- Rubber protection at the toe
- Nylon overlay at rear of the upper
- Stiffened heel cup
- Vibram MegaGrip outsole
- eVent membrane for waterproofing
- Weight: 716g/pair (size 9½)
- Men and women’s fit
- Price: £130
The boots look modern and different from anything else on the market. They are miles away from traditional brown leather walking boots and much more similar to trainers.
Both the women’s and men’s are green/grey and you’ll either love the look or hate it.
As soon as I put my feet into the boots they felt comfortable. The forefoot width is fairly generous but not too wide and the women’s UK8.5 fits me very well. I am usually an 8.5 but not all shoes and boots fit well.
There is a lovely padded area around the ankle and this gives extra comfort when walking. I can honestly say that from the moment I slipped my feet in they felt ultra comfy.
Walking in the boots feels very, very cushioned. It almost feels lie you are walking on spongy marshmallows, but not in a wobbly way.
The boots are also amazingly lightweight. I usually wear boots that are a lot heavier, or trainers, yet these offer a great compromise.
As I have written already, these boots are not meant for rocky mountains or places where it’s very muddy. They best suit forest trails, paths and gritty paths. The grip is actually pretty good but it would not be a sole I would trust for traction on scree or steep mountain slopes and paths.
The back edge of the solo of the boot is too rounded to offer good grip when descending steep and muddy slopes.
I am a little worried that the uppers will not stand the test of my walking in wet and muddy Scotland but we’ll see. I would have liked to see more of a robust rand (between sole and upper).
The waterproof liner works fine except that rain and wet gets in the top of the boot around the ankle and laces. To prevent this you’d need to make sure waterproof trousers or gaiters were covering the ankle of the boot.
I would reserve these boots for dog walking and trail hikes. I would not choose them for very wet days or for anything that is too rugged. But for general off-road use and when you are walking on pavements they are a great find.
The price is also quite good for a pair of walking boots.
See Hoka for stockists or search on-line.