A Hiking Tale

Charli sits on a granite rock overlooking Dartmoor National Park

Hiking is a delight. Being in the great outdoors with the wind (sometimes too fresh) in my hair and a good dose or scenery to explore is invigorating and enlivening. But what do you wear to keep your feet supported when hitting the trails?

Those who follow me on instagram know that hiking is a huge passion of mine. Before getting pregnant, my weekends were spent outdoors in the company of darling pooch and an offline map for navigating the Tors of Dartmoor National Park. I always carried my camera, a bottle of water, an energy bar, a waterproof and, of course, a trusted pair of hiking boots.

Sadly, my long-loved boots came to a slow end over summer. Their grip started to fail (not ideal when clambering on granite hills) and they lost some of the considerable comfort that I’d relied upon. They were over 10 years old, much loved and much mourned. And then came the tricky task of searching for a new pair of boots to see me through weekend adventures with Fergus!

Charli sits be a river on Dartmoor National Park wearing a blue waterproof jacket.

Thankfully Lowa, who have a reputation for making the world’s most comfortable and durable boots since 1923, got in touch to see if I would like to try out a pair of their hiking boots. They are a brand known for creating functional, comfortable, practical and durable boots. Knowing this, my decision to accept their offer was easy!

What to look for in a hiking boot

I’m pretty confident in the type of boot I like. I have bendy ankles that twist and turn easily, especially on rough terrain, so I prefer a mid rise style of boot that supports my ankles and prevents injury. I frequently walk in boggy, marshy, wet terrain so a waterproof boot was also essential as is a toe cap to protect my toes from falling rocks when scrambling for a good photo on the Tors.

Chari lounges on fallen tree with her working cocker spaniel sitting quietly in front of her.

Also, being plus size, I like a little padding in the sole of the boot. I carry a fair bit of weight with me on my adventures and a cushioned sole helps to absorb some of that weight, meaning that my feet and knees (at least) don’t ache after a day of adventures. I can rarely say the same for my leg muscles though; the DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) after climbing a hill has never eased up – no matter how fit I get!

The Lowa Mauria GTX Ws Review

With these criteria in mind, the Lowa Mauria GTX Ws seemed the perfect boot for me.

Appearance

The Mauria is a heavy duty hiking boot with a mid-rise cut. The upper boot is made from a dark brown nubuck leather with a Gore-tex lining that keeps your feet dry whilst allowing them to breathe. The boot comes with a burgundy trim and laces. The burgundy detail is refreshing in a world of women’s hiking products coming with baby blue, pink, and purple detailing.

Why are so many activewear products hideously gendered in appearance? I love that these boots aren’t!

A close up shot of the Mauria hiking boot.

Comfort

The boots are designed for comfort and it really shows. They have a flexi-fit which includes free moving lace hooks that allow for a individualised fit of the boot. This is really evident as the boot moves with my gait whilst keeping me supported over rockier terrain.

I’m wearing a size 6 boot and they’re a very good fit when worn with warm, woolly, hiking socks. This suggests they are slightly snug fit as I’m a small size 6 in boots and often need to add insoles (particularly in my smaller, left foot) in order to get a glove-like fit to a pair of boots. I definitely don’t need to add insoles in these though so I would definitely suggest trying these on and wearing them around the house/shop a bit to ensure they fit well before deciding if you’re going to keep them or not.

Strangely, the boots haven’t rubbed me. I am always rubbed raw by new shoes. No matter how well fitting they are, anything more than a 15 minute saunter and I’m going to be wincing at blisters for weeks to come. Granted, these haven’t had a long hike yet due to my current illness, but they’ve had long enough to inflict some severe damage. Yet they haven’t! I think this is testament to the flex-fit technology.

Chari lounges on fallen tree with her working cocker spaniel sitting quietly in front of her.

Value

The boots are slightly pricier than many hiking boots you will find. They retail at £240. I do feel they will be worth every penny.

I’m a big believer in investing in quality. And when it comes to hiking, you really want a boot that you can trust. There is nothing worse than being hours away from home in leaking, slippy or uncomfortable boots. I’ve been with people when these situations have arisen and they have no choice but to grin and bear through hours of discomfort to get home. I would hate to be in that position but I’m confident that, with these boots, that won’t be happening.

And, although I cannot yet speak for durability as I haven’t had these boots that long, I do feel that they will last the distance. I fully expect to be wearing these boots in 5 years time whilst (most likely) dragging a complaining 5 year old geocaching on the moors.

A close up shot of the Mauria hiking boot.

Because of this, I highly recommend checking out Lowa boots if you’re in the market for some new hiking or walking boots. They have so many options and, if they’re all as well-made as these Mauria boots, you really can’t go wrong!

The boots in this post have been gifted for the purpose of review by Lowa.  All thoughts and opinions expressed remain true to my own findings.

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11 Comments

  1. Claire Roach
    October 22, 2019 / 2:05 pm

    Aww I really miss hiking, it used to be a passion of mine until a nasty ankle and wrist injury put rest to it 🙁

  2. MELANIE EDJOURIAN
    October 22, 2019 / 2:21 pm

    I would really like to take up hiking as I love to walk and be surrounded by nature. The boots sound like they are perfect for the varied terrain you would have walked over. I like a padded sole too!!!

  3. October 22, 2019 / 2:52 pm

    These boots do look absolutely amazing and they sound like absolutely quality to have and like you say, it is an investment!

  4. October 22, 2019 / 4:29 pm

    These look so nice and comfy, perfect for long walks on the moors with a dog.

  5. October 22, 2019 / 7:58 pm

    I used to love heading out with my pooch Sal and heading over the common with her. Seeing her run and about, barking in delight was something that really lifted my hear – such amazing memories.
    It looks like you have managed to put together some amazing essentials which will keep you warm, cosy and comfortable while you hike through the winter.

  6. October 22, 2019 / 8:41 pm

    These look like the perfect boots for hiking! I’m actually in need of a new pair of hiking boots so will check them out!

  7. rhian westbury
    October 23, 2019 / 12:40 am

    These definitely look comfortable, as a plus-sized lady myself I know how many boots I buy just don’t have enough comfort underneath and cause discomfort when walking too much x

  8. October 23, 2019 / 11:47 am

    Getting out and about for hikes is such a great activity, and good exercise and good for the soul. You are so right about needing the right footwear and I hasten to add that you would be foolish not to have them. My boots are over 20 years old and have seen many a peak, many a path and a puddle. Good support, durability, and waterproofing are key. Your boots sound ideal and I am in no doubt that they will see you through many years of roaming.

  9. October 23, 2019 / 1:24 pm

    Ahhhhhh Dartmoor! I grew up near there, we used to go walking over the moors and climbing tors at weekends! Your boots look great, I need some proper hiking boots.

  10. October 24, 2019 / 8:21 pm

    I’d never really hiked before until this summer but I really enjoyed it! So much so that I’ve actually asked for a pair of hiking boots this Christmas so I can do more of it next year x

  11. October 25, 2019 / 8:55 pm

    I grew up in Cumbria surrounded by beautiful hills. Now that I live in Norfolk, I do miss the chance to get outdoors and go hiking.