Are Doc Martens Good For Hiking and Climbing?

Are Doc Martens Good For Hiking and Climbing

If you’re going on a hiking trip, you know how important it is to find the right hiking boots. Hiking requires footwear that is tough enough for the rough terrain but comfortable enough for the long hours of wear.

There aren’t many boots that fit this description, and if you own a pair of Doc Martens, you might be wondering if they’re good for hiking.

Are Doc Martens Good For Hiking and Climbing?

Yes, Doc Martens are good for hiking. However, they may not be your best option for off road treks or long hikes in tough environments like deserts and mountains.

The simple truth is that this footwear may not be your best choice for enjoying the back-country. But, if being comfortable in your hiking boots is important to you, then wearing Doc Martens on and around trails may be just the ticket.

Dr. Martens Unisex-Adult Hiking Boot

Are Doc Martens Good For Hiking and Climbing?

What Makes Doc Martens Good For Hiking and Climbing?

If you plan on wearing Doc Martens for hiking, be sure to break them in first by taking some short hikes until you become accustomed to them – ankle support will be different from what you’re used to as well as having someone there to help stabilize your ankles if needed.  

Water Proof

Some hiking boots are waterproof but most have some sort of water-resistant coating and even the most expensive brands can’t compare with Doc Martens when it comes to keeping your feet dry.


What makes Doc Marten’s soles so effective at repelling moisture is their unique construction that employs a combination of Goodyear welted construction, air-cushioned sole units and a special non-slip tread pattern known as “Nylex Reinforced.”


Surprisingly, the non-slip tread pattern is not patented by Doc Marten so it’s used by other brands.  For example, there are hiking shoes with Vibram soles that have a similar tread pattern to Micheline Jungle Mocs; they’re just designed in a different style of shoe.

Traction refers to a shoe’s resistance to slippage. This is important when going hiking because you don’t want to be wearing slick shoes. Instead, you’ll need a pair with a tough and treaded outsole design that won’t slip no matter what the weather is like.

Doc Martens has a competitive advantage in this area because these boots were designed to be slip-resistant.

Air Cushioned Sole

Along with non-slip properties, the air cushioned sole units offer shock absorption without sacrificing support and durability.   Another advantage of their air cushioning system is its ability to provide comfort even after you’ve hiked for miles.

Doc Martens’ air cushioned soles with PVC dots repel moisture and keep your feet dry – this is very important if you’re hiking in wet climates.

You may not find it troublesome to wear boots that simply “insulate” your feet from the cold when compared to wearing shoes or sandals but once you’ve experienced hot and sweaty feet in a pair of hiking boots, it’s hard to go back.


A good pair of hiking shoes should protect your feet from harsh trail conditions. Doc Martens has always prioritized providing workers with protective footwear.

The tough leather surface and steel toe included in some models provide much-needed protection. Unfortunately, the brand’s heavy-duty models lack the flexibility required for strenuous hikes.

Straps and buckles

If you hike in cold weather, a pair of sturdy buckle-up boots can keep your toes from freezing while double leather straps along with metal hardware will prevent them from getting wet if you step into shallow puddles.

Light Weight

You can answer by saying Doc Martens’ are lightweight in comparison to regular boots which makes them perfect for backpacking along with all styles of outdoor activities such as hiking, mountain climbing and hiking.

The weight of your hiking shoes is an important consideration because it affects your performance. To have a good time, you should wear lightweight shoes that will not drag you back no matter how far you walk.

Doc Martens don’t fare well in this category because, when compared to specially designed hiking boots, they are a little heavy.

READ MORE: Are Combat Boots Good For Hiking?


Doc Martens shoes are also incredibly comfortable. You’ll hardly notice you’re wearing them after a short time of getting used to them.

And thanks to their thin soles, you will have the necessary sensitivity on uneven terrain so as not to trip or slip on objects along the way.

The thick rubber sole makes these shoes suitable for hiking in wet and slippery conditions .In fact, hikers wear Docs for this very reason because they can tread easily over slippery surfaces with no fear of falling.

FREE SOLDIER Men’s Hiking Boots 8 Inches Lightweight

Are Doc Martens Good For Hiking and Climbing?

Choosing The Right Doc Martens For Hiking

Not only does wearing the wrong size hiking boots cause your feet to get sore and blister, they could also injure you in slippery conditions.

Choose The Right Size

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that you’ll need a pair of shoes that fit perfectly before you start your hike. These are not the times to scrimp on the shape and dimensions of your hiking shoes, as they must be perfect.

Boots that fit snugly around the ankle and heel while allowing enough room for your toes to wiggle are ideal.

When it comes to Doc Martens, you should know that finding the right size will not be a problem, but you will need to break them in first.

Because of the toughness of these shoes, you can’t wear them until you’ve spent weeks gradually softening and getting used to them.

The Right Socks

During the break-in period for your boots, it is critical to wear thick woolen socks. To soften the leather, use the leather softener and protector provided by the company.

Never use these boots for extended periods of time until you have completed this rite of passage, or you will end up with severe blisters.

READ MORE : Can You Run in Hiking Shoes?

Break Them In

If you plan on wearing Doc Martens for hiking, be sure to break them in first by taking some short hikes until you become accustomed to them – ankle support will be different from what you’re used to as well as having someone there to help stabilize your ankles if needed.

In fact, try hiking in tennis shoes or sandals before switching over to Doc Martens so that your ankles can get used to the difference between stiff and non-stiff footwear. You’ll want those stiff boots but not at the expense of an injury.


Most people who wear Doc Martens will tell you how great they are and recommend them instead of your average hiking boots which cost $150+ but here’s the thing: You can get a decent pair of hiking boots for $70-$100. The cost is cheap considering you don’t have to re-purchase them in 2 months or fix them every other month.

So, if you’re going on an overnight hike then unless they’re free (which your old Doc Martens might be) I would recommend getting some waterproof hiking boots for the same price and treat it as an investment piece that will last you years and years.

Are Doc Martens good for long walks?

Yes ,They provide good ankle support because of thick leather material used and an extremely durable sole unit made out of rubber with small air bubbles inside it that make it very flexible for walking long walks.

They are a great choice to choose when walking due to their design and the are very combatable

Can You Run In Dr Martens?

It is a popular misconception that Dr Martens boots are not good for running in.

The truth is that as long as you choose the appropriate product, they can make an ideal footwear choice for runners.

If you run most of your runs on tarmac or less uneven surfaces, there is no reason why Doc Martens shoes shouldn’t be just as good to use as any other running footwear option.

They are also ideal if you like to take part in multi-terrain races as they can handle more varied terrains other than tarmac without compromising their comfort or traction quality – something which is not true of many running shoes designed for this purpose.


The answer to the question of whether Doc Martens are good for hiking is a resounding yes. The shoe was designed in 1964, at the height of mountaineering popularity and has an incredible history that spans decades.

One standout feature is its ability to withstand rugged terrain while still being able to keep your feet warm when necessary. If you’re looking for shoes with this type of versatility then look no further than Doc Martens!

Read More: Best Hiking Shoes For Yellowstone

Resources: Dr. Martens


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