How to choose trekking Boots for Everest

by Kshaunish Jaini

Conquering the world’s highest mountain is no easy feat, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. If you strive to develop your physical and mental strength, reaching the heights of Mount Everest should be relatively easier. Moreover, it’s incredibly important for aspiring trekkers to utilize best mountaineering tools. Aside from durable tents and cold-resistant clothing, people should also consider the best boots for climbing Mount Everest.

The Necessity for Reliable Boots on Everest

Attempting to climb Everest requires a great deal of investment. If you were just going through a relaxing trail, even tennis shoes would perfectly work. However, it’s an entirely different thing when you’re testing your limits with an 8,848-meter trek involving the most dangerous paths and unforgiving weather. Take note that you will likely be spending two weeks to get to the base camp of Everest and upto two months trekking the entirety of Everest. Thus, using poor quality boots will most likely ruin your expedition.

If you wear the wrong kind of footwear on your Everest climb,  your neck, shoulder, and back can experience pain and problems later. In order to reduce the risk of injuries, picking the right pair is really important. After all, you wouldn’t want your grand adventure to be sabotaged by muscle fatigue and broken ankles that could have been prevented by wearing the right pair of boots.

So, what does it mean to have reliable boots for Everest?

First and foremost, they need to be flexible. The trek isn’t characterized by a single, straight route. There are many perils that require trekkers to easily move and change directions. Your feet need to have the allowance to naturally bend and flex. Secondly, the boots should have a terrific and solid heel to grant sufficient support. More importantly, a quality heel that inhibits unnecessary movement inside the footwear will prevent small, yet painful, issues such as blisters and sores. Another feature you should definitely look forward to is ankle support, which is essential in surviving harsh terrains. Without enough ankle support, your ankle could easily get injured as you traverse rough ground. The boots should also have limited breathability. If your shoes aren’t breathable, it can lead to sweating, swelling and heating of your feet. On the other hand, ultra-breathable footwear can lead to frostbite. The secret is finding that sweet spot in the middle Finally, the best boots for your Everest trek need to have effective shock absorption. It’s going to be a long, tiring climb, so your feet need to stay as comfortable as possible.

Understanding the Everest Base Camp

Picking the best boots for Everest isn’t as simple as buying the most expensive one and using that for the whole trek. You will need to use two different pairs of boots if you want to effectively climb the mountain. Basically, your trip can be divided into two: the Everest Base Camp and the Everest Summit Trek. Furthermore, the Everest Base Camp has two options,  the Southern Route and the Northern Route. Mountaineers need to stay at this camp for a number of days in order to acclimatize and rest for their summit attempt. Doing so helps the body fend off severe degrees of altitude sickness.

The Southern Base Camp of Mount Everest is located in Nepal. It’s the route chosen by trekkers if they will use the southeast ridge. Here, various supplies including food, medicine, and additional equipment are provided by the trekking company / guides and are supported by porters or Sherpas who get to their destination with the help of animal transportation. You can expect to see them driving yaks and dzos as they bring your emergency supplies. In 2015, about forty thousand mountaineers went through the Southern Base Camp, which clearly indicates that this side of the Everest Base Camp is the more popular route. On the other hand, taking the Northern Base Camp can be a bit more difficult for various reasons. You can read more about which Everest route to choose here . Thankfully, both of these routes can be accessed by vehicles, although the South Base Camp’s side only allows this during the summer months.

Boots recommended for the Everest Base Camp

The important thing to keep in mind is that your ankles should have good support, the soles should have a good grip and they should protect you from the snow ( if you encounter any ). At the very least, break in your shoes with a few hikes under your belt, before you embark on the trail to Everest!

One of the things you need to remember when buying boots for the Everest trek is that you should test them out first. This means that it’s best if you will go to an actual, physical store to test the flexibility, durability, and comfort of a pair of boots. Also, once you buy them, don’t forget to break the boots in to avoid blisters. Finally, remember that the Everest Base Camp is actually more about walking rather than climbing. For this, you have a variety of options.

The first option is to get a decent pair of hiking boots. Make sure that they are the right size for you. You don’t even need to pick water-resistant boots since they will all succumb to the ice and snow eventually. Oddly enough, a pair of boots that is not resistant to water will dry quicker. Once your feet are wet, just wear a new pair of socks and continue walking. Hiking boots are a great choice if you’re at the Everest Base Camp during spring or autumn.

Another option is to get snow boots. In particular, you must get a pair of snow boots if you will be experiencing a lot of snowfall. Be sure to check weather updates before and during the trip so you can pick the right footwear. Trekkers usually get these during the colder parts of the year, particularly from December to February. With snow boots, you won’t have to worry about your feet getting terribly cold. Not to mention, it’s just that much easier to walk in the snow with this kind of boots.

If you want a specific recommendation, go ahead and try the Vasque Breeze 2.0 GTX. These are relatively comfortable yet tough hiking boots. These boots utilize nylon mesh linings to immediately remove excess moisture and speed up drying. In addition, shock absorption is good with these boots since they have molded EVA midsoles. The fact that this pair of boots has Gore-Tex liners means that your feet will be protected from tough conditions while the rubber outsoles provide enough traction and stability during long treks at the Everest Base Camp.

Some Recommendations:

New Balance Hiking Shoes  - worn by Lou Whittaker to the North Col - article reference

Scarpa Kailash Hiking Boots

Boots for the Everest Summit Trek

While tens of thousands of people have been at the Everest Base Camp in 2015, only 641 people were able to complete the Everest Summit Trek in the same year. Furthermore, only about 7,600 ( 7,646 as March 2017 ) successful summits have been achieved since 1953. This stark contrast in numbers is a clear indication of the difficulty of the climb to the top. If you’re still up for the challenge, there are two pairs of boots you can choose from.

La sportiva boots for Everest seen from multiple angles

The Olympus Mons Evo boots from La Sportiva

The Olympus Mons Evo boots from La Sportiva were made to support your climb once you’ve reached an altitude of 8,000 meters and above. Under these extreme conditions, these boots have managed to stay quite light at 49.86 ounces. La Sportiva utilizes both Cordura and Kevlar fabrics to ensure durability and effectiveness against snow and water. If the snow and ice become an issue and you need to use crampons, these boots are compatible with crampons. More importantly, they were created for steep terrain – something you’ll face many times during the Everest Summit Trek. Prices are on the higher end approximating about USD 1000

Millet boots for climbing Everest

Millet boots

Aside from the Olympus Mons Evo, you can get the Millet Everest GTX. Millet produces some of the best climbing boots. These lie in a range of USD 250 to 650, and they’ve been a trusted brand for Everest climbers. Just like the boots from La Sportiva, the Everest GTX boots are both rigid and effective against harsh winds, snow, and water – made possible through Gore-Tex technology and premium materials. The Everest GTX boots are also built to easily attach to crampons, aside from arguably having the best insulation a pair of boots could ever provide. If you truly want the best boots for reaching the summit of Mount Everest, this is it. The Everest GTX boots come from an established, trustworthy brand – and Millet has succeeded in making boots worthy of conquering the extremely cold and high-altitude environment of the world’s tallest mountain.

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