Several decades ago, if you hiked down a trail, almost everyone you passed would be sporting a pair of above-ankle hiking boots. Today, the footwear scene looks a little bit different. For many hikers, trail runners have replaced hiking boots as the footwear of choice. These shoes are like road running shoes but they are made to withstand the rigors of hiking or running down a trail.
Though there are still situations in which hiking boots are the better choice, trail runners offer a lot of advantages to the average hiker. Here’s a closer look at why trail runners have become so popular, along with the times when you still want to reach for traditional hiking boots.