You may have a pair of Vans classic shoes and wonder if they’re good for hiking. It may seem tempting to bring your Vans to the trails because they are so versatile for day-to-day walking. However, shoes that aren’t made for hiking can be hit or miss on a trail or mountain.
For short paved hikes, Vans classic shoes can be a suitable choice. However, they aren’t recommended for longer or more intense hikes because they lack ankle support and durability for certain weather conditions.
Read on to learn more about whether or not these shoes are good for hiking, and how to improve their durability and functionality if you do choose to use them for this purpose.
Are Vans Good for Hiking?
Vans shoes are good walking shoes and people like to use them while traveling, in urban areas, or during long travel days. If you’re going to wear them for your next hike, make sure it is a short hike on a well-maintained trail. If you’re looking for shoes to take your hiking up a notch, we suggest checking out other shoe options.
At the very least, make sure you are familiar with the trail you will be hiking on if you will be using your Vans shoes. This way, if you encounter slippery areas, steep inclines, or rocky terrain, you’ll be prepared.
Vans have a fairly strong grip on their soles, so they will do well on slick surfaces. This is why this shoe became so popular with skaters and helped to launch the skating trend. However, this grip can also be a downside on trails with loose surfaces or when crossing streams because it increases the likelihood of slipping.
Vans classic shoes aren’t waterproof, meaning that they aren’t ideal for hiking in wet conditions. If it’s raining, snowing, or sleeting, your shoes are going to get wet and you’ll be at a higher risk of slipping on the trails.
The cushioning on Vans shoes isn’t designed for extreme shock absorption, so they may not be the best option if you’re hiking on uneven or rocky terrain. You can add a foam or gel insert to your shoes to provide more cushioning, but this will also add weight and may not be ideal for long hikes.
If you’re looking for arch support, the Vans shoes may not be the best option. They have low arch support, which can be uncomfortable for some people over long distances.
Additionally, the canvas material is more likely to tear or rip on branches and other sharp objects that you might encounter while hiking.
The bottom line is that Vans classic shoes can work for short hikes on paved trails, but we don’t recommend them for more intense or longer hikes.
How Can I Waterproof My Vans?
If you’re looking to waterproof your Vans shoes, we suggest using wax or spray-on waterproofing product. Make sure to test the waterproofing on a small, inconspicuous area of your shoe first to make sure it doesn’t cause any damage.
This is a good compromise if you want to use Vans for hiking because although they won’t provide full support, they will be able to hold up better to the elements. This will also extend the life of your shoes as well.
Some waterproofing sprays contain harmful chemicals that can damage your shoes, so it’s important to do your research before purchasing a product. Look for sprays that are made with silicone or other water-repelling materials.
If you’re using a spray-on waterproofing agent, make sure to apply it evenly to all of the surfaces of your shoes. You don’t want any areas that are left unprotected and will be more susceptible to water damage.
If you’re having trouble choosing a waterproofing product, we suggest asking an expert at your local outdoor store for advice. They’ll be able to help you find the best product for your needs and your Vans shoes.
Does Waterproofing Shoes Make Them Less Breathable?
It’s important to consider the breathability of your Vans shoes because this will affect the temperature and comfort level of your feet.
Waterproofing products can make shoes less breathable, so it’s important to find a product that won’t compromise the ventilation of your shoes. If you’re using wax, make sure it is beeswax or another natural waterproofing agent. This way, you’ll avoid any harmful chemicals and ensure that your shoes will still be able to breathe.
Do Vans Cause Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is a common injury that is caused by overuse or repetitive stress on the plantar fascia, the ligament that connects your heel to your toes. Symptoms of this injury include pain in the heel and along the arch of the foot.
There is no evidence that wearing Vans shoes specifically causes plantar fasciitis, but any shoe that doesn’t have good arch support can cause this condition over time. If you’re experiencing pain in your feet or heel after hiking in Vans shoes, it’s possible that you have developed plantar fasciitis from the added stress on your feet.
If this is the case, seek medical attention and look for a shoe with better arch support to prevent the pain from worsening.
Does Vans Make a Hiking Boot?
Yes, Vans does make a hiking boot. However, this style of shoe is not as versatile as classic shoes and is designed for more specific purposes. The hiking boots have better ankle support, durability, and weatherproofing than the classics do, making them a better option for intense or long hikes.
The SK8-HI GORE-TEX MTE-3 is a good example of a hiking boot made by Vans. If you’re looking for a shoe that can do it all, classic shoes are not going to be the best option. However, if you need a specific type of shoe for your hike, then Vans has you covered with their line of hiking boots.
If you enjoy hiking in sneakers but want something more durable than the Vans classic shoe, the Vans UltraRange is a good option. This style of shoe is designed for versatile use and has higher ankle support, better grip, and more cushioning than the classics. It’s also water-resistant so you can wear it in wet weather conditions.
Overall, Vans shoes are not the best choice for hiking. They are, however, a comfortable choice for short walks on well-paved trails. If you love the Vans brand, consider purchasing their hiking boots instead of their classic shoes such as the SK8-HI GORE-TEX MTE-3. These boots are specifically designed for hiking and will provide you with better support and durability on the trail.
Looking to hike in your Doc Martens, or Red Wings? Check out our guides to hitting the trails in your favourite boots.