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Best Hiking Boots for Adventure Elopements in 2023

Table of Contents:

bouquet in a pair of hiking boots forest landscape

Okayyy so you’ve picked your dream adventure elopement location and you’re starting to plan your outfit. Then you realize wait – what the hell kind of shoes do I wear?? I put together this guide for you to the best hiking boots for adventure elopements so that you can learn what you should take into consideration when buying your boots, and how to find the best ones for you. Happy shoe shopping!

hiking books surrounding vow book

What to Consider When Choosing Hiking Boots for Your Adventure Elopement


Before anything else, figure out what type of hiking boots you’re looking for based on the type of hike you’ll be doing + the terrain. Are you simply taking a short trail to your ceremony location and won’t need anything more intense than ultralight trail shoes? Or are you going to be backpacking through the mountains on paths that aren’t well taken-care-of and will need specific mountaineering boots? 

What are the most common types of hiking boots?

Here are the three most common types of hiking boots that you’ll find on the market:

  • Ultralight hiking shoes
  • Day-hiking boots
  • Backpacking boots

If you’re an avid hiker, you might already have some great backpacking hiking boots lying around that’ll fit the type of hike + landscape you’ll be experiencing during your adventure elopement. However, if you typically hike in the mountains on paths made of compact soil, but you’ll be hiking a sandy beach trail for your elopement, the shoes you have might not cut it. 

If you’re NOT an avid hiker and don’t already own hiking boots, consider buying some type of all-purpose, ultralight day-hiking boots that you’ll be able to use for any future hikes you take. Since you’ll need to buy brand new boots for your elopement, ya might as well make sure you can use them in the future instead of buying niche, terrain-specific boots that you’ll never be able to use again!

hiking boots in wedding outfits


Hiking boots come in a variety of prices, but typically they’ll be on the more expensive end if you want to buy high-quality, durable boots from a reputable brand. Most of the boots on the list below are in the $100-$200 price range, but it’s important to figure out your realistic budget when you start shopping for hiking boots. 

If you don’t hike a ton and likely won’t use your boots much more after your elopement, opt for a less pricey pair that doesn’t have all the bells & whistles an avid hiker may be looking for. 

If you REALLY won’t use them after your elopement, you can also recycle your gently used hiking boots through companies like Nike’s Reuse-a-Shoe or Soles4Souls!

On the other hand, if you know you’ve been needing an upgrade or know that you’ll use your boots many more times after your elopement, it might be worth it to spend a little more on durable boots that fit all the specifications you’re looking for. 

leather hiking boots


Material is important to take into consideration when you’re buying any shoes or clothing items, but it’s especiallyyyy important when you’re buying hiking boots. The material your boots are made of will impact their durability, resistance, flexibility, and breathability, along with comfort, your ability to walk on different terrain, and how quickly you can break them in.

What are the most common hiking boot materials?

The most common hiking boot materials include:

  • Leather: full-grain, split-grain, & nubuck
  • Synthetics
  • Waterproof membranes
  • Vegan
  • Synthetic insulation

If you’re looking for hiking boots that will be super durable, resistant to water, and great for extended trips on rugged terrain, you’ll want to go with full-grain leather hiking boots.

If you want breathable leather boots at a slightly lower cost, with a little bit less water resistance, opt for split-grain leather hiking boots, which are usually paired with nylon to make the boots super lightweight. 

The final type of leather that hiking boots are often made up of is nubuck leather, which is simply full-grain leather that has been buffed to look like suede.

Hiking boots made with waterproof membranes, like Gore-Tex, are meant to keep your feet dry in wet conditions, so they’re great for hikes in rainy weather or on wet ground. Keep in mind that this material doesn’t allow for as much breathability, so your feet will probs be sweating if it’s hot out.

Vegan hiking boots are simply boots made without any animal ingredients/byproducts, and synthetic insulation is an element often added to mountaineering boots for extra warmth on snowy/icy terrain.

two pairs of hiking boots together


Comfort is obviously a huge part of finding the right pair of hiking boots for you, since you’ll be wearing the boots for long periods of time & they’ll be supporting you while you explore different types of rugged, unpredictable terrain. Make sure you buy hiking boots that are snug enough that your feet won’t be sliding around in them, but that are loose enough that your feet won’t be hurting/falling asleep during your hike.

A few ways to make sure your hiking boots are super comfy:

  • Buy boots with cushioned midsoles – polyurethane is very durable, whereas EVA provides firm support & is a bit more cushy
  • Add internal support such as shanks or plates
  • Buy from a familiar brand – it’ll definitely help to buy from a brand you’ve bought shoes from before so you know what their sizing is like, especially if you’re buying online!
  • Wear the right socks – we’ll go more into this at the end of this blog!
  • Buy from a specialized store – buying your boots at a specific outdoor store like REI will usually mean you can ask a specialist for help measuring your feet + finding the perfect size.

Pro tip: break in your boots BEFORE your adventure elopement!!

Do notttt buy your hiking boots the day before your adventure elopement and then wear them for the first time on your big day! Your feet might end up sore due to the stiffness of the boots, especially if they’re made up of a stiffer material. REI has a great blog about how to break in your hiking boots that you should read!

bride putting on hiking boots


If you might get rain or snow during your hike, or you’ll be hiking on any sort of wet ground, you need to be sure to get great waterproof boots so your feet stay dry. Like I mentioned above, full-grain leather has naturally water-resistant properties, so I recommend buying hiking boots made up of either full-grain leather/nubuck leather or synthetic materials such as nylon, and that are made with waterproof membranes like Gore-Tex. You can also use waterproofing spray as a last resort or as extra protection!

couple walking in hiking boots forest landscape


Lastly, make sure your hiking boots match your style & will go well with your elopement outfits! I personally LOVE the way traditional hiking boots look with wedding dresses, I think it looks so rad and can be super stylish. Don’t worry toooo much about the color of your boots since they’re going to get dirty and will probably be at least partially covered by your dress/pant legs. But also don’t let me tell you what to do – if you’re dreaming of wearing white boots to go with your white dress, or green boots to go with your emerald green velvet suit, freaking go for it! You can also find more stylish boots if you really look for them, and if you’re not hiking a far distance or on super rugged terrain.

Need some help choosing your dress, too?? Check out my Ultimate Guide to Choosing Your Dream Hiking Elopement Dress!

couple walking in hiking boots

Overall Best Hiking Boot Brands of 2023

There are soooo many brands that sell great hiking boots, so I could really go on forever about all the best ones. But here is a quick list of a few of the best brands that I would personally look into first when shopping for hiking boots for your adventure elopement!

Best hiking boot brands for adventure elopements:

hiking boots next to ring and vowbook

Best Women’s Hiking Boots for Adventure Elopements

Here’s a simplified list of some of the BEST women’s hiking boots for adventure elopements, depending on the type of terrain/landscape you’re eloping in!!

On a Budget: REI Co-op Flash Hiking Boots ($44.83)

For Mountain Elopements: La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX Hiking Boots ($229)

For Beach Elopements: Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid GORE-TEX Hiking Boots ($165)

For Forest Elopements: Danner Trail 2650 Hiking Shoes ($169.95)

For Desert Elopements: Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator ($110)

Okayyy and just for fun, here are some cuter, more stylish boots if you’re looking to match your boots to your elopement outfit/aesthetic a lil more! Keep in mind that they may not be as functional or durable for more rugged terrain but you’ll sure as hell look cute wearing them.

two pairs of hiking boots

Cute Hiking Shoes for Adventure Elopements:

hiking boots next to bouquet and dress

Best Men’s Hiking Boots for Adventure Elopements

Aaand now for the men!

On a Budget: REI Co-op Flash Hiking Boots ($44.83)

For Mountain Elopements: La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX Hiking Boots ($229)

For Beach Elopements: Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid GORE-TEX Hiking Boots ($165)

For Forest Elopements: Danner Trail 2650 Hiking Shoes ($169.95)

For Desert Elopements: Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator ($110)

groom putting on hiking boot

Bonus Tips for Choosing Your Adventure Elopement Shoes

Let’s wrap up with a few bonus tips to help you find the perf hiking boots for your adventure elopement!!

  1. Break them in beforehand: like I already mentioned above, pleaseeee do NOT wear brand new boots to your elopement. Your feet will get sore and that is not how you want to experience your epic hiking elopement!
  2. Function > fashion: I know that hiking boots can sometimes be a bit bulky, but I def personally think it’s better to have functional, durable, and comfortable boots than super cute, stylish ones – especially if you’re going on a significant hike. I promise your boots will look cute with your elopement outfit no matter what, and they’ll feel much more authentic to the day than if you were to suffer through a long hike with uncomfy boots that are a little more fashionable!
  3. You can bring cuter shoes along: if you really don’t want to wear your hiking boots at your ceremony or while you take couples portraits, you can bring a pair of cuter shoes in your backpack and change into them if it’s safe to do so once you arrive at the spot you’re stopping at! I would say avoid heels though because it will NOT be fun having your heel get stuck in a root or between rocks when you’re trying to stroll gracefully along the mountain top for your photos.
bouquet in a pair of boots

There you have it – all my best tips for choosing the best hiking boots for your adventure elopement! I can’t wait to see what you pick for your big day!!

If you want some more helpful resources + more of my top elopement tips, check out my other recent blogs below:

10 of the Best Trails in Washington State for a Hiking Elopement

How to Have a Leave No Trace Elopement | The 7 LNT Principles

How to Plan Your Perfect Elopement in 18 Steps

  1. Kathy says:

    Omg so helpful!

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  5. […] heels are cute but hiking boots can be JUST as cute, I promise!! Be sure to look at my guide to the Best Hiking Elopement Boots if you’re not sure what to […]

  6. […] picking the best hiking elopement dress here, as well as a guide to choosing the best hiking boots here. Def recommend checking those out so that you pick outfits + shoes that are cute and stylish, but […]

  7. […] explore the park. I promise you can find super cute hiking boots to go with your elopement attire, here are some of my personal fave hiking boots for adventure […]

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