Man isn’t meant to stay indoors — our weekly “Trekking” column can attest to that. It’s a column dedicated to the adventurer inside of all of us, the one pining to ditch the office humdrum for a quick surf session or seven-week jaunt in the Grand Tetons. One day we may highlight an ultra-light stove and the next a set of handmade canoe paddles. Life doesn’t just happen inside the workplace, so get outside and live it.
It’s difficult to understate the value of a quality hiking boot. They provide traction and protection while you stumble through the woods or ascend a nearby mountain, giving your feet much-needed support within a durable package that’s designed to thwart the everyday elements. However, few modern hiking boots offer the kind of streamlined style and subtle nuances as those lining Ridgemont’s Outback series ($125).
The California-based Ridgemont Outfitters is a small company with a penchant for balance. Former pro skater Stacy Lowery started the company in 2010 as a compromise, a simple means for bringing the best of both worlds together without delving too far into either. That said, the Ridgemont Outback is the perfect example of the aforementioned vision. The sleek high-tops offer unparalleled versatility in one of three distinct colors — brown, black, or grey — meshing waxed cotton canvas with an oiled-leather exterior for added durability. The waterproof pair of casual kicks also adopt rigid, vulcanized rubber and a robust lugged tread on the bottom, rendering them even more suitable for your outdoor escapades without sacrificing their welcome sense of style and laid-back demeanor.
The merits of the Ridgemont Outbacks don’t stop there, though. Their Ortholite innersoles and padded ankle support give them even more appeal, delivering a comfortable fit that doesn’t wear on you during laborious hiking sessions. We wouldn’t recommend them for a 2,663-mile trek on the Pacific Crest Trail, but for a quick jaunt before grabbing a beer downtown, there are few finer shoes fit for the task.
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