Hi-Tec Total Terrain Aero Mid (Women’s) Hiking Shoes

The manufacturer provided these shoes for the purpose of this review.

By Jenn K.

Hi-Tec Total Terrain Aero The Hi-Tec Total Terrain Aero Mid Women’s Shoe is a new addition to the Hi-Tec shoe line-up. These hiking shoes are a waterproof, mid-height shoe. The upper is constructed of ventilated mesh and suede.

I am reviewing these shoes in a size 8, which is my normal hiking shoe size. I found that the toe box area is on the narrow side, but this is not a worry for me as my feet are not wide. The shoes fit great with a feeling of support. I tried them on with a mid-weight wool sock.

The shoes I am reviewing are the Charcoal/Grey/Cyclamen/Cool Grey color which is mostly grey with dark pink accents. I am not a person that is fond of pink. However, these shoes look cool with the grey and pink accents. The pink is not overbearing and it gives the shoes some “pop”.

These shoes are packed with features. They have a ghillie (like dance slippers) and eyelet lacing system. There is one main loop towards the toe of the shoe. Then there are 4 loops on each side of the lacing system with a plastic eyelet at the top on each side.

The lining of the Total Terrain Aero Mid is moisture wicking and has an anti-odor/anti-microbial OrthoLite sockliner. The foot bed is primarily foam and is lined with OrthoLite. This foot bed has reinforcement from the mid-foot to the heel. The midsole is contoured CMEVA and the outsole is MDT carbon rubber.

The outsole has a multi-directional tread/lug pattern that is primarily black with pink accents. There is a different tread pattern (not as aggressive) for the toe zone and the heel area. The rubber on the outsole overlaps on the toe and heel areas of the main shoe body. And the toe area of the shoe body is reinforced to prevent scuffing the area.

These shoes weigh 1 lb. 10.30 oz. and are available in women’s sizes 5-10 and 11. They are also available in three colors: Blue Moon/Metal/Minty, Charcoal/Grey/Cyclamen/Cool Grey, and Smokey Brown/Candy.

Update 9/18/12

During the past month I wore the Hi-Tec Total Terrain Aero Mid Boots while on two fitness hikes (4 miles each) and on two longer day-hikes (8 miles each). On the fitness hikes I generally carry a small backpack or a waist belt that holds my water. On the longer day-hikes I carried a medium sized day pack. The fitness hikes I participate in are on dirt and are generally completed as a very brisk hike; almost to the point of a slight jog.

The boots are easy to put on and take off my feet. The pull tab works well to put them on. The lacing system is comfortable and there was no difficulty with me tightening or loosening the laces to my desired comfort level. I found that when they are tied it is best to double knot the laces to keep them from opening.

The Total Terrain Boots have been comfortable to wear on my fast paced fitness hikes and my slower paced day-hikes. The boots have a smaller toe box than I am used to. I am not able to wear my heaviest socks with these boots for this reason. However, the boots are comfortable with a mid-weight wool sock and there have not been any foot pressure areas or decreased circulation in my feet. However, on my first outing with the boots I had a small pressure area on my ankle where the cuff of the right boot rests against my skin. I bent it back some and that relieved the friction in that area. Also when wearing these boots my heel is not sliding inside or lifting up.

The boots are lightweight and sturdy. The bottom provides traction while walking on loose dirt, pebbles, and on pavement. The boots have been worn on damp/wet pavement from water run-off and I found that I was able to keep my footing on the wet surface. I also had the opportunity to walk on a wet wooden bridge while wearing these boots and I had a loss of footing. I believe it was primarily because I had some mud on the bottom of the boots before I stepped on the bridge.

The weather in Southern California has been warm recently. The temperatures have been above 90 degrees during most of my outdoor activities the past month. The Total Terrain Aero Mid Boots have been wicking moisture from my feet. I cannot smell a stinky odor inside the boots from my sweat.

The foot bed is not the most supportive. I have fallen arches and I like more support from my foot beds. This helps with my foot stabilization and my alignment from my foot to my knee. These foot beds are not stiff and do not allow for the support I need, especially in the arch area. But, this is the same issue I have with all my other hiking boots and I generally use customized insoles.

Unfortunately as of now these boots have only been worn in dry weather conditions and only on wet surfaces. The boot body has not been exposed to water to see if the waterproofness is effective. I will have to find some water to play in during the next few weeks. The exterior of the boots are holding up well and I have just been wiping off the dirt dust to keep them looking in great shape.

These boots have a nice design for women and are stylish. I received some positive comments on them while I was on the fitness hikes. The pink and grey combinations of colors really make these boots appealing.

Update 10/17/12

The Hi-Tec Total Terrain Aero Mid Boots have been worn the past month on one fitness hike and three times while exploring on the trails near my home after work. The fitness hike is 6 miles in length and near my house I hiked three to four miles. On all occasions I either carried a small pack or a waist belt. The temperatures have been in the mid 60’s to the upper 80’s on the days I have worn these boots.

The boots are very comfortable. It took me some time to get used to the smaller toe box. However, I like the slenderness of the forefoot area. It seems like my foot positioning and traction is much better with a more slender forefoot. I noticed that after wearing the boots a few times my feet were not irritated nor were there any pressure areas. The boots are a perfect height as they give my ankle support where I need it, are comfortable near my ankle, and prevents my ankle from “rolling”. For day-hiking boots I tend to like a mid-height boot and not a very high boot, so these are working out well.

The boots are still holding up well. There are no scuffs on the toe protector area, as this area seems to be very durable and scuff resistant. The laces have not frayed and the mesh fabric is not showing signs of wear. Some sections of the suede leather developed marks from brushing up against objects (rocks, etc.). However, I noticed that the suede can be easily brushed to look like new with a suede brush, hence the marking removed.

I had to opportunity to expose the boots to water. I slipped on a few wet rocks and actually ended up in some shallow water in the bay near my house. The water was only a few inches deep and the areas of the boots that were exposed to the water did not have any water seep through. The inside lining was dry.

I found that the inner lining does not trap odor or sweat. At the most the boots have been slightly moist on the inside from my feet sweating. They have not developed a foul odor.

I am still not a fan of the foot bed. I like a foot bed that is more supportive for my fallen arches. I tried an aftermarket foot bed in these boots and it gave me more adequate support and prevented my feet from fatiguing. I also noticed there was less vibration with the aftermarket foot bed.

The traction of these boots is good on dry dirt, dry rocks, and vegetation. I noticed that on wet rocks my footing is not stable. But, I find that with all my boots. When I stepped in mud it caked to the bottom of the boots. Even after walking a few steps the mud was still caked on the bottom. This mud was thick and gooey and I would have expected it to stick to any boots that I would have worn. After the mud was dry it was removed with a brush.

These are a stylish and comfortable pair of day-hiking boots and I plan to continue wearing them during my fitness hikes and regular hikes.

For more information please visit www.hi-tec.com.


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