For every kind of hiking trip, there is an appropriate kind of hiking boots. The general idea is like knowing when to wear black or rubber shoes. Knowing what kind of boots to wear not only enhances the hiking experience, but also lengthens the durability of the boots and gives out a sense of professionalism to the wearer.
First one on the classification is trail shoes. Although they are not actually boots, they are still on the list of commonly-used footwear during hiking. These shoes are ideal for short hikes that cover one to five miles, and features lightweight support with moderate cushioning. With this description, these are also good for day-to-day casual wear.
Light hiking boots follows next. This kind is geared for short to medium hikes, with a distance of one to ten miles. They are designed for easy to moderate terrain, but are not really suitable for extremely rough terrain with high elevation gain.
Third on the spot are backpacking boots. As the name suggests, these boots are suited for supporting the wearer carrying a pack in an extended hike, with a 10-or-more-miles coverage. They offer increased support and cushioning for this purpose, and can take on rougher terrain, but they are still not suitable for technical alpine ascents or climbing on ice.
Last on the list are mountaineering boots. Last but not the least, these boots pack quite the punch. Offering maximum ankle protection and extreme durability, they have thick and stiff soles designed for the roughest terrain and can go even with high elevation gain. At times, boots under this type have waterproof capability, and sometimes even provides insulation for protection against the cold.