Best Gaiters: What are they?
The best gaiters are the most popular footwear among hikers, skiers and mountaineers. They have been used since the early 20th century and were first introduced in 1924 by American company Brooks Brothers. Since then, there have been many variations of these shoes with different designs and materials used to make them. There are now over 100 different models of best gaiters available worldwide.
What makes the best gaiters so popular?
First of all, they are comfortable and lightweight. Second, they provide good traction even under heavy loads such as those encountered while skiing or climbing mountains. Third, they offer excellent protection from the elements due to their waterproof construction and breathable fabric lining. Finally, they are very durable and can withstand harsh conditions like the cold, wet weather and extreme temperatures.
How do they work?
The best gaiters are made out of a combination of leather and synthetic material. These materials include nylon, polyester and spandex. The upper part consists of a mesh fabric lining which allows air to circulate around your feet during exercise without restricting movement. The sole is constructed from rubber or plastic which provides grip when walking on ice or snow.
All of these materials are stitched together using a process known as computer numerical control (CNC). This automated method of production means that the shoes can be made relatively inexpensively in a short amount of time.
This has made the best gaiters very popular with hikers and backpackers who want a shoe that provides comfort, support and protection without breaking the bank.
How do you size them?
When trying on the best gaiters, it is important to choose a pair that fits your feet comfortably. They should not be too tight or too lose as this can cause blisters and sores which will make walking and hiking very uncomfortable. Always try on your shoes before a big hike to avoid any potential issues on the trail.
When trying on the gaiters, you will want to make sure you choose the correct size. The gaiters are available in half sizes which means you may go up or down a half size from your usual shoe size.
For example, if your foot is a size 9 you will be able to fit into a size 8.5 or 9.5 gaiter. It is best to try both sizes on to see which one feels more comfortable.
What are the extra features on best gaiters?
There are several different models of best gaiters on the market and each one comes with its own unique features. These special additions allow you to personalize your shoes and improve their performance.
One common feature is a gaiter trap which is basically a pull out fabric flap that covers the top of the shoe’s tongue. This flap helps keep debris and dirt out of the shoe and can be pulled over each foot individually.
Some shoes have additional flaps on the side to prevent mud from building up against the shoe.
A gaiter pull is a type of lace which makes it easier to tighten or loosen your laces. This comes in especially handy when you are wearing heavy boots and winter socks.
Some gaiters also come with a built in shank. This helps support your arch and reduces the amount of pressure that is put on your ankles.
Finally, some gaiters have an extra layer of felt at the bottom of the shoe. This provides additional cushioning and absorbs shock, keeping your feet feeling fresh even after a long day on the trails.
How are they made?
The best gaiters are made in a wide range of factories and manufacturing plants located all over the world. The materials used to make them are sourced from a variety of places including the United States, Japan, China and Mexico. Once all of the components have been sourced they are sent to a factory where local workers hand sew them together. Stitching patterns, colours and fabric designs are varied to create a wide range of different styles and models.
Are they environmentally friendly?
The short answer is yes. Gaiter manufacturing does not have a negative impact on the environment. The materials used to make them (such as nylon, cotton and plastic) can be recycled and are commonly found in local rubbish tips and dumps. These materials can then be turned into new products, meaning gaiters have a small carbon footprint. We love our planet so every little helps!
How do I look after them?
Your gaiters will come with their own care instructions. Follow these and your will keep your gaiters in top condition for years to come. The most important thing is to check them after each use. Check for any rips or tears, if you find any of these mend them straight away as you would with any other piece of clothing.
How do I choose the best gaiters for me?
There is a wide range of gaiters on the market, each one is different and some are better than others. It can be hard to choose which pair is right for you so to help you decide we have listed the most important factors to consider below.
Are the gaiter tight or loose?
The first thing you should think about is how tight or loose you want your gaiters to be.
Do you want your socks and pants to be completely covered by your gaiters or would you prefer them to be a little looser?
Some gaiters fit very tightly, almost like a second skin, while others are larger and baggier.
How much water do you like to keep out?
Gaiter manufacturers produce different models designed to keep different amounts of water out. If you are hiking in a dry climate you will not need strong water resistance but if you are hiking through wet marshland you will want something much stronger. Lets take a look at the different types of models designed to keep water out.
Models Which Do Not Keep Water Out
This type of model simply does not keep water from seeping in. There are three reasons somebody would choose a gaiter like this.
They are cheap – These models are usually very cheap and are not designed to keep water out. Instead they rely on other features (such as visual appeal) to sell.
They are perfect for hikers who know they will never be hiking in wet conditions. They have a strong visual appeal – Some people buy these models simply because they look good. They would never be seen dead wearing water proof gaiters! They are cheap – Once again, these models are usually the cheapest available and as such are great value for anybody on a budget.
Models Which Preform Averagely Against Water
These models do a passable job at keeping water out. They are not as strong as other models but they are also far cheaper.
They are perfect for people who only occasionally encounter wet conditions or who only want to protect their lower legs and shoes from mud and debris.
Models Which Are Designed To Keep Water Out
These models are designed to keep water out. They are great for people who regularly encounter wet conditions or who want the added protection.
They are not designed to be worn in exceptionally wet conditions (such as rainforests or near large bodies of water) and will struggle with this type of terrain.
What Will You Be Doing In Them?
Before you buy a pair of gaiters you need to think about what you will be using them for. There are many different types of gaiters available and some are better suited to certain activities than others. Below we have listed the different types of activities and models which will be suitable for each activity.
Hiking and Backpacking – If you are going hiking or backpacking in wet conditions you will want a model which preforms well against water and has good comfort. We would recommend that you avoid models with tight fits as you will find them much more comfortable.
We would also recommend avoiding models which only cover the lower leg and shins as your shoes and lower legs will get very wet otherwise.
Light Hiking – If you are just going light hiking on dry land you can choose any type of gaiter you want.
Mountaining – If you are mountain climbing in wet conditions you will want a model which preforms well against water and has good traction. We would recommend that you avoid models with tight fits as you will find them much more comfortable and avoid models which only cover the lower leg and shins, as explained above.
Backpacking – If you are going backpacking in dry conditions you can choose any type of gaiters you want.
Sources & references used in this article:
Water gaiters and sleeves by SR Vaughan – US Patent 6,342,031, 2002 – Google Patents
Silks, Congress Gaiters, and Rhetoric: A Butler University Graduate of 1860 Tells Her Story. by HZ Weidner – 1994 – ERIC
Gaiters: Exploring Skin Stretch Feedback on Legs for Enhancing Virtual Reality Experiences by C Wang, DY Huang, SW Hsu, CL Lin, YL Chiu… – Proceedings of the …, 2020 – dl.acm.org
Improvement in gaiters by US Patent 34,140, 1862 – Google Patents
‘You’d never wear leather gaiters to go duck hunting in 1920!’ by M Campbell – Kill Your Darlings, 2012 – search.informit.com.au