“I could walk for one hundred days in these hiking boots!” exclaimed Arthur (age 5) as we set off on our weekend hike in the Peak District; all wearing our new Keen walking boots to review. We love getting out into the great outdoors as a family. If you’re hoping to get some walking distances from your little ones, wellies just won’t do. They need sturdy walking boots that support their feet, are comfortable and waterproof.
This post was updated May 2020. All shoes mentioned in this post were gifted in exchange for this honest review and coverage on my social media. This post also contains affiliate links. Should you click to purchase, it is at no additional cost to you, but I relieve a small commission.
The boys have now had their KEEN hiking boots for almost a year and they’re still going strong! I’m also surprised they still fit! Although I know that once our eldest grows out of his, his boots will be in such good condition that I could give them to his younger brother. And they have worn these hiking boots A LOT! If you have read my best kids hiking boots post, you know that I put the KEEN hiking boots at number one.
Us parents are still wearing our KEEN hiking boots too. We obviously don’t expect to outgrow ours, but they’re are in such good condition after a year of hiking in them!
Although they are on the pricier side for kids hiking boots, they are VERY good quality. I particularly love how they are easy to get on and off with strong elastic laces that don’t need to be tied, and the reinforced rubber toe protects from scuffing when climbing.
Both boys seemed very comfortable walking in them straight away. The sole provides excellent grip and they are waterproof for walking through long wet grass (though don’t go wading in streams if you want to keep feet completely dry). There is also Cleansport NXT™ for natural odour control. I have no idea what this is exactly, but with boys’ active feet, this can only be a good thing.
Jay found these hiking boots to be very comfortable with good support. They didn’t feel like they needed to be worn in at all, and felt lightweight despite being leather. Although he remarked that the laces felt a little short.
This hiking boot comes in half sizes, which is handy, and you can trust the sizing online.
This is a very technical and robust boot, and although not really necessary for 10 km family walks, it’s a good purchase if you plan to do longer, multi-day treks over rough terrain.
I was relieved to find online that they do half sizes. However, what I didn’t read properly was that this boot is coming up half a size small for some people. I initially ordered a size 6.5, but had to change to a size 7. If you wear thick walking socks, I would definitely order a half size up.
I also found the laces to be rather tight initially and I had to play around with them to get a comfortable fit. But once I had this sorted, I can confirm that they are a VERY comfortable fit. I like how there’s a locking mechanism for the laces around the ankle, so they don’t slip.
I’ve also been hiking in them without the kids, meaning I’ve been able to walk at a normal pace and cover some distance. I do feel they needed a little wearing in, but they provide excellent support on rough terrain and I’m very happy with them. And a year on, I absolutely LOVE them!
KEEN trainers for kids
If you’re looking for something lighter for the kids over the warmer months, there are of course the KEEN sandals (read our review here, in a nutshell we love them too!) But for hiking amongst long grass, gravel, or for just every day use, the middle ground is a trainer.
And KEEN also do trainers! The boys were recently gifted the CHANDLER CNX TRAINERS.
Streamlined, flexible and light, this trainer has excellent tread and I really like the non-marking rubber outsole which covers the toe area. Quick-dry mesh material makes it breathable, and the easy lacing system keeps it secure and makes it easy for the boys to get their trainers on and off. Plus, I love the style!
The boys have been running lots with Daddy during lockdown and according to Ez, these trainers make you run faster!
Final thoughts on our Keen hiking boots
If you’re like us, and do lots of hiking as well as city breaks (yes, I wear hiking boots for our city breaks as we always cover so much ground!) these hiking boots work out to be very good value.
You can expect the kids hiking boot to last as long as they fit them. And with the reinforced toe, excellent grip, and elastic lacing, they are the best hiking boot I’ve seen on the market for kids.
As for the adult hiking boot, the excellent quality means you can expect them to last for many years of adventuring.
Were you an intrepid backpacker in your previous life? Exploring distant and exotic lands on a budget, getting off the beaten track and feeling like you were doing something different? Now that young kids are in the picture, travel priorities may have changed. But you don’t have to get sucked into the package holiday bubble. Adventure travel with young kids is possible! Jenny x