There are many types and variations of boots and knowing about them is the first step to buying the right pair.
Many manufacturers divide their footwear into A, B, C and D categories. Category A footwear is generally lightweight and very flexible. These boots and shoes are designed for light activities, i.e. travelling, walking or everyday use. Category B footwear has a more solid construction and firmer foothold for longer hikes and easy treks. Boots in the C category are mostly suitable for hybrid step-in (also called semi-automatic) crampons and designed for longer (multi-day) treks on rough terrain with a heavy rucksack. Category D boots are fully compatible with step-in (also called automatic, clip-on or rigid crampons) and have a robust construction designed for glaciers, mountaineering and ice climbing.
Category D stands for 100 percent crampon climbing boots for demanding glacier or icy routes.
Category C are conditionally crampons and are also suitable for long trips in trackless terrain with lots of luggage.
Category B provides a decent grip and a solid sole construction for long hikes and easy treks.
Category A is soft and almost weightless. Lightness and speed on the road, on trails and in everyday life.
Categorizing by Areas of Activity
To provide a better overview, we additionally organise our collection according to the following areas of activity: ALPIN, ROCK, TREK, TREK LIGHT, TRAIL. We also have three extra categories: DOUBLE STITCHED, YAK and WINTER that are defined by the way they are made (double stitching) and material (yak leather) or season (winter).
Categorising according to activity makes sense because different lasts, materials and construction techniques also influence footwear performance. For example, our ROCK boots generally have a narrower last than and a completely different construction to our TREK footwear - although they are both category C. Or take our Approach GTX, it's a low cut shoe and classed as B category footwear, but has a tendency towards category C due to its rigid sole unit.
There are also significant differences when it comes to cushioning. For example, our ROCK footwear is less padded, to ensure greater precision when climbing. Likening it to the sports seat of a rally car helps illustrate the point. By contrast, a TREK or TREK LIGHT boot could be compared to a comfortable armchair.
Boasts warm insulation, stability and a sure grip. Made with the prize-winning HANWAG IceGrip sole.
Tibetan high-altitude yak leather possesses thick hides that are very robust yet surprisingly supple.
Footwear made with the demanding, handcrafted technique that few other shoemakers still master.
Lightweight and very comfortable hiking boots with a highly flexible sole construction.
Ultra-comfortable footwear designed for multi-day treks carrying a heavy load.
High-performance footwear designed for climbing on rock/ice, scrambling/glaciers, and approach hikes.
Fully crampon-compatible, robust boots for high-alpine use available with a Gore-Tex® lining.