Q. Hey Gear Guy, I was really unsmart on my first campout and brought sneakers! My Scoutmaster said I had to get hiking boots, but my family doesn’t make that much money. Do you know of some really cheap, decent hiking boots?
— Bootless Cole, from the Internet
A. Don’t worry, you’re not the only one on a tight budget. Check out the Northside Apex Mid ($60; northsideusa.com). It’s a basic mid-cut leather boot with waterproof protection to keep your feet dry. The key thing to remember is that your feet are probably growing fast. So you don’t need a super-durable boot. Most of the boots in the $50 to $70 range probably are going to be durable enough for the amount of hiking you’ll be doing before you outgrow them.