Recent Comments

How to fix smelly hiking boots


My hiking boots smell terrible. Is there anything I can do to take care of that?
– Smelly Steve, Knoxville, Tenn.

A. Try taking a shower, Steve. No, seriously, keeping your feet clean is key. And wear only socks made of a wool and polyester blend that will wick moisture away from your feet. Powders like cornstarch and baking soda can also help keep your feet dry and less sweaty.

As for your boots, we asked Peter Sachs of LOWA Boots for some advice. Here’s what he had to say:

“Most hiking boots have removable insoles. Take those out and wash them with a mild detergent, but rinse them really well so you don’t get suds the next time you hike in the rain. Let them air dry. It’s also O.K. to fill your shoes with water and rinse them out. This will actually enhance the boot’s life by getting rid of the salts from your body’s sweat. To dry them out, stick newspaper inside. That’ll help pull moisture from the lining. Finally, borrow some dryer sheets from your mom and stuff those inside your boots overnight.”

Check out the BL Essentials guide for more hiking boot tips.

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12 Comments on How to fix smelly hiking boots

  1. camper 101 // June 26, 2008 at 9:48 pm // Reply

    thanks for the tips, this has happened to me before, i just put some lysol in my shoes to make them smell better, that did the trick for a while, but now i know the real answer.

  2. boyscout45 // May 28, 2008 at 3:23 pm // Reply

    hey i read that that an thats good info

  3. Running in the back country // October 15, 2007 at 4:51 pm // Reply

    Internal frames usually have a greater volume to carry more stuff (cubic inches). They are designed to hug the body better giving you a better center of gravity. Weight is packed closer to the back. This is ideal for cross country skiing, climbing, etc.

    External frames provide better support from the hips which allows more weight to be carried higher in the pack making trail hiking easier. External have a place to strap the sleeping bag to the frame where the internals have a section you stuff the bag into. Some people prefer one type to the other, I will switch between the 2 depending on the type of activity I am doing.

  4. Pedro's Keeper // August 28, 2007 at 12:03 pm // Reply

    Thanks. I’ve been looking for an answer to my smelly sneaks and work moccassins. This should do the trick.

  5. boyscout66 // June 11, 2007 at 9:25 pm // Reply

    what type of knife is best for camping?

  6. Try looking online, or better yet, go to REI or your local sporting goods store and ask an employee. there are many adjustable packs that can fit you now and be adjusted as you grow. I also had a hard time finding a pack because I was only 4′ 5″ when I started backpacking. I bought a kelty yukon 2900 cu. in. that fit real nice.

  7. what is the best fish stimulator?

  8. joe scout // May 23, 2007 at 5:52 pm // Reply

    Whats better:Internal vs. External Frame backpacks?????

  9. I need a frame backpack but I’m to small what should I do.

  10. Would you know the best way to survive a rafting trip on rapids?

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