After 200 Miles There Is No Premature Wear
Thus far, I have put about 200 miles on this pair of shoes and have had no issues with premature wear. The only place where there is evidence of wear is in the Rangi bottom foam, which is what Hoka is calling the soft midsole foam between the top EVA layer and Vibram outsole.
I have used these shoes for hiking all across California in Yosemite, the Sierras, the San Gabriels, and Zion on very rugged and rocky terrain, and they have held up amazingly well considering what they have been put through.
As for the upper, there is no sign of wear, and I anticipate these shoes to last for hundreds of more miles with the limiting factor seeming to be the soft midsole.
Hoka One One Kaha Gtx Review
Weight Per Pair : 2.45lb
Boot Type: Midweight Hiker/Backpacking Boot
Width Options: Regular
What We Like: Incredibly comfortable, high stability, and great waterproofing
What We Dont: Traction and lace system could be slightly better
HOKA embraces the maximalist approach to footwear with the Kaha GTX , named for the Mori word for strength and support. This midweight hiker/backpacking boot packs in a plethora of comfort without going overboard on weight. For hikers with knee or hip problems, choosing the Kaha GTX is a no-brainer, and its an excellent choice for anyone who appreciates a comfy foot, whether youre going on a short hike or a long one. For $220, they are a decent investment, but its a worthwhile one for those who will benefit from its unique design. There was simply no competition when it came to our choice for winner of Most Comfortable Hiking Boot.
Comfort: A Step Back From Hokas Runners
Comfort and cushioning is the hallmark of the Hoka One One brand, so youd expect it in the Kaha hiking boots, especially since they look the part with the signature thick foam midsole. And while theyre definitely a heavily cushioned hiker, theyre not quite as cloud-like as regular Hoka One One runners.
So if youre a Hoka One One enthusiast expecting the usual plush ride, lower your expectations a touch. If youre new to the brand, youll probably be impressed by how cushioned they are for a hiking boot.
The boots were comfortable right out of the box, despite the full-grain leather upper. This is likely thanks in part to the contoured insole and cushioning. I found the laces easy to make snug which kept my foot in place and heel back, and gave my toes some room without sliding around in the toe box.
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Provides Better Traction On Varied Surfaces
It has 5 mm lugs that provide excellent grip in the sand, soft mud, scree, and slick granite.
The grip on the Kaha is top-notch due to the utilization of its Vibram Megagrip hi-traction outsole. This allowed Hoka to strategically minimize weight while having a very durable and sticky rubber outsole.
From past experience with similar outsoles and looking at the status, it appears this outsole will allow for many hundreds of more miles to be put on this pair of shoes. There is no sign of accelerated wear, just a little bit on the soft outer midsole.
Hoka One One Sky Kaha Trekking Boot Review: Long Marching Days Max Cushion And Comfort
Article by Sam WinebaumHoka One One Sky KahaSky Kaha Sky Toa ,Kaha StatsFirst Impressions and FitUpperMidsoleOutsoleHiking Ride
|On the summit of West Peak, Bigelow Range Maine during an 18 mile day|
Tester ProfileSamThe product reviewed was provided at no cost. The opinions herein are the authors’.
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Hoka One One Sky Kaha Gtx Hiking Boots Review: Unusual Looks Exceptional Comfort
Hoka One One’s Sky Kaha walking boots split opinion with their futuristic sole and odd appearance. We put them through their paces…
Don’t be put off by their unusual looks, the Hoka One One’s Sky Kaha walking boots are supremely comfortable and supportive. The proprietary sole design cushions the sole well and works to propel the foot forward, while the GORE-TEX bootie is a welcome addition.
Sole designed to work with your natural gait
Styling won’t be for everyone
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Hoka One One’s Sky Kaha hiking boots have had a 2020 upgrade. The newest iteration features the brand’s own rubberised foam sole design and a full-grain waterproof leather design, plus a GORE-TEX waterproof bootie to keep your feet comfortable and dry. This range has long been a regular in our ranking of the best women’s hiking boots , so how does the latest version hold up? Read on for our Hoka One One’s Sky Kaha review.
- … and the best women’s walking shoes
Hoka One One Kaha Gtx Vs Danner Mountain 600 Hiking Boot
Both of these boots are hybrid, sneaker-style mid-height hikers. However, Hoka One One is coming to hiking boots from the running world and Danner is a hiking boot company that makes sneaker-like hikers. The Danner 600 looks more like a hiking boot with a full brown suede upper and traditional metal D-ring lace loops for a classic look. Otherwise, theyre very similar in price and build. Both feature low-profile Vibram soles and thicker foam midsoles for a hiking boot that performs more like a trail running shoe. Go with the Danner if you prefer a hiking boot that has more traditional styling.
The Hoka One One Kaha Hiking Boots are a great option for those that love the Hoka brand and for people that are looking for a hiking boot thats ready to run in slightly rougher terrain.
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A Supremely Plush Ride
The midsole of the Kaha is made up of two layers: EVA top layer & Rangi bottom foam layer.
This combination makes for a supremely plush ride. For long day hikes, these have to be some of the most comfortable and resilient shoes I have ever worn.
Keep in mind these are neutral shoes and, therefore, might not be supportive enough for some people. For those with a neutral gait, these are very well cushioned and feel like walking on a cloud even when covering nothing but rocky terrain.
Two primary concerns with highly cushioned shoes are protection on sharp objects and maintain proprioception on slick terrain. The Kaha passed both of these tests with flying colors as they have kept my feet feeling like brand new even on rocky 20 plus mile hikes and felt very agile even when summited the slick slopes at Half Dome.
Well Done Design Team
“That’s one small step for man.” I jokingly said when first seeing these moon boots in comparison to trail running shoes I normally use for hiking.
Despite these fitting in with the Hoka brand with their large and “clown shoe” size, I actually love the look of them! The black/grey colorway, as Hoka calls it, is vibrant and eye-catching with its bright red bottoms and orange accents.
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Support: A Stable Shoe With Foam Support
Because of how tall the outsole is, I had some questions about how stable the boot would be. Would I be more likely to roll my ankle with a boot perched up so high? My experience was that the broader heel that mushrooms out underneath and a fairly wide toe platform make for a stable boot that mostly wants to rock front and back, not side to side.
I found that wearing reasonably thick socks made from natural materials is best when wearing the Kahas because the insole is fairly smooth and slick. Thinner socks, especially those made from synthetics, felt very slippery inside the boot.
Justin Park / TripSavvy
Waterproofing & Breathability: Repels Water And Lets Vapor Out
Unlike some waterproof hikers, the Gore-Tex membrane didnt automatically make my feet sweat, even when worn indoors for extended periods of time. The Kaha GTX features a membrane thats designed to let vapor out but keep water from getting inside the boot. Since the waterproofing layer is inside other materials, a hiking boot can appear wet but still be waterproof.
This was my experience hiking a trail with patches of snow. The leather upper appeared to get wet, but my feet remained dry inside. Unlike a Durable Water Repellent coating on, say, a ski jacket, this Gore-Tex membrane doesnt mean water will bead up and roll off of the boots. Sealing boots in that manner will make them run hotter and will be less breathable, so theyre usually reserved for winter boots or work boots where breathability is less essential.
Justin Park / TripSavvy
The tongue is only gusseted to about the point of articulation on the ankle, so the waterproofing technically ends there since theres a break in the material. That said, I didnt fully submerge the boot to find out. However, I didnt experience any leakage into the boot while testing it in mostly wet and muddy conditions.
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Build Quality And Durability
Hoka One One is a relative newcomer to the world of hiking footwear, and its simply too soon for me to make a conclusion about the Sky Toas long-term durability. My biggest concern thus far is the midsole: although extremely soft and comfortable, I fear that it will pack out and wear down quickly. The upper, on the other hand, features a combination of mesh and burly synthetic materials, which I expect to stand the test of time. That said, as with any lightweight-focused gear, the Hoka One One Sky Toa is no match for the durability of a more robust hiking boot like the Asolo Falcon GV, Oboz Sawtooth II Mid, or Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX. Overall, expect a much more limited lifespan, especially if you plan to use the Sky Toa on rugged terrain or while carrying a heavy load.
Mens Version Of The Hoka One One Sky Toa
We put the womens Sky Toa through its paces for this review, and Hoka One One makes the boot in a mens version for the same price. The mens Sky Toa is 5 ounces heavier than the womens at 1 pound 14.2 ounces per pair and also is offered in three different colorways. However, the rest of the design remains the same with a Vibram Megagrip outsole, Gore-Tex waterproof bootie, and 4-millimeter heel-to-doe drop. Notably, Hoka doesnt make the Sky Toa in a non-waterproof model, which feels like it would be a natural fit given the boots light and flexible build.
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Water Resistance & Durability
As implied in the name , the Kaha GTX features a Gore-Tex membrane that is both waterproof and breathable, although not quite as breathable as other waterproof membranes like eVent, which was utilized for earlier versions of this boot. Flood height is 5.5 inches, so you should feel comfortable splashing through creeks without too much risk of water sloshing over the top.
The Kaha GTX has beefed this up with a full-grain waterproof leather upper that should stand up to regular usage in terms of durability. At the same time, the sole is reinforced with a rubberized foam to extend its longevity without skimping on cushioning. Theres also a toe bumper on the front that should save your feet from taking a beating if you happen upon any hidden rocks.
Hoka One One Kaha Review
The Kaha is supremely lightweight and feels like a running shoe both in weight and the midsole ride that I thoroughly enjoyed coming from a trail running perspective. The stack height and drop are also great for promoting a smooth and protective ride.
If there is one concern I have with the Kaha, its that the price tag of $220. It is definitely on the higher end, but then again, it is an amazing shoe and worth every penny for a very serious and active hiker.
The Sky Kaha is a very lightweight backpacking/hiking boot. Sizing is fairly standard and fits the same size as a running shoe.
It weighs in at 17.9 oz in a Mens US 9, making it nearly half the weight of most comparable boots. With a heel-toe offset of 6 mm , the Kaha has a very smooth and effortless heel-toe transition, while offering the maximal protection one expects from a Hoka product.
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Why We Like The Sky Kaha Hiking Boot
HOKA ONE ONE cush meets an alpine-worthy performance in the Sky Kaha Hiking Boot. We appreciate its maximum comfort when we’re trekking miles through the alpine, and GORE-TEX gives reliable waterproofing for passing showers and the occasional snowfield. Vibram’s MegaGrip rubber has a softer feel for better grip that we can count on whether we’re scrambling rocky boulders or tackling the steepest parts of the trail.
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Compare To Similar Products
Heavy and expensive with less than ideal ankle support and stiff midsole
Weight Per Pair : 3.12lb
Boot Type: Lightweight/Day Hiker
HOKA ONE ONE, often simply referred to as HOKA, was founded in 2009 in France by Nicolas Mermoud and Jean-Luc Diard. The pair previously worked with outdoor brand Salomon, a serious name in the hiking-shoe and trail-running biz. The original target of their brand was ultramarathon runners. Over the past decade, HOKA has established a foothold in the market by embracing what is known as the maximalist approach to shoes. Sometimes called fat shoes, maximalist shoes and boots go above and beyond when it comes to cushioning to prioritize comfort, which is highly appreciated by those with chronic knee or hip issues.
HOKA epitomizes this concept with the Kaha GTX , named for the Mori word for strength and support. This midweight hiker/backpacking boot, which comes in at around $220, packs in a plethora of comfort without going overboard on weight. There was simply no competition when it came to our choice for winner of Most Comfortable Hiking Boot.
Price: On Par With The Category
Retailing around $220, these arent cheap hiking boots, but they are on par with others in the same trail runner/hiker category. The Danner Mountain 600 and the Adidas Terrex Free Hiker boots are similar in construction and style, and both retail for about $20 less than the Kahas.
Justin Park / TripSavvy
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Hoka One One Kaha Gtx Men’s Black Olive/green
The Hoka One One Kaha was named for the Maori word meaning strength and support, which is clearly represented when you lace up these hiking shoes. While keeping your feet and ankles well-supported, these hiking shoes won’t weigh you down as you move confidently through rocky, rugged terrain. A soft and smooth ride is complimented by a Vibram® Megagrip traction outsole and a GORE-TEX® waterproof bootie to keep you dry in whatever conditions you may encounter.
Upper: A durable and supportive full-grain leather upper with GORE-TEX® waterproof bootie provides comfortable protection in wet conditions. Padded, gusseted tongue keeps debris out. Lace-up front offers an adjustable fit.
Midsole: An EVA top layer provides plush comfort right next to the foot. Rangi bottom foam offers durable cushioning and a responsive feel.
Outsole: A Vibram® Megagrip hi-traction outsole with 5mm lugs. Includes multidirectional lugs for supreme lugs for supreme grip on varied terrain.
Good For Climbing And Sand
On the trail, the Kaha provides good traction and makes it easy to climb and descend with confidence, even on mud and sand. As you would expect, these boots perform a bit like a pair of trail running shoes in that regard, providing a solid level of stability.
However, venture off-trail on to more rugged terrain, and I didnt always feel quite so confident. Add in a bit of moisture to the mix, and scrambling over rocks and hiking uphill requires a bit more effort. I never fell fully on my face, but the shift in approach was definitely noticeable.
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Our Analysis And Test Results
The Kaha GTX almost defies being placed in a category. Is it a high-top trail running shoe, a lightweight backpacking boot, or something in between? Whatever designation you choose to label the Kaha with, it is a phenomenally comfortable shoe that is not just a one-trick pony. This model does well in almost all of our hiking boot review metrics, making it an easy decision to award it a Top Pick for folks looking for a padded ride.