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Our Best Waterproof Shoes

Whatever it is you’re looking to conquer during the winter months, here are our top picks for waterproof runners that will keep you dry.
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Wet feet can ruin what might have been a joyful run or walk in the rain. They can lead to slippage, friction, and blisters (and soggy socks are just unpleasant at the best of times). But there’s no need to let a little wet weather stop you from getting in that extra mile. 

Whether you are hiking, trail running or just walking the dog, these are our top picks for keeping your feet dry all winter.

Hoka Clifton 9 Gore-Tex 

Hoka, Hoaka, Hooka - however you say it, it’s the brand on everyone's feet from dog-walking dads and mile-hiking mums to elite marathon runners. 

The Clifton 9, the ninth iteration of a mightily successful franchise within Hoka, now comes with a Gore-Tex membrane and traction pods underfoot for more grip, ready for some of Canada's unpredictably slushy winter roads. It has an unrivalled step in feel, and the midsole is plush and soft yet inherently stable.  The membrane keeps your feet dry and doesn’t interfere or cause any irritation. The fit is slightly wider and the foam is responsive enough to do a variety of workouts from long miles to tempo workouts on a variety of terrains. 

It also has to be said, our staff get a lot of referrals from medical professionals recommending their patients try Hoka. Their maximalist cushioning and stiff rocker soles provide ample protection against some regular causes of foot pain.

The Clifton 9 Gore-Tex is perfect for those who appreciate a little comfort, and a roomy, plush and responsive ride to keep warm and dry while you are outdoors.



New Balance 880 Gore-Tex 

Reliability is the name of the game with the New Balance 880. This is the top selling shoe in our store and across North America, as it continues to be the dependable workhorse in your winter gear, while remaining remarkably comfortable.

It now comes with a Gor-Tex liner and an underrated Vibram rubber outsole for enduring grip. With shoe companies full-on delivering crazy foams, lighter and less durable materials, and unconventional lacing systems, while hoping you’ll want a shoe for each activity. 

With the New Balance 880 GTX I know exactly what I’m getting – a traditional reliable daily running shoe with support and comfort whatever the weather. And for those who wear orthotics, or need a little more width, New Balance are our favourites in providing that support. The fit is normal, the outsole provides a stable platform with a deep foot bed, and because it’s made in wider widths, this will fit like a glove. 

If you want one running shoe for your winter, a shoe that can double up as a versatile walker and runner, or if you’re on your feet in the wet and windy winter, look no further than the New Balance 880 GTX.


New Balance Hierro v7 GTX 

Plush and protective is how I’d describe the experience in this shoe. If you have worn any version of the New Balance 1080 you’ll instantly feel some similarity in fit and feel. 

The Hierro v7 also includes a Gore-Tex liner, and their softest foam with some necessary stability measures, including trail-ready tacky Vibram Megagrip underfoot and a reinforced upper. The shoe works like a mountain bike - soft enough to absorb shock while remaining stable enough to handle the unpredictability of the trail floor. Some nice additions include a toe and heel protector for those sneaky sticks and pebbles. For the runners out there, you can use this shoe to log long miles, or to pick up the pace if you wish you’d just stayed cosy and want to get home asap. 

The fit remains snug in those areas where you’ll appreciate more support, but are roomy enough so the forefoot doesn't feel cramped, and the grip is strong enough to deliver ample protection for the majority of trails. 

However, if you’re looking to conquer more challenging terrain, you may want to look at the Hoka Speedgoat, which we talk about below. Like the New Balance 880 GTX, this also comes in wider sizing for men and women, so can handle the majority of foot shapes. Big cushion and great comfort, and an off road ready package, will keep you wanting to wander off the beaten path. 



Hoka Speedgoat 5 GTX 

The Hoka Speedgoat 5 GTX is a trailblazer. Delivering Hoka’s maximal cushioning, long haul comfort, and a dynamic ride with a dependable trail ready protection. 

The moment you slip this shoe on you can feel it can handle anything from meandering hills to the most technical terrain Canada has to offer. The Hoka Speedgoat is akin to a Jeep - agile, versatile and luxurious, yet durable. Hoka include the low 4mm heel to toe drop, the meta-rocker (a curve in the shoe that propels you gently forward), and compact but plush cushion. Nice features include a comfortable but secure heel collar, a wide base for efficient stability, a very durable Gore-Tex mesh upper that offers great defence on the trails, and deep Vibram rubber lugs underfoot for great grip.

 If you are a Hoka enthusiast, have worn the Hoka Bondi, and are looking for some winter protection, a transition to the Speedgoat will feel relatively seamless. However, the fit is slightly more snug around the mid and forefoot which offers phenomenal support, but we’d recommend being properly fitted to ensure the greatest comfort. 

And finally, given my description you might think this shoe will be heavy - I assure you it isn't. For a great blend of comfort and performance on long runs or hikes during the winter months, the Hoka Speedgoat would keep you on track. 



Brooks Ghost 15 GTX

If you are a seasoned runner or walker, you have probably laced up some Brooks Ghosts; or if this review is the catalyst to you getting more active, this shoe is a great place to start. 

It is a supremely comfortable, lightweight and stable daily trainer, now with a Gore-Tex liner to keep your feet dry. With the trend of running shoes getting chunkier midsoles and rockered platforms, the Brooks Ghost stays loyal to its foundation of delivering lower stack height, a firmer midsole, and a plush and stretchy upper, that in tandem provides a delightfully accessible running shoe for a variety of running workouts and walks. The wide base provides ample stability, and a roomy toe box and a comfortable deep heel collar provide a great platform for an orthotic to do its magic. 

Those who have worn the Ghost and are wanting winter protection will probably find no issues transitioning to the GTX version. If you are unsure what you want, and need a dependable friend to keep you dry and comfortable in our not so friendly weather, or if you want a no frills versatile shoe to do it all, the Brooks Ghost 15 GTX will deliver for every occasion.



Brooks Cascadia 17 GTX  

There have been lots of innovations in the trail shoe market, but what Brooks are great at is delivering great shoes year in year out, that deliver a consistent feel and ride with minor but very effective changes in every edition. 

The Cascadia 17 GTX remains tried and true with striking stability for all terrain, and a firm but cozy ride. The Gore-Tex liner keeps your feet warm and dry, and while the shoe is a little heavier than other trail shoes, it makes up for it by being exceptionally durable. The rock plate in the midsole holds the shoe in place on sharp turns or undulating trails, The outsole has great traction, and there is enough cushioning for longer efforts. 

The Cascadia 17 GTX is for someone who wants to spend hours at a time on their feet, but likes a little firmer ride or to run at a variety of paces, and prioritises durability and structural integrity wherever you go. 



Tips & Tricks

Beginning with getting properly fitted, we regularly see our customers going a half size up on their standard non waterproof runners. This is due to that added Gore-Tex membrane. This material will not stretch, so it keeps your feet dry, but definitely snugs up the fit on your foot. 

Additionally, while Gore-Tex is a market leader in waterproof materials, and it does breath well, your feet may run warmer and can swell, so that extra half size up may just provide some relief.

It can be a little overwhelming to take stock of all the options out there. Everyone's feet are different and what might work for you may not work for others. Hopefully this article will help narrow down that search.

At the end of the day, it's the fit that is important, so come to the store to try them out or shop online if you. We hope you enjoy exploring the very best of a Canadian winter (with or without wet feet).  



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