Just like clothing there are many personal preferences that go into selecting footwear for the trails. While some may be comfortable moving on technical terrain with full rigid mountaineering boots others will be just as comfortable with minimal or no shoes at all.
Most of the year in the Pacific Northwest (with exception of late June – September) is often wet. A waterproof (Goretex) trail running shoe can be a good choice for nearly year round use. Extensive hiking with snow can require more substantial boots that can accommodate gaiters and crampons.
Zero heel running shoes or Vibram 5 fingers offer much less support but a better trail feel. The more miles spent on trails will likely require different footwear for varying conditions.
Make sure you get a good fit while trying out boots, shoes. A heel slipping out of the pocket can cause blisters while toes bumping the front toe box can make you loose toenails.