Our Review of the Best Hiking Boots for Men and Women
When it comes to hiking gear there are few items more important than your boots. Your boots establish the kind of relationship you’re going to have with the trail: whether it will be easy and forgiving or nasty and brutish. The wrong boots on the wrong trail will lead to sprained ankles, painful blisters, sore quads and maybe even a lost toenail or two. In addition, you need to take potential weather conditions into account when you select a boot for your outdoor adventures. Because an uninsulated boot on a really cold day can make your life just as miserable as a heavily insulated boot on a hot July afternoon. Selecting the right boot then is critical if you are to enjoy yourself and make sure you get home safe and sound. Below are the best hiking boots for men and women… and ladies first…
The Bridger features an all leather upper that is a welcome nod to tradition but is more than just a walk down memory lane. The leather upper provides the boot with flexibility, durability and just enough warmth to keep you going on those cold mornings. The TPU foreplate protects your toes from danger when the going gets tough but doesn’t add significant weight, which is crucial. Another important aspect of the Oboz Women’s Bridger is that it doesn’t require a lot of breaking in. You can pretty much lace them up and hit the trail. Other components of the Bridger that bring a smile are the rigid heel cup to prevent lateral slide, the soft comfortable collar that actually protects your lower shins instead of rubbing them raw and the nylon shank.
- Structured arch and heel cup
- Carbon rubber tread provides outstanding grip
- BDRY waterproof membrane
- TPU foreplate keeps your toes safe
- Lightweight and comfortable
The Bridger by Oboz provides a high degree of lateral stability, which is vital to help prevent turned ankles and to allow you to make more effective contact with the ground. The less energy you waste making up for poor footing the further you’ll go while expending the same energy, and the faster.
The Vasque Breeze 2.0 is an outstanding lightweight hiking boot that offers true waterproof protection, extreme comfort and high performance on all terrains, including light snow cover. This is a boot that looks as good as it feels and performs and one that is going to find an honored place in your collection of outdoor gear after you wear it for the first time. The 2.0 GoreTex® not only protects your feet from external sources of moisture it’s also highly breathable which protects your piggies from sweat pooling in the boot and ruining your day. There aren’t many hiking boots that can claim to do a first class job at both. The Breeze 2.0 is one.
- Highly breathable
- Waterproof and abrasion-resistant GoreTex® shell
- Dual density ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) footbed
- Vibram sole with XSTrek compound
- Weight 2.8 pounds
While you can’t call these insulated boots they aren’t really intended to be worn in extreme winter conditions. If worn with the right socks though they’ll keep your feet both dry and warm down to about freezing, or maybe a bit colder. The real attraction of these boots is their comfort and all terrain performance.
3. Adidas Sport Performance Women’s Terrex Swift R Mid GTX Hiking Boots
The Adidas Sport Performance Women’s Terrex hiking boot is an outstanding 3-season boot that provides both spring and support to send you bounding down the path of happy destiny. The EVA midsole provides a high degree of comfort no matter how long you’ve been pounding the trail and the TRAXION™ outsole grips rock, tree trunk, gravel, dirt, scree and more like glue. Regardless of your condition the Terrex Swift will help you get more from your experience whether the sun is shining or you’re scurrying between the pines in a summer rainstorm. You could pay a lot more for 3-season hiking boots and get a lot less.
- GoreTex® outer shell is waterproof and breathable
- Adidas ADIPRENE® material provides shock absorption
- EVA midsole delivers just the right cushioning
- Woven synthetic textile upper
- TRAXION™ rubber outsole for superior grip
When you first lay eyes on the Women’s Terrex Swift you might think “Nice sneakers.” But as soon as you pick them up you’ll realize these are no basketball shoes. Put them on and you’ll notice the firm but gentle support in the midsole, the incredible grip and the fact that your feet aren’t overheating.
You don’t wear the Khombu Men’s Leather Boot to assault the actual Khombu Ice Fall on Everest. You wear it on your weekend hikes at the state park or while you’re shoveling the walk or perhaps on your trip to the Grand Canyon or Yosemite. For the price it’s hard to beat with its K-guard water protection and leather upper. It’s comfortable, requires little breaking in and should provide you with years of service as you make your way across the hiking trails of the world. Perhaps surprisingly the Khombu is rated down to -20 Fahrenheit. Although truth be told you’d be pushing things to wear these in that kind of weather. Still, for all but extreme circumstances this is boot worth having on the trail.
- Full leather upper
- Effective waterproofing with K-Guard
- Rated to -20 Fahrenheit
- Extremely durable
- 4-season capability
Some winter boots with similar performance characteristics can run you twice as much so the Khombu Men’s Leather Boot makes our list based on value as much as anything else. These are well-built, highly functional hiking boots will all terrain capability that are comfortable right out of the box. Makes you wonder why other boots cost so much.
The Men’s Oboz Wind River III Waterproof Boot is an outstanding 3-season boot that combines light weight, a waterproof upper and an innovative tread design to keep you moving down the trail in safety and comfort. The Wind River III waterproof system is comprised of a moisture wicking fabric lining, a tape sealed poly bootie and a watertight, hydrophobic upper. These three components work in concert to ensure that as long as the water isn’t deeper than the boot, your feet will stay high and dry. There’s a molded rubber toe cap, an EVA midsole and heel cup that delivers just the right amount of cushioning and a sculpted arch for all day support.
- Oboz B-Dry 3-tier waterproofing
- Moisture wicking fabric lining
- Low density EVA foam in the midsole
- High density EVA in the heel cup for stability and comfort
- Lightweight at 24 oz.
The Wind River may not be a true 4-season boot but there’s nothing you’re going to encounter in the other 3-seasons that it can’t handle. These are truly waterproof, highly flexible, supportive and durable hiking boots that you can wear with confidence in virtually any situation.
The Men’s Karrimor Mount Mid Waterproof Hiking boots are well made from the bottom of their synthetic rubber (but highly effective) soles to the tip of the comfortable padded tongue. They are 3-season virtuosos that let you polish off most mountain trails with ease while keeping your feet dry and comfortable. The upper features a waterproof membrane, the midsole has just the right amount of EVA foam for comfort and shock absorption and the suede and mesh outer breathes well and prevents overheating on summer days. The sole is more flexible than other boots in this class and that’s great if you like your boot to adjust to you rather than having you adjust to it.
- Molded ankle provides excellent support
- Waterproof upper lets you skip through streams and puddles
- Firm but lightweight toe guard
- Dynagrip MT007 sole unit
- Well-constructed and affordable
If you’re a fan of 3-season hiking you’re going to love this boot. It’s comfortable, durable and waterproof and it won’t break your bank to acquire it. It’s ready to go right out of the box so you can pick up a pair before your next sojourn and not have to worry about breaking them in.
The men’s and women’s hiking boots we profiled here are all outstanding examples of the bootmaker’s art in 2018. If you’ve been getting more serious about your outdoor activities and want a pair of boots that will keep up with where you’re going you can’t go wrong with these. Remember: boots are the essential component of a hiking outfit. Everything else flows from them. You can get by with a less than perfect shirt, you can make due with some gnarly shorts, in some cases you can even get by without a rain slicker, but wear the wrong boots and it’s going to detract from your experience in a fundamental way and perhaps expose you to unnecessary danger. If you enjoyed this article, make sure you check out more of our reviews:
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- Best Water Filters
- Best Hiking Boots for Men and Women
- Best Hiking Jackets for Men
- Best Hiking Backpacks
- Best Hiking Hammocks
- Best Camping Tents
- Best Trekking Poles
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- Best Camping Pillows
- Best Portable Bluetooth Speakers for Camping
- Best Camping Chairs
- Best Camping Stoves
- Best Women’s Hiking Jackets