Footwear designed for off-trail hiking must provide lateral support for the ankle without restricting movement, have water resistant qualities, protect from brush and fit a man's, woman's or kids' foot shape. The best boots are made from material such as leather or Nylon. The weight is important when walking long durations or distances, but medium or heavy is needed for thick brush or rocky off trail terrain. Regardless of the weight or material, the hiking boot's main strengths lie in traveling across uneven terrain and through underbrush providing protection and support to the ankles. These qualities are markedly different from the mountaineering boot, which is made for ascending mountains and enduring harsh high altitude conditions; or the trekking shoe, which is made for flat and level defined paths. For backcountry and off trail adventures, hiking boots provides the attributes and advantages over other types of boots.
Waterproof vs Water Resistant
To prevent moisture buildup, hiking boots need to breathe, allowing vapor to exit, but keeping water out. Both breathability and waterproofing can be achieved by using a special Gore-Tex lining that allows molecule-size water vapor to move through the material. Additional treatment is usually needed to make them fully waterproof. Additional waterproofing can be achieved by adding a protective coating to the surface. Nikwax Waterproofing has many products for enhancing the waterproof or water resistance qualities of a boot. Apply the treatment to improve the material's ability to repel water while keeping hiking boots breathable. There are a range of applications and products, from restoring the factory coating, to improving the interior liner's water tightness.
Synthetic material will break in faster than leather, however, some synthetics are not as durable. Both men's and women's hiking boots are available in synthetic or leather. There are some characteristics that vary slightly with gender. Lightweight hiking boots excel on short day, or backpacking hikes. The weight is reduced through the use of nylon. So if you are looking for less weight, the best option is to get synthetic. However, the weight does not determine the quality. While its true, the lighter the boot, the easier your level of effort will be, in some cases the lighter version is less durable. Medium weight hiking boots provide better support than lightweight, and can take the heavy use and abrasion better.
Search for Hiking Boots
Hi-Tec Women's Skamania Mid-Rise Waterproof Hiking Boot
Inclement weather isn't a problem with Bandera hiking boots for women. Featuring high performance mesh and waterproof suede, this brown hiking boot ensures you stay dry. Removable contoured footbeds make it easy for hikers to quickly swap out insoles for personal orthotics. Finished with an EVA rubber cup outsole, these olive hiking boots offer great traction on technical trails.
Vasque Breeze 2.0 Waterproof Hiking Boots
The Vasque Breeze 2.0 Waterproof hiking boots offer kids a lightweight, comfortable hiking boot built for trail adventures.
Columbia Men's North Plains Mid-High Wateproof Hiking Boot
The mid-height rise of this trail shoe from Columbia stabilizes the foot and ankle for a carefree stride.
Hi-Tec Men's Altitude IV Waterproof Hiking Boot
Hi-Tec®'s Altitude IV Waterproof hiking boot for men features a waterproof (seam-sealed) nubuck leather upper with a soft padded leather collar and a fully gusseted leather tongue. The outsole is composed of durable carbon rubber for excellent traction and the compression-molded EVA midsole provides lightweight cushioning.
Peak Essential Hiking Boot - Men's
Sale Price: $113.97
The Muck Boot Peak Essentials are ideal for any cold or wet surfaces, whether watching or participating in outdoor activities. This performance shoe will keep your feet warm and dry if you are hiking, or walking in slushy wet snow or ice.
KEEN Women's Targhee II Mid WP Hiking Boot
The Targhee II Mid from KEEN offers four-wheel-drive performance for your feet. This hiking boot is revamped with the KEEN.DRY waterproof breathable membrane to keep your feet dry and comfortable. The aggressive outsole has 4mm lugs to bite into the terrain, providing excellent traction. The ESS shank provides torsional stability for a secure ride, while the mid cut height increases ankle support through...
KEEN Men's Targhee II Mid WP Hiking Boot
Here's a hiking boot that offers four-wheel-drive performance for your feet. It's designed to be both waterproof and breathable, and the aggressive outsole bites into the terrain. The mid-cut height adds ankle support. 4mm multi directional lugs Contoured heel lock Dual density compression molded EVA midsole Hydrophobic mesh lining KEEN.DRY TM waterproof breathable membrane Non-marking rubber...
Ahnu Women's Sugarpine Hiking Boot
A vibrant color scheme sets this hiker apart, while still offering Ahnu's signature performance features.
Bora2 Mid GTX Hiking Boot - Men's
The Arc'teryx Bora2 Mid GTX Hiking boot is a new generation of technical hiking performance footwear with removable liners and the comfort and capacity for multiple days spent in variable weather and terrain.
Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Hiking Boot
Newton Ridge is a place where one needs a leather, waterproof, durable and lightweight hiker. So if there's a Newton Ridge on your path, then lacing a pair of lightweight and durable hikers to your feet is a solid move. PU coated leather, suede, mesh and metal hardware upper. Waterproof seam-sealed construction. Techlite lightweight midsole for long lasting comfort, superior cushioning, and high...
Comfortgo Baby Kids Classic Waterproof Boots Girl Boy Rain Hiking Winter Snow Boots (Todder/ Little Kid)
Available in 2 kinds of lining: Faux Fur Lined or Textile Lining. Kids can have fun in the Comfortgo kid's boot. The upper of this kid's boot is crafted out of soft faux nubuck synthetic waterproof materials. On the upper there are stitching details. This boot has a lace closure with metal eyelets that ensures a comfortable fit for an easy on every time. Interior comfort is provided by the...
Columbia Women's Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot
Hit the trail whatever the weather in Columbia's Newton Ridge Plus hiking boot. Waterproof construction protects against early morning dew, streams, and showers. Breathable mesh helps ventilate the interior. Omni-Grip tread tackles rugged terrain with confidence.