10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (2024)

Best Overall Men's Hiking Boot

Hoka Kaha 2 GTX


Responsive support

Rockered sole for comfortable walking

Great waterproofing

Durable materials


Some break-in period

Not as great in technical terrain

May be overkill for day hiking

The Hoka Kaha 2 GTX is our favorite pair of men's hiking boots. These boots, built on Hoka's foundations as a running shoe brand, bring a lively spring into your step thanks to the thick 2-inch compression-molded EVA midsole. This rockered sole is super comfortable to walk in, as it allows for a more rolling and less jarring stride while hiking. The support offered by these boots is incredible, thanks to high-top construction, a wide sole, and plenty of impact protection.

The Kaha 2 GTX is made of durable waterproof nubuck leather, though this material does take a few hikes to break in. It also has a unique Swallowtail heel design, which we like, but it took a little bit of getting used to, especially as it puts more material behind your heel than you may be accustomed to. Overall, though, this boot offers many amazing features and is recommended to any hiker looking for high ankle support and maximum comfort. Our favorite boot for support and comfort is the Salomon Quest 4 Gore-Tex.

Read more: Hoka Kaha 2 GTX review

Best Overall Women's Hiking Boot

La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX - Women's


Excellent comfort


Breathable and lightweight

Long lugs with excellent traction


Lacks support in comparison to other hiking boots

Sizing runs small

The La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX is our favorite hiking boot for women. It earns top marks in almost all categories, making it one of the most balanced hikers ever tested. It's rugged, durable, lightweight, and incredibly comfortable. The 5-inch shaft offers a surprising level of stability for its design, fit to take on technical surfaces. It features a Gore-Tex waterproof membrane with a breathable design. The deep lugs do well on everything from rock slabs to sloppy steeps, making it a trustworthy and versatile option for most terrain. It's an excellent option for any day trip or backpacking adventure.

While we appreciate the lightweight design of this trail runner-like hiking boot, it's not nearly as stable as other midweight boots. It also fits small, so we recommend sizing up. It truly shines as a protective and lightweight hiking boot that sacrifices some stability. It can withstand various weather and is suited for long backpacking adventures and day trips. If you want more cushion and comfort, check out the Hoka Kaha 2 GTX, which scored just a few points behind.

Read more: Women's La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX review

Best Men's Value Boot

Merrell Moab 3 Mid Waterproof


Low cost

Comfort straight out of the box



Traction is poor in mud

Heavy for the size

The Merrell Moab 3 Mid Waterproof is a great deal that'll get you out on the trails in most conditions. This water-resistant suede boot is incredibly comfortable, and the break-in period is almost non-existent. It is as supportive as you'd expect a hiking boot to be with solid underfoot construction. It's an excellent option for beginners or experts looking for a boot to deliver great performance at a decent value.

While we appreciate this boot's comfort and performance, it has a few limitations. First, while the Vibram sole sticks well to dry and technical surfaces, the lugs do not have the appropriate spacing between them to shed mud easily. They perform poorly in super muddy or sloppy conditions. Additionally, the design is heavier than other lightweight boots. Overall, it is a high-value option that'll keep you comfortable and protected for most outdoor adventures. To save even more money, check out the Timberland Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof. It was not nearly as comfortable as the Moab 3, but it did score higher in support, traction, water resistance, and durability.

Read more: Men's Moab 3 Mid Waterproof review

Best Women's Value Boot

Merrell Moab 3 Mid WP - Women's


Great ankle padding and comfort

Mesh vents are very breathable

Good water resistance


Lacks support for long hikes and backpacking trips

Lacing system has questionable durability


The Merrell Moab 3 Mid WP offers excellent value. It is designed as a day hiker and moderate backpacking boot so that it can go with you on most adventures. It features a comfortable and easy-to-break-in design and generous padding in the ankle shaft. It has excellent durability, with several mesh panels between the leather infrastructure. The new and improved Vibram sole offers sufficient traction on all trail surfaces, making it a great, high-value option for most adventures.

While we love the value and comfort of this boot, we don't love the lacing system, which lacks durability. In addition, the boot is heavier than many of its rivals. Still, it functions well for most adventures, including backpacking, with a lower impact on your wallet than most hiking boots. If you are willing to pay more, the Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid Gore-Tex - Women's scored higher across all metrics and is often on sale for prices near or below the Moab 3.

Read more: Women's Merrell Moab 3 Mid WP review

Best Support in a Men's Boot

Salomon Quest 4 Gore-Tex


Very comfortable

Agile yet burly

Very water resistant

Excellent stability


Long-term durability issues along the seams

Bulky and heavy

Not ideal for light hiking

The Salomon Quest 4 Gore-Tex is a high-top boot that offers a ton of over-the-ankle support for backpacking trips. This boot is ideal for long adventures on the most technical and demanding trails. It is top-notch, offering an excellent blend of stability and comfort, fit for tromping through all kinds of conditions. The beefy lugs bite down on all surfaces, offering traction on slippery, steep trails and rocky river crossings. If you're in the market for a well-rounded boot that'll offer comfort and stability while shouldering a heavy pack, this top contender is the way to go.

While the Quest 4 is stable and protective, it is heavy for a hiker. It also does not breathe or release heat as readily as we'd wish. While it can function as a casual daily hiker, it thrives on technical surfaces and tricky conditions. This is a great choice for anyone who wants a high-performance boot, especially for those heading out on a trip with a big pack. Want a lighter option? The Hoka Kaha 2 GTX scored slightly higher and is lighter, though it's not as adept at off-trail travel.

Read more: Men's Salomon Quest 4 Gore-Tex review

Max Cushioned Comfort for Women

Hoka Kaha 2 GTX - Women's


Plush and comfortable midsole

Sticky outsole

Waterproof and durable design


Not as breathable

Thicker soles take an adjustment period

The Hoka Kaha 2 GTX offers superior comfort, with over two inches of foam stacked into its midsole. It is one of the thickest models we have tested, easily providing a smooth landing surface every time. It is surprisingly stable for its stack height, with rigid ankle support to prevent unsuspected turns or twists. The 5mm lugs and sticky rubber hold well on tricky surfaces. It also offers a surprising amount of water protection, and the reinforced leather upper resists scuffs and scratches. Hands down, this boot offers the best cushioning on the market. Check it out if comfort is your top priority.

While the thick cushioning underfoot is heavenly, getting used to it may require an adjustment period. When hiking over rocky terrain in the Kaha 2, we had to train ourselves to lift our feet just slightly to avoid unsuspected trips. Additionally, while the upper offers superior waterproofing, it isn't breathable. But if ample cushioning and excellent underfoot protection are your priority, this is our recommendation. In our testing, all the most comfortable boots usually cost around $200. The exception was the Keen Targhee III Mid - Women's, which was very comfy and about half the price. It scored lower in most metrics than the Kaha but gives solid comfort and has a more traditional sole and styling.

Read more: Women's Hoka Kaha 2 GTX review

Best Off-Trail Hiker for Men

La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX


Consistent all-around performance

Great traction





Runs small

Some long-term durability issues

The La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX is comfortable and agile like a trail running shoe but rugged and capable like a proper boot. If you want to be able to handle all terrain types, this lightweight boot is one to consider seriously. From walking on mellow trails to navigating cross-country obstacles, the Raptor is ready to tackle and transition.

Besides the higher price, our only real issue with the Ultra Raptor II Mid is that it runs small. So it's smart to consider trying these on in person, or at least be sure to order from someone with a good return policy. The Raptor does come in wide sizes, though, which we appreciate since the regular version — like many La Sportiva shoes — is on the narrow side. If you want to do it all and have your feet be happy and nimble the entire time, check out this impressive boot. If you want more traction and don't mind the extra weight, check out the Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX, which tied the Raptor for second place.

Read more: Men's La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II Mid GTX review

Best Women's Option for Wide Feet

Altra Lone Peak ALL-WTHR Mid 2 - Women's


Wide toe box

Lightweight design

Excellent padding and ankle support

Fantastic traction


Zero-drop design may take an adjustment period

Not as durable as other hiking boots

Our hiking experts agree that the Altra Lone Peak ALL-WTHR Mid 2 is a fantastic option for wide feet. It features a durable lacing system, thicker cushioning underfoot, and traction that performs in wet and dry weather. It's a favorite for wide feet because it has a unique toe box that allows your toes to splay and wiggle freely while hiking. It offers the fit and flexibility of a running shoe but with a little more support to shoulder a heavy pack.

While the Altra ALL-WTHR is lightweight, it is not nearly as durable as other leather hiking boots. The mesh materials and cushioning underfoot have a history of wearing and breaking down after fewer miles than a traditional hiking boot. Additionally, the zero-drop design requires an adjustment period. Consider this boot if your top priority is a wide fit, comfortable design, and excellent cushioning underfoot. It's a favorite amongst thru-hikers and fast packers, where weight and comfort are imperative considerations.

Read more: Women's Altra Lone Peak ALL-WTHR Mid 2 review

Best Waterproof Boot for Men

La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX


Watertight construction

Specific fit

Excellent on sloppy surfaces


Less support in the cuff

More difficult to lace up

If you live in a wet climate or prefer a steep hike to dry conditions, consider the La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX. This waterproof boot beats out the competition regarding performance in wet conditions. We tested it by hiking in the rain and trudging through rivers. The gusseted tongue and Nubuck leather construction do well to keep water out, keeping your socks dry. Not only that, but it offers a superior level of comfort and support. The deep lugs are sticky, holding well on sloppy and dry surfaces. Despite these heavyweight features, it is a relatively light boot, making it a great option for all types of adventures in wet (or dry) conditions.

That said, we wish this boot offered more stability. The upper cuff around the ankle is not very rigid, which translates to less stability on uneven surfaces. Additionally, inserting the lace into the boot's eyelets isn't easy, meaning it takes longer to lace up and release. If you're seeking a bombproof boot for water or snow, this is the one you should check out. If you are on a tight budget but still want great weather protection, check out the Timberland Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof. They scored lower than the Nucleo because we didn't find them to be the most comfy, but they are half the price and have great support and durability.

Read more: Men's Nucleo High II GTX review

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (28)

Best Waterproof Boot for Women

La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX - Women's


Fantastic waterproofing


Construction is durable


Lacks breathability


For ladies seeking a hiking boot that does well in wet environments, the Nucleo High II GTX features some of the best waterproofing on the market. Built with a Nubuck leather exterior, waterproof ventilation, and a gusseted tongue, it has proven to keep feet dry in the wettest conditions. The construction is incredibly durable, showing little wear and tear after our testing period. It offers a comfortable fit and a short break-in period. It's a wonderful option for any adventure in wet (or dry) conditions.

While this boot is waterproof, it's not very breathable. In addition, its waterproofing elements make it heavier than other lightweight options on the market. We recommend the La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX if your primary interest is withstanding wet conditions. Two other great water-resistant models are the La Sportiva Trango Tech GTX and the Vasque St. Elias FG GTX, which overall scored higher, just not in the water resistance metric.

Read more: Women's Nucleo High II GTX review

Why You Should Trust Us

Over 11 years, we've researched and tested over 140 unique pairs of hiking boots for women and men. We purchase all products directly from the retailer to provide an unbiased review. After they arrive on our doorstep, we do the dirty work, breaking in each pair and taking to the trail. Our testers wore these boots for thousands of collective miles, with over 500 hours of field time while hiking, camping, fishing, rock climbing, and backpacking through many different conditions. We spent time in all kinds of weather, from hot, sunny days to snow storms to heavy downpours. During this testing period, our team kept detailed notes about the performance of each boot after each hike and after completing a series of objective tests. Award winners were carefully determined after gathering data and after many hours of consideration. We tested women's hiking boots and men's hiking boots, with a focus on lightweight and midweight designs, suitable for all seasons.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (32)

The hiking boots we tested were considered across 6 key test metrics including:

  • Comfort
  • Support
  • Traction
  • Water Resistance
  • Weight
  • Durability

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (33)
10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (34)
10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (35)

For hundreds of miles and over all kinds of terrain, we've put the boots in our reviews through the wringer.

Our team of experts has spent countless days trekking around the world, over all types of terrain, in all sorts of weather, all in the name of testing the best hiking boots on the market. Leading the men's hiking boot review is Ryan Huetter and Ben Applebaum-Bauch. Both are avid guides who love long trails. They've tested these boots in places like the Pacific Crest Trail and Colorado Trail. Below is chart displaying how all the current top boots scored compared to each other.

Our women's hiking boot leads are Jane Jackson and Trish Matheny. Jane has put hundreds of miles in her boots, hiking in beautiful places from the altitudes of the Himalayas to the long trails circumnavigating the granite mountains in the Western United States. Trish has spent much of the last 15 years in the backcountry. She has worked and played on dusty, muddy, and rocky trails across the United States, all with a pair of hiking boots strapped to her feet. Collectively, they've logged hundreds of hours of trail time, testing in all manner of terrain to see how each boot performed. Below is a look at the full women's lineup and how everything scored after a gauntlet of tests.

How to Choose Hiking Boots

Hiking boots are best for adventurers seeking footwear that offers protection and stability on the trail. With such a wide variety of options on the market, searching for a pair that will best suit your needs seems daunting. With our experience, we can help you find exactly what you're looking for. To begin, there are various factors to consider when choosing the best boot for you, including how you will use the boot, the type of boot you need, its fit and design, and how long the break-in period may last. Taking these considerations to heart will help steer you in the right direction to finding your best boot for hiking. Let's dive in.

Intended Usage

What will you be using your hiking boots for? There are various options, but the first step is narrowing them down by identifying your intended use. Are you planning just day hiking, or will you be backpacking too? What types of terrain will you be hiking? How does your boot need to perform? Does it need to be breathable or waterproof? These are the types of questions to ask before your search begins, which will help to steer you in the right direction.

Day Hikes

When you're heading out for a day hike, the type of footwear you choose depends on the intensity of the hike, how technical it is, and how much weight you carry. Sometimes, a lightweight hiking boot with minimal ankle support may be all you need. The lighter materials used in lightweight boots make them more flexible and breathable. They also have enough comfort and support to carry substantial loads. Most offer more stability than hiking shoes or trail runners, but they aren't as heavy as midweight hiking boots. Consider a midweight boot, even for day hikes, if you prefer more stability.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (36)

Moderate Backpacking Over Rugged Terrain

Backpacking all your gear into a campsite for the night can be strenuous, but it can also be made easier by footwear with a little more stability, especially around the ankle. For any moderate backpacking adventure, a midweight boot is recommended. This type of boot has stability on unstable surfaces without being too heavy. This is helpful when shouldering a heavy pack for a couple of days. A lightweight boot can also function for moderate backpacking adventures. However, with larger loads, your feet might get a little more beat up than they would in a more rigid midweight boot.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (37)

Factors to Consider

Not only do you need to consider the length of time you'll be wearing your boots, but also the conditions. This includes the trail's climate, temperature, surfaces, and steepness. A lightweight hiking boot should be fine if you prefer easy hikes on flat terrain. But, if you often take on steep and technical trails with talus fields, consider a more stable design.


Many people opt for hiking boots instead of hiking shoes because they have some level of water resistance or waterproofing. If you find yourself hiking in wet weather, look for a boot that integrates a seamless design, waterproof or Gore-Tex membrane, and leather construction. An extra plus is a gusseted tongue, which will protect you better during river crossings.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (38)


You'll encounter many different surfaces when you're out on the trail. Wet, dry, steep, and flat — they will vary. For example, kitty litter gravel over rock in dry conditions can cause unsuspected slips when the trails are steep. Steep slabs can also be treacherous, especially if a boot can't grip the rock. A soft, sticky rubber with evenly spaced lugs is preferred.

If you encounter wet conditions, like slippery rocks, mud, ice, or snow, you'll want to look for a combination of deeper lugs that are well-spaced and a sticky rubber that doesn't get too hard in colder temperatures. The spacing of the lugs will help shed mud and snow more easily. The deeper lugs will help bite down on the trail, especially when traveling up or downhill. Regardless of the specific conditions, think about the surfaces you'll be hiking on and then look at the design and construction of the outsole to ensure it'll do what you need it to on your adventures.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (39)


A boot that can breathe is important, especially in hot or humid weather. Without breathability, a hiking boot can turn a dry sock into a wet one which is a great way to end up with hot spots or full-on blisters. While considering your options, look for breathable panels protecting from small particulates. If hiking in warmer conditions, look for a light design. A hiking shoe or trail running shoe is also a nice alternative for a hiking boot in hot weather, as long as you're okay with less stability through the ankle and body of the boot.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (40)


A lighter boot is the most common preference for most people when hiking. Who doesn't like to feel light? It means you can go further, and the hike always seems much more enjoyable. We recommend looking for a pair of less than four-pound boots. Anything heavier will seem strenuous to hike in, especially if you intend to go out for the day. When you're doing your research on different products, be sure to check out the weight specs to see how each boot measures up.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (41)

Types of Hiking Boots

We've been discussing several different types of hiking boots, so let's take the time to define each. In this section, we'll cover lightweight, midweight, and heavyweight hikers. In addition, we'll discuss hiking shoes and trail runners, as these are common substitutes.

Lightweight Hikers

In our review, we opted to test many lightweight hikers that generally weigh less than two pounds per pair. These typically have a low to mid-cut, not rising more than 4-5 inches. These boots have a lower ankle height with thinner, more flexible fabrics. These designs have often done away with stability elements, such as rigid shanks embedded in the midsole. They also tend to have more flexible cuffs around the ankle, so there's not as much ankle support as you might encounter with a midweight or heavyweight hiking boot. This boot category is best for those who prefer light feet on the trail, trading off stability around the ankle. If you don't care too much for stability around the ankle, consider a hiking shoe or trail running shoe as an alternative to a lightweight hiking boot.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (42)

Hiking Shoes

So what's the difference between a hiking shoe and a hiking boot? The biggest difference is ankle stability. Hiking shoes do not have high cuff ankle support, whereas a hiking boot will. Many of the design elements—including stability, waterproofing, and traction—can be the same. Hiking shoes are also typically quite durable, with better breathability and lower weight than most hiking boots. These are a great option if you don't care too much about ankle support but still want a supportive and stable shoe for exploring the outdoors.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (43)

Trail Runners

A trail runner is your best if you want to go even lighter, with even fewer stability elements. While there is a huge range of trail runners, many options offer stability elements, similar to a hiking shoe, but with upper materials that are typically more flexible. Of the footwear options for hiking, trail runners are the most lightweight contenders (outside of sandals) with the least amount of stability. That said, there are incredibly stable trail runners on the market that mimic a lightweight hiking boot or shoe. If you don't require your footwear to cover the ankle and prefer lighter shoes, then you should look at our best trail running shoe review to scope out the different options on the market.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (44)

Midweight Hikers

A traditional hiker is a midweight hiking boot. Typically weighing 2-3 pounds per pair, they rise 4-5 inches on the ankle. They are usually more rigid than a lightweight hiker but more flexible than a heavyweight boot. They offer better stability and durability than most lightweight hiking boots tested.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (45)

Designed for versatility, this type of boot is a great option for day hikes and backpacking. They can carry loads between 20 to 30 pounds across rugged terrain. They feature stiff soles, leather construction, an ankle cuff that fits well, and stability elements. Most feature breathable vents that don't allow particulates to get inside. If stability is a higher priority than weight, this is a good type of boot for all outdoor adventures.

A midweight hiker is a fantastic choice if you seek ankle support with lightweight construction.

Heavyweight Hikers

These burly hikers are heavy, full-leather hiking boots designed for off-trail explorations and mountaineering adventures. They are designed to carry a 40+ pound backpack across treacherous terrain and often weigh upwards of 3 pounds per pair. During this review, we didn't feature any heavyweight boots, but there are many options on the market, and our lineup has some that lean in that direction. They are typically completely waterproof, extremely durable, and very heavy. They are built with full-grain leather and TPU midsoles, with several stability elements. They are designed to handle the roughest terrain and the most extreme conditions.

Fit and Sizing

No matter how high the ratings and how great the features are, if the boot doesn't fit, it's not the right boot for you. You can premeditate all of the features you want, but until you slip it on and try it out, you won't know if it's the right one for you. When considering the fit of a boot, do your research, especially when shopping online.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (46)

Before trying on a boot, grab a sock of similar thickness that you intend to hike in. This will impact the overall fit. When you slide your foot inside and lace it up, note the additional volume or wiggle room in the toe box. Notice if your toes feel cramped front to back, or side to side. If they do, you might need to size up a half size or find a different brand that is either wider or more narrow. Walk around and test out the flexibility and stability of the boot. Point your toes, go up the stairs, and walk around on unstable surfaces to see how the boot flexes or if there are any pinch points. If you require specific support, consider using insoles. Once you've found a fit that works, start getting excited because you're on your way to buying your perfect boot.

If you're ordering online, select a retailer with a good return policy so you can return anything that isn't a good fit.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (47)

Break-In Period

After you've found your pair of hiking boots, know that they will most likely require a break-in period. Depending on the construction and materials, break-in times vary. Lightweight hikers with softer materials typically have a faster break-in period than those with more rigid materials. Midweight hikers have the widest range of time since there are so many combinations of materials in the construction. Some, for example, might take longer to break in than those with a different type of leather.

Finally, test your boots on short hikes before committing to longer adventures. The boots need time to mold and shape. Even in the "right" boot, diving straight into a long, grueling hike can still lead to blisters or other issues on the trail, something nobody wants.

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (48)


Whether you're about to embark on a life-changing thru-hike or you're taking your dog on its daily walk, a solid hiking boot should be a part of any adventurer's gear closet. There are many different options to choose from, but if you take the time to consider what you will use it for, the conditions you'll be hiking, and the adventures you'll be embarking upon, choosing a hiking boot can be fun. Luckily, we've tested the best options on the market to help guide you in the right direction. Happy trails!

10 Best Hiking Boots of 2024 (2024)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Nicola Considine CPA

Last Updated:

Views: 5577

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (49 voted)

Reviews: 80% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Nicola Considine CPA

Birthday: 1993-02-26

Address: 3809 Clinton Inlet, East Aleisha, UT 46318-2392

Phone: +2681424145499

Job: Government Technician

Hobby: Calligraphy, Lego building, Worldbuilding, Shooting, Bird watching, Shopping, Cooking

Introduction: My name is Nicola Considine CPA, I am a determined, witty, powerful, brainy, open, smiling, proud person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.