Purchasing hiking boots for the love of hiking is never a bad idea. Having a sweet and memorable experience during hiking has many factors around it, of which these boots are a part of. Hiking boots are specifically designed for the protection of the feet and ankles during the hiking exercise. This makes the choice of right hiking boots be more like a matchmaking process. That is, there must be a point of intersection between your dream hiking boots with how and where you choose to hike.
The rating of hiking boots is relative and affected by some factors such that the choice of the best is determined by how good the service it renders is. The types, components and fit – these three things are important to know so as to aid your decision-making process about the selection of your hiking boots.
|Merrell Moab 2||Wide Toe Box||PRICING|
|KEEN Targhee II||Extra Toe Space and Protection||PRICING|
|Timberland Chocorua||Lightweight, Waterproof and Breathable||PRICING|
|The North Face Chilkat III||Has Good Traction||PRICING|
|Salomon X Ultra 3||Excellent All-round Performance||PRICING|
There are many types of hiking boots from which you can make your pick. There are:
- Hiking shoes, which are low-cut models possessing midsoles that are flexible. They are excellently suitable for day hiking.
- Day Hiking Boots, which ranges from mid-cut to high-cut models. They are excellent for day hikes or light loads short backpacking trips.
- Backpacking boots, which are high-cut boots that cover up the ankles for maximum support. It is specifically designed to conveniently carry loads that are heavier on multiday trips. It is durable and supportive, its midsoles are stuffer than any lighter footwear, and they are very suitable for either on-trail or off-trail travel.
A typical hiking boot has four basic components: the boot uppers, the midsoles, the internal supports, the outsoles and crampons. You should know that the materials from which the boot is made from definitely impacts the boot’s weight, durability, breathability and water resistance. So, all these components are made with various types of materials which makes them suitable for different purposes according to the manufacturer’s discretion. All you need to do is to make the best suitable choice for yourself.
When you are out there to buy your hiking boots, check for these three qualities of a typical hiking boot: snug feeling, tight lest and make room for you to wiggle your toes. You can also consider following these tips:
- Size your feet: know your size and go for the right fit.
- Try on the boots at day end. This prevents you from buying boots that are under-sized
- Wear appropriate socks
However, we understand that picking the best while considering your budget, maybe a bit difficult; therefore, we have simplified the list and come up with the best you will find out there. This list below is exhaustive from different brands of hiking boots and we believe a pick from it will work just fine for you.
1. Merrell Moab 2 Mid Ventilator Hiking Boots
The Moab 2 vent is manufactured by the renown well-established manufacturers of footwear. This boot is popular and it is mostly used among men. You would probably come across this boot or one of its versions on the trail. Though this boot is on the heavier side of the boots for hiking and discourages you to pick up the pace, it has solid traction and it is generally accepted as an affordable consideration for light-moderate hiking exercise. This means that it is excellent for short, moderate ventures. Though it does breathe well through its mesh, the boot is not made with any waterproof membranes which makes it not suitable for contacts with water or soggy conditions because it wets out easily. The upper side of the boot is thick, made up of suede leather and mesh, plus an EVA midsole, a nylon shank, and a Vibram TC5+ outsole. These make it more pleasing for you to wear in warm weather.
The Moab 2 vent has a comfort rating of about 25%. There is no pressure points or hot spots produced on your feet by its spacious foot box when worn. It has a looser fit than how a typical hiking shoe should be. It has thick and rounded laces like a cord which makes it untie faster than other models. Of course, you need not worry because you can swap out the laces for suitable ones anytime. Lacing system which has designs that permits easy and precise adjustments throughout the upper is recommended.
This boot is on the heavier side of the hiking boots with a rating of about 25% (7 on a scale of 1-10), although it’s unlikely for you to notice its extra weight until you are out on a lot of mileage. That is why it’s said to be suitable for short-distance hikes. Its weight is about 444g for men and 386g for women.
Moreover, you don’t need to worry much about its support system because the support offered by the Moab 2 Ventilator is sufficient especially for light hiking needs. It’s made with a wide forefoot that improves balance when you are powering off your forefoot with its flexibility.
Moab 2 Ventilator has high durability. It can withstand a wide range of trial abuse, and given a bit of care, it will last you for hundreds and thousands of miles without hitch. The breathable mesh in the upper is overlaid by leather which prevents it from wearing through.
2. KEEN Targhee II Waterproof Mid Hiking Boots
The Targhee II is a solid lightweight hiker that offers a super comfort to the feet and toe protection in a completely inexpensive package. This is the best option for you if you are on a low budget and in need of lightweight hiking boot that is mid-cut. Targhee II is best for an average hiker. Its model is such that has a big toe cap and comfy fit, which feels burly but only weighs exactly 2.4 Ibs. Although some of its components like its thick midsole, hardy rubber protection at the toe and heel, and high-traction outsole made it heavier, they contribute to its higher performance in metrics such as traction and durability. So, you can be confident when slopping through all kinds of landscapes as the boot’s outsole is suitable for every surface type.
You can be so sure to enjoy maximum comfort in the usage of this boot on a trail. It has a cushy dual insole extending to the ankle collar which wraps your foot in a subtle comfort. The possibility of having stubbed toes has been removed by the presence of the stiff protective rubber in the front of the boot, and the thick sole coupled with shank inserts takes care of uneven surfaces and pointy rocks without resulting into any discomfort or perhaps foot fatigue.
The lacing system is of Targhee II is made to have three lower, one middle and one upper locking eyelets. This is very cool because it allows your heel to be cinched down in the heel cup, thereby securing the heel which is indeed innovative and useful. It is quite versatile because both it will fit in for you whether you have wide feet or a narrow foot as the case may be. This is due to the flexibility of the upper part of the boot and its lacing system.
Targhee II is known to always suit the taste of its lightweight models’ customers, especially when durability is of most concern for you. It is the most durable model of all the lightweight models of hiking boots. You should consider getting one of these boots if you have wide feet and wishes to maximize your hiking experience to the fullest.
3. Timberland Chocorua Trail Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots
This is a good looking, all-round hot deal hiking boot suitable for light to medium day hiking at a very good affordable price. This Timberland shoe is popular and among one of the top sellers in the market. This contributes to the reason for its high market demand, plus that they are burly and functional.
Observing from a style and look view, Chocorua has a kind of a traditional hiking boot appearance which you will like. The upper of the boot is made of topnotch full-grain waterproof leather. Combining this material with a Gore-Tex membrane has instinctively made us know that these boots are pretty nice in the context of waterproof capabilities.
Chocorua comes in two types of a color mix: Brow with green, and brown and green. Though it might sound the same, there is a difference between them in that the brown with green color mix has Brown to be predominant. The idea of behind the simplicity of the autumnal color mix is great because it makes the boots look nice and stunning.
The Chocorua provides a kind of out-of-the-box comfort for the wearers. It has a removable, dual-density EVA footbed which has perforations to give room for additional aeration. And as a matter of fact, a removable insole is a standard for a proper mid pair of hiking shoes. This functions well in regulating the temperature inside the boots.
Other features of men’s Chocorua mid hiking boots include a lacing system that is adjustable and rustproof for a customized fit. It comes with EVA midsole purposed for lightweight, all-day cushioning and a solid rubber outsole coupled with lugs for superior traction.
4. The North Face Chilkat III Winter Boots
Chilkat III is a versatile winter boot by the North Face. It is good for you if you are in need of an all-round boot that can do it all, though it is recommended that you go for higher performance models of hiking boots with a tighter fit for an intense winter hiking.
They are generally comfortable and offers excellent traction on slippery terrains and surfaces. Its lacing system seems quite simple and user-friendly, having a shaft that is of a medium height which enables the laces to get on and off users’ feet easily. It has a temperature-sensitive rubber sole and an assertive tread pattern. They are highly resistant to water and performs well ion keeping the feet dry always wettest condition exception. Its weight per pair (size 11) is 3.4 Ibs.
5. Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX Hiking Boots
X Ultra 3 GTX is a Salomon product, versatile in combining the comfort feature of a trail running shoe with the support feature expected from a hiking boot, resulting in a proficient performer in every trail condition. This boot is most suitable for you as a hiker who wishes to enjoy more stability when carrying a heavier pack and loves to backpack with trail running shoes. As a casual and/day hiker, you will also love the comfort, features and the good value of the boot.
The X Ultra 3 comes with high traction contra grip outsole for superior traction while on the tracks. It also features an injected EVA midsole, advanced chassis and protective heel cap. Furthermore, it is made of protective rubber toe cap and mudguard to prevent mud clogging. The upper material is made of water-resistant textile, softshell, waterproof PU coated leather.
There is no gainsaying about the impact of having the right footwear for your hiking exercise. As important as having your backpack is, it is equally important to have a suitable hiking boot for your adventure. With the above-reviewed hiking boots, you can be sure you have the right pick to help you enjoy the best hiking experience.
You may also like: