Best Hiking Boots Under $100 According to Avid Hiker

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If you like to explore the trails, you might be looking for a pair of comfy hiking shoes. However, as you know, outdoor explorations can wreak havoc on your trusty pair of shoes, and it can be a pain to replace them. Your best bet is to find reliable yet affordable hiking boots that hold up to wear and tear.

For men and women alike, the best option is the Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes. These are made of 100% suede leather built for outdoor performance with breathability and grippy Vibram soles to keep you from slipping.

This product roundup will review the style and materials of several affordable shoes so that you can pick the best hiking boots for under $100. Read on for more!

IMAGE PRODUCT Waterproof rating  Price
Best OverallMerrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes (men’s) Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes (men’s) NO
9.7
Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Hiking Boots (men’s) Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Hiking Boots (men’s) YES
9.5
Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boots (men’s)  Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boots (men’s) YES
9.5
Budget PickColumbia Granite Ridge Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots (men’s)  Columbia Granite Ridge Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots (men’s) YES
9.5
Best OverallMerrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoe (women’s) Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoe (women’s) NO
9.7
Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots (women’s)  Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots (women’s) YES
9.5
Columbia Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots (women’s)  Columbia Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots (women’s) YES
9.5
Foxelli Leather Hiking Boots (women’s)  Foxelli Leather Hiking Boots (women’s) YES
9.5
Best Budget OptionColumbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped Hiking Boots (women’s)  Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped Hiking Boots (women’s) YES
9.5

Review of Best Hiking Boots Under $100

Men’s Shoes

Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes: Best Overall

Sale
Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes
16,434 Reviews
Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes
  • Performance suede leather and mesh upper
  • Bellows, closed-cell foam tongue keeps moisture and debris out
  • Protective rubber toe cap
  • Breathable mesh lining. 5mm lug depth
  • Vibram TC5+ sole

The Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes are the best solution if you’re looking for a reliable, comfortable, low-cut shoe with breathability in mind. They feature plenty of mesh throughout to keep you from sweating.

The shoes are crafted with 100% suede leather uppers with interlays of mesh for ventilation. For even more ventilation, the pair features a lining of mesh as well. There is also comfortable foam in the tongue that prevents moisture from building up and causing sweat.

Because of all the breathable parts of the shoe, the Moab 2’s are not waterproof and are also not well-insulated. This means they are designed for warmer climates with dry conditions. Overall, this pair is built to keep dirt out of your socks and keep your feet from sweating. The upside of non-waterproof shoes like these is that they are typically lighter.

For extra comfort, the Moab 2’s have air cushioning in the heel. This helps absorb shock and adds to the shoe’s stable ride. There is also a FIT.ECO blended EVA footbed, contoured to fit your feet perfectly with plenty of support for your heels and arches. This is where your feet generally get tired after a long day of walking.

The midsole is made of EVA, and the sole is a VIbram TC5+ to grip slippery surfaces, like gravel. They feature a 5 mm lug for added traction. They also have protective rubber toe caps, so you won’t have to worry about hitting your toes on rocks as you climb the mountain trails.

Pros

  • Great for dry, dirty, dusty conditions
  • Excellent breathability
  • Air cushion in the heels for shock absorption
  • Grippy Vibram TC5+ soles with 5 mm lug depth (good traction)
  • Protective rubber toe caps
  • Not as heavy

Cons

  • Not waterproof
  • Not insulated (not great for cold weather

Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boots: Most Waterproof Ankle Boots

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Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Hiking Boots
33,340 Reviews
Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Hiking Boots
  • Our White Ledge Men's Hiking Boots have premium full-grain waterproof leather uppers, seam-sealed waterproof construction, and rustproof speed lace hardware with hooks at top for secure lacing
  • LOOK NO FURTHER for trail-ready performance and style Our selection of men’s hiking boots, waterproof hiking boots, casual boots, and casual shoes is designed to fit in with your outdoor-ready ensembles
  • TIMBERLAND HAS YOU COVERED whether you're looking for men's boots, women's boots, or kids boots For the best in hiking boots, rain boots, work boots, casual shoes & boots & more, choose Timberland
  • WHAT YOU NEED IN THE OUTDOORS: Timberland has the gear you need for all your outdoor adventures, including jackets and coats for outdoor activities, backpacks and luggage & outdoor accessories
  • Covered by the Timberland Limited Warranty For complete terms, limitations, and instructions on how to make a warranty claim, please visit the Timberland website

The Timberland White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Hiking Boots are the best choice for men’s ankle boots in this product roundup. Ankle boots offer enhanced support on your ankles and are a great choice for all-day hikes.

These Timberlands are available in three stylish colors and are made of 100% full-grain leather. This premium leather is waterproof with sealed seams to keep moisture out. The Timberland boots are also lined with a “ReBOTL” recycled fabric for the environmentally conscious.

For added durability, the lacing hardware is rustproof. Not only this, but the shoes feature a fast lacing system with hooks, so you can spend less time tying your shoes and more time out on your adventures.

For traction, the Timberlands have multi-directional lugs that grip the ground, although the lugs are much shorter than seen above in the Merrells (the actual depth is not mentioned). The sole of these shoes is made of recycled rubber, and they feature a compression molded EVA foam midsole for added comfort.

Keep in mind that while these shoes are an excellent option to protect against rain, the waterproofing makes them heavier than shoes that feature a lot of mesh, such as the Merrell Moab 2’s above. The lack of mesh also makes them less breathable and less suited for hot weather.

Pros

  • Full-grain leather is waterproof with sealed seams
  • Good ankle support
  • Lining made of recycled fabric
  • Recycled rubber soles
  • The fast hook lacing system
  • Compression-molded EVA foam midsole (comfortable)

Cons

  • Waterproofing is heavier
  • Not suited for hot weather (less ventilation)

Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boots: Most Versatile Ankle Boot

Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boots
17,843 Reviews
Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boots
  • ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY: This Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof hiking boot features Techlite lightweight midsole for long lasting comfort, superior cushioning, and high energy return as well as Omni-Grip advanced traction rubber sole for slip-free movement.
  • HANDY FEATURES: This men's hiking boot is crafted of a waterproof full-grain leather and suede lightweight construction as well as a durable mesh tongue for breathability and comfort during treacherous days out on the trail or on the mountain.
  • ADJUSTABLE FEATURES: The Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof II hiking boot features a lace-up closure for an adjustable, secure fit.
  • DURABILITY: This men's waterproof hiking boot is lightweight and durable.
  • This Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof hiking boot is the perfect waterproof addition to a treacherous day out on the trail or up the mountain.

The Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boots are another excellent ankle boot option. This pair is the best choice if you want to protect your ankle, have decent waterproofing, have good tread for icy conditions, and have some added mesh for breathability.

The Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II boots can be found in 15 stylish color options.

This pair is made of a polyurethane coated waterproof leather and suede upper with sealed seams. For added waterproofing, there is an “Omni-Tech” waterproof membrane throughout the boot. This membrane is also breathable.

These boots feature mesh within the upper itself for added ventilation, making them also suited for those warmer hiking climates.

Additionally, there is metal hardware along with the laces for durability. These shoes are incredibly comfortable with their “Techlite” EVA midsole with plenty of responsive cushioning.

For traction, these boots feature an “Omni-Grip” multi-terrain rubber outsole that is grippy outside but also claims not to mark up your floors. The Newton Ridges also features a winter tread pattern for ice.

Pros

  • Versatile with mesh for breathability on warmer days, waterproofing for rain, and winter tread pattern for ice
  • Combination of mesh and polyurethane-coated leather/suede
  • Waterproof membrane (“Omni-Tech”) and sealed seams
  • More lightweight because of breathable mesh
  • Good for warmer weather
  • “Techlite” EVA midsole is cushioned
  • Good ankle support
  • Metal hardware on laces is durable
  • Grippy “Omni-Grip” rubber outsoles for good traction

Cons

  • Still heavier than the Merrell Moab 2’s

Columbia Granite Ridge Mid Waterproof Boots: Budget Pick

Columbia Granite Ridge Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots
2,540 Reviews

The Columbia Granite Ridge Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots are the best choice if you’re looking for a trusty pair of hiking boots on a limited budget. Although all of the boots in this product roundup can be found for less than $100, the Columbia Granite Ridge can be purchased for just $39.99 while still offering the reliability and comfort that Columbia boots are known for.

The Columbia Granite Ridge boots are ankle boots, like the Columbia Newton Ridge and Timberland White Ledge pairs above. They feature a suede and textile upper with the patented “Omni-Tech” waterproof (yet still breathable) membrane lining. For an ankle boot, they are fairly lightweight due to the mesh tongue.

These shoes feature a “Techlite” EVA midsole for comfort and Omni-Grip non-marking rubber for the outsole, like the Newton Ridge. Unlike the Newton Ridge, though, the Granite Ridge does not feature the metal lacing hardware or winter tread pattern.

Pros

  • Decently lightweight
  • Good ankle support
  • The waterproof membrane is still breathable
  • “Techlite” EVA midsole for cushioning
  • Omni-Grip non-marking rubber outsole

Cons

  • No metal hardware on the lacing system
  • No winter tread pattern

Women’s Shoes

Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes: Best Overall

Sale
Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoe
4,676 Reviews
Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoe
  • Breathable mesh lining
  • Performance suede leather and mesh upper
  • Bellows, closed-cell foam tongue keeps moisture and debris out
  • Merrell M Select FIT.ECO+ blended EVA contoured footbed with added zonal arch and heel support
  • Vibram TC5+ sole

Like the men’s version, the Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoe is the overall winner for the women. These stylish shoes have been nicknamed “Mother of All Boots,”. Avid hikers love Merrell Moab 2 that many say they’ll wear them until they HAVE TO REPLACE them.

The Merrell Moab 2 features a leather and suede upper construction with mesh interspersed throughout the body of the shoe. While the leather is durable, the mesh allows extra ventilation and prevents the dreaded foot sweat. Because of the mesh, the shoe is also more lightweight. These shoes also feature a foam tongue to prevent moisture accumulation.

There are rubber caps along the toes to protect you from rocks, just like the men’s version of the shoe. The Moab 2’s are also equipped with a FIT.ECO+ blended EVA contoured footbed with air cushioning that adds support for your heels and arches to prevent fatigue.

With a Vibram TC5+ rubber outsole and 5 mm lug depth, you can feel sure-footed no matter the terrain.

These shoes are also environmentally friendly, as Merrell used recycled materials throughout the construction of the boots.

Lastly, just like the men’s version, the Merrells are not waterproof and are not meant for winter hiking, as they are not as well insulated against the harsh elements.

Pros

  • Durable leather construction with added mesh for breathability
  • Contoured footbed with air cushioning prevents fatigue
  • Foam tongue absorbs moisture
  • Lightweight
  • Rubber toe caps for protection
  • Recycled materials
  • 13 colors
  • Grippy TC5+ Vibram rubber outsoles with 5 mm lugs

Cons

  • Not good for winter
  • Not waterproof

Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots: Most Versatile Ankle Boots

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Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots
14,824 Reviews
Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots
  • ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY: Columbia Women's Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Hiking Boot features our lightweight, durable midsole for long lasting comfort, superior cushioning, and high energy return as well as an advanced traction rubber sole for slip-free movement on rough ground.
  • HANDY FEATURES: Treacherous days out on the trail are comfortable and worry-free with this boot's waterproof full-grain leather and mesh bootie construction and its durable mesh tongue for breathability.
  • ADJUSTABLE FEATURES: The Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Hiking Boot features a lace-up closure for an adjustable, secure fit.
  • FEMININE STYLE: This women's waterproof hiking boot delivers style and durability with its contrasting color combinations and soft mesh exterior.
  • OMNI-GRIP: This multi-terrain traction system matches specially formulated compounds and treads to specific environments. A dual-zone winter tread pattern ensures solid footing on surfaces such as ice and snow.

The women’s Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots are an excellent option if you’re looking for versatility in your hiking boots. These trendy boots feature a durable leather design, waterproofing to hold up against the elements, and mesh for added breathability for warmer days.

Like the men’s version, this pair is constructed with both leather and mesh along the upper, making it rather versatile, as it is durable yet more lightweight. Sealed seams add to the waterproofing of this shoe. There is an Omni-Tech waterproof membrane running along the lining of the shoe to keep moisture out.

Although it is waterproof, this membrane promises to be breathable and perfect for warmer hikes.

The Newton Ridges feature an Omni-Grip non-marking rubber outsole for grip as well. The Techlite midsole is very cushioned and supportive without feeling too thick and heavy.

These shoes also are equipped with metal hardware along the laces for added durability.

Pros

  • Waterproof membrane with sealed seams
  • Durable leather construction
  • More lightweight than all-leather shoes because of breathable mesh areas
  • Good ankle support
  • Cushioned, comfortable midsole adds support
  • Metal hardware at laces
  • Grippy “Omni-Grip” rubber outsoles for added traction

Cons

  • Still heavier than the Merrell Moab 2’s

Columbia Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots: Most Lightweight Waterproof Ankle Boots

Columbia Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots
964 Reviews
Columbia Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots
  • OMNI-GRIP: This multi-terrain traction system matches specially formulated compounds and treads to specific environments. A dual-zone winter tread pattern ensures solid footing on surfaces such as ice and snow.
  • HANDY FEATURES: Treacherous days out on the trail or in the snow are comfortable and worry-free with this boot's waterproof full-grain leather and mesh bootie construction and its durable mesh tongue for breathability.
  • ADJUSTABLE FEATURES: The Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot features a lace-up closure for an adjustable, secure fit.
  • FEMININE STYLE: This women's waterproof hiking boot delivers style and durability with its contrasting color combinations and soft mesh exterior.
  • ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY: Columbia Women's Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot features our lightweight, durable midsole for long lasting comfort, superior cushioning, and high energy return as well as an advanced traction rubber sole for slip-free movement on rough ground.

The Columbia Crestwood Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots are very lightweight for a waterproof ankle boot. These boots are reliably built, breathable, and durable with the well-deserved Columbia name.

Along the upper of these boots, you’ll find a mesh and leather design for durability and breathability combined. These boots also feature Omni-Tech waterproofing for protection against the elements. Because of the additional mesh areas, the Crestwoods are even more lightweight than the Newton Ridges above.

The midsole of the Crestwoods is Columbia’s patented “Techlite” EVA rubber. This midsole is very cushioned and responsive to movement, making each step feel easier along the trails.

Lastly, these shoes are equipped with an Omni-Grip outsole that adds traction and won’t mark up the floor. They also feature a tread pattern that prevents slippage on ice.

Pros

  • More lightweight than other waterproof, ankle boots
  • Cushioned, responsive “Techlite” EVA rubber midsole
  • Mesh and leather design is breathable and durable at the same time
  • Omni-Tech waterproofing is reliable
  • Seven color options
  • Omni-Grip outsole adds traction and prevents slipping on ice

Cons

  • Additional mesh areas may be less durable and may accidentally let in more moisture than intended
  • No metal hardware on laces

Foxelli Leather Hiking Boots: Most Comfortable Features

Foxelli Leather Hiking Boots
1,528 Reviews
Foxelli Leather Hiking Boots
  • WATERPROOF & BREATHABLE: Made from suede leather and breathable mesh, Foxelli hiking boots for women are designed to make your outdoor outings even more pleasant. KingTex waterproof membrane seals out any moisture and keeps the feet nice and dry even in the harshest weather conditions. Breathable mesh collar and gusseted tongue allow for better air circulation.
  • LIGHTWEIGHT & COMFORTABLE: When it comes to all-day comfort – Foxelli women hiking boots certainly deliver! Well-padded collar and tongue result in superior cushioning around the ankle area. Removable, soft foam innersoles offer relief and quality protection to your feet at all times. Shock absorbent midsoles minimize any impact on joints, while the flexible upper assure that the ultimate freedom of movement. FOR ULTIMATE COMFORT, TAKE A CAREFUL LOOK AT OUR SIZE CHART AND CHOOSE THE BEST FIT.
  • GREAT SUPPORT & DURABILITY: Foxelli women’s hiking shoes will withstand almost anything you might throw at them. High-quality rubber soles are fully slip-proof and feature advanced traction for better stability on challenging terrains. No more slipping and falling on wet or muddy surfaces! Rand guards add extra protection to the areas of the boots that need it the most. Good arch and ankle support are also featured for a greater posture and balance!
  • PREMIUM DESIGN: What’s more important: performance or aesthetics? With Foxelli hiking boots you never have to choose between the two! Stylish, youthful and trendy, these trekking boots come in 3 different designs that will work for urban leisure just as well as for the trails. 2 additional pairs of colourful non-slip shoelaces are also included!
  • RISK-FREE PURCHASE: We offer a 30-day, no questions asked, money-back guarantee with a 1-year warranty for any defects. If you’re not 100% satisfied - we’ll give you your money back. It’s a promise! BUY WITH CONFIDENCE!

The Foxelli Leather Hiking Boots are the ultimate choice in comfort, with their flexible upper design, padded mesh around blister points, soft foam insoles, and cushioned tongue and collar. These are a pair of boots that are sure to keep your feet protected from the elements as well, with added waterproofing features.

These fashionable boots feature an outer upper made of leather and suede with mesh intermixed for added breathability. Also, these boots are equipped with a mesh style collar around the top of the shoe to enhance ventilation, and the gusseted tongue keeps moisture from getting trapped.

For waterproofing, there is a “KingTex” membrane lining to protect you from the elements.

The Foxelli pair is incredibly comfortable, thanks to the cushioning in the tongue and collar that keeps the boots from scuffing your ankles up as you walk. The flexibility of the upper also keeps blisters at bay. The extra soft foam insoles can be removed if needed.

The Foxelli shoes also feature midsoles built for absorbing impact.

These boots also have mud guards and rubberized bumpers at the toes to protect your feet from impact. The outsoles are grippy rubber, perfect for traction on rocks.

Pros

  • Very comfortable with cushioning at the tongue and ankle areas
  • Flexible rather than stiff
  • Good ankle support
  • KingTex lining for waterproofing
  • Soft insole
  • EVA midsoles absorb shock
  • Breathable mesh
  • Grippy rubber outsoles
  • Rubberized toe bumpers for protection

Cons

  • No metal hardware at laces
  • Lesser known brand
  • Heavy

Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped Hiking Boots: Best Budget Option

Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped Hiking Boots
9,130 Reviews
Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped Hiking Boots
  • ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY: Features our lightweight, durable midsole for long lasting comfort, superior cushioning, and high energy return as well as an advanced traction rubber sole for slip-free movement on rough ground.
  • HANDY FEATURES: Treacherous days out on the trail are comfortable and worry-free with this boot's waterproof full-grain leather and suede bootie construction and its durable mesh tongue for breathability.
  • ADJUSTABLE FEATURES: The Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Amped hiking boot features a lace-up closure for an adjustable, secure fit.
  • FEMININE STYLE: This women's waterproof hiking boot delivers a style with durability with it's contrasting color combinations and soft suede exterior.
  • OMNI-GRIP: This multi-terrain traction system matches specially formulated compounds and treads to specific environments. A dual-zone winter tread pattern ensures solid footing on surfaces such as ice and snow.

The Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped Hiking Boots are the best choice for the budget-conscious. Amid these other affordable boots, you can find the Newton Ridge Plus Amped as low as $58.33.

The Columbia Newton Ridge Plus Amped boots come in nine color options to fit nearly any wardrobe.

While the standard Columbia Newton Ridge Plus boots feature an all-leather and mesh design, the Amped have a full-grain leather/suede/mesh design that promises to be waterproof while still being relatively lightweight. Because of its Omni-Tech waterproof, seam-sealed membrane, it can stand up against some rain as well.

The “Techlite” midsole isn’t too heavy and is rather cushioned with plenty of bounce and springiness. The rubber outsole is an Omni-Grip, non-marking design.

This pair is built for warmer weather days, as it is quite lightweight and ventilated with a mesh tongue and breathable design. The Newton Ridge Plus Amped boots also feature metal hardware along the laces for durability.

Pros

  • Relatively lightweight
  • Waterproof membrane and sealed seams
  • Mesh for breathability
  • Cushioned
  • Omni-Grip rubber outsole, non-marking
  • Metal hardware at laces for durability
  • More inexpensive

Cons

  • Suede may show dirt easily

Buying Guide: What to Know Before Purchasing Hiking Boots

Materials

When looking for a pair of new hiking boots, make sure that the materials of the shoes are high-quality. Many hiking boots are designed with uppers made of a smooth, shiny, full-grain leather, which is rather durable and stylish.

Nubuck leather is another material you may see. It has been buffed out to hide scuffs and is often a darker color.

For waterproofing, leather is often treated with a polyurethane coating to keep your feet dry through the elements.

Suede is another material you’ll often find in the uppers of your hiking shoes. Suede is a finish of leather but has a softer texture. Lighter colors of suede can sometimes show dirt more easily, so keep in mind that these shoes may need special cleaning more often.

For a more breathable pair of shoes, look for a synthetic (usually nylon) mesh along the uppers and in the tongue. Mesh areas will allow more air to flow, preventing your feet from sweating. Mesh designs are best suited for dry climates and warmer weather.

You can also find hiking shoes constructed with synthetic materials, like polyester. Nylon is another common option. These synthetics will be more lightweight than leather, and they also don’t require a break-in period to become comfortable on your feet. Boots made out of synthetic materials are typically less expensive as well.

More: Top Rated Tactical Gloves for Cold Weather [Review and Buying Guide]

Durability

The upper material of your hiking boot is a major part of its overall durability. Leather is the most durable material for hiking boots and is often seen in the upper part of your boots.

Full-grain leather is inherently water-resistant, doesn’t tear easily, and should last for years. Nubuck leather is also rather durable but flexes more easily for enhanced comfort. Suede may show dirt easily.

Shoes with an upper made out of synthetic materials, like nylon or polyester, will be less durable as they may tear or fry over time.

Another major component of durability is the outsole of your boots. The outsole should be made of rubber, which is designed to resist breakdown and wear on rough terrain.

More: Top 7 Multi-Use Hiking Bandanas On The Market [Review And Buying Guide]

Waterproofing

Waterproof hiking shoes are important if you’ll be hiking in a colder climate where there may be snow or rain, because you definitely don’t want your toes to be in danger of frostbite.

Look for a shoe with seam-sealed construction, which means that a waterproof membrane has been taped along the seams to ensure water doesn’t seep in.

Many hiking boots have an upper that is treated with a durable water repellent finish to keep moisture out. For example, you may commonly find boots with Gore-tex, a type of polytetrafluoroethylene that resists moisture.

You can find boots with other types of waterproofing finishes as well. For example, the Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II shoes above are made of a leather treated with polyurethane for waterproofing.

Other boots are designed with a full-boot waterproof membrane or lining, which is often also designed with Gore-Tex.

Keep in mind that even the most waterproof shoes will not be able to keep water out if your feet are entirely submerged, such as in a river. Another important note is that waterproof-treated shoes are usually heavier than their non-waterproof counterparts.

More: North Face Resolve 2 vs Venture 2: Which Rain Jacket Should You Choose?

Breathability

For breathability, look for a shoe designed with nylon mesh to allow air to flow throughout the shoe and prevent overheating. If you can keep your feet from sweating, this will help prevent blisters as well.

Keep in mind that shoes featuring plenty of nylon mesh are best suited for warmer temperatures and environments where your feet are unlikely to get wet.

More: Arc’teryx Atom AR vs Atom LT: Which One Should You Buy?

Comfort and Fit

For ultimate comfort, the midsole is important, because it determines how stiff the boot is and also provides a cushion underneath you. Look for a boot with an EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) rubber material in the midsole. This will be rather comfortable and absorb shock rather than harming your joints as you hike.

The fit of the hiking shoe is also incredibly important. Low-cut hiking shoes are more lightweight and best suited for very short hikes. Mid-cut (ankle) boots are better for longer day hikes or if you need more ankle support. High-cut boots are best if you want more protection for your legs and are best for off-trail hikes or multi-day hikes, as well as snowy conditions.

Traction

Many hiking boots are equipped with deep lugs on the outsole for extra traction. The deeper the lugs, the better grip your shoes will have on loose or slippery trails. However, shorter lugs are better suited for smoother or dusty terrain, and they hold onto mud less.

Also, pay attention to the directional pattern of the lugs. Some shoes, for example, have a lug pattern designed specifically to prevent you from slipping on ice.

More: Patagonia Nano Puff vs Patagonia Nano Air: Which is the Better Jacket to Have?

Stability and Support

In addition to a supportive midsole, the most technical hiking boots should have inserts, such as shanks or rock plates, between the midsole and outsole to protect the bottom of your feet from pointy rocks. This is especially important if you’ll be hiking on rocky trails. Note that shoes with these inserts will be stiffer.

Many boots also have a toe bumper, toe guard, or toe cap at the front of the shoe. This is in place to prevent you from stubbing your toes on hard surfaces along the trail, like large rocks.

Conclusion

Whether you’re looking for a pair of hiking shoes for a three-hour trip or a longer backpacking excursion, finding affordable hiking boots is important.

The winner of this product roundup is the Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator Hiking Shoes. These are an excellent mild-weather shoe designed with a durable suede leather with mesh to improve breathability, making them rather versatile. They also feature a contoured footbed and EVA midsole for the ultimate comfort.

Hopefully, this product guide has helped you to find the perfect hiking boots for your feet!

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Tim Fox

Tim Fox

Since the age of 10, Tim, a writer at Outdoor With J, has enjoyed camping in the great outdoors. Although he loves the peace and quiet of the outdoors, he also likes his creature comforts. Tim’s mission is to make camping a fun and comfortable experience for all. You can find more about him here

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