Best hiking boots in 2024 — tested and rated for walks and trails

a photo of a woman wearing the best hiking boots
(Image credit: Getty/JasonTodd)

The best hiking boots should keep you comfy, stable and dry as you walk, whatever the weather. After all, what's on your feet can make or break a hike. That's why, in 2024, comfort and reliability are in. Chaffing and slipping are out. 

We tested a range of the best hiking boots on the market and took them out in the mud, slush, rain and warmer climates. As we trudged and traipsed, we assessed each pair for comfort, grip, foot and ankle protection and weatherproof qualities. 

We've rounded up a range of styles and budgets so that any and every hiker can find the best pair of hiking boots for their adventures. See which boots made it onto our guide and why we love them.

Once you've taken your pick, these are the best hikes in Yosemite National Park and the best hikes in Yellowstone National Park, according to the experts. We've also got a guide to how hiking boots should fit and how to stay safe when hiking alone in 2024. And if you prefer sneakers instead of boots, here's our handy guide to the best trail running shoes.

How we test the best hiking boots

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All the boots on this list have been tested over numerous miles in different climates and on different terrains. When we were walking, we were looking for how well they grip different footpaths, how waterproof they are and how supportive and comfortable they feel by the final miles of a hike.  

We also looked for extras like toe protection — designed to stop you from losing a toenail if you hit a rock on the trail, ankle protection and Ortholite insoles. Below, we have tested a mix of lightweight hiking boots for softer trails, and more high-tech boots for advanced hiking. 

Best hiking boots to buy right now

a photo of the Scarpa walking boots best hiking bootsEditor's Choice

(Image credit: Future/Tom's Guide)

1. Scarpa Maverick Mid GTX

Best stylish all-around climber

Specifications

Weight: 475g
Waterproof: Yes, Gore-Tex

Reasons to buy

+
Good all-around stability 
+
 Italian styling 

Reasons to avoid

-
 Relatively expensive 

In Italian, scarpa means shoe. So it might seem a little, well, presumptuous to call a company Scarpa, but this bootmaker pulls it off, developing a solid fanbase over the years with its stylish yet practical hiking shoes and boots.

Scarpa's Mavericks have all the necessary features one should look for in a hiking boot. They are snug without being binding, come with Ortholite insoles to squelch odors, and use a Gore-Tex liner to keep things dry. In our tests, the Scarpa Mavericks did a good job handling a variety of hiking trails, from mud to rocks.

From our first steps in the Scarpa Maverick Mid GTX boots, we found them to be extremely comfortable. The outsole is a good balance of stiffness and flexibility. It's firm enough to protect the bottom of your foot over rough terrain while remaining pliable enough for comfortable all-day treks. The Mavericks also strike the right balance in styling. The ziggurat side panels acknowledge their technical heritage, yet they maintain a level of sophistication so that the topsides don't look like they were designed for the disco.

Some wearers may find the uppers lack sufficient padding but it helps reduce the boots' overall weight. And over miles of hiking, we never had an issue with chafing. As a further sign of how much we liked these boots, we often found ourselves pulling on the Mavericks well after our official testing period was over.

a photo of the Salewa Pedroc Pro PowerTex Mid PTX hiking boots

(Image credit: Future)

2. Salewa Pedroc Pro PowerTex Mid PTX

Best speed hiker

Specifications

Weight: 390g
Waterproof: Yes, PowerTex

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent snug fit 
+
Cool comfort 

Reasons to avoid

-
 Softer sole 

Hiking boots today can be as much of a fashion statement as they can be a technical tool that can make or break a serious mountain hike. Salewa manages to combine both in its Pedroc Pro Powertex Mid PTX, one of the most comfortable boots we tested.

The $199.95 Pedroc Pro PowerTex Mid PTX is a mid-height technical hiking boot boasting a lightweight and impressively breathable design intended for quick ascents. However, it's also waterproof to fend off sudden downpours and has enough strength and padding to protect your ankles against slip-ups on rocky terrain — not that we ever had any reason to doubt the Pedroc outsole's confidence-inducing adhesion.

Salewa touts its boots as "blister-free" (at least for the first year), and in our many miles and weeks of testing, we had no reason to doubt their claim. The Pedroc Pro Powertex are comfortable yet snug, employing a similar lacing system and net of Kevlar cables used on the ultra-light Pedroc Air. It makes for a nice snug fit without binding or pinching, and we found it even accommodates wide feet within its regular form factor.

If you were looking for evidence that Italian designers have an edge when it comes to making products that are both functional and stylish, you should look no further than our two top hiking boots here. With roots in Germany, Salewa is now based in northern Italy, as is Scarpa, the other leading Italian in our lineup. Both the Salewa Pedroc Pro Powertex and the Scarpa Maverick Mid GTX excel in terms of comfort, surefootedness, and style, making them equally at home on the narrow streets of Moderna or the stunning slopes of the Dolomites.

a photo of the Hoka Anacapa Mid GORE-TEX

(Image credit: Future/Tom's Guide)

3. Hoka Anacapa Mid GORE-TEX

Best beginner hiking boot

Specifications

Weight: 384 g
Waterproof: Yes

Reasons to buy

+
Lightweight 
+
Comfortable 
+
Responsive underfoot 
+
Fully waterproof

Reasons to avoid

-
Comes up a little narrow

We were impressed with how comfortable this Hoka walking boot was. Founded by two French adventure athletes who clearly know a thing or two about mountains, the boot feels lightweight underfoot, with a protective yet responsive midsole foam. We had no problem doing faster hikes in this shoe and appreciated the extended heel geometry, which allowed for a stable feel on the trails. 

Like a lot of the best Hoka running shoes, this boot came up a little narrow, so if you're between sizes, it's definitely worth sizing up. It's a shame there are no wider versions of this boot like there are in Hoka's running shoes. The Anacapa did give a little after 50 miles or so, but it definitely feels snugger than other boots on test. The lacing system didn't budge and felt supportive around the ankle on unstable trails. The boot also comes in a low version, for hikers who prefer a shorter design. 

Testing these shoes in all weathers, we were also impressed with the GORE-TEX waterproofing, which kept our feet dry during wet, muddy walks. This is a great hiking boot for beginners who are looking for a comfortable and supportive boot that they don't have to spend months breaking in. 

a photo of the Timberland walking bootsbest value awards badge

(Image credit: Future/ John Quain )

4. Timberland Mt. Maddsen

Best value old-school hiker

Specifications

Weight : 1,361g
Waterproof: Yes, TimberDry

Reasons to buy

+
Old west design
+
Excellent comfort 

Reasons to avoid

-
Heavy
-
Stodgy appearance

Back in the post-hippy seventies, Timberland made a name for itself as the go-to waterproof hiking boots for American backpackers who wanted to get away from it all. Some of the company's boots, like the Mt. Maddsen's we tested, still flaunt that traditional leather upper design — but there's a lot going on under the top that keeps them up to date and competitive.

First off, these aren't your grandfather's Timberlands. You no longer have to spend days breaking them in before your camping trip. The Mt. Maddsen's were supple and comfortable right out of the box. The mid-rise uppers are soft and while the boots are heavy compared to models like those from Scarpa and Salomon, the Timberlands can inspire confidence and make your feet feel like they are protected from the elements, even though they do not have the work-boot-like heel and toe protections that the Asolo boots offer.

Timberland uses its own "Timberdry" waterproof system, which we never had cause to complain about. Its outsoles are also surprisingly flexible and tenacious, and the boots are roomier and more forgiving than many others. Certainly, the Timberland Mt. Maddens are not a technical boot, but they're still solid after all these years.

a photo of the Salewa Pedroc Air

(Image credit: Future)

5. Salewa Pedroc Air

Best low-cut speed hiker

Specifications

Weight: 310g
Waterproof: No, water repellent

Reasons to buy

+
Super sticky sole 
+
Comfortably snug 
+
Ultra light design 

Reasons to avoid

-
Not waterproof 

If you're looking for a trail companion that can keep up with rapid ascents and give you an extra boost of confidence navigating rocky hikes on a hot summer day, look no further than the $149.95 Salewa Pedroc Air hikers.

The Pedroc Airs are the lightest hikers we tested. They have a breathable knitted mesh upper wrapped in a net of Kevlar cables. These provide a soft, flexible feel but with enough strength that you don't feel your feet are vulnerable to the elements. Better still, the Pomoca outsoles are super sticky, delivering extra confidence on steep descents. 

Surprisingly, we found the lightweight EVA midsole offered the right mix of shock absorption and stability to also tame city streets. Indeed, the Pedroc Air was so grippy and light that they had us skipping from rock to rock and from curb to curb (we just couldn't help ourselves). And yet, we never had cause to doubt that the Salewa hikers would hold up to our over-exuberant daily treks. In fact, the only weakness we could find with the Salewa Pedroc Airs is that our feet did feel the dampness in heavy downpours. 

a photo of the Sportivia walking boots

(Image credit: Future/ John Quain)

6. La Sportiva Ultra Raptor II GTX

Best for a variety of trails

Specifications

Weight: 470g
Waterproof: Yes, Gore-Tex

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent comfort
+
Top-notch traction 

Reasons to avoid

-
 Less protection 

For occasional hikes and everyday comfort, La Sportiva's Ultra Raptor II GTX is hard to beat. They are forgiving and light enough to be worn all day, grippy enough to handle slippery trails, and subtle enough to wear in most offices.

Using Gore-Tex for waterproofing and an Ortholite interior sole to keep your feet comfortable, La Sportiva deploys some unique elements to make everything just a little bit kinder to your feet. The boots use an elastic material around the counter lining, for example, with a folded-over piece of material to help you pull the boots on. It's easy on your Achilles tendon, and unlike the usual loops at the heel of most boots, it won't get caught on twigs and underbrush.

The outsole of the Ultra Raptor II deploys La Sportiva's own design intended to prevent you from sliding downhill. The company calls it an "impact brake system" with forward-oriented oval studs, and we have found it particularly effective in some of the company's trail running shoes, as well as with these boots on loose dirt downhills. In fact, we found these boots had the stickiest soles, second only to the Innov-8 boots in this review.

One additional piece of advice: these La Sportiva boots tend to use a smaller form than other models, so we recommended going up a half size from your usual to get the right fit.

a photo of the Inov-8 walking boots

(Image credit: Future/ John Quain)

7. Inov-8 RocFly G 390

Best for fast, challenging hikes

Specifications

Weight: 390g
Waterproof: No

Reasons to buy

+
Outstanding grip
+
Excellent comfort 

Reasons to avoid

-
Less toe and ankle protection
-
Not waterproof

Inov-8's (pronounced "innovate") claim to fame is its hyper adhesive, shock-absorbing graphene foam sole. Indeed, compared to other hiking boots, we found the RocFly G 390 was like walking around with gum on the bottom of your feet — and we mean that in the best possible way. The RocFly's are light and comfortable, and the larger lugs underfoot, along with the graphene composite, gives the wearer a confidence few other boots can match.

The overall design of the RocFly is more similar to a trail running shoe than a boot. The mesh uppers are breathable but not waterproof, for example, which makes them light and cool enough for hot summer sojourns. The softer, cushier soles are also great for longer hikes and for those of us with more sensitive knees.

However, while the sticky soles do an excellent job clinging to rough rocks, there's not much foot protection here. The RocFly's don't have a solid toe box, for example, or side foot and ankle protection to guard against sharp rocks and missteps. Furthermore, if you tend to pronate, these boots offer little support to correct your gait.

a photo of the Merrell walking boots

(Image credit: Future/ John Quain)

8. Merrell Moab 2 Mid Waterproof

Best for bad weather

Specifications

Weight: 1012g
Waterproof: Yes, M Select

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent support 
+
Durability 
+
Warmer for colder climbs
+
Reasonable price

Reasons to avoid

-
Heavy

Merrell's Moab 2 boots are distinctly American: They're big, they're boxy, and they give your feet plenty of room to move about in. Emulated by many other bootmakers over the years, Merrell's models are durable without being stodgy and are often sufficiently insulted to do double duty as winter boots for urban commuters.

True to form, the Moab 2's were one of the roomiest models we tested. If you order a wide width, wide is what you shall receive. And the boots offer good lower ankle support, lots of upper cushioning, a padded tongue, and a solid toe cap to keep you from stubbing your toes.

The Moab 2's have one of the harder soles we tested, but we also found it was particularly adept in certain challenging situations. The Vibram TC5+ sole that Merrell uses for these boots is specifically designed to work on wet ice. It does a remarkable job doing so, as if there are tiny cleats under foot when you're walking across patches of melting ice. It's also significantly better than other boots at holding onto slick rocks that we skipped across while fording a local stream.

There are softer and more supple boots on the market, but no other model provides such a well-rounded combination of grippiness, insulation, and comfort at such a competitive price.

a photo of the asolo hiking boots

(Image credit: Future/John Quain)

9. Asolo Fugitive GTX

Best for hikers who want solid protection

Specifications

Weight: 690g
Waterproof: Yes, GoreTex

Reasons to buy

+
Impregnable design 
+
First-class support 
+
Solid stance

Reasons to avoid

-
Stiff

With a classic Tyrolean design, the Asolo Fugitive GTXs are reminiscent of lace-up hiking and ski boots of the '50s and '60s. It's an attractive retro style for a pair of sturdy boots that will keep your feet solidly planted on terra firma.

The Asolo Fugitive GTXs have a roomy fit, second only to the Merrell Moab 2's we tested. The boots are structurally firm and offer extremely solid protection for your feet — the best in this regard we've tested. A hard toe box protects you up front, and there's high ankle coverage, a gusseted tongue, and a suede and nylon upper with metal lacing loops to cosset your foot. A Gore-Tex liner keeps you dry.

Taking its name from a northern Italian town, the Asolo's idiosyncratic design — with its hardware lacing and tough, arched sole — definitely won us over after miles of hiking. 

The arch support helps roll your foot forward, and the boots gave us the stability of a mountain goat. Standing on a ledge or at the top of a rocky trail, these boots make your feet rooted to the spot. Some people may find the styling excessive, as if you should be yodeling in the Alps. But if you're planning on strapping on some crampons to traverse a glacier, these are the boots for you.

a photo of the Salomon walking boots

(Image credit: Future/ John Quain)

10. Salomon Cross Hike Mid Gore-Tex

Best technically oriented all-rounder

Specifications

Weight: 396g
Waterproof: Yes, Gore-Tex

Reasons to buy

+
Lightweight
+
High-tech design

Reasons to avoid

-
Annoying quicklace system

With a name more typically associated with skis and bindings, Salomon's Cross Hike boots make the ideal footwear for an apres ski trek. Their design is reminiscent of high-tech alpine ski boots, yet their lightweight offers your feet relief after a day of downhill skiing.

A close competitor to the Scarpa Mavericks in this review, the Salomon Cross Hike boots similarly boast Gore-Tex waterproofing an Ortholite inner sole and very comfortable uppers. For the outsole, Salomon uses a design with large lugs that work well in loose dirt and slush; they're less forgiving, however, on city sidewalks. Our pair of Cross Hikes had a distinctive neon sole, which we found was not as grippy on slick rocks in the rain as other boots.

The most distinctive aspect of the Salomon Cross Hikes, however, is its "quicklace" system. Rather than standard laces, the shoes use a fixed, single-pull tie, which you then tuck into a pocket at the top of the tongue. We've never found the approach that much faster than tying up standard laces, but it does give the boots a tidier and smoother appearance. Occasionally, we found the excess lacing loop dangling over our boots, although it never snagged on anything on our hikes. Still, the quicklace system receives mixed reactions. You'll either love it or hate it.

a photo of the La Sportiva TX Hike GTX

(Image credit: Future)

11. La Sportiva TX Hike GTX

Best solid sole hiker

Specifications

Weight: 550g
Waterproof: Yes, Gore-Tex

Reasons to buy

+
Heavy duty construction 
+
Rock solid sole 

Reasons to avoid

-
Hard on heel strikers

Heading for some sharp rocky trails? La Sportiva's $179 TX Hike GTX will keep the bottoms of your feet from getting banged up while keeping a grip on jagged terrain. 

The TX Hike GTX are the alter ego to Sportiva's other entry in our top hiking boots list, the Ultra Raptor II. Whereas the Raptors are softer and tend to cosset your feet, the low-cut TX Hike GTX are big bruisers with solid but hard soles that emphasize protection over comfort. The shoes' Vibram soles feature more aggressive 5 mm lugs and a wider toe box than typical La Sportiva hikers. There's also more toe protection in the TX Hike GTX shoes than you'll find in light-weight, speed hiking designs. And while these shoes aren't heavy in the old-school Timberline sense, they are heavier than many other shoe-style hikers, which translates into improved durability.

Like many brands today, La Sportiva's TX Hike GTX shoes do have a sustainability story to tell with a recycled upper mesh material, a Bluesign certified Gore-Tex lining, recycled laces, and a Vibram Ecostep EVO outsole that claims to be comprised of 30 percent recycled material. It's a trend we all support, and these hikers from La Sportiva prove you don't need to make any compromises to get there.

a photo of the Danner Trail 2650 Campo GTX

(Image credit: Future)

12. Danner Trail 2650 Campo GTX

Best casual hiker

Specifications

Weight: 382g
Waterproof: Yes, Gore-Tex

Reasons to buy

+
Soft soles 
+
Street style 

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricier than some of the low-cut competition 

Originally established as a go-to boot for Pacific Northwest lumberjacks, Danner has greatly expanded its line to appeal to a variety of hikers, urban trailblazers, and tree huggers. The $200 Trail 2650 Campo GTX shoes are a case in point, boasting all-day comfort and street-smart design. The Trail 2650 moniker is a reference to the 2,650-mile Pacific Crest Trail, which stretches from Mexico to Canada. Even if you don't intend to embark on such a sojourn, the Trail 2650 Campo GTX shoes are built to handle it should the opportunity arise. The Campo GTX is waterproof (to handle all that Pacific Northwest drizzle) and boasts one of the most shock-absorbent soles in our roundup.  

The Trail 2650 Campo's use a Gore-Tex Invisible Fit waterproof synthetic upper that is intended to be lightweight but still keep your feet dry. It uses a gasket design in which there's no tongue but rather a sleeve your foot slides into. This not only contributes to the waterproof aspect of the shoe but also keeps out irritating dirt and pebbles. In a variety of rainy conditions, we never found a reason to complain. 

The Trail 2650 Campo's outsole is based on a reliable Vibram design, with extra support under the arch portion of the sole to prevent rocks from hitting you where it hurts. Particularly noteworthy here, however, is how remarkably cushiony the shoe is, making it an ideal all-day hiker. However, it doesn't offer much rebound, so it won't put an extra bounce in your step (in case that's what you're looking for). That makes the Danner Trail 2650 Campo akin to ultra-impact-absorbing shoes like those from Hoka. Better still, Danner's extra spacious toe box for those of us with wider feet completes the comfy attitude.

We tested the tri-color blue, orange, and black versions of the Trail 2650's. (For those who are less fashion-forward, it also comes in a brown and meadow green combination.) It gave the shoe street appeal, but you should note that the footwear has tough touches like a heel pull that's secured by an additional hard plastic bolster to protect the back of your foot. So while these Danner's may look like a pair of city slickers, they're actually a carefully designed set of country hikers. This just goes to show you can't always tell a shoe by its upper.

a photo of the Vasque walking boots

(Image credit: Future/John Quain)

13. Vasque Breeze Lt Low GTX

Best for occasional trail runners

Specifications

Weight: 626g
Waterproof: Yes, Gore-Tex

Reasons to buy

+
Low profile design
+
Sticky outsole

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited foot protection 

Not all hiking boots have to be boots. Witness the low-rise shoe-like option from Vasque, the Breeze Lt Low GTX hiking boots. The Breeze Lt Low is a lightweight hiking shoe inspired by trail runners.

When you don't want to look like you're going on a hike — or just need something with added traction but not all that ankle protection — a hiking shoe will do. We've found that Vasque's models offer superior adhesion on loose public trails and enough traction for the occasional scramble over a rock field. For waterproofing, the Breeze shoes rely on Gore-Tex and use a Vibram Litebase sole that Vasque says is 50 percent thinner than previous soles and 30 percent lighter.

In terms of fit, while comfortable, the Vasque shoes have a narrower design than the other models we tested. And, of course, being low-cut shoes, they offer less protection than the boots we tested. However, if you're considering something less obtrusive and lighter than some of the big hiking boots here, the Vasque Breeze Lt Lows are a more affordable alternative.

How to choose the best hiking boots for you

Here's a few pointers.

Comfort

The first priority for any hiker should be comfort. The bad old days of having to break in stiff and uncomfortable boots before a trip are thankfully a thing of the past. We still recommend that you spend a couple of days in a new pair of boots before committing them to two weeks of wandering around the fjords of Norway, but when you first put on new boots, they should feel comfortable from the start. With most of today's technical materials, they aren't going to get more comfortable the more miles you put in.

Weather

Dealing with weather is the second factor for hikers. If crossing the lava flows of Iceland is what you're after, you're going to have some days of rain, and you won't have time to waste drying out your boots along the way. So waterproof boots are a necessity, including gusseted tongues, which are attached to the shoe all along the sides to keep out dirt and water. Most of the models we reviewed have both features.

Terrain

When choosing the right hiking boot, also consider the type of trekking you usually prefer. Different outsoles are often designed for different types of hiking. For example, softer, stickier soles are great for scrambling over smooth rocks and slippery terrain, while some soles, such as the particular Vibram sole used in the Merrell Moab 2 boots are specifically intended to deliver extra traction on melting ice. Furthermore, harder soles underfoot may not provide much shock absorption but will deliver more protection from jagged rocks and uneven terrain.

Materials

Finally, consider the construction of the hiking boots. If you're a hot-weather, public trail day hiker, you'll want a boot that is light and breathable. On the other hand, if you often find yourself on more challenging hikes in cooler climates, you'd be better served choosing a heavier boot with more foot protection and greater warmth.

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