I hiked 35 miles in Scarpa's Rush 2 Mid GTX — and they’re the most comfortable waterproof hiking boots I’ve ever worn

These Italian boots were made for walking (in the rain)

Person wearing the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots
Editor's Choice
(Image: © Dan Bracaglia/Future)

Tom's Guide Verdict

The Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTXs are a pricey yet high-performing Italian hiking boot that checks all the boxes and looks great doing it. Comfortable, responsive and breathable, the Scarpas also boast excellent traction, ankle support and moisture resistance. If you love to hike and want a do-it-all boot, these are a great investment.

Pros

  • +

    Excellent water-resistance

  • +

    Comfortable, stylish design

  • +

    Solid ankle support

  • +

    Grippy outsoles

Cons

  • -

    Expensive

  • -

    They take dedication to break in

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The Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX is a stylish waterproof hiking boot with lots of technical features that make it a great choice for a huge range of outdoor adventures. Designed to feel more like a trail running sneaker but with the support of a hiking boot, they also boast a GORE-TEX upper, interior ankle support system and extra-grippy traction on the sole. 

Over roughly two months, I trekked over 35 miles in the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX boots, including up and down steep inclines, on wet and rocky trails, through waterlogged fields slicked with wet grass and mud, and over slippery sidewalks littered with half-decayed rain-soaked leaves. I even dipped my toes in the Salish Sea to ensure waterproofing is up to snuff (it is). 

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots on the floor

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

If you're getting the sense I dig these stylish and practical Italian boots, you're correct. But, how do they compare to the competition? At $219 a pair, the Scarpas are definitely on the higher end of the hiking boot price range. 

However, many of the best hiking boots cost a pretty penny. The reason? They're built to last the long haul. But having recently tested out a surprisingly decent pair of $50 hiking boots from Amazon, I could understand why that may be a turn-off. 

The Salewa Pedroc Pro PowerTex Mid PTX, for example, offers similar tech to the Scarpa Rush 2 for $20 less. Both are Italian brands and both boots look pretty slick, yet quite different.

The Hoka Anacapa Mid GORE-TEX is another competitor priced at around $200, though you can often find a pair at a discount for much less. I personally find them to be more "granola" than the other two pairs, but hey, some folks like that aesthetic. To each your own!

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX review: Price and availability

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots are available in men's and women's styles/sizes for $219 from major US-based retailers like Backcountry and through Scarpa directly. 

Men can choose from Anthracite/Ottanio (black and blue shown here) or Moss/Sulfur with US men's sizes 3 through 15 available. Women can pick from Sage/Dusty Yellow and Baltic Blue/Sunny Lime with US women's sizes 4 through 16 on offer. 

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX review: Design and fit

At 14.6 ounces, the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX boots are pretty darn lightweight but not as light as the Salewas or the Hokas, which are 13.8 ounces and 13.5 ounces, respectively. That said, Scarpa did shave a few ounces of weight off the boots compared to the now-discontinued Scarpa Maverick Mid GTX boots, a TG favorite. 

Design-wise, the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTXs are sporty without being too loud. The women's versions incorporate cheerier colors than the men's but I dig them. The squishy, oversized heel gives off trendy sneaker vibes while the GORE-TEX upper offers subtle patterns and stitching, mostly for aesthetic purposes, but eye-catching nonetheless. 

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots on a trail path

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

The oversized Scarpa logo above the outward-facing heels is not my favorite but at least folks 100 feet down the trail will be able to identify your footwear and remark on how cool you are, long before you're within earshot. 

Size-wise, I tend to be between a 9 and a 10 in hiking boots, with a preference toward a tighter fit. So, for this review, I opted to test a 9.5. In terms of length and width, the sizing feels right on the money.

Upon first trying them on, the Scarpas fit snuggly but not painfully or uncomfortably. This tends to be par for the course with most high-quality new boots: The break-in period is real.

Upper

GORE-TEX, GORE-TEX, GORE-TEX. Living in the US Pacific Northwest where it rains 475 days a year, owning a decent arsenal of waterproof footwear and general rainwear is a must. And few do H2O-proofing better than the OG. 

The entire upper of the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX is GORE-TEX lined, which proved waterproof and breathable in my testing. The tongue, however, is not fully waterproof, so you'll want to avoid complete submersion. That said, zero water got in during my numerous walks/hikes in the rain. 

The laces match the boots and seem tough enough that I wasn't tempted to immediately swap them out with something better. I also appreciate the upper boot lace hooks for quick removal without the need to untie them. 

The area around the ankle is extra padded and squishy. Even when I had the boots tied tightly, I found the ankle support comfortable. Scarpa also gave them a heel pull loop to make it a little easier to get in and out of them. 

Midsole

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots midsole

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

The midsole on the Scarpas is made from two densities of EVA rubber foam and is quite squishy and with a decent energy rebound. They aren't the bounciest boots in town but feel plenty responsive compared to other hiking boots I've worn. 

The Scarpas incorporate a (hidden) plastic anti-torsion frame around the ankle for added stability, which I appreciate given how chunky the heel is. 

Outsole

The outsole on the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX boots combines Scarpa's proprietary Presa foam material and SuperGum, a fancy rubber compound. The result is impressively grippy traction in every use case I tested, including on wet rocks, leaves and mud.

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots on a concrete floor

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

The outsole curves up around the front of the boots, providing reliable toe protection from rocks, tree roots and the like. The traction pattern includes a brake area along the outer heel, along with zones in the inner heel and frontal sole dedicated to stability and pushing off. 

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX review: Performance

When I first laced up the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots I found them comfortable yet snug in one area: With plenty of room length-wise and adequate space width-wise, the tops of my feet felt more encased than I'm used to.

Over time, though, things loosened up. And now, with 35+ miles logged, the Scarpas have molded to my feet nicely — they're broken in. More importantly, my tops no longer feel overly constricted. 

On a recent hike through the remnants of an old lime quarry located on the remote San Juan Island in the Salish Sea, I tested the Scarpas on extremely steep yet dry terrain, including several dusty scrambles. Traction was no issue, my ankles felt well-supported, and my overall comfort level was fantastic. 

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots side on

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

I also dipped each foot briefly in the ocean to test out the water resistance of the upper. Foolishly, I performed this test at the start of the hike. However, the GORE-TEX did its job and my little piggies remained dry and happy.

For what it's worth, I thoroughly enjoy hitting the outdoors in trail running sneakers, however, due to past ankle injuries, I find it far too easy to roll one in such footwear. The higher the heel, the more likely I am to misstep and reinjure myself.

The Scarpas have fairly plush heels but thanks to the internal anti-contortion ankle frame, the height of the boot, and the fact that you can tie them pretty darn tight, I neither rolled an ankle nor feared such calamity.

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots on a person's feet

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

Post-hike, we hit a local oyster purveyor and slurped down a combination of Olympias and High Beach Sweets, along with some ice-cold beverages just a few hundred yards (that's 45,895 meters for my UK readers) from the oyster beds themselves. 

The scene was remote Pacific Northwest island chic, with Arc'teryx, Filson and Patagonia gear as far as the eye can see. (Okay, that's a bit of an exaggeration). Also out in force: nature-themed tattoos, cuffed beanies and Dickies workwear — particularly, overalls.

Though I missed my cool guy Doc Martens, I still felt pretty cutting-edge in the Scarpas — low-key showing off the latest gorp-tastic Outdoor Research gear also helped me feel accepted amongst the trendy, mollusk-loving folks. 

Should you buy the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX?

Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots laying on the floor

(Image credit: Dan Bracaglia/Future)

Ultimately, for the occasional hiker, the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX may be overkill. Aside from their comparatively high cost, breaking these boots in takes some dedication. For me, that was roughly 25 miles of trekking around my neighborhood and hitting local hikes. It also included roughly 5,000 feet of ascent.

However, if you love to hike and need a pair of do-it-all boots that not only look great but perform great, the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTXs are totally worth it. Just be prepared to break 'em in real good before tagging any major peaks.

With solid ankle support, toe protection, traction, responsiveness, water resistance and overall comfort, the Scarpa Rush 2 Mid GTX hiking boots check all the boxes while looking darn fly all the way. 

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Dan Bracaglia
Senior Writer, Fitness & Wearables

Dan Bracaglia covers fitness and consumer technology with an emphasis on wearables for Tom's Guide. Based in the US Pacific Northwest, Dan is an avid outdoor adventurer who dabbles in everything from kayaking to snowboarding, but he most enjoys exploring the cities and mountains with his small pup, Belvedere. Dan is currently training to climb some of Washington State's tallest peaks. He's also a big photography nerd.