Best rated mountain boots online store: Scarpa’s Rush series of hiking footwear seeks to find the sweet spot between performance and weight savings, running the gamut from trail runner-inspired hiking shoe (the Rush Low) to the TRK GTX here. We recently took the Rush TRK GTX on a trek through the Cordillera Huayhuash in Peru, where the boot traveled with ease across tricky mountain terrain while still maintaining a light and agile feel underfoot. The suede leather upper and rubber toe rand offer top-notch durability and protection, and the sticky SuperGum outsole gets the job done over a wide variety of surfaces. Finally, moisture protection is excellent, with a waterproof/breathable Gore-Tex liner and tall collar to keep you covered during high water crossings. We used to rank Scarpa’s Zodiac Plus GTX (below) high on this list, but the Rush TRK GTX wins out in most categories. The Rush is noticeably more supple than the Zodiac and features a roomy toe box (promoting great out-of-the-box and all-day comfort), offers softer cushioning underfoot, and is $90 cheaper to boot. For all but the most aggressive mountain terrain, it’s by far the more approachable design. That said, the Rush is still overbuilt for easy trails, especially compared to many of the lightweight designs here. But if you’re headed above treeline with a heavy pack, the Rush TRK GTX is well worth a look. For those sticking to more gentle terrain, check out Scarpa’s lighter and nimbler Rush Mid GTX. Read extra info at mountain boots.
The Merrell Moab 3 Mid WP – Women’s offers excellent value across the board. Designed as a day hiker and moderate backpacking boot, 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 spaced between the leather infrastructure. The new and improved Vibram sole offers sufficient traction on all types of 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 other hiking boots on the market.
If your favorite maximalist trail-running shoe had ankle support, it’d probably look a lot like the HOKA Anacapa Mid GTX. And that formula should be just about perfect for hikers looking to go far and fast. As one of the lightest midcut boots in our roundup, the fleet-footed Anacapas use the marshmallow stack height that HOKA is known for, with a gloriously thick EVA cushion under the heel and a 6 millimeter heel-to-toe drop. Taking a cue from the brand’s running shoes, HOKA put in a meta-rocker (a sole slightly curved upward like a smile) to help propel forward motion. “They just encourage you to go,” says our California crew. End result: a smooth and speedy gait with lots of cushioning for joint support.
Altra’s Lone Peak trail running shoes have developed a serious following among thru-hikers, making the streamlined boot version an intriguing concept. Combining an ankle-height design with the Lone Peak’s trademark wide toe box, generous cushioning, and zero-drop last, the Hiker 2 offers instant comfort (we experienced no break-in period) alongside a bit of extra support and coverage. Further, at 1 pound 9.6 ounces, it’s far and away the lightest boot here, which is a game changer for high-mileage days. We’ll admit that we were initially skeptical about the hiking-boot-meets-trail-runner design, but we found the Lone Peak Hiker 2 to be a surprisingly capable piece and consider it a great lightweight option for those who stick to the trail.
Of course, everything comes with a trade-off. While our crop of testers loved the ground feel of the slim-and-trim 2650s, they did notice a few jagged rocks underfoot when scrambling in high alpine. Still, the Vibram® Megagrip outsole stole our hearts as one of the stickiest rubbers in test. “I carted our daughter over drenched boardwalks covered in moss and I never slipped,” says one Washington state–based tester of her voyage into the Hoh Rain Forest (complete with daughter pulling her ponytail). The light and relatively breathable upper (even on the waterproof version) preserves the trail-shoe-like feel, but it’s the weight savings we couldn’t get over for such a durable pair of kicks. If you’re a hiker waffling between the agility of trail runners versus the support of backpacking boots, the Trail 2650 may have your number.
In general, a hiking boot is designed to be stable, which typically involves a piece of hard plastic inserted between the midsole and outsole, known as a shank. The length of the plastic can vary from just under the arch to the full-length of the boot, depending on intended use. The benefit of a stiff boot is that the heel will not drop on an ascent, which helps reduce calf fatigue. This is why the stiffness of a boot will increase along with its technical abilities, culminating in extremely unyielding mountaineering boots that can better handle long summit pushes. On the other end of the spectrum, some lightweight boots do not have this additional structure, instead resembling a tall, flexible hiking shoe. Read even more information on https://www.trekkit.in/.
If you live in a wet climate or prefer a precipitous hike to dry conditions, consider the La Sportiva Nucleo High II GTX. This waterproof boot beats out the competition when it comes to 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. Even with 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 a bit more stability. The upper cuff around the ankle is not very rigid, which translates to less stability on uneven surfaces. Additionally, it is difficult to insert the lace into the eyelets of the boot, meaning it takes more time to lace up and release. If you’re seeking a bombproof boot for water or snow, this is the one you should check out.