hiking shoes

Best Hiking Shoes: The Ultimate Guide

If you want to explore the outdoors, hiking is one of the best things you can do for yourself and your family! Not only are you seeing many scenic areas, but you are also getting cardio in, which is beneficial to your overall health. However, you might be researching what clothes or accessories to bring along and have realized that your shoes might not be the best fit for the occasion. So, what are the best hiking shoes, you may ask? You have come to the right place for answers. 

Here at Adventurism, we have researched to ensure you get the best of the best. Whether you are on a budget or simply want an excellent choice, here are the eight top hiking shoes for you to wear:

  • Merrell Men’s Moab 3
  • Salomon Men’s X Ultra 4 GTX
  • La Sportiva TX4 Evo
  • La Sportiva Spire GTX
  • Hoka One One Speedgoat 5
  • Altra Lone Peak 8
  • Timberland White Ledge
  • KEEN Men’s Targhee 4


This article reviews each shoe we mentioned above. We will also discuss what you should look for in a hiking shoe, providing the ultimate guide to succeed in your trekking adventure! For more information, we encourage you to continue reading. 


Why Are Hiking Shoes Important?


Hiking shoes are essential because they best protect you from the elements. Many hiking shoes are waterproof, so if you accidentally step in mud or a puddle, it will protect your socks and feet from getting nasty and soggy. 

Another benefit of wearing hiking shoes is that the bottom of the shoe is made out of rubber, so it will prevent you from slipping and sliding everywhere, especially during wet conditions. 

However, if you were wearing regular sneakers, your socks and feet may get wet. Plus, if you are hiking in a steep area, you risk potentially hurting your foot or ankle because the bottom of your shoes is not designed to help you during those times.


What Are the Best Hiking Shoes?


Here, we have a list of the best hiking shoes. However, consider certain things, such as the overall comfortability, the type you wish to have, and the components you want to have. For example, get waterproof or insulated shoes if you live in a damp and cold area. Still, let us dive into these shoes for a better understanding. 

1. Merrell Men’s Moab 3


For those looking for a budget-friendly yet good-quality shoe, look no further than the Moab 3 by Merrell. We have picked this one out due to its overall performance and providing comfort for many customers. 

The outer material is made from leather, while the soles are from rubber, ensuring you get a good grip while hiking on whatever trail you desire. Also,  if they get too dirty, throw them in the washing machine for easy cleaning! This shoe comes in different sizes for men and women

2. Salomon Men’s X Ultra 4 GTX


Suppose you love a good day hike but also love technical climbing every so often. In this case, the Salomon X Ultra 4 GTX is just for you. It comes in both men’s and women’s sizes.

This specific shoe provides great grip, stability, and waterproof protection. Not only that, but you can throw these in the washing machine if you do not have time to clean any dirt and debris that was left on them, ensuring they still look fresh and new for years to come. 

3. La Sportiva TX4 Evo


Suppose you love to “go against the grain” so to speak and want to dive deeper in your hiking journey with more technical hikes. In this case, look no further than the TX4 Evo by La Sportiva. This shoe is designed for those wanting a challenge while allowing their feet to remain safe and secure. 

The La Sportiva offers an eco-friendly leather that provides maximum stability and grip. Not only that, but these shoes are durable, flexible, offer protection, and carry ample support while you have a heavy load while backpacking. Here is the link for the women’s TX4 Evo shoes.

4. La Sportiva Spire GTX


Yet another La Sportiva, the Spire GTX is one of the best options for you, especially if your feet tend to get extremely sweaty, as this shoe contains mesh material. However, despite this, you will be happy to know the shoe itself is waterproof, so you can wear it in most weather types. 

The Spire GTX is built to last long with its rubber sole material and can be washed in the machine for your convenience. Lastly, this La Sportiva shoe has great shock absorption, which means it will last a long time without your feet getting uncomfortable. If you are looking for women’s shoes, they have you covered, featuring various sizes.

5. Hoka One One Speedgoat 5


Diversity is essential to some, so if you love bringing style wherever you go, including a hiking walk, the Hoka One One Speedgoat 5 is for you. Not only do they look good, but they are durable and help you walk easier and comfortably. 

These shoes provide shock absorption and help your feet breathe with mesh material. The sole material is made out of rubber, ensuring you will not slip and slide while climbing rocks and going through debris. The women’s shoes are listed here.

6. Altra Lone Peak 8


Most shoes nowadays do not consider how the natural shape of the foot is supposed to be. However, the Altra Lone Peak 8 considers all portions, so your feet will be extremely comfortable, especially in the toe area, as it is wider than your average sneaker. 

These machine-washable shoes contain rubber soles, which will help you not slip and fall while climbing up or downhill. Here is the women’s shoe link for your convenience. 

7. Timberland White Ledge


Being our first boot on the list, the Timberland White Ledge will not disappoint you! This waterproof and rustproof leather boot is exactly what you need when hiking the trenches of the Earth. 

It is extremely affordable for those on a budget and will last a long time. Not only can these Timberland boots be worn outdoors, but also for work and during casual times. These boots come in women’s sizes as well. 


8. KEEN Men’s Targhee 4 


The last shoe we will discuss is also a hiking boot called the Keen Targhee 4. This specific boot is made with rubber sole material, helping you walk along any difficult paths you might come into. 

This boot is extremely comfortable, providing decent arch support in the middle of the sole. It is made of waterproof, breathable material, so whether you are out on the hottest day of the summer or it starts to rain, your foot will not feel hot nor will it get soaked, allowing the best of both worlds! Lastly, here is a link to the women’s for anyone needing it. 


What to Look for in Hiking Shoes?


There are many things to look for in hiking shoes. However, the most important things to look at are as follows:


  • Comfortability: Shoes will not do you any good if you are uncomfortable with them. For example, if your heels are chaffing or bleeding after a while, having said shoes will not work out for you, as even putting band-aids on these shoes will not solve the problem. 


  • Fit: How do these shoes fit you compared to other shoes you have used? Suppose you have a wide foot but accidentally bought a shoe that squishes your feet. In this case, it will not fit you well and will eventually become a problem as no matter how many times you attempt to “break them in” they will not do you justice. 

  • Safety: If you like to hike on long trips but are doing so with your everyday sneakers, then it will not be safe to climb on rocks, fallen down trees in the way of the path, or something similar. Most hiking shoes contain rubber soles that allow you to do these things with ease whereas most everyday shoes do not have this.


On top of this, we have different types and components you may want in your hiking shoes. We will go into more detail about the two below:


1. Types of Hiking Shoes


There are many different types of shoes to consider before going on your hiking journey. However, there are a few things to consider beforehand:


Day Hiking Shoes


Suppose you are only hiking on a short trip for one full day. In that case, you will have a much lighter backpack load than if you were going on a multi-day backpacking trip. These boots will be low to high-cut, specifically designed for the day hikes. Also, these shoes require less break-in times and will flex much easier than others. People who love to run on trails, consider doing low-cut instead of mid or high-cut. 


Backpacking Boots


Although low and mid-cut boots are perfect for regular hiking, they will not withstand a long journey carrying a heavy load. For example, if you want to go on a 3-day hike, we highly recommend getting high-cut boots that wrap around the ankles. 

Doing so provides an excellent support system whereas the other two counterparts will not. High-cut boots contain a stiffer midsole, making it extremely durable and supportive. Plus, you can go off-trail more this way.


2. Hiking Shoe Components to Consider


On top of everything else, here are some hiking shoes or boot components to consider before purchasing them. 




Weather can be extremely unpredictable, and if you are on a multi-day hiking trip, you may not know what it will be the next day. On top of this, you might be dealing with marshes, mist, rain, or other similar things. Because of this, it is crucial to get waterproof shoes. You never know what is to come! 




Suppose you are Vegan and do not wish to get anything dealing with leather. In that case, consider getting a shoe that contains faux leather, polyester, nylon, or other synthetic material. That way, you will be free of guilt and can continue with your hike!


Leather Material


There are many leather materials out there, but here are three of the most common ones you will find:


  • Full-grain: This leather offers perfect water resistance and is extremely durable. It is used in many backpacking boots that can be used for extended trips. This leather’s biggest downfall is that it is not as breathable as some synthetic leathers, like nylon or split-grain leather. You will also need to break these in for a long time before using them. 


  • Nutback: This leather needs quite a bit of time to break in before going on an extended hike, but it is extremely durable and resists abrasion and water. Not only that, but nutback leather is very flexible. 

  • Split-grain: This leather costs much less than the other two but is not as resistant to water and abrasion. However, many split-grain boots offer waterproof liners that help with this issue. This leather provides a smooth exterior and is typically paired with nylon mesh or nylon, creating a lightweight boot with breathable properties.




Many mountaineering boots provide synthetic insulation that will help during winter season. This will help if you are hiking in the snow and glaciers.




There are so many excellent boot choices that you can have. However, we believe the best ones are listed above. We hope you find success and satisfaction during your hiking journey. If you need help with anything else regarding your adventures, we are here to help you. Check out our other articles to ensure you get all the information needed. 

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