Hiking is one of the greatest activities you can take up; it helps you explore nature, get outdoors, and it is a great workout.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to go hiking without the proper footwear in place.
If you are wearing the wrong shoes you are more likely to develop blisters, shin splints, and won’t be able to hike as long as you would like. Investing in a good pair of hiking boots is crucial.
We have created a list and reviews of five of the best men’s hiking boots of 2018, to help you find the one that will work the best for you.
Top 5 Men’s Hiking Boots Comparison Chart
Timberland Men's White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot
Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus II Waterproof Hiking Boot
Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent Mid Hiking Boot
Hi-Tec Men's Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
KEEN Men's Targhee Ii Mid Wp High Rise Hiking Boots
Best Men’s Hiking Boot Reviews
1. Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot
No list of the best men’s hiking boots would be complete without a boot from the famous Timberland brand. This is one of the most reliable brands on the market these days, and the White Ledge Men’s Waterproof Boot definitely does not disappoint.
Timberland was the first company to invent the waterproof leather boot, and the rest, as they say, is history. Their primary focus is on creating boots that can test the outdoors, get through any type of weather, while also not sacrificing the look/fashion of the boot itself.
The company is also committed to protecting the environment and that can be seen through the materials they use in the creation of the shoe. This boot is filled with incredible features that are sure to help protect you on any hiking trip.
The Timberland White Ledge Men’s Waterproof Boot is ideal for any kind of hiking activity you may be doing, whether it is a hike through the snow or a sunny hike during the day. They have been made using full-grain waterproof leather that is guaranteed to keep your feet dry if you are going through rain or mud.
The footbed is highly breathable, wicking away moisture from your feet. This allows the air to circulate around your foot, keeping them both cool and dry. This will also decrease the amount of smell that comes from the shoe, increasing the longevity.
As for comfort level, these boots have a fully padded collar and tongue, designed to protect your ankles from increased strain. There is additional protection around the ball of the foot to absorb any jumps from high places.
There are also multidirectional lugs built into the bottom of the shoe, to provide traction over rough terrain. The tongue has also been gusseted, relieving any pressure that you would normally feel from laces.
The best thing about buying a boot from Timber is the B.S.F.P. (Brake, Support, Flex, and Propel) system that provides the highest quality in traction. This allows you to scale through any territory easily and safely. There are grooves both behind the ball of the foot and around the toe area that respond perfectly to the natural stepping motion of your foot.
What's to like about the Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot
On this list, the Timberland’s White Ledge Men’s Waterproof Boot is my favorite. First off, you can’t find better traction than this boot right here. The B.S.F.P. system is truly remarkable, and it lives up to its name.
There are also a variety of colors to choose from, and each one goes with a multitude of outfits. I found the boots extremely comfortable and even though they laced super well, they were never too tight. They are also easy to get on and off.
What's not to like about the Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot
It is hard to find something I don’t like about these boots; the pros definitely outweigh the cons here. If I were to find something it would be the price point is a bit high, especially if you are buying on a budget. As well, even though there is a cooling system in place, I found that it could be better as my feet were fairly sweaty after my hike.
2. Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Waterproof Hiking Boot
Next up on our Best Men’s Hiking Boots list is the Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Waterproof Hiking Boot. Alike with all of the boots on this list, Columbia is another brand with a fantastic reputation for the creation and quality of their brand. Columbia strives to create boots that are comfortable, that can handle difficult terrain, and that will complement a variety of outfits.
The Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Waterproof Hiking Boot comes in one of four colors/styles to choose from: Graphite (Royal Blue), Nori (Dark Banana), Cordovan (Squash), and Black.
These shoes come in a variety of sizes to fit whatever size you are. They have been made out of leather and a synthetic material, with a rubberized sole. The shaft on the shoe has a measurement of 5 inches from the arch, and the platform measures 0.5 inches.
As with all great hiking boots, these Columbia boots are fully waterproof and can trek through water/be worn in the rain. The upper material is made out of leather, and it is also equipped with a mesh tongue that is breathable. This allows airflow directly to the foot. The tongue and the collar have been padded for your comfort.
What's to like about the Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Waterproof Hiking Boot
One of my favorite aspects of the Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Waterproof Hiking Boot is the variety in look that you can choose from. Each of the four styles look like a completely different boot and you could easily choose two of them. These boots are quite comfortable, and I found the support system in place to be stellar.
What's not to like about the Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Waterproof Hiking Boot
For a hiking boot, I found these boots to be lacking in the traction area when compared to others on this list. They were a bit slippery at times and did not enhance the safety around my hike. They could also use a bit more breathability inside of the shoe to increase airflow around my foot.
3. Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent Mid Hiking Boot
Merrell is another fantastic brand that you must look at if you are interested in purchasing a high-quality boot. They really do have a focus on the outdoors and create boots that can get through even the toughest of situations.
These boots are available in three colors: walnut, black, and grey. They have a variety of sizes ranging from 7 all the way to 15. The boots have been made out of a suede leather and mesh material, with a sole made out of Vibram.
For added padding, there is an added insole that can be removed at any time. The mesh lining is fully breathable, with a rubber toe cap for extra protection on your hike.
The arch shank is made out of molded nylon, while the tongue has been made out of a closed-cell foam that keeps out moisture and debris. The heel has been built with the Merrell exclusive air cushion that absorbs shock and adds stability while running or walking.
The footbed has been created with the FIT.ECO EVA system, exclusive to Merrell, that increases the zonal arch and the support for the foot.
What's to like about the Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent Mid Hiking Boot
If you are searching for the most breathable boot on this list, then the Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent Mid Hiking Boot is the one for you. Because of the added mesh material, unlike other boots, it adds much more airflow to the foot even on the longest hike. These boots are like walking on a cloud and the Merrell exclusive footbed, with the FIT.ECO EVA system, is like a dream.
What's not to like about the Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent Mid Hiking Boot
These boots are on the expensive size, especially if on a tighter budget. While the mesh added more breathing room, it took away from the waterproof ability that other boots do have. I found that in rain, these boots were not the greatest to have.
4. Hi-Tec Men's Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
We wanted to include something for everyone on this list, no matter what budget you are working with. Hi-Tec is a fantastic brand that creates budget-friendly boots that are still of high quality.
The Hi-Tec Men's Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot are made out of leather/textile material with a rubberize sole. These are laced-up boots that have striped nylon straps and suede overlays. There is a removable insole that molds directly to the shape of your foot.
The membrane is both breathable and waterproof, keeping moisture out. The steel shank at the top of the shoe increases stability for your foot when hiking on uneven terrain.
What's to like about the Hi-Tec Men's Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
These boots are an incredible deal because of the cheaper price point. They still work just as great as any other hiking boot, with a focus on being waterproof. I liked the steel shank at the top as it does add further protection for the ankle over rough terrain.
What's not to like about the Hi-Tec Men's Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
As with any cheaper brand, the material was not as strong as the previous three boots and the comfort level could have been a lot better. I found the support was also not as strong as it could have been.
5. KEEN Men's Targhee II Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
The final boot on our best men’s hiking boots list has been made by another high quality company, “KEEN.” KEEN has a focus on merging technology with fashion, and their boots definitely compliment their mission.
The KEEN Men's Targhee II Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot has been made out of waterproof nubuck leather for longevity and support. It is also made with a hydrophobic mesh lining that increases breathability and your overall comfort level.
The boot has been made with the KEEN.DRY waterproof technology that is strong enough to wade through a river. The outsole has been lugged profusely so it can grip to multiple terrains. The mid cut height of these boots increases ankle support especially when on rocky terrain.
What's to like about the KEEN Men's Targhee II Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
The best part about these boots is definitely the KEEN.DRY feature. These are the most waterproof boots on this list, and I went through fairly deep water without my feet getting wet at all. I also like the mesh lining feature, as it does keep the foot nice and cool during a hike.
What's not to like about the KEEN Men's Targhee II Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
I find the boots to be a bit expensive for what they actually are. I think they should lower the price and their sales would skyrocket. The shoes could also use a bit more comfort around the heel area.
Now since you know our top 5 choices for the best men’s hiking boots, it is time for you to find what one is going to work the best for you. There are so many options to choose from that you need to know what to look for in a hiking boot. Below are the six things I look at before purchasing a new boot.
Types of Hiking Boots
You have to know the type of hiking boot you are buying. Is it meant for the outdoors? Is it meant for a certain type of terrain? What are the sizes for that particular boot? The possibilities are endless so the more you can do ahead of time to choose what you are looking for in a boot, the better off you will be.
Materials are incredibly important to look for, especially to find a boot that will last you a long time. Ensure that the leather you are getting is fully waterproof. You also want to find material that is breathable (mesh is great for this), as it will allow airflow to your foot.
As with any product, the construction of the boot is important. Ensure high quality craftsmanship has gone into the manufacturing of the boot. You want these boots to endure for years.
Boots or Low-cut Shoes?
There are various styles of boots that vary on height from your foot. You need to decide whether you want “high tops” (that could go as far as your knee) or low cut shoes that look more like a shoe than a boot.
The part of your shoe that will get banged up the most is definitely the outsole. Find one that has been rubberized with increased traction. Also find a boot that the area around the toe has been reinforced to protect from stubbing.
The top five boots we chose specifically came from five separate brands. There are so many brands of boots, with many that charge way too much for the quality they deliver. Find a brand that is reliable, with great reviews (we recommend all five on our list!)
Men’s Hiking Boots F.A.Q.
How to choose hiking boots?
Follow the steps we laid out before to choose your hiking boots. The first step is to make a list outlining exactly what it is you need. What are you going to be using these boots for and where? What terrain are you looking at? What is your budget? The more questions you can answer, the easier it will be for you to narrow down your search and finally make a choice. I recommend investing in a hiking boot that will last a long time, even if it means spending a bit more upfront.
How should hiking boots fit?
You want hiking boots to fit snug, without having too strong of a grip around your ankle. They need to fit well enough that your ankle feels supported and secure, as without that you could be in trouble. There should be a bit of room in front of your big toe, to allow for breathing room.
How to clean hiking boots?
This does vary depending on the style/material your boots are made out of. I recommend researching your specific brand. For the average boot, take some warm water and soap and just scrub them yourself both before and after a hike.
This way grime will not increase on the boot and they will continue to look good as new. The longer you wait in between cleans, the harder it’s going to be to get all of the dirt off your shoes.
What size hiking boots should I get?
This may seem like a simple question to answer, but it is not. Each boot and brand does have a different fit and we recommend trying on in store before you make a purchase online (or buy a boot with a return policy in place). There are some boots that run too large, or too small, so find one that is going to work best for you.
How to waterproof hiking boots
There are plenty of ways to turn normal boots into waterproof boots. Many people just put plastic bags around their socks and stick them in the shoe, as that is the easiest way. However, there is no reason to NOT buy hiking boots that are waterproof. Almost every pair IS waterproof, and it is incredibly important for your comfort while hiking.
So there you have it, an in depth look at what we believe to be the five best men’s hiking boots of 2018. We hope that through our list we have given you options no matter what your budget may be.
Remember, before even starting to look for a pair of boots, make a list of what you intend to use them for. The “where” is really important as the terrain you are going on dictates what type of shoes you are going to have to get.
Out of the top 5 above we have two favorite choices. The first is the Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot. This is the best waterproof men’s hiking boot on the market today because of its fantastic design, the high-quality craftsmanship, and the comfort level.
If you are looking for a cheaper alternative that still has great features, we recommend buying the Hi-Tec Men's Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot.
If neither of these are what you are looking for we recommend taking a quick look at the other three or branching out to others not on our list, or use these as a starting point in your search. There are thousands of hiking boots on the market, and each of these five brands have long lists of other alternatives that could be the best for you.