Table of Contents
1. Altama Maritime Assault Boot
The first pick shouldn’t come as a surprise to you. I didn’t mention this in the intro but my Altama Maritime assault boots have been with me for about 3 years now and I wear them just about everywhere. They are just now starting to show signs of falling apart but in my opinion, they are still going strong. For around $100 I think the Altama Maritime Assault Boot is the best bang for your buck.
- MADE TO LAST – High abrasion quick drying 1000D Cordura quarter panels offered in both solid colors and MultiCam® Air mesh linings help wick away sweat and other moisture quickly from your fee
- BUILT FOR BATTLE – Non-shine rust-proof lace hardware will not break on the battlefield Low profile laces will not cause pain from fin wear on long swims Full length one piece ABS shank provides stability and support when climbing a caving ladder
- NO SLIP GRIP – SEAL Rubber sticky outsoles. The rubber compound was originally developed for rock climbing shoes and modified for wet tactical operations. Ultron® PU contoured insole will not absorb water Front non-metallic drain ports allow for water to drain easily when flexing the boot
- FIN FRIENDLY FIT – Fits just about any dive fins used by Militaries worldwide. SEAL Rubber is one of the stickiest, high traction rubbers on the market today. Designed for Specials Ops. Worn by the Elite.
- SINCE 1969 – Altama has been a leading manufacturer of Mil-Spec boots for the US Department of Defense, supplying military personnel worldwide
Pros/Extremely Durable, affordable, and breatheable
Bottom Line/A great all around shoe or boot that has varying levels of anke support
2. Salomon Men’s X Ultra 4 GTX Shoe
The X Ultra four provides excellent traction regardless of the type of terrain you’ll find. There are even braking lugs at the back of the shoe and climbing lugs in the front that give you traction on steep terrain whether you’re going up or down. Finally, the active support band integrates with the unique quick lace system to provide excellent support. Best of all these are super lightweight shoes making them great for long hikes or camping trips. You’ll end up paying a bit more for these as they often retail for around the $160 mark. However, The X Ultra 4’s are currently on sale from Moosejaw for 25% off
Pros/No break in period
Cons/Non-Traditional Lacing system/Expensive
Bottom Line/As light as shoes but with the durablity support of boots
3. Merrell Moab 2 Low WP
These waterproof shoes are some of the highest quality on the market. These are frequent sights on the hiking trail when passing other hiekrs but I’ve also found them in equal numbers on the flat range during USPSA competition for their extremely good traction on surfaces like small loose gravel. In addition, they have great comfort characteristics by virtue of their almost luxurious inner cushioning. Maybe not great for wearing every day all day but definitely good for weekend getaways and off-grid adventures. If you go to pick these up, be warned, they tend to run wide (which is perfect for me)!
Pros/Extermely Durable with great traction
Cons/Durability comes at a cost – they’re pretty heavy
Bottom Line/Great for hiking in very rocky or rough terrain
4. Adidas Terrex AX3
Adidas Terrex AX3
The Terrex AX3 Shoe is a crossover shoe capable of hiking or running out on the trails. It’s lightweight, breathable to keep your feet cool and comfortable when picking up speed, and a cushioned EVA midsole absorbs shocks and lends support over long distances. The Continental outsole provides grip on dry and wet trails, and the multidirectional tread pattern and heel brake have you covered for the uphill and downhill sections. I’ve not worn the women’s versions of this shoe but I’ve heard that both the men’s and women’s shoes fit a bit more like tennis shoes and by extension might have a smaller toe box than some of the other hiking shoes on this list.
Pros/Extremely Comfortable and lightweight – affordable
Cons/No weatherproofing, fit more like tennis shoes
Bottom Line/A great pair of casual hiking shoes if you’re not a hardcore week-long hiker
5. La Sportiva Women’s Spire GTX Boot
I normally wouldn’t include what I consider to be an overpriced pair of shoes on this list but since they are on sale for 25% off I think it makes the shoes worth it. The La Sportiva Spire GTX boot is a lightweight and durable hiking shoe that is also waterproof meaning it can be used in almost any type of hiking condition and will allow you to cross small streams and creeks without getting your feet soaked. The durable upper gets in on the fun by kicking trail debris to the side without a second thought. Pile on the miles and get through the next section of the trail with confidence. The shoes are overall great but this type of greatness comes at a price many consider to be too much for the feature set.
Pros/Durable, Lightweight, and Waterproof
Cons/Normally very expensive (almost $200)
Bottom Line/Great for the hardcore hiker who needs a good shoe to keep them on their feet all day.
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