The best hiking shoes for men are the essential difference between renowned outdoor adventurers and those who give up on hiking after a couple of trysts. Such shoes should be tough enough to take on the worst of outdoor conditions and still leave plenty of performance along the course. In order to provide you as much choice as you would want, we took to reviewing the best hiking in the market in our quest to identify the best of them. We have featured 10 leading best sellers in this comprehensive review and buying guide and offered you all that you need to make a good choice.
The Different Types of Hiking Shoes and Hiking Boots
Some features can cross over multiple shoe and boot categories. Examples include types of tread designs, breathability due to design and materials used and special features like being waterproof.
- Hiking shoes – light weight and often more comfortable than hiking boots for day hikes.
- Hiking Boots – strong and sturdy, best suited to rugged terrain and heavier duty for backpacking or multi-day trips
- Walking Shoes – comfort over ruggedness and designed for urban terrain
- Trail Running Shoes – a blend between regular running shoes and hiking shoes. Designed for off road terrain while maintaining the needed breathability and comfort of a running shoe
- Climbing Shoes – Light weight specialty shoes that are designed for maximum grip while rock climbing
Hiking Shoe Materials
Light weight materials include nylon and mesh. These are idea for their breathability and flexibility (easy to break in).These breathable materials aren’t the best when it comes to water resistance so waterproof shoes made from these materials tend to have linings to provide the water resistance.
Heavier duty boots and hiking shoes tend to use leather for its durability. This extra ruggedness is the reason that t takes longer to break in a full leather hiker versus a lighter weight shoe. The leather also adds to the water resistance of the boot while sacrificing some breathability.
The sole of the boot is made up of multiple layers. First there is the insole that provides the cushioning. Next is the mid-sole and this is where the stiff part of the sole exists to provide the needed support. The outer part of the sole is the tread and the tread patterns vary widely for different terrain conditions. Hiking on concrete pavement is very different than walking in the swamp or on granite boulders and the treed types need to match your destination.
The Top Ten Hiking Shoes Reviews
The Keen Targhee II Hiking Shoe has a Nubuck leather upper and it’s ready to wear for hiking. The Nubuck leather upper is one method in which this hiking shoe is waterproofed and the KEEN-DRY breathable waterproof membrane is another method. The Targhee II has a removable anatomical footbed, which quickly moulds itself to the hiker’s foot shape. This footbed can be replaced with a one which may better suit the hiker’s foot. The outsole is made from a type of rubber which does not leave marks. The sole also features multi-directional lugs of 4mm. Constructed with a patented toe protection cap and the S3 heel support, this hiking shoe has excellent torsion stability. The ESS shank creates durable foot support as does the compression moulded EVA midsole.
The padded collar and tongue add to these shoes’ comforts. These Best hiking shoes are long-wearing and great for hikes where the hiker is not weighed down too much. We suggest backpacking, trekking and low ascent climbing as the best uses of the Keen Targhee II. The brand Keen has a stake in environmental awareness. They enjoy selling their products to people who love the outdoors and care about the planet that they are living on.
This clever Best hiking shoe will keep feet cool while allowing the hiker to hike in the wild and rugged places. The Dura leather lattice-like outer covers the inner layer made of breathable mesh. A bellows-style tongue resists the small rocks and debris that often wriggle their way inside a hiking shoe. The synthetic leather toe-cap and heel counterweight have been designed to create more torsional stability. The lining on the inside of this hiking shoe has been penetrated with the anti-microbial solution, Aegis. This helps to minimise odours.
To add to the shoe’s comfort, a nylon arch shank has been inserted. The shank adds support and durability to the sole. A cushioning foot-frame made of moulded EVA is another comfort factor. Merrell have placed an air-cushion inside the heel to absorb shock and prevent bruising. This cushioning adds stability. The 5mm lugs on the sole make this hiking shoe more versatile, allowing hikers to move at a fast pace if they need to. A final fortifying touch to these airy hiking shoes is the material in the sole. This is the VibramR Multi-Sport Sole with TC5 + Rubber. Bumper protection around the heel and the toe helps to keep hikers feeling fresh on their feet even after long hours of hiking.
3. Adidas AX2
These popular hiking shoes may have a few issues when it comes to comfort. The upper of this shoe is very light and easy to wear. It just does not match with the stiffened sole. This is a very lightweight hiking shoe that is built almost like a trail running shoe. The AdiPRENE support does not cushion the foot as much as it could, so the comfort factor is quite low. A moulded sock-liner does make this hiking shoe feel a bit more comfortable, though. The mid-sole is made of a light EVA layer which provides some extra padding to the foot overall.
The high-traction outsole is good for hiking in wet and dry conditions. This hiking shoe also has a removable insole. The shoes are described as being waterproof, although some reviews have stated that this is not true. The Gore-TexR Extended Comfort waterproof lining is apparently not very efficient. Overall this hiking shoe is light to wear and has moderately good traction. The versatility, water resistance and durability of the shoe are rated very low. It is possible to add a coating of a commercial water-resisting product to increase this capability. We suggest that you wear these hiking shoes for day hikes and some trail running only.
The letters XCRSN in this name are a shortening of the word excursion. With sturdy durable soles made from non-marking rubber and the variable-pattern of the lug layout, these Best hiking shoes are good for most excursions. The Columbia Omni-Grip system keeps these hiking shoes on the trail, whether it’s on wet or dry terrain. The outsoles have excellent traction and durability. They perform well on snow and ice as well as narrow hiking trails. The mid-sole of these hiking boots is made from Techlite foam. This adds cushioning and resilience. This type of mid-sole offers a nice feeling for the ground beneath the shoe.
The heel counter demonstrates a gradual flexibility – the flexibility increases toward the top of the heel. These hiking shoes feel flexible on the foot, with a gently tight hold around the back of the foot. A durable toe-cap reinforces the front of the hiking shoe. The OutDry factor of the shoe works very well. Hikers can trek through slush and mud and still emerge with dry feet. The OutDry material that the upper is made of can be easily cleaned. As a bonus this material is extremely breathable. The Columbia PeakFreak is an all-round winner. It is generous in the sizing and may need to be laced more tightly for narrow-footed hikers.
5. Vasque Juxt
This Best hiking shoe is a shoe to dream about owning! This model was worn by Navy SEALS during their campaign to catch Osama Bin Laden. This is an extremely versatile, all-terrain hiking shoe. The outsole of this fantastic hiking shoe is constructed with Vasque’s Off-The-Grid technology. This makes the outsoles of these hiking boots extremely durable. A TPU plate has been inserted at the mid-foot for extra foot support. The Arc-Tempo add-on allows the shoe to be adjusted for those with higher arches. This Best hiking shoe’s upper is made from suede leather. The foot-bed is made of dual-density EVA.
Due to this hiking shoe’s shape, which is long and narrow we recommend that you purchase one size smaller than your normal hiking shoe. This shoe has been designed with longer toe boxes so that the toes do not cramp on downhill hikes. Overall this hiking shoe has generated positive reviews everywhere. Military personnel wear them, as well as keen trail hikers. These shoes have been designed to be flexible. This means that spots that would be awkward to climb on in other hiking shoes, will be easy to negotiate in the Vasque Juxt Multi-Sport. This hiking shoe is a stand-out for comfort, versatility and flexibility.
These hiking boots are constructed with rubber outsoles that offer great durability. Outsoles such as these provide excellent traction in harsh terrain. The insertion of a thermoplastic shank plate provides even greater stability and comfort. This shank plate is lightweight so it keeps the overall weight of the hiking shoes low. Shock absorption is provided by midsoles which are a mix of EVA and polyurethane. The foot-beds are removable. Some hikers may need to replace them with a more comfortable version. These Best hiking shoes have nylon inner linings which wick sweat and dampness away from the foot. A bellows-style tongue prevents small debris from entering the shoe.
This Best hiking shoe is equipped with Gore-TexR. XCRR. membranes for water-proofing and breathability. The ankles and heels of these shoes are wrapped in a thermoplastic urethane overlay, which gives the shoes good qualities of support and durability. The uppers of the North Face Men’s Ultra 109’s are made from polyurethane coated leather, nylon mesh and thermoplastic urethane. These combined materials create flexible yet stable uppers. These Best hiking shoes are lace-ups. A pair of North Face Ultra 109’s weighs 1 lb 11oz. These hiking shoes deliver a sound performance, with excellent water-proofing, on rough water-logged trails.
These Best hiking shoes have lots of interesting technology built into them. A precise, secure fit is provided by the SensiFit. System. The QuickLace system provides one-pull tightening and loosening of laces. This means that the Salomon Men’s Ultra hiking shoe is easy to put on and easy to take off. The outsoles on this Best hiking shoe are made from non-marking ContaGrip., a special proprietary application which makes use of ideal combinations of rubber for each specific use. These Best hiking shoes have the special Salomon Advanced Chassis placed between the midsole and the outsole for maximum foot protection and a stable yet responsive shoe.
A protective rubber toecap enhances the tip-of-the-toes protection, while an anatomically designed foot-bed contributes full cushioning to the foot. The OrthoLite. sock-liner fabricated from OrthoLIte. foam creates a dry and cool environment which is healthy for the foot. EVA heel cups contribute to support and cushioning. This hiking shoe has a special protective coating around its base and a protective heel-cap provides extra stability for the rear-foot. Gore-TexR. Performance Footwear keeps this hiking shoe dry on the inside and the outside. Hikers who are wearing this shoe will travel well over all terrains. The weight of a pair of Salomon X Ultra 2 GTX is 410 grams.
The Oboz Tamarack BDRY is a great hiking shoe for comfort and stability. The dryness factor is created by Nubuck uppers which are covered by a B-DRY waterproof membrane. This membrane works well to keep feet dry even on long hikes. Toe and heel caps made of rubber offer protection against roots and branches on the trail.
Dual density EVA mid-soles and a nylon shank plate give this hiking shoe extra support and motion control as well as a good heel lock. A non-marking Granite Peak carbon-rubber sole with an asymmetrical lug pattern creates fine durability and traction. Each lug measures 4mm. A fore-foot plate made of TPU provides extra support for the foot. This aspect may also prevent stone-bruising, while it still keeps the shoe very flexible. The B-Fit Deluxe foot-bed keeps the foot comfortable with soft foam pods. This feature also helps to keep the foot in a centred position. Hikers over the age of seventy highly recommend this hiking shoe. Sufferers of arthritis also recommend this hiking shoe, because of its comfortable fit. Oboz are known for their commitment to saving the great outdoors. One tree is planted for every Oboz shoe that is sold.
This low-cut hiking shoe is a top favorite Best hiking shoe for many people. It’s so durable that it could almost be a hiking boot. The high durability ratings come from the leather that it is made of. This hiking shoe is extremely comfortable straight out of the box – it just seems to be a comfortable boot that fits well on all types of feet. The Gore-TexR. waterproof lining scores an 100% rating for waterproofing. The support factor in this hiking shoe is superb. It’s provided by a polyurethane Monowrap Frame on the midsole, combined with a full length nylon shank. These two factors create excellent torsional stability, which means the foot can be twisted mid-step without causing the hiker to fall.
The only real drawback for this shoe is that it adds a quarter of a pound of weight to each foot. This too can be translated into a positive point because it allows the hiker to carry a heavier pack and therefore extends the distance that a hiker can travel when wearing these shoes. Comfort is also a good feature on the Lowa Renegade. This hiking shoe has suede uppers and felt and foam inside. The lacing system comprises of one low-placed traditional eyelet hole with three pulley style eyelets above it. This makes the Renegade a synch to put on and take off. This hiking shoe weighs 2.73 lbs.
This Best hiking shoe is constructed with the high durability Vibrum Nuarsi outsoles which sport 4mm lugs. This outsole provides great traction on a variety of tracks. Equipped with thermoplastic urethane shanks, the shoes give good support to the sole of the foot, but also a bit of stiffness. While walking in these hiking shoes there may be some up and down heel movement. The Nubuck uppers are 1.8mm in thickness, which means that the shoes may need some wearing in. A curved rubber toe-shield and double layers of Nubuck across the toe and side panels offer excellent protection against impact and abrasion. Gusseted tongues which are attached to the shoe’s upper prevent small pieces of trail debris from entering the inside of the shoe, or socks.
These Best shoes have been constructed with dual density EVA foot-beds. Padded heel-beds and tongues provide lots of cushion-ey comfort. A moulded EVA athletic midsole contributes even more comfort to these hiking shoes. Waterproofing is created by the Nubuck uppers, mesh panels and Ultra-Dry lining. Perspiration is able to escape from side panels which have more than adequate ventilation. These Best hiking shoes for men are very durable and they last well on trails of all types – loose gravel, mud and shallow water create good test conditions for any hiking shoe.
Also Read: Vasque Clarion GTX
The excellent ratings associated with these 10 shoes mean they have everything you need in a high quality hiking shoe. They offer excellent performance and irrepressible durability even when used in the most demanding of hiking trails.
Come on, what are you waiting for? Order your pair of the best hiking shoes from the best online places to shop for shoes today!