The Best Hiking Boots of 2017

Hank Shell

The days are getting longer, the sun is shining brighter, and it’s time to get out and hit some trails.

Spring is one of my favorite times to get out and put down some mileage on area trails.

Of course, winter can leave your footwear looking a little less than dapper.

If you’re in the market for a new pair of hiking boots, check out some of our picks for this season’s best.

Men’s Hiking Boots

Salomon Quest 4D 2 GTX

SalomonQuest4D Hiking Boots

Salomon is mostly known for their ski game, and for good reason. The QST series was one of the best selling ski lines last season, with the QST 106 being one of my personal favorites.

But Salomon has established itself as a major competitor in the adventure footwear market as well.

The new S/Lab trail running series is pushing boundaries in performance trail running shoe design, and Salomon has brought some of that technology to its hiking boots.

Hailed by multiple outdoor publications as the best boot of 2017, the Salomon Quest 4D 2 GTX is one you don’t want to miss.

Salomon’s proprietary Sensifit wrap, developed for its trail running shoes, hugs the midsole of the foot, providing a snug and secure fit.

The boot is built on the manufacturer’s 4D Advanced Chassis, which provides stability and support for the foot on rough terrain.

When choosing a boot exclusively for hiking, you’ll generally want to go with a high-top boot like the Quest 4D 2 to support your ankles on uneven terrain.

You also want something waterproof and breathable, and Gore-Tex is the industry gold standard when it comes to keeping your feet dry. Any boot with GTX in the name will have a Gore-Tex upper.

Other features include an EVA molded foot bed, OrthoLite sock liner and Salomon’s Contagrip soles.

LOWA Renegade GTX Mid

LowaRenegade Hiking Boots

LOWA has been making hiking boots since 1923, so the company is well established and respected as a purveyor of quality hiking footwear.

The LOWA Renegade GTX Mid is another boot that’s made quite a splash among hikers this year.

Like our previous boot, it’s a high-top design with a Gore-Tex laminate.

The Renegade incorporates some of LOWA’s latest technology to provide a secure and comfortable fit out of the box.

Weighing in at 1110 grams, the Renegade is lighter than Salomon’s Quest 4D 2, which is a good thing – the lighter your boots, the less work you’ll do on the way up.

With a Nubuck Leather upper and sleek profile, the Renegade is also a classically stylish boot.

The boots are built on a Monowrap frame, which, like Salomon’s chassis, provides stability and comfort underfoot when tackling rough trails.

Ultra grippy Vibram Evo soles give the boots excellent traction in many different conditions.

LOWA offers these boots in a lot of different color schemes, which may appeal to more fashion-minded buyers.

It’s worth noting that both of these boots are offered in women’s specific versions, which have also proven very popular.

Just to be thorough, we’ll look at a couple of women’s boots from other manufacturers.

Women’s Hiking Boots

Hoka One One Tor Ultra Hi WP

HokaTorUltaHi Hiking Boots

Hoka One One is a company that’s broken onto the running shoe scene with its unique approach to design and construction.

While most running shoe companies are heading toward more minimalist designs, Hoka has favored a  ‘maximalist’ design philosophy, incorporating beefy soles for extra cushioning.

The same goes for their hiking boots.

While more of a high-top hiking shoe, Hoka’s Tor Ultra Hi WP has emerged as a popular, high-performance hiking platform.

Hoka’s midsole blend of EVA and RMAT material, along with its Meta-rocker sole shape, deliver a sensation akin to walking on clouds.

Lay this atop a Vibram sole, and you’ve got a comfortable, all-terrain cruiser.

The cushioning is truly sensational, and energy transfer is fluid.

While this boot does not have Gore-Tex, it does have eVent fabric incorporated into the upper.

It’s not quite as popular, but eVent is recognized industry-wide as a quality waterproofing material.

For hikers looking for a lighter boot with a running pedigree and excellent cushioning, the Tor Ultra Hi WP is a great choice.


Asolo Futura GTX

AsoloFuturaGTX Hiking Boots

Italian boot maker Asolo is another well-established brand in the outdoor community.

As its name implies, the Futura GTX incorporates a Gore-Tex laminate into its upper, providing waterproofing and breathability.

At first sight, the Futura appears to be a pretty burly shoe, though they’re reasonably light for a high-performance hiking boot.

Constructed for more advanced hikers and trekkers, the Futura is built on Asolo’s Duo Asoflex Lady Last. A last is the shape of the foot upon which a shoe is constructed.

In the case of Asoflex, the last is a woman-specific foundation constructed for stability and comfort.

The boot’s upper is fabricated with suede and nylon and comes in two color schemes – orchid purple and jade green.

Asolo’s Sensor rubber and EVA material combine to form a fairly high-traction sole, which hikers will appreciate on more technical trails.

Other features include a molded EVA midsole and heel insert, as well as a polyurethane protective cover.

For the hard-charging female hiker, the Asolo Futura GTX is a good choice for those long hauls.

Related Article: Effects of Outdoor Exercise

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