Summary

We spent 9.5 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what hikers think:

6 reasons to buy

  • Out of a handful of verified Columbia Vitesse OutDry reviews, nearly everyone agrees that it's a super comfortable shoe.
  • Everyone is also satisfied with its waterproofing qualities. 
  • It's not just great for the summer but also during rainy days when you don't want to wear boots, according to some customers.
  • Despite the presence of a waterproof membrane, this shoe remains breathable, according to an expert review.
  • An avid hiker praises the Vitesse OutDry for being a lightweight hiking shoe.
  • The same in-depth review also mentions the firm heel cup that keeps the heel in place and keeps the foot stable.

1 reasons not to buy

  • This shoe lacks lateral support so it may not be suitable for serious hikes.

Bottom line

A sporty shoe that looks good on the trail and on the street, the Vitesse OutDry from Columbia ticks the box for comfort, stability, and protection. This waterproof hiker is lauded for its seam-sealed construction which means less water intrusion and enhanced upper strength and durability. Plus, the lightweight midsole creates a cushiony platform and absorbs impact well.

It's a great shoe overall, and is best used for light hiking, quick day hikes, casual activities, and trips around the town.

Facts

Rankings

A top rated hiking shoe
Top 10% most popular hiking shoes

Expert Reviews

84 / 100 based on 3 expert reviews

  • 96 / 100 |

    Columbia Vitesse OutDry - Does it live up to its name?

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    Out of the box, I thought’ “am I really going to put these on my feet!” They look great from all angles though I’m not fond of this particular color scheme.

    They are relatively lightweight yet there is more longitudinal flex in a pair of climbing boots than these. Not something I am accustomed to in a shoe.

     

     

    Does this shoe live up to its name? Vitesse means moving fast and OutDry implies the outside of something is dry.

    After 65 miles of hiking and one 7-mile run in these shoes, I would consider these shoes a fast hiking shoe and a slower than average running shoe.

    But wait, just because they may look like a runner, they really are a hiking shoe. Very light for a hiker as well at 13½ ounces for men’s size 9½.

    Outside the skin of my foot did stay dry in heavy rain and slugging through muddy trails on several hikes in the past months. My feet stayed warm on the snowy trails back in March as well.

    Hiker Light

    The breathable mesh upper and lightweight midsole combine to make a lightweight hiker. It won’t weigh you down even though your pack might. The bright blue outsole is mildly aggressive.

    Columbia refers to it as Omni-Grip™ Rubber. It provides enough grip with 3mm lugs except for the greasiest up and downhill trails.

    Additionally, the lug pattern did not hold debris which contributes to a lighter hiker than some due to the constant shedding of mud.

     

    Is it waterproof?

    An emphatic, YES! Morning hikes across a dewy field, rain-drenched sidewalks, and muddy puddles were no match for the patented OutDry laminated mesh upper and welt between the upper and midsole. The no-sew overlays technology adds rigidity and aesthetics to this shoe.

     

     

    My foot remained dry on every hike whether it was wet or hot. The breathability is the best of the four waterproof shoes that I’ve owned.

    The padded gusseted tongue kept out water that went up passed the middle laces. Therefore, this shoe gives a comfortable feel in all conditions.

     

    Fit & performance

    The overall fit and comfort in cold and wet conditions is amazing, but the everyday feel is equally great.

    There were no hot spots, no rubbing on the heel or ankle. I tried to find a type of terrain or length of time that created a tight or rough spot, but alas I could not.

    The toe box is roomy but not sloppy and the heel cup forms nicely to my ankle.

    The malleolus cutout is deep enough to not rub my ankle, but not so low as to lose that nice cup feel around my ankle. Still not sure why many shoe manufacturers still add a heel cup pull to their shoes.

     

     

    I’ve tried to use them a few times to no avail.

    The Vitesse’s performance on a long hike is top tier. The stiffness of the midsole gives tons of rock protection and enough cushion to not feel like a boot.

    As hard as I try to not compare it to a runner, the thought of its lack of sole flex and minor impact return bothers me. I believe those traits also make it a great hiker.

    The flex test

    I wanted to follow-up on my thought at the beginning of this review – ‘there is more longitudinal flex in a pair of climbing boots.’

     

     

    I decided a specialized test was necessary to compare the force needed to flex the toe box of the Vitesse as compared with a few other shoes. Five different shoes were placed on a scale inside a frame. The results were telling and proved my initial thoughts.

    On Cloudflyer Waterproof came in at 5 lb 6 oz, the 361 Degree Strata was 7 lb 3 oz, Saucony Peregrine was 7 lb 13 oz, and the Hoka One One Sky Arkali, also a hiking shoe, was close at 12 lb 1 oz, but the Vitesse recorded 12 lb 5 oz!

     

     

    For a lightweight shoe, the lack of flex was a bit surprising. The stiffness does afford protection on technical trails and spreads out the foot compression, somewhat like a biking shoe.

    The pros

    • The upper is amazing with a just-right toe box, waterproof and breathable material, and stable heel counter.
    • It has enough cushioning for a long hike and extremely comfortable in all conditions.
    • The padded tongue and mesh construction hugs your foot all around.
    • The overlays add to upper stability and aesthetics.
    • It is stable and secure.
    • Sizing seems to be right on.
    • Great value for a well-constructed hiking shoe.

    The cons

    • The lack of cushioning may be a negative for some people, but I like to feel the trail a bit.
    • The baby blue or Phoenix Blue as Columbia calls it is just not my choice of color for a hiking shoe. I’d prefer black.
    • Significant flex in a shoe is customary to the point that I need to give it a negative even though I think it adds to the comfort factor on technical or rocky trails.

    The wrap-up

    The lightweight yet stiff midsole gives a solid feel on all terrain. It has enough body to protect from the sharpest rocks.

    It is great as a daily walker as well. Plus the stylish silhouette means these performance hiking shoes look good on the trail and for everyday wear.

    They did look great with a pair of jeans. For my final verdict on the Columbia Vitesse OutDry, I really like the comfort and fit. Its durability, protection, lightweight, and water protection are all excellent.

  • 85 / 100 |

    Columbia Vitesse Outdry - A light hiking shoe that's great for travel

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    I was very excited when these arrived on my doorstep since I was in the market for a new lightweight hiking shoe that I could take on adventures with me.

    This shoe definitely fits what I was looking for.  The Vitesse Outdry is a comfortable light hiker that is perfectly suited as a travel/lighter hiking shoe.  

     

     

    I tested this on a variety of terrain, and I thought it worked ok on most surfaces, but not the best if you are looking for a dedicated hiking shoe as it is limited in some respects.  

    If you are looking for a shoe to wear around while you are traveling that transitions well to light hiking, this is the shoe for you.

    When I say “light”, don’t think that this will be like a road shoe, or even a trail running shoe.  This shoe is lighter for a hiking shoe and should be used for easy/light hikes.

    Construction & design

    This shoe is quite …sturdy. It’s got a robust midsole, heavy padding along the ankle collar and tongue, and a full rubber outsole.

     

     

    The overlays along the outer edge of the shoe provide protection, but also makes it easier to wipe down the shoes after a hike. This is quite helpful when you are hiking in very dusty areas like southern California.  

    The flat laces are durable and do a good job of locking in the shoe to the foot. The heavy padding also makes it so that it feels like a wetsuit rather than a corset when you really tighten those laces.  

     

     

    The step-in comfort is amazing because of all of the padding, but the insole and midsole really help the shoe feel really plush for a hiking shoe.

    No, it doesn’t feel pillowy soft like a Clifton 1, but it is very comfortable for a hiking shoe where you need to balance durability with that lasting comfort.  

    I was able to walk around all day without any hotspots or feeling like I want to chuck them off of my feet at the end of the day.  

     

    Fit/performance/durability

    Like most people right now, I have had a difficult time finding places to hike/run since a lot of trails around me are shut down. Even where there is outdoor space, I still want to go to areas where there aren’t a lot/any people so that I can maintain a safe distance.

    Luckily, I was able to test out this shoe in a variety of environments before most places shut down. What I have found about this shoe is that you don’t need to treat it like a dedicated hiking shoe because of its versatility.  

    When I got to a trail that was too crowded, I just went for a long walk in the hills and found that it’s just as comfortable to walk around in because the lugs are not too aggressive.

     

     

    I found myself reaching for them because they are waterproof, and we have gotten a fair bit of rain in the area lately.  What I did notice as I wore them on longer walks and hikes is that my foot got quite warm.

    There was some breathability, but it could be the fact that there is a waterproof layer, my feet did get a little hot.  That is a tradeoff for having waterproof shoes.  

     

     

    When I took it around those walking trips around town, I found that it was very comfortable, and the cushioning shows no breakdown after months of use. I honestly can say that it is one of my go-to shoes for taking the dog on the light trails and easier hikes.  

    I say easier hikes because when I took it on a very rocky steep trail, the shoe did not perform as well as some of my other hiking shoes. Yes, it was still comfortable and the shoe felt like it was very stable, but the grip doesn’t do well on technical downhills.  

    It performed great on the uphill portions of the hike, but I couldn’t get any traction on the downhills and I felt like I was slipping more than normal.

     

     

    I think that the lack of traction was due to the fact that the lugs are not that aggressive, which is part of the reason why they are so great as a transitional hiking shoe.

    The rubber provides enough grip for those uphill but requires you to move more cautiously through the downhill portions.

     

     

    Pros

    • Very comfortable from the first time that you put it on
    • Versatile shoe for light hikes and walking around
    • Affordable and durable
    • Stable platform and stabilizing ankle collar
    • Pull tab!

    Cons

    • Not enough grip for technical downhill hiking
    • Not that breathable
    • Colorways not exciting
Become an expert

-The Columbia Vitesse OutDry is a sporty-looking shoe that has the performance of a rugged hiker. It boasts of a breathable mesh upper, the Outdry waterproof membrane, and the Omni-Grip non-marking traction rubber sole.

-Designed to promote speed and agility, this footwear from Columbia comes with an ultra-light midsole, one of the most advanced shoe cushioning technologies today.

-Lastly, the seamless upper construction results in a polished look and enhanced durability. 

Designed for men and women, the Columbia Vitesse OutDry shoes have soft and stretchy mesh uppers with no sewn overlays for that "glove-like" fit and support. It's a low-cut model which means less coverage for the ankle and more freedom of movement. The tongue and collar are nicely padded for a comfortable stride and the web lacing system ensures easy adjustment of the fit whenever needed. 

The Vitesse OutDry hiker features a high-traction sole exclusively developed by Columbia. Called Omni-Grip, this rubber sole is made of specially formulated compounds that offer protection against the elements. It features multidirectional lugs and wide contact areas for enhanced grip and traction. Thus, this hiker is expected to perform well on rocky trails, slippery roads, and packed dirt. Furthermore, there are enough spaces in between the lugs so mud and debris don't get stuck.

Perhaps the most striking feature unique to this shoe is its ultra-light midsole. It's Columbia's most advanced cushioning system so far which boasts of high energy return. It works by absorbing impact so less energy is utilized by the body, thereby making long walks and hikes much bearable and preventing fatigue, foot pain, and the like. 

The thing about this midsole is that it's very thin, more like an insole. But it has really good cushioning property, durability, and impact protection.

The Columbia Vitesse OutDry shoes are made with breathable mesh uppers so they make the ideal footwear for sunny hikes. Nevertheless, they come with the OutDry waterproof membrane which is integrated into the shoe through seam-sealed construction. This means that the waterproof material acts like a sockliner that prevents the entry of water. 

The upper also has a seamless construction, meaning there are no sewn overlays. This really enhances the waterproofing quality of the Vitesse because there are no stitches, holes, and seams where water can get through. Plus, there are no "weak spots" where damage usually starts to take place.

Lastly, there's a rubber toe cap and heel cup, as well as rubber reinforcements along the part where the upper and sole meet, giving the shoe a sturdy structure.

Author
Paul Ronto
Paul Ronto

Paul loves adventure. Over the past 20 years, he has climbed, hiked, and ran all over the world. He’s summited peaks throughout the Americas, trekked through Africa, and tested his endurance in 24-hour trail races. He has worked in the outdoor industry as a whitewater and hunting guide, gear tester, copywriter, and outfitting specialist at places like The National Outdoor Leadership School, No Barriers USA, and Sierra Trading Post. He has been quoted in NYMag, NBCNews, and Business Insider to name a few.

paul@runrepeat.com