782 users: 4.3 / 5
9 experts: 82 / 100
Weight: Men 25oz
Use: Backpacking
Cut: Mid cut
Waterproofing: Waterproof

Verdict from 8.2 hours of research from the internet

9 reasons to buy

  • Scores of satisfied customers became instant Danner fans after experiencing this footwear’s amazing traction firsthand.
  • The Danner 453 deeply impressed a huge portion of the reviewing population with its feather-like lightness.
  • This mid-cut backpacking boot requires minimal-to-no break-in time, and many wearers couldn’t agree more.
  • Many experts and users were smitten by the Danner 453 with its enormous level of comfort. An expert among them even likened it to a well-worn tennis shoe.
  • Based on a number of favorable reviews, this boot’s arch support is genuinely top notch.
  • A moderate percentage of reviewers were at a loss for words because it's a hiking boot with excellent waterproofing.
  • This premium-priced hiking footwear is considered a smart purchase by many.
  • Some experts praised the Danner 453 for its commendable durability. Its toughness lasted an expert’s pair through punishing outdoor ventures for more than two years.
  • Danner’s 453 provides great stability on challenging treks, according to a handful of owners. One of them reported that even pointy rocks couldn’t destabilize him.

5 reasons not to buy

  • A considerable number of owners couldn’t help but feel disgusted with the boot’s outsole for wearing thin too quickly.
  • Many passionate hikers were flabbergasted by the Danner 453’s thin laces. These laces, according to them, were too scrawny to give them a secure ankle fit.
  • Some wearers found the boot too narrow. Even the 2E - wide still felt too cramped and restrictive for them.
  • A handful of reviewers detested the hook eyelets for bruising their laces and rendering them unusable.
  • The ankle cuff’s inner liner bleeds and stains socks, based on a few critical reviews.

Bottom line

Danner’s mission to provide a waterproof backpacking footwear with huge amounts of comfort and support is accomplished in the 453. This worthy purchase of a boot is remarkably stable, durable, and lightweight. It is also a grippy platform that requires minimal break-in time. However, many wearers were disappointed with the Danner 453’s frail outsole, bleeding ankle liner, and too-narrow fit. Its fragile shoelaces and abrasive lace hooks further compounded the negativity which surrounded the boot.

Tip: see the best hiking boots.

Expert reviews:

User reviews:

Amazon, SportsShoes and 21 other shops don't have user reviews

  • The Danner 453 is a mid-cut hiking boot designed for long treks. It sports a layered leather upper, whether nubuck or full-grain, which is made waterproof—thanks to Gore-Tex’s waterproof liner. This sturdy upper is nestled on the Terra Force X platform which is the boot’s sole unit, consisting of the insole plate (through which the upper is stitched), internal and external shanks, midsole, and outsole. The Terra Force X platform also promotes heel-to-toe energy transfer and reduces weight, thanks to its overall X-frame design.
  • With a pair of speed hooks, the boot’s lacing system provides a quick lockdown. This closure system securely hugs the gusseted tongue which, along with the ankle cuff, has a leather inner padding for added comfort.
  • Danner’s proprietary rubber outsole, called Terra Force X (TFX), grants traction over various terrain with its numerous grooves and multiple lugs. It is engineered to be lightweight and supportive for enhanced mobility.

Danner’s 453 is a leather footwear designed for male backpackers. It is built using Danner’s 850, a last infused with athletic performance. It has a supportive fit designed for high-mileage hikers and enough room in the toe box. The padded ankle collar and gusseted tongue provide comfort, while the laces and speed hooks make personalized lockdown possible.

Part of the Danner-patented Terra Force X sole unit, Approach TFX powers the outsole of the 453. This lightweight yet durable rubber layer provides traction on tricky terrain and uneven ground. Its construction allows it to maintain grip during descents and sidehill maneuvers. The multi-directional lugs across the outsole are also beveled to shed away debris and prevent mud buildup effectively.

The Approach TFX outsole, aside from fulfilling its primary objective of providing dependable traction, also acts as the forefoot’s defensive bumper. The engineers have made this possible by slightly extending its front end to the tip of the upper’s toe box.

Shock absorption, protective cushioning, and ground stability are mainly provided by the boot’s midsole. This stabilizing rubber platform is made of high-density EVA, a synthetic material characterized by flexibility and resilience. Within its confines is a TPU shank that further reinforces the midsole and contributes to the boot’s overall stability. This component also protects the arch and helps the footwear economize the wearer’s energy consumption, thereby lessening fatigue. The midsole also features an external, nylon shank which conveniently cups the arch zone of the boot. This additional, supportive implement promotes medial and lateral stability.

The midsole’s overall design is noticeably contoured. Such an ergonomic design aids the wearer’s arch and reduces foot fatigue. It also improves heel-to-toe energy transfer efficiency. 

A molded TPU footbed called Fatigue Fighter—another Danner-owned component—doubles down on the 453’s cushioning. Its top cloth is made of microfiber which makes it fast-drying, while its heel zone is layered with a spongy polyurethane material which makes terrain traversal a comfy experience. The insole’s underside is also peppered with circular nodes, small grippy bumps that further latch the footbed in place.

The Danner 453 is a durable piece of backpacking gear due mainly to its stitched upper which is made of layers of quality leather. Its strict defenses against wet elements are made possible by Gore-Tex’s waterproof membrane. This waterproofing liner also disperses sweat and provides wind protection. Protecting the forefoot zone against bumps and terrain hazards, on the other hand, comes in the form of a sturdy, scuff-proof toe cap.

It features rounded laces and speed hooks which make lacing up rather fast and convenient. There’s also the upper’s tongue that locks out debris with its gusseted construction.

The ankle collar’s interior has a leather padding which gives extra cushioning. This supportive ankle collar also has ridges which promote mobility.

  • Backpacker Magazine hailed the Danner 453 as a must-buy product.
  • Danner recommends the use of Danner Cleaning Gel to remove grime and oil-based substances from their leather hiking boots.

Size and fit

True to size based on 469 user votes
Small (0%)
True to size (61%)
Large (39%)
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Size comments

The 453 is very comfortable and they fit true to size.. - Amazon

How 453 compares

This shoe: 88
All shoes average: 88
40 99
This shoe: $190
All shoes average: $205
$45 $495
This shoe: 25oz
All shoes average: 20.9oz
8.3oz 43oz
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.