Verdict from 2 experts and 100+ user reviews

6 reasons to buy

  • The Hoka One One Challenger Mid GTX ticks the box in terms of comfort, according to most of those who tested this footwear.
  • Many people note that this lightweight hiking boot is undeniably durable.
  • Several testers give it excellent ratings for its superior level of ankle support.
  • This Gore-Tex hiking boot lives up to its promise of keeping the foot dry no matter what, note a couple of users.
  • A significant number of Hoka One One Challenger Mid GTX reviews say that it's an awesome hiker for overnight backpacking and serious hiking.
  • Nearly everyone loves the design and color of this tough hiking boot.

2 reasons not to buy

  • Plenty of users didn't like the narrow eyelets that make lacing a pain.
  • A few say that this shoe needs to be sufficiently broken in before real comfort is achieved.

Bottom line

A tough, waterproof hiker that promises the Hoka comfort, this lightweight hiking boot has gotten rave reviews for being superbly comfortable and amazingly supportive. It is well-loved by many, particularly those who have foot pain issues. Thanks to the plush cushioning system, precise fit, and generous foot and ankle coverage.

Taking its seemingly complicated lacing system aside, the Hoka One One Challenger Mid GTX would have gotten a nearly perfect rating from many outdoorsy individuals and casual wearers.

Tip: see the best hiking boots.

Good to know

-The Challenger Mid GTX by Hoka One One is a rugged waterproof hiker featuring an oversized midsole that rolls over rough terrain smoothly and comfortably. It also has a heavy-duty outsole designed to provide stability on uneven terrain.

-It's also made with a premium leather upper so it's sure to endure some of the harshest weather conditions. 

This hiking shoe from Hoka One One has a mid-cut profile, offering plenty of coverage and support around the ankle. Since the upper is entirely made of leather, it might feel stiff at first. However, with frequent wearing, the shoe will break in and will adapt to the shape of the foot, giving the wearer a precise fit. Meanwhile, the anatomically molded foam collar nicely cuffs the ankle without making the wearer feel restricted.

A hiking shoe that performs well on rugged terrain, the Challenger Mid GTX features an articulated outsole with lugs that vary in shape and sizes. It is designed to offer shock absorption and stability. This sole is made of durable rubber that is highly resistant to abrasion. 

A distinct feature of the Hoka One One Challenger Mid GTX is its upscale midsole made of EVA. It's basically a thick foam that is larger than traditional midsoles, which is designed to provide plush cushioning while walking or hiking. 

This midsole is developed using the Hoka One One signature cushioning which is basically a midsole geometry that features lightness, shock absorption, and superior cushioning. This innovative technology also called "Early stage Meta-Rocker" works like a "wheel", driving the hiker forward and complementing the normal gait cycle.

Additionally, the Active Foot Frame functions like a bucket seat that cradles the foot, keeping the foot snugly attached to the midsole for a supportive and comfortable ride.

The shoe boasts of a premium Nubuck leather upper that offers superior protection against the elements. Lining the interior is a Gore-Tex waterproof membrane that seals water out, keeping the foot dry and comfortable. The Challenger Mid GTX also features a stitched midfoot "seatbelt" that provides an additional midfoot lockdown for a secure fit.

Completing the upper is a lace-up closure with two sets of eyelets at the top. Lastly, there's a pull loop at the back of the collar for easy on and off.


How Hoka One One Challenger Mid GTX ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 49% hiking boots
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Bottom 37% Hoka One One hiking boots
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Top 48% day hiking hiking boots
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The current trend of Hoka One One Challenger Mid GTX.
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Paul Ronto
Paul Ronto

Over the past 20 years, Paul has climbed, hiked, and ran all over the world. He has summited peaks throughout the Americas, trekked through Africa, and tested his endurance in 24-hour trail races as well as 6 marathons. On average, he runs 30-50 miles a week in the foothills of Northern Colorado. His research is regularly cited in The New York Times, Washington Post, National Geographic, etc. On top of this, Paul is leading the running shoe lab where he cuts shoes apart and analyses every detail of the shoes that you might buy.