Verdict from 1 expert and 100+ user reviews

5 reasons to buy

  • The vast majority of Merrell Forestbound Mid WP reviews talk about its top-notch comfort.
  • Many people are greatly impressed by how these lightweight hiking boots made their trips to the trail more enjoyable.
  • A significant number of customers, including those suffering from foot pain, find it very supportive.
  • Lots of verified buyers highly recommend this Merrell outdoor boot for its quality construction. 
  • A handful of users are amazed by the boot’s cushioning which has allowed them to walk for hours without tiring.

2 reasons not to buy

  • Several customers are disappointed with the waterproof qualities of this boot.
  • A handful of reviewers find the Merrell Forestbound Mid WP hiking boots somewhat narrow.

Bottom line

Built to give you comfort, support, and protection in your longest hikes, the Merrell Forestbound Mid WP is a heavy-duty leather boot that is touted for its fantastic performance on the trail. It has gotten high marks for its robust construction, high-quality cushioning, and sheer lightness. 

Despite some concerns over its ability to guard the feet from extreme rain and water, this shoe still makes a great pick for both recreational and serious hikers. However, people who are wide-footed should check first if this boot fits them comfortably before making a purchase.

Tip: see the best hiking boots.

Good to know

-This boot has a PU-coated leather upper with mesh lining that protects against the elements.

-Designed for wet and dry conditions, this hiker is lined with the M. Select Dry membrane that seals out moisture.

-It comes with a durable M. Select Grip rubber outsole that is highly slip-resistant and offers stability on mixed terrain. In addition, the angled lugs channel excess water away from underfoot while the razor siping increases surface traction. 

-The EVA midsole and Kinetic Base insole create a cushiony and supportive platform for the foot.

This mid-top hiker from Merrell has sizes available for men and women. It has a leather upper which is pliable enough to conform to the shape of the foot after some breaking in. Furthermore, the traditional lace-up closure features two additional hooks on top for a more secure fit.

The Forestbound mid-top waterproof hiker has the M. Select Grip sole featuring diamond-shaped lugs on the forefoot and heel area. These lugs are 5mm deep, which are ideal for challenging terrain. Whether you are stepping on wet or dry surfaces, steep slopes, rocky ground, muddy trails, or loose dirt, such a lug depth is good enough to get a solid grip and traction.

This outsole also has thin-cut lines (created through razor siping) that enhances the shoe traction on wet areas. Furthermore, the lugs are highly angled, creating an effective water dispersal system.

Like most other Merrell shoes, this model features a midsole made of EVA - a lightweight and flexible foam that does a great job in absorbing shock or impact. EVA midsoles also have a high bounce rate, which helps with the stability of the foot when walking, running, or going uphill. 

For added support and comfort, this boot comes with a removable insole that is contoured to the shape of the foot.

This shoe has several other features necessary to survive long hikes. For instance, it is equipped with a molded nylon arch shank that absorbs up to four times a person’s weight, thereby reducing the risk of fatigue when hiking or walking long distances.

The Forestbound Mid WP has a leather upper treated with polyurethane (PU) to increase its durability, water repellency, and abrasion-resistance. 

Lastly, this boot comes with a die-cut rubber rand and toe cap for superior protection against varying trail hazards.


How Merrell Forestbound Mid WP ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 32% hiking boots
All hiking boots
Top 18% Merrell hiking boots
All Merrell hiking boots
Top 37% backpacking hiking boots
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The current trend of Merrell Forestbound Mid WP.
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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.