3 Best Adidas Hiking Shoes

Paul Ronto
Paul Ronto on
3 Best Adidas Hiking Shoes
We earn affiliate commissions at no extra cost to you when you buy through us. Why trust us

When it comes to hiking shoes that underscore athleticism, you can’t go wrong with Adidas.

This household name features fantastic kicks that give adventurers the edge they need to conquer the outdoors. We’ve tested Adidas hiking shoes to provide you with our top picks. Not only that but we also weighed all their actual pros and cons and discussed them one by one. So, whether you need a great all-rounder, an Adidas hiker that makes you go faster, or perhaps a highly affordable pair, we’ve got them all here.

How we test hiking shoes

At RunRepeat, we strive towards honest footgear reviews. Here is our approach:

  • We buy Adidas hiking shoes with our own money. This affords us to come up with objective reviews.
  • We hike in every Adidas kick. Each shoe goes through a particular process unique to its area of expertise, gauging every pair in various terrain and weather conditions.
  • We find more reasons as to why a shoe makes us feel in terms of fit, breathability, support, bending of feet, and others. We do this by conducting more tests inside our lab such as our smoke test in which we determine if a pair is leaning toward waterproofness, breathability, both, or neither. What happens is we pump smoke inside the shoes and assess subjectively how much smoke escapes, thus telling us about how permeable the upper is.

Best Adidas hiking shoes overall

What makes it the best?

It's very cushioned and comfortble. Its structure is as stable as it gets. Its grip is superb. Its Gore-Tex membrane works like charm. And that's why we choose the Adidas Terrex Swift R3 GTX as the best overall hiking shoe from Adidas. 

While it scored a perfect 5/5 on the torsional rigidity test, which means that it is very stiff and almost impossible to twist, even a little bit, this hiking shoe is actually rather flexible. It's actually 6.7% more flexible than the average hiking shoe. We needed a force of 34.1N to bend it to 90 degrees on our flexibility test, while the average force needed for hiking shoes is 36.4N. This translates to a more natural ride and we loved how the shoe flexed with our feet, especially on more demanding hikes. 

On the bottom of the shoe it reads "Lugs 4.5 mm". In the lab, our calliper measurements confirmed this, they are indeed 4.5 mm thick. They are not just thicker than average but their bite is very secure. We appreciated that especially when going downhill. 

With a heel stack height of 36.6 mm (the average is 33.5 mm) and a footbed that's 18% softer than the average, this is a very comfortable hiking shoe. We noticed that our feet experienced much less fatigue after hikes, especially the longer ones. We definitely attribute this generous cushioning and stability. 

When testing the shoe, we did not plan for it but we ended up doing a rather rainy hike. Our feet and socks remained completely dry. 

We don't recommend this shoe to hikers who want the straight-out-of-the-box level of comfort. When a shoe has the stability of the boot, it asks for some break-in. 

Pros

  • Boot-like stability
  • Highly durable and protective
  • Lightweight for what it offers
  • Excellent waterproofing
  • Breathable for a GTX shoe
  • Generously cushioned
  • Very secure foothold
  • Top-notch grip with deep lugs

Cons

  • Stuffy for summer
  • Can be too stiff (even stiffer in cold)
  • Break-in needed
Full review of Adidas Terrex Swift R3 GTX

Best lightweight Adidas hiking shoes

What makes it the best?

Adidas’ Terrex range has a new front runner. The Adidas Terrex Trailmaker took the prize as the best lightweight Adidas hiking shoe! Not only is it way lighter than the other Adidas hiking shoes in the lineup, but it incorporates supportive cushioning along with a good amount of ground feel, and it caters to the wide-footed hikers among us.

The Terrex Trailmaker is by far the most lightweight shoe in the Adidas hiking shoe range. Popping it on our scales in the lab, it clocked in at a slight 12.7 oz (361g). 1.2 oz (34g) lighter than the average hiking shoe, it even manages to shave 12% off the weight of the Terrex Swift R3 GTX! This shoe is perfect for long day hikes when every ounce counts.

Measuring 30.6 mm, the heel stack is 3 mm lower than average, while the forefoot is around the average at 21 mm. With a lower-than-average drop of 9.6 mm, hikers who enjoy the sensation of the ground passing beneath them will appreciate the additional ground feel that this slimmed-down midsole provides. Protection is still present - our durometer measurements showed the midsole measures 29.5 HA, only 4% softer than average. On our hikes, our feet still felt supported and protected from sharp objects, whilst enjoying the soft cushioning to the max.

The Adidas Terrex Trailmaker looks after wide feet. At the widest point, the forefoot, we measured the shoe to be 3.7 mm wider than average, and it gets better the further forward we go. Instead of narrowing quickly around the toes like many shoes, the Trailmaker remains 3.2 mm wider than average at the big toe. We enjoyed the extra wiggle-room for our toes, especially on hot days!

In our experience, the Trailmaker isn’t for use on wet grass, mud or ice. The lugs are pretty slim, measuring just 3.4 mm, which is 0.9 mm less than average, so we don’t recommend them for technical hiking.

Pros

  • Extra lightweight
  • Amazing in-shoe comfort
  • Highly breathable
  • Balance of cushion and ground feel
  • Stable for a light shoe
  • More flexible than average
  • Welcomes wide feet
  • Secure lockdown (bootie upper)

Cons

  • Outsole lacks durability
  • Not enough grip on wet terrain
Full review of Adidas Terrex Trailmaker

Best budget Adidas hiking shoes

What makes it the best?

A hiking shoe that can do a little bit of everything, feels very secure, loves biting the softer ground and even has some recycled elements? And it retails at £100? Of course, it must be our best budget pick in the world of hiking shoes from Adidas! 

The price is what dreams are made of. This makes the Adidas Terrex AX4 30% cheaper than the average hiking shoe. But when we took it to multiple hikes and cut it in half in our lab: that's when we realised why this is such a great budget hiking shoe. 

The grip is solid! We took our calliper and measured the depth of the lugs to be 3.7 mm. Now, that's 0.5 mm less than the average thickness, but we can't say we felt that. We felt very secure in Adidas Terrex AX4. 

What also helped immensely this overall secure feel was the wide base. Both at the heel and the forefoot, the Terrex AX4 is wider than average (2.6 mm and 3.8 mm, respectively). We felt no traces of instability! 

Where we noticed something that is significantly different is the insole. It's only 2.6 mm thick, while the average is 4.9 mm. Some hikers might need to use a thicker insole if they want a softer, more cushioned feel. 

Pros

  • Excellent value for money
  • Feels like a trail running shoe
  • Breathable
  • Water-repellent
  • Solid grip
  • Durable for the price
  • Stable platform
  • Contains recycled materials

Cons

  • Lacks toe protection
  • Flimsy insole
Full review of Adidas Terrex AX4

Adidas – an abbreviation for “all day I dream about sports”– has been at the forefront of athletic footwear since the dawn of man, or at least it feels that way. It came as no surprise to us that Adidas would eventually get involved hiking footwear industry.

Adidas Terrex Swift R3 GTX review

And now, Adidas hiking shoes are some of our favourites.     

Core components of Adidas hiking shoes

Adidas hiking shoes are well-known for their high-quality construction. Compared to other hiking shoes, these shoes are famous for their outsoles, midsoles, and hyper-durable materials.   

Rugged outsoles

Terrex hiking shoes come with rugged outsoles for increased traction on off-road terrains, such as dirt, gravel, mud, snow, and ice.

The size of the lugs on the outsole along with the pattern of the lug profile, are specifically designed for certain surfaces and intended activities. Most Adidas hiking shoes will come equipped with an all-terrain lug profile, ideal for a variety of surfaces.

Adidas Terrex Swift R3 GTX Lug depth

4 mm is the average lug depth of Adidas hiking shoes

  • Deeper lugs facilitate traction in loose terrain.
  • Wide-spaced lugs prevent mud from building up
  • Uni-directional lugs help push forward and grip on steep uphills.
  • Aggressive lugs under the heel help you brake and slow down on descents.

To further enhance the performance of their outsoles, over ten years ago, Adidas Terrex began collaborating with Continental. Their goal was to improve the grip of their hiking shoes. Since then, Adidas Terrex outsoles that utilise Continental rubber offer 30% more traction.

Adidas Terrex Swift R3 GTX outsole

The Continental rubber also features exceptional durability and wear resistance!

Cushioned midsoles

Hiking shoes are designed to cushion your feet against prolonged stretch on off-road surfaces. Cushioning in the midsole prevents foot fatigue, which allows you to hike farther distances and at faster speeds. Cushioning also protects your feet from sharp objects, like roots and rocks.

Adidas Terrex Trailmaker Heel stack

All Adidas hiking shoes we've tested have at least 30 mm of heel stack height

The majority of the Adidas hiking shoes in this article use ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) foam in the midsole. EVA foam is an ideal material for midsoles because it’s lightweight and excellent at absorbing shock.

Some foams are softer than others. It is up to you to decide whether you want a firmer and more stable ride...

...or a plusher one.

Protective uppers 

Hiking shoes are built to protect your feet from rocky terrain and harsh weather. Terrex hiking shoes come with sturdy and protective uppers made with durable materials. For example, all Adidas hiking shoes will come with protective toe guards.

We test the durability of all Adidas hikers with a Dremel to let you know which ones truly stand out

For waterproofing, Adidas hiking shoes utilise Gore-tex (GTX). Gore-tex is the industry leader in waterproof materials. Gore-tex is the gold standard because it repels water from entering from the outside, even when submerged. At the same time, Gore-tex allows the moisture inside your shoe, your sweat, to evaporate from inside.

Permeability comparison between a non-GTX shoe and a GTX shoe

How to decide which Adidas Terrex hiking shoe is best for you

Thus far, we’ve done our best to guide your decision-making regarding selecting an Adidas hiking shoe. To do so, we devised categories like best overall, best waterproof, and best value. But what else should you consider when selecting a hiking shoe?

Terrain type

Picking the best shoe for you depends on the terrain you enjoy hiking. For example, do you need a shoe for easier trails on flat or rolling terrain? Or technical trails with steep sections and loose terrain?

  • Easy to moderate trails are characterised by relatively even and stable surfaces, such as fire roads and well-maintained single-track trails. This trail is typically found in larger open areas, like valleys and meadows.
  • Technical and advanced rails are characterised by uneven terrain with rocks, roots, steps, off-camber terrain, and steep inclines and declines. These trails are commonly found in mountainous areas with undulating terrain.
  • Hiking off maintained trails is characterised by uneven, unstable, and highly technical terrain. These trails often include scrambling and water crossings.

For easy to moderate terrain, lightweight, flexible, and cushioned hiking shoes may be the best choice. For example, the Adidas Terrex Trailmaker or Adidas Terrex Hikster.

Adidas Terrex Trailmaker side view

Adidas Terrex Trailmaker

On the other hand, stiffer hiking shoes that offer more stability may be better for highly technical and advanced terrain. Hiking shoes with extra reinforcements like heel protectors and rubber toe caps can also be advantageous. For example, the Adidas Terrex Swift R3.

Adidas Terrex Swift R3 GTX support

Weight of your load

Another item to consider when selecting a hiking shoe is the typical weight you carry. Do you prefer shorter day hikes with a light backpack? Are you buying shoes for a multi-day backpacking trip? Or do you typically go hiking with only your car keys and cell phone?

In general, cushioned, flexible, and lightweight shoes are okay for light loads, so long as the terrain allows. On the other hand, if you frequently have heavier loads, a stiffer shoe may be preferred.

Duration of your hiking efforts

Deciding if the hiking you prefer is long or short is somewhat subjective. A one-hour hike on terrain characterised as easy may feel long and hard for one person and easy for another. That’s why we think your fitness and experience level dictate how easy or hard something really is.

Nonetheless, it’s helpful to consider these parameters. Then you can pick an Adidas Terrex hiking shoe that provides the cushioning, support, and traction required for typical hiking adventures. For example, if you prefer light and fast-speed hiking, go with the Terrex AX4.

adidas-terrex-ax-4-grip.JPG

The local climate 

The last factor you might consider when investing in a new pair of hiking shoes is the local climate. Is it hot and dry? Do you frequently hike in the rain? Do you love winter hiking?

The climate you hike in will tell you a lot about the footwear you should wear.

If you frequently hike in the rain or snow, selecting a Gore-tex hiking shoe will be advantageous. However, if you primarily hike and dry weather, waterproofing may not be necessary. You may be better off with a shoe that breathes well and ventilates your feet.

Trying on Adidas Hiking Shoes  

Trying on hiking shoes can be an involved process. Here are some tips to help you find the pair that fit your feet the best.

  • Order multiple pairs. When you do your shopping online, it can be tricky to know your size, especially if you are trying a new model from Adidas. That’s why we recommend buying multiple pairs in different sizes to see which fits best.
  • Try shoes on towards the end of the day. Over the course of the day, it’s normal for our feet to swell. So for the most accurate fit, try your shoes on after they have had time to swell.
  • Wear them around the house. Getting a feel for new shoes and letting your feet warm up to the shoe can tell you a lot about how it will fit. That’s why we recommend wearing new Adidas hiking shoes around the house.
  • Try your shoes with socks. Using the style of sock, you plan to wear with the shoe will tell you a lot about how it will fit. For the most accurate experience, try the shoe with whichever socks you intend to use. 
  • If you fall between sizes, go with the larger pair. A slightly larger shoe will accommodate foot swell. Also, compared to a shoe that is too small, it’s an easier issue to fix with slightly thicker socks or a different insole.

adidas-terrex-ax-4-fit.JPG

About Adidas Terrex

Adidas got involved in hiking and trekking footwear in the 1970s. At the time, Adidas was already a high-performance gear company. However, Adidas’ founder, Adi Dassler, wanted to develop something new for Adidas. In particular, Dassler wanted to create adventure-oriented footwear.

In the late 1970s, a subsidiary of Adidas, Adidas Outdoor, started gaining traction. This was made possible by supporting iconic mountaineer Reinhold Messner with lightweight and durable shoes for his climbing adventures. Messner would later become one of the first to summit Mount Everest without supplemental oxygen.

In 2009, Adidas produced its first full line of outdoor garments and footwear. As you can imagine, it was a massive hit.

Later, in 2011, Adidas officially introduced Terrex, a collection of outdoor performance gear and footwear focused on blending form, function, and sustainability.

Now, the Terrex lineup of footwear is an industry icon. Terrex is specifically designed for hiking and trail running. Terrex shoes come with various footwear innovations that separate them from Adidas’ other shoe lineups. Terrex shoes are an excellent choice for offroad use, whether it be a casual and sunny day hike or an endurance effort in wet and cold conditions.

Adidas Terrex Trailmaker Heel tab

Adidas’ Commitment to Sustainability

Rethinking their materials

Adidas is committed to a future that prioritises sustainable shoe manufacturing. For Adidas, innovation is the solution to a more sustainable footwear industry.

Adidas is rethinking the standard materials they use. They are expanding their portfolio of materials and fabrics to include recycled and natural materials. As well as exploring new innovative and sustainable materials.

By 2024, Adidas will replace virgin polyester with recycled polyester wherever possible. By 2025, 9 out of 10 footwear articles will contain a sustainable material.

Redesigning their process

Adidas is also interested in designing its manufacturing processes. In particular, they are attempting to remove excess waste from the process. Cutting down on waste is the inspiration behind their Made to be Remade campaign.

Instead of throwing away your Adidas hiking shoes after you’ve thrashed them on 1,000s of miles of trail, you can return them to Adidas. Adidas will clean the shoes, shred them, melt them down, and remake the materials into something new. 

Reducing their footprint 

Adidas wants to reduce the size of its carbon footprint. To do so, they methodically measure carbon emissions produced by the shoe manufacturing process. The results of their measurements taken from the complete life cycle of the products are then provided to the consumer in full transparency.

To show their commitment to reducing their carbon footprint Adidas, in collaboration with Allbirds, created the first pair of performance running shoes with less than 3kg of CO2 emissions.

Adidas Terrex Trailmaker lab test

Frequently Asked Questions

Are all Adidas Terrex hiking shoes waterproof? 

Several models of Adidas Terrex hiking shoes are waterproof. For example, the Swift R3 comes equipped with a Gore-tex membrane on the interior of the shoe.

Other models are water-repellent. This means that they are designed to repel small amounts of moisture, like light rainfall. However, they should not be submerged.

Are Adidas Terrex hiking shoes good for running? 

Terrex hiking shoes can be used for light trail running. However, they truly shine as dedicated hiking shoes. For more focused trail running, you may be better off with a pair of Adidas trail running shoes.

Adidas Terrex running shoes are designed to balance support, traction, and durability in off-road contexts. The Terrex shoes that are designed specifically for trail running are the Terrex Agravic, Terrex Soulstride, Terrex Speed, and Terrex Two. 

Author
Paul Ronto
Paul Ronto
Over the past 20 years, Paul has climbed, hiked, and run 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.