Picking the ideal pair for your outdoorsy escapades can be a real challenge more often than not. To make the hunt so much easier for you, we’ve tested 300+ hiking boots for women across multiple brands.
Do you need a tough-yet-comfy well-rounded hiker? How about a lightweight kick that propels on manicured trails? Or perhaps something that sits on the affordable end of the pricing scale? Whatever you need, we got the right boot down below.
Doesn’t offer much in terms of torsional stability
After testing hundreds of fantastic hiking boots for women (and wrestling with some), we are proud to hail the Lowa Renegade GTX Mid as the ruler of them all!
This kick can really get down and dirty whether you are prepared or not. With its aggressive rubber lugs down under, the Renegade GTX Mid made our every step slip-free, be it on steep slopes or grassland. The shoe’s Vibram outsole also wowed us on descents, thanks to its deep, deep heel brake.
Up top, the Renegade GTX Mid’s upper elevated our hiking experience with immense comfort. Virtually not requiring a break-in period, this Lowa boot offered plushness from the off. Its no-rub liner, particularly around the collar, was a real blessing for us!
If you have wobbly ankles, you can rest assured in the Renegade GTX Mid, too. We can say this because this offering held ours magnificently. It’s true—the boot has tons of ankle support going for it!
At no more than 900 g a pair (women’s hiking boots this good usually weigh more, by the way), the Renegade GTX Mid felt lighter in real life. Yes, you’ll be striding fluidly in this gem!
Exemplary in almost every way, the X Ultra 4 Mid GTX is a force of nature on soft soil and rocky terrain.
Comfort-wise, the Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid GTX exceeded our expectations. Thanks to its plush liner, our feet didn’t get any of that rubbing sensation. The boot’s snugness, particularly around the collar, was readily available on day one. Its lasting board (the part underneath the removable footbed) could be cushier, though.
In the grip department, the X Ultra 4 Mid GTX didn’t mess around, either. Its Contagrip outsole latched on to both wet and dry surfaces magnificently. There was also not an instance where we lost our footing on mud and mulchy terrain. Yes, the X Ultra 4 Mid GTX deserves A+ on the traction front!
Creek-hopping and stream-crossing in the X Ultra 4 Mid GTX translated to dry feet from start to finish. Its GTX (Gore-Tex) liner barred out practically all sorts of fluids during our wet-weather escapades. The boot also stayed moisture-free during our dunk-in test!
As for its weight, the women’s X Ultra 4 Mid GTX sits at around 370 g per kick. So, if you’re scouting for your next lightweight pair, this is it!
Do you need something truly remarkable for days-long backpacking trips? Then write down the Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX as part of your shopping list!
Categorized under premium kicks, this brawny yet gentle beast eats rocky terrain for breakfast. Our packs were heavier than usual during our tests, yet we held our ground and didn’t lose balance in the Quest 4D 3 GTX.
Equally impressive is the hiker’s Contagrip outsole. Every step felt secure on it, and the way it clung to pebbles and crumbly rocks made us instant believers. The Quest 4D 3 GTX’s dedicated heel brake also didn’t disappoint on descents. Superb!
Is the Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX watertight? It fenced out wetness left and right, so that’s a yes. Rainwater tuned into beads on its waterproof upper, leaving us with dry and fresh feet after the downpour was over.
And let’s not forget the comfort level of the Quest 4D 3 GTX. After a short break-in, the boot in question made our tootsies happy in its snug confines. We, however, want to highlight the shoe’s cushy footbed in this regard for keeping our feet centered, pampered, and supported the entire time!
If you like tired feet to be a thing of the past on your multi-day excursions, then you’d better gear up with the 996 Vioz GTX from Zamberlan!
The main attraction about the 996 Vioz GTX for us was its premium feels on the inside. Engineered with a supple lining, the footgear granted us safe passage off trails with extraordinary comfort. And while the 996 Vioz GTX has a svelte construction overall, its soft interior didn’t give us hotspots or blisters.
In the area of slip resistance, this Zamberlan hiker didn’t let us down. From dusty, rocky trails to treacherous slopes filled with wet leaves, the 996 Vioz GTX locked our feet to the ground. The aggressive design of its heel brake also afforded us tons of purchase and control on descents!
Speaking of control, movement in the 996 Vioz GTX felt natural from the start. Whether negotiating inclines or making careful foot placements sideways, the boot’s great ankle flexibility served its purpose more than we imagined initially.
So, yeah, the Zamberlan 996 Vioz GTX is pack-ready and powerful like that. We highly recommend it as a second pick, especially for those who can look past its almost-300-dollar MSRP.
After going through over 300 pairs of women’s hiking boots, we’re pleased to bring you the Adidas Terrex Free Hiker as our top pick for lightness!
Weighing no more than 350 g per boot (for insight, the men’s sits at 380-ish), the Terrex Free Hiker is freeing indeed! Moving over and past rocky obstacles in this lightweight piece was speedy and quite effortless.
Engineered with Adidas’ ever-iconic Boost midsole, the Terrex Free Hiker upped our game on uneven terrain and level paths alike. The rebound and support we got out of it were nothing short of amazing. The propelling Boost midsole of this hiking boot is definitely among its highlights!
Is the Terrex Free Hiker grippy enough on more demanding terrain? If by “demanding” you mean moderately muddy or sloped and damp, then yes. While its lugs aren’t as prominent as those in backpacking boots, they still kept our footing in check where slick surfaces were involved.
Overflowing with comfiness from the off, the Adidas Terrex Free Hiker made our first few days struggle- and pain-free. We couldn’t detect any warm spots inside its pampering interior even if we tried. And blisters? We didn’t get any!
Are you a huge fan of Salomon? Do you need a kick that weighs like a pair of sturdy sneakers? We give you the OUTline Mid GTX if you answer “yes” to both!
At around 700 g per pair, the OUTline Mid GTX will bring out the speedy Jane in you, whether you’re prepared or not! While not as sporty-looking as our top pick, this Salomon must-own didn’t pull or weigh us down during strides.
Its agility in the rain wowed us big time, too! The OUTline Mid GTX didn’t get soaked at all while we were bolting across a moderately-drenched path. Splashes clung to its waterproof upper and got shaken off as we went.
Just like the Terrex Free Hiker, the OUTline Mid GTX didn’t require a honeymoon phase. We were greeted with plushness all over on day one, and our tootsies experienced no irritation or bunching within its weather-proof confines!
And boy, is the Salomon OUTline Mid GTX sticky or what!? Its rubber lugs, while no more aggressive than those on our top pick, did a remarkable job of clawing into soft soil and mucky tracks. We probably wouldn’t use the boot on extra-muddy downhills, though.
Queenly comfort is what awaits those who’d dare don the Targhee III Waterproof Mid from KEEN.
There’s something purely magical about the Targhee III Waterproof Mid. On the outside, the boot means tough business, while on the inside, the brilliance of its comfiness stuns like the northern star! There’s just a combination of solidness and suppleness within its confines that we’d rather experience than explain!
And with the boot’s semi-stiff construction comes amazing supportiveness. Yes, the Targhee III Waterproof Mid is by no means a pushover in this area, as it successfully carried us across tricky terrain without getting our ankles injured. Our arches came out of it all pain-free, too!
Traction-wise, the KEEN Targhee III Waterproof Mid delivered in aces. Its saw-like lug design proved mighty useful on both dry land and wet terrain. We also scrambled on it, and the ground beneath us submitted with no qualms.
As grounded as it looks, the Targhee III Waterproof Mid shocked us (in a positive way) with its lightness. It’s about 400 g per kick, which is lighter than the men’s variant by approximately 100 g!
So, if royal comfort is what you’re after without skimping on brawny performance, get the Targhee III Waterproof Mid immediately!
Here’s another jaw-dropper for you comfort-wise, and it’s none other than Scarpa’s Terra GTX!
We braved our first few hours wearing the Terra GTX without prior preparations. We’re so glad we did because the boot conformed to our feet without a fight. Fresh from the Scarpa box, the boot felt plenty great! Its bountiful comfort pampered us throughout our testing, exempting us from hotspots and blisters.
Equally overwhelming was the Terra GTX’s waterproofing. Had it not for its mighty Gore-Tex liner, we would’ve gotten our feet wet, and so sustained unwanted blisters.
The shoe’s incredible impermeability does not come at the expense of breathability, though. Indeed, in warmer temperatures, the Terra GTX dealt with stuffiness like a champ. We’d even go so far as to say that this Scarpa boot is a commendable summer hiker!
But does it give sufficient grip, you might ask? We answer YES without a shadow of a doubt! Its grippy forefoot tread and clawing lugs made our traversals, loaded packs on our backs, safe and slip-free.
As a cherry on top, the premium finish of the Terra GTX’s leather upper is a real sight to behold. We just wish it’s a bit more scratch-proof, though.
Feast your budget-shoe-seeking eyes on this—the Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof. Yes, this Timberland boot retails at $115 (MSRP), and it has the fantastic performance to match its mouth-watering price tag!
Super-comfy straight from the box, the Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof delighted us with plush cushioning everywhere. From its snug collar that didn’t rub to its dreamy yet supportive footbed, the shoe pampered our feet for miles.
Underfoot, the Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof’s contoured arch gave us amazing security and support. Even with a light pack, we safely completed our journey without a hint of pain anywhere around our arches!
With the hiker’s super-humble asking price, you’d think that its waterproofing wouldn’t be up to snuff. Well, we’re happy to report that the Timberland Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof lives up to its name—it kept our tootsies fine and dry in its watertight shell in moderate rain.
And we dare not leave out the Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof’s amazing grip. We trampled on dirt tracks, mushy soil, and wet rocks, and the boot stuck on them like glue! Downhill traversals were equally impressive, thanks to the kick’s clawing heel brake.
Make your hiking shoe shopping as uncomplicated and affordable as can be by listing down the Merrell Ontario Mid. Yes, at its MSRP of $120, the Ontario Mid will make both your wallet and heart sing!
As snazzy as the Ontario Mid’s suede upper looks, the boot boasts incredible comfort on the inside. Everything within its confines was soft to the touch, and its snugness was instantly available (no break-in period required)!
Speaking of its leather upper, while not lined with a waterproof membrane, it still managed to keep light moisture at bay. In drizzly rain, the Ontario Mid kept our feet fresh and dry. That said, we wouldn’t use the boot in a heavy downpour.
At no more than 450 g per shoe, the Merrell Ontario Mid transformed the trail before us into a playground. Sure, there are less weighty pairs (see our top picks above), but this svelte belle made us move with a boost in our step nonetheless!
And if you like roominess in your footgear, the Ontario Mid is also it. That, and the kick’s mini toe bumper protected us from unexpected bumps along the way.
One knock against this mighty fine women’s hiker is its hit-or-miss arch support.
Still, you shouldn’t miss out on this affordable beauty. Get the Ontario Mid now!
Whether it's a vertical kilometre or an ultra, climbing in the Alps or exploring local mountains, Jovana uses every opportunity to trade walls and concrete for forests and trails. She logs at least 10h/week on trails, with no off-season, and 4x more on research on running and running shoes. With a background in physics and engineering management, she prefers her running spiced with data.