49 users: 4.1 / 5
Weight: Men 320g
Use: Day Hiking
Cut: Low cut
Features: Lightweight / Breathable / Orthotic friendly

Verdict from 8 hours of research from the internet

6 reasons to buy

  • Out of a handful of reviews available for the Merrell Forestbound shoes, the majority finds them to be incredibly comfortable.
  • It makes a great casual walking shoe, according to a few customers.
  • Some also give it high ratings for being supportive despite its low-cut style.
  • Most of the verified buyers are also impressed by its top-notch quality.
  • It's a great hiking shoe for a good price, says one user.
  • Another reviewer gives it top marks for stability.

1 reasons not to buy

  • Two users find the Forestbound shoes a bit narrow.

Bottom line

Always ready for a fun and challenging trip to the forest, this pack-ready hiker by Merrell is touted for its quality comfort. Aside from long day hikes, it also fits the bill for casual walking. Thanks to its clean-cut design.

The Forestbound also gets high marks for being supportive and stable. Plus, it has a durable construction that people would expect from Merrell. Despite some concerns over its narrow fit, this hiker is a great shoe overall, and as what customers suggest - a great deal for its price. 

Tip: see the best hiking shoes.

User reviews:

SportsShoes, REI and 17 other shops don't have user reviews

-This shoe has a leather upper coated with TPU for extra strength and durability. The rubber toe cap and rand also offer additional protection against sharp hazards on the trail.

-With a lug depth of 5mm, the Forestbound provides reliable traction on mud, loose dirt, rocks, and soft grass. Meanwhile, it has a lightweight EVA midsole for comfort and support, and a molded nylon arch shank for stability.

The Merrell Forestbound men and women's hiking shoes are low-cut models. Thus, they provide more freedom of movement yet less support for the ankles. Since the uppers are made of leather, they conform to the feet after some time of use. The collar and tongue are also padded for a comfortable fit. Lastly, this shoe has a lace-up closure for a secure fit.

For the outsole, this shoe has the M Select GRIP with deep lugging to bite into mud, dirt, and grass. The diamond-shaped lugs on the forefoot and heel areas are designed to enhance grip and traction on uneven ground and loose dirt while the grooves along the sides help disperse water easily so the wearer doesn't slip. 

The midsole of the Forestbound is made of EVA foam. It's cushiony, lightweight, and flexible which is important to maintain one's stability on the trail. For added comfort and support, this hiking shoe also comes with the Kinetic Base insole. This insole is removable so people who prefer to use a different one or need custom orthotics can still use the shoe.

As what is expected from a leather shoe, the Merrell Forestbound has a durable upper that offers a good level of protection against abrasion and wearing. While it isn't as durable as genuine leather, PU leather offers good resistance against the elements. The shoe interior is lined with a breathable mesh lining so your feet don't get toasty even if you're wearing a leather shoe. This makes the Forestbound great for hiking activities in the summer. 

The Forestbound also features a die-cut rubber rand and toe cap for added protection against the elements. The bellows tongue helps keep the debris out and the webbing lacing system ensures a snug fit each time. There's also a pull loop at the back for easy wearing or taking off.

-The Merrell Forestbound Waterproof version is also available.


Size and fit

True to size based on 29 user votes
Small (0%)
True to size (83%)
Large (17%)
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How Forestbound compares

This shoe: 75
All shoes average: 86
60 99
This shoe: £100
All shoes average: £130
£50 £240
This shoe: 320g
All shoes average: 394g
185g 660g
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.