The fundamental set of differences between the anatomy of male and female feet is the key trigger behind the concept of hiking boots for women. Ever found yourself staring at vast arrays of sports shoes at a store, wondering whether they will suit your feminine feet? Well, contrary to popular belief, a woman’s feet is not just a smaller version of a man’s feet. Instead, there are considerable differences in the heel width, arch and ankle size as well. Boot manufacturers have made use of these differences to create gender-specific hiking boots that offer dependable performance on track without weighing you down.
Top Women’s Hiking Boots That Provide Comfort in Tough Environments
Hiking shoes or boots designed for women typically encompass a higher arch support, and are narrower at the heel area. Plus, they feature a slightly curved design that wraps around the natural bends of a woman’s feet and offers a precise fit. Furthermore, these boots have harder rubber soles with wider-spaced lugs to ensure durable use on rugged terrain, and a comfortable experience during prolonged hikes.
It’s also a good idea to opt for boots that offer more in terms of customization and insole support. The ankle shaft height matters too, as shanks that run the full length of the footbed provide greater stiffness for covering rocky, uneven terrain. Waterproofing is of course, a desirable feature for traveling across shallow waterbeds and mud.
In the following section below, we have listed the 10 best hiking boots for women in 2018 that match your needs for comfort and support, while helping you manage trail conditions with remarkable stability and ease.
1. Merrell Women’s Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
You know your hiking needs are properly met when you opt for Merrell’s Moab boots. Designed to offer a snug fit and a cozy feel, these are fuss-free, functional hiking boots that perform exceptionally well both on and off-trails. They feature a rugged, aesthetic design and include a tough, perforated covering that ensures an airy, dry feel irrespective of the weather outside.
- One of the most prominent advantages of these boots is that they sport an ergonomic structure that wraps around the contours of your feet naturally and firmly.
- The suede uppers make for a durable construction and the breathable mesh lining enables adequate airflow to keep your feet dry and comfortable during day hikes in the sun.
- The firm OrthoLite footbed provides excellent traction for walking along tricky terrains strewn with obstacles.
- These boots are lightweight and don’t drag you down.
- There is also a gusseted tongue that does a great job of flicking out dirt and debris and keeping your feet safe within.
- Some users believe that the lower cut of the boot leads to less support around the ankle and heels, but this problem can be solved by taking a break in between hiking sessions and allowing sufficient period of time to recover.
A combination of supportive components and aesthetic design makes these Merrells’ a worthy addition to your footwear collection. The suede and mesh upper gives you the maximum in terms of breathability, while the OrthoLite footbed secures your feet from feeling the impact of hard objects often encountered on trails.
2. Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot
Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge is the perfect example of a hardened hiking boot that offers the best of two worlds: quality and low cost. Despite being inexpensive, this leather-synthetic hybrid is well-built and features a waterproof construction that secures you from the ravages of unpredictable weather.
- The interior of the boot consists of a breathable mesh to allow sufficient airflow and escape of sweat vapor.
- The Omni-Grip tread enables you to handle rugged and tricky trails with confidence.
- In terms of standing comfort and prolonged hiking, the boot doesn’t disappoint. It’s light to walk in, and offers a snug fit, in order to keep hot spots, blisters and soreness at bay.
- The foot offers top-notch protection with a solid front, a sturdy toe bumper, as well as a midsole constructed from molded ethylene foam. This negates the possibility of arch pain when hiking for long hours in this boot.
- A combination of rubber and leather is a potent protection against water destruction. As a result, these hiking boots are totally weather-proof and perfect for walking on snow and rain.
- The laces are a bit too short, making the process of lacing up a little inconvenient.
Whether you are looking to go for a day hike in the sun or go for a weekend backpacking in the snow, the Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge won’t disappoint. It encompasses durable construction with practical features and high-quality components to give you the experience of a high-end, standard hiking boot.
3. KEEN Women’s Durand Mid WP Hiking Boot
With a compelling combo of durability, ankle support and flexible construction, the KEEN Women’s Durand boots occupy the top-slot of hiker’s boots. They are excellent for wet weather hiking and snowshoeing, as well as some low-key backpacking in areas that are subjected to a cool, temperate climate.
- The boot is well-made and durable enough to withstand the torments of Mother Nature. Apart from slight fraying, it maintains its true form and performs just as well even after a year of regular use.
- With a polyurethane midsole and a solid rubber toe cap, the boot is built to render dependable protection from stones, rocks and roots.
- There is a thick underfoot to secure your feet from coming in contact with stones and thorns on longer hikes. The airy cushioning around the ankle and heel is very comfortable as well.
- The waterproof covering is right in place with this boot. You can wear these boots in spring, fall and rain hikes and still not get your feet soggy and muddy.
- One of the few let downs of the boot is that it is a bit too wide around the heel, toes and foot. As such, hikers with narrow heels may experience a certain degree of heel slippage.
- While the boot does have a solid waterproof covering, it falls short in breathability. When temperatures soar, it can get pretty warm inside.
The KEEN Women’s Durand is an intriguing choice for the mild weekend backpacker/hiker that isn’t lugging heavy loads and doesn’t plan on covering too many off-trail peaks and scrambles. With a light, airy feel and a solid waterproof build, this is a robust boot that lasts long, and definitely comes across as an impressive upgrade in terms of ankle stability and underfoot support.
4. Salomon Women’s Quest 4D 2 GTX Hiking Boot
Stable enough to tackle harsh terrain and lithe enough for runners, the Salomon Women’s Quest 4D II GTX embodies the best characteristics of hiking boots of women. They are midweight boots that offer excellent traction, whether off trail or on. Besides providing top-notch comfort during long day hikes, they provide the level of ankle support and stability that hikers and backpackers expect from a boot of this quality. Fast packing is also one of their attributes. And since they are lightweight, you can easily cover long distances easily without feeling too much of fatigue.
- The boot features a Contagrip sole that offers adequate flexibility to support footstrike and stability for treading on bumpy terrains dotted with obstacles.
- It comes with an advanced 4D Chassis that enhances the torsional stability and food support, allowing you to maintain an upright posture and get a better grip over the trail.
- The uppers are designed with quality materials for improved support and comfort. The foam padded ankle collar gives you the peace of mind that your feet are safe even when you roll down those steep roads.
- As far as water resistance is concerned, the Quest 4D doesn’t disappoint. Thanks to its external leather construction, gusseted tongue and tough nylon lining, it performs exceptionally well in wet conditions.
- The lacing system is nothing short of impressive. Once you fasten it up in the morning, you won’t have to worry about it all day.
- While waterproof hiking boots generally seem to be warmer during hot days, this boot has been designed to ensure optimal breathability all kinds of weather. It features nylon mesh panels, which ensures your feet stays dry and odor-free irrespective of the conditions outside.
- This boot is too heavy-duty and burly for people who prefer hiking for short distances.
- The heel design is slightly raised. Some users may find it difficult to get accustomed to the slightly raised heel design but thanks to the nice and roomy forefoot area, it won’t be a big problem.
Overall, if you are a casual hiker looking for a rugged, lightweight option for backpacking and thru-hiking in sloppy terrain or difficult trails, then you should definitely go for its boot. It is built to offer all-round performance and retains its form and quality even when the weather goes awry.
5. Danner Women’s Mountain 600 4.5″ Hiking Boot
Danner Women’s Mountain 600 is a multi-purpose and robust hiking boot designed to help you conquer wet and bumpy terrain like a pro. Constructed with high-quality waterproof suede, the boot allows for a nice and airy feel within while maintaining a robust exterior that protects your feet from the effects of abrasion and weather. The snazzy, minimalistic design ensures you don’t hesitate before strapping them on for a trip to the local market or even the bar without drawing stares of disapproval from others.
- The clever midsole construction makes for an optimal combination of comfort, stability and dependable traction while you are out fighting with the elements.
- The unique Danner Dry liner staves off the entry of pesky dust partices and debris, while the waterproof suede upper with moisture-wicking qualites ensures a breezy feel.
- The boot also features a specialized Vibram SPE midsole that offers hikers remarkably support sans all the clunkiness prevalent in similar supportive boots.
- The boot is fitted with a detachable OrthoLite insole that provides ample to your underfoot, while the heel frame lends steady, lightweight support for acing hot, long treks.
- The tongue of the boots is not waterproof. So if you encounter erratic weather along your adventure, your feet may end up getting soaked. The good news is that these boots dry out fast.
It doesn’t matter what your choice of terrain is, because the Danny Women’s Mountain 600 is suitable for hiking even on the most trickiest of terrains in the most treacherous of weather conditions. And the fact that it incorporates a modish look makes it a nice boot for people who need some motivation to venture outdoors on a lazy Sunday.
6. Ahnu Women’s Montara WP Boot
Comfortable right out of the box, the Ahnu Women’s Montara boot is a stylish, lightweight footwear choice for casual hiking in favorable weather. It is designed to keep your feet airy and odor-free till the end of the day and are so cozy and snug that you can even sleep on them at night! It offers brilliant arch support and balances the pressure you impose on your heel when lugging around with a heavy backpack.
- This boot sports a stylish design and offers a concise, athletic foot that make it a good substitute for your daily sneakers. You can use it for casual day hikes, or even strap it on for strolling downtown.
- The thick Vibram soles offer reliable traction for walking on bumpy terrains and protect your feet from feeling the impact of stones underneath.
- This is a wider boot with a flexible midsole and a higher volume fit. As a result, it’s a good option for hikers with a heavier built and wider feet.
- The high and tight ankle lacing negates the flimsy, loose feeling of wider boots and gives you confidence to step in all kinds of terrain.
- Some users are dissatisfied with the durability of Ahnu Women’s Montara. Apparently, these boots begin to show signs of wear and tear after hiking for 50 miles at a stretch.
Despite having durability issues and questionable waterproofing, the Ahnu Montaras manage to strike an excellent balance between hard-core hiking boots and the more casual hiking shoes. They are suitable for people with narrow feet and have all the features to become your go- To-choice for short day hikes along dry trails.
7. Timberland Women’s White Ledge Hiking Boot
With a tough, seam-sealed leather construction and a 100% waterproof covering, the Timberland White Ledge boots are especially designed to allow the natural motions of your foot. They are flexible, durable and offer a snug fit. While walking in rain and snow is their USP, they are suitable for any terrain. Their solid outsoles offer excellent traction and tight grip. Plus, they integrate lugs at strategic positions to minimize the pressure of walking on bumpy roads.
- The boot upper, tongue and and the area around the ankles are all made of a leather and polyester mix. As a result, the entire covering is soft, breathable and perforated to allow sufficient airflow and keep your feet dry and comfy.
- These hiking boots offer the perfect fit for stepping confidently on tricky terrain. You can even wear them with thick socks. They are wide enough and come fitted with lace toppings, so you can fasten them as tight as you want.
- The moisture-flicking tongue is soft so you won’t feel any lace pressure on your foot. And the speed hook lacing is extremely durable and doesn’t loosen up or tear even with rough use.
- The mid-soles are removable and made of dual-density EVA that make for a bubbly comfort. The waterproof textile lining keeps the weather out and ensures a comfortable experience.
- These boots are not totally comfortable of the box and require some time to break in.
Timberland Women’s White Ledge boots are replete with a novel set of features that is sure to surpass your expectations and reward you with years of reliable use. They are designed to endure all types of weather and function well on those times when most of the entry-level hiking boots fail.
8. Vasque Women’s Breeze 2.0 Gore-Tex Hiking Boot
An incredibly agile mid-weight hiking boot, the Vasque Breeze is one of the most stable and weather-proof trekking boots in the market. Its features a high cuff for offering better foot control and stability for hiking on steep trails with loose rocks. It is fitted with thermoplastic urethane plate to give you the rigidity for conquering exhaustive, long day hikes. The narrow heel box gives security to your instep, making sure you don’t slip on sloppy surfaces. With a higher arch and narrower heel cup, these boots are specifically designed to cater to the typical form and needs of a woman’s feet.
- The Gore-Tex membrane holds up well against sloshed and muddy roads. The boots are quick to dry and prevent water from entering and wetting the feet.
- The burly leather upper and mesh panels make for a durable construction that provides extended usage. The substantial toe bumpers and rubber heel enhance protection and minimize the chances of tripping on obstacles.
- The supportive and nubby outsole helps you gain grip on slick and muddy areas, and the metal lacing hooks removes the hard-work of bending every now and then to fasten up the boots firmly.
- There is a gusseted tongue fitted on the boot upper to keep out rocks, sticks and debris from entering your feet and hurting them. The large eyelet hooks simplify the lacing process.
- The boots enclose plenty of room within, and come in both wide and narrow size options to help you choose a fit you’re most comfortable with.
- The cuff may feel too high initially, but with time you will get used to it.
The Vasque Women’s Breeze is definitely one of the most versatile and impressive hiking boots out there. While it does have the feel of a burly backpacking boot due to the supportive midsole, other features like the stability plate, the tall cuff, Gore-Tex liner, and the overall responsiveness make it feel like a light fitness shoes.
9. Adidas Outdoor Women’s Terrex Swift R Mid GTX W Boot
This Adidas boot may not be on the radar of the typical outdoor person, but its impressive design and ergonomic structure all qualify it as a suitable choice of footwear for long day hikes and casual backpacking trips.
- – At under 2 pounds, these boots are quite lightweight and comfortable to walk around. They are also super easy to take on and off according to convenience.
- They sport a casual and chic design with a rugged exterior that is hardened to stay intact even in the face of abrasion.
- The rubber outsole offers substantial traction and gives you good grip for stepping over tricky terrain.
- The single-pull design fails to offer the perfect fit and increases the degree of discomfort when you are covering long miles with a backpack on.
- The speed laces may be ideal for running shoes but come across as less appealing for hiking boots.
All in all, the Terrex Swift R Mid GTX by Adidas is a stable choice of footwear that provides impressive chassis and traction for handling rocky terrains and muddy slopes with ease. Its lightweight and flexible constructions makes it suitable for longer day hikes.
10. Oboz Women’s Sawtooth Mid BDRY Hiking Boot
With the Oboz Women’s Sawtooth, you can step on puddles, climb steep terrains and even hike for hours at a stretch, without rolling your ankles or getting sore and soggy feet. This high-end hiking boot features a plush forefoot foam and fully waterproof covering to give you the confidence and security you need to tackle unpredictable hikes without any fear. In terms of durability, comfort, and fit, these boots rank high!
- The boot features a massive rubber cup for improved protection against blisters and bruises. Additionally, there is extra rubber enhancements on the heel area to offset the pressure during long hikes.
- The boots are spacious, soft and airy on the inside and require a minimal break-in period.
- The flexible yet sturdy rubber outsole enhances surface friction and negates the possibility of slippage. It includes an ergonomic design that increases grip in all directions, regardless of how wet the terrain is.
- The padded footbed is not just comfy but also fitted with a substantial arch for premium support. The structured heel cup minimizes fatigue and eases the rigors of outdoor adventures.
- The boot features a breathable and waterproof polyurethane layer, as well as firmly secured, gusseted tongue. Both of these act in concert to render complete protection from rain water and creek water.
- Temperature control is not the best with this boot, and you will probably feel the urge to take off your boots after 8 hours to let the sweat evaporate out and feel more comfortable.
- The boots are pretty heavy if you consider the weight standards set for women’s hiking boots.
If you are looking for a reasonably comfortable shoe with some boot-like characteristics for short-length hiking on moderately uneven terrain, then this might be your ticket. But if you are looking for footwear that can handle rugged trails featuring elevation gain, you may want to look elsewhere. Overall, Oboz Bridger Mid BDry is suitable for backpacking tours with light load in a cold and dry environment.