The Best Hiking and Mountaineering Boots
As mountaineers; rock climbing, hiking, and mountain climbing are important to you and enjoying it is just as important.
That’s why our team of experts have come up with a list of top 10 hiking boots for 2018, helping you when preparing for a backpacking trip.
In a hurry? Check our top 5 here:
To enjoy the sport of mountaineering/hiking and to feel safe while at it, you need the best mountaineering boots you can get. They come in different styles, sizes, fits, crampon compatibility and provide different levels of warmth.
To help you make that decision easier, our experts have compiled a list of Top 10 Best Hiking Boots for 2018 so you can have a look at the best and choose the one which suits your foot and style.
It is not going to be an easy decision. Our top 10 list takes a look at the best hiking boots available, from the practical perspective to the comfort level.
And this list will help you choose the hiking boot which suits you the most. I recommend you read our buying guide below before making a purchase.
1. La Sportiva Batura 2.0 GTX
Taking hiking to a whole new level, the La Sportiva Batura 2.0 GTX is a low profile and lightweight boot for winter mountaineering and ice hiking.
It features innovative and cutting edge two layer Goretex technology that makes it breathable and warmer if you’ll be doing technical routes.
It comes in as one of the lightest super gaiter style boots even weighing lighter than some single boots. In order to create the ideal environment for your feet in cold conditions, the outer and inner gaiters have Goretex that work to keep your feet dry.
It also has a waterproof zipper that extends all the way to the top of its very high cuff making sure that you’re dry even when hiking through a frozen creek.
It has a low profile design that makes it easy for you to climb easily with or without crampons.
The Batura has quite a rigid performance and better insulation system when edging rock thanks to the stiff honeycomb carbon insole that creates an air chamber and supports the foot.
This mountaineering boot has an almost unquestionable durability. It has a burly zipper coveted protected with Velcro storm flap.
The Velcro flap protects the coils from unwanted crampon snags but essentially increases the boots resistance to weather elements.
* It is the lightest super-gaiter boot on the market
* Its ankle is designed with fabric that allows for flexibility when climbing without crampons
* It is warm, waterproof and easy to lace
* It features metal lace loops and durable leather
* It is supportive
* It is a bit pricey
2. Zamberlan 4000 Eiger GTX RR
Like all Zamberlan mountaineering boots, the Zamberlan 4000 Eiger GTX RR is a great choice no matter where you’re using it.
If you desire comfort and warmth for your feet with a durable hiking boot for any mountain/ice expedition, then the Eiger GTX RR should be your pick.
The Zamberlan 4000 offers a hard-wearing performance and warmth that’s needed for successful mountaineering in high alpine areas.
It has an outer gaiter, developed with Microfiber and a stretch Cordura overlayed with a polyester material and finally reinforced with a rubber rand.
All of this makes for a boot that’s highly resistant to ice and rock for full boot height. It also features a special waterproof zipper and a breathable & waterproof Goretex membrane that ensures an almost perfect waterproof protection.
The thermo footbed and heat reflective aluminum layer used in the Zamberlan 4000 ensures warmth and comfort.
Another hallmark of this boot is its extra PE layer that adds cushioning and more comfort. It has a Vibram Teton sole that gives it solid grip whenever the crampons are off.
This Italian made boot is compatible with step-in crampons thanks to the Zamberlan pro-Crampon System and the addition of the heel welts and thermoplastic toe.
It comes in black and orange colors and its fiberglass shank provides rigidity and lightweight support.
* Perfect for alpine exhibitions
* It features Goretex breathable and waterproof lining
* It’s outer gaiter also has a waterproof zipper closure
* The Eiger GTX RR is durable, comfortable and warm
* It is compatible with step-in crampons
* It has thermoplastic toe and heel welts
* Tight fitting isn’t perfect
3. Scarpa Charmoz OD
The Scarpa Charmoz OD is an essentially tough, durable and lightweight boot for all of your advanced outdoor use. It is perfect for modern alpinism and general mountaineering even if you’re trekking with a pack in the greater ranges.
It features MicroTech and L-Tech synthetic leather that has a breathable and waterproof Outdry membrane.
The Outdry membrane is an Italian technology that ensures the leather is ultra-breathable, durable and waterproof; meaning it is weatherproof all round.
The boots are tough, lightweight and will cope with extreme conditions. It is developed on the modern and popular NAG technology that means it’ll fit and support your feet wherever it is supposed to. Which makes it feel bespoke and perfect for different people with different foot volumes and shapes.
This boot is very much mountaineering focused and crampon compatible. Whether you’re on a steep terrain or you’re doing multi-day treks in the mountains, these boots are very comfortable.
The Scarpa Charmoz OD has become quite popular among professional guides and that’s because they are truly versatile.
It comes with an autofit collar, a memory foam and a revised lacing system that gives you maximum comfort. Even after all these, the Scarpa Charmoz OD is crampon rated B2 and it uses a Pentax Precision II XT sole.
* It has a B2 crampon rating
* Uses an Outdry membrane for ultra breathability
* The insole is Pro-Fibre
* Low-profile lacing
* Lightweight, comfortable and durable
* Compatibility with crampons isn’t automatic
* Will require some time to break in
4. La Sportiva Makalu Mountaineering Boot
La Sportiva has done so much with this pair of Makalu Mountaineering Boots.
It is the perfect choice if you’re serious about general mountaineering. The La Sportiva Makalu looks less flashy, sharp and maybe old school but it comes out as classy. You can get these in ‘Extreme Yellow’, they look quite cool but maybe a bit ‘show offy’.
It is made with high-quality Idro-Perwanger water repellant leather and that’s just one of a few reasons why it’s one of the best mountaineering boots.
The water repellant leather still ensures breathability. This boot is a top class blend of durability, support, and comfort.
The MtnFlex insoles contribute to the comfort this pair of boots can offer; meaning they can be worn for days on end without any issues.
It features the Vibram rubber rand that helps protect your toe and it is quite easy to lace up.
Despite that, they’re easy to lace up, these full steel shank boots work impressively well with crampons.
The Makalu Mountaineering Boots have a honeycomb heel grid, which flexes with impact providing you the ultimate comfort. It is designed with a lining that helps transport moisture away from your skin to ensure you’re comfortable dry and cool.
Apart from the D-rings being able to allow for exact and easy tensioning of bootlace, you’ll be amazed at how they fit like a glove on your legs.
* It offers good support and can be used straight out of the box
* It has an adjustable lacing system
* Has auto crampon compatibility
* Its weight could be an issue
* Will get a bit warm at sunny periods
5. Arc’teryx Acrux AR Mountaineering Boot
The Acrux AR is the result of a journey to create the most durable, lowest volume weatherproof, best fitting and yet lightest double boot ever made. It is designed exclusively for mountaineering, mixed climbing, and ice.
Its excellent design is a blend of the quick drying prowess, protection, and insulation of a double boot and the low volume and lightweight of a single boot. The Acrux AR is able to meet all your performance demands due to all the wide range of innovative materials and components leveraged for its production.
All the use specific needs of the professional mountain guides and climbers have been put into consideration when designing this boot. It uses the Arc’teryx Adaptive fit technology, which creates an instant custom, fit without any pressure by employing a removable bootie that uses minimal seams and stretch textiles.
It offers the highest level of laminated watertight construction and breathability in its category. Its Goretex membrane churns out top-notch waterproof benefit and climate control. The Acrux AR has perforated PE foams that dry quickly and hence improve comfort.
It also features a rubberized sole, which makes it possible to use the boot as a camp shoe and a specially designed Vibram AR outsole offering sure-footedness and support. The Vibram Mont rubber compound maintains the durability and performance of the Acrux AR in sub-zero conditions.
* It has a built-in insulated gaiter
* It comes with a removable and machine washable liner
* It is a low profile and light mountaineering boot
* Might take a while to break in
* It is a bit pricey
* Fitting the inner bootie into the boot could be time-consuming
6. Scarpa Koflach Arctis Expe Boot Y-Technology
The Scarpa Koflach Arctis Expe Boot Y-Technology is definitely one of the best mountaineering boots you will find on the market. With this boot, you can go as high as you want to go because this boot is well designed to help you overcome high altitudes.
The Pebax plastic featured on the upper part is built to stay tough and durable no matter how cold it might get in high altitudes. It offers a blend of rigid plastic support and a secure crampon attachment boasting a supple plastic that ensures natural walking comfort and ease of lacing. It comes with a heat reflective insole that allows maximum warmth.
The Vario cuff ensures fore-aft flex and natural lateral giving you the best possible range of movement. Meaning you’re worry free even when you’re pointing 40°C ice. The Y-Technology used by Koflach in these boots also help in increasing the ease of lacing.
The boot features a removable Arctics Expe HA liner that helps to keep your feet warm and the rubber-band feature on the outside reduces abrasion and wear. When the ground gets slick, the Vibram Dalaugiri soles are sure to grip well.
Finally, one major hallmark of this boot is that it allows you use any type of crampons available, auto or semi-automatic.
* Ideal for high altitude climbing
* It features the Y-Technology that makes for natural walking comfort and ease of lacing
* It is a lightweight mountaineering boot
* It allows an unequaled tightening with its steel rollers
* It might cause some blisters when they’re first worn
7. Scarpa Men’s Phantom 8000 High Altitude Climbing Boot
The Scarpa men’s Phantom 8000 High Altitude Climbing Boot might be tagged as one for men but it is still one of the best mountaineering boots. The Phantom 8000 mountaineering boot is currently one of the few boots made for high altitude climbing and it performs well for semi-professional mountaineers even in extreme weather conditions.
It is designed with the latest technology that aims to keep your feet dry and supported whenever it is worn. It is compatible with both automatic and semi-automatic crampons, which means flexibility of use. It comes standard with custom moldable thermo liners that help to keep your feet warm making your climbing of very cold mountains convenient.
This boot is built to endure the craziest of adventures. It has an insulating foam stuffed in-between layers of the heat reflective aluminum foam in the upper area that provides optimal protection against the elements. It has features such as waterproof Tizip, speed lacing and a thermo liner that provides high performance and worry free use.
It is capable of supporting a performance demanding climb on demanding terrain because it is lightweight and very warm. The advanced midsole system ensures improved sensitivity and high-level shock absorption.
* It is designed for high altitude climbing
* It protects against water, rain, bushes, thorns rocks and much more
* It is made with a rugged and durable textile material
* It is one of the lightest mountaineering boots on the market
* It is warm, flexible and comfortable
* It has improved sensitivity and features the necessary protective features
* It is quite expensive
8. Salewa Men’s Alp Trainer Mid GTX Hiking
As one of the bestselling boots, the Salewa Men’s Alp Trainer Mid GTX Hiking boot is also one of the best climbing boots you’ll find. In matters of style and class, this mountaineering boot does not disappoint.
Made with extremely lightweight leather that ensures comfortable long hikes, this durable this boot is sure to endure a variety of terrains. This boot has an almost perfect grip on different types of surfaces and has a sole that has an impressive cushioning effect and ankle support.
The Alp Trainer Mid GTX Hiking boots are flexible, they look good and come at a good price when compared with shoes in its category. It comes with a footbed and an extended technical lacing towards the edge of the boot that allows suitable comfort, adjustment and fit.
It features a steel wire for additional heel containment. This steel core allows the boot to have a better range of freedom and it combines support, flexibility and fit. The Alp Trainer Mid GTX Hiking boot is innovatively built with the PUR heel shock absorber and EVA, which efficient, light, durable, and provide a good cushion.
* It’s a wonderful choice for trail adventures
* It offers extended lacing towards the front of the boot for extra fit
* It has Goretex breathable waterproof membranes that keep you dry comfortable and protected
* Vibram sticky rubber soles offers good traction
* Its EVA midsole cushion feet and offers gentle support and cushion
* It might get a little too warm in intense sunshine
9. Salewa Men’s MS Condor EVO GTX M Mountaineering Boot
The Condor EVO GTX mountaineering boot is for all seasons. It is made with a very durable Perwanger suede leather and it is packed with advanced features. In designing this boot, Salewa focused on developing a boot that’ll provide extreme durability, stability and comfort.
It features a specialized lacing system known as the 3D System EVO that makes individual adjustments on the 3 distinct areas of the boot possible. These can be adjusted to get the best possible fit and performance. It has a unique color scheme for the style conscious and a hybrid crampon compatibility.
The Condor Evo GTX is made with a breathable Goretex performance comfort lining that enhances climate comfort in different weather conditions. It’s designed to be compatible with semi-automatic crampons. There’s a very effective edging stability provided by the self-cleaning Vibram Mulaz outsole.
The grip on rock and snow is optimal with the Condor EVO GTX Boot. It has the patented SALEWA technologies ensuring you have the Alpine Fit 100% no blister assurance. Its 3D lacing system also provides the perfect fit for your foot and the 3F System ensures firm heel and ankle support.
This mountaineering boot is light, indestructible and it has a high cuff meant for alpine spring climbing or extended treks through mixed conditions.
* It is essentially durable and comfortable
* It has optimal traction on rocks and ice
* Made with breathable Goretex leather
* It’s ready for use straight out of the box
* Some people might consider the warmth not enough
10. La Sportiva Spantik
The La Sportiva Spantik is a very warm, light and compact mountaineering boot. It is ideal for climbing peaks of up to 6000 meters or high cold mountaineering conditions. This boot is double insulated, it is step-in crampon compatible and it offers awesome technical climbing capabilities.
It is insulated both in the inner and outer shell; meaning it is currently and arguably the boot with the highest level of warmth. This boot performs well for cold weather mountaineering even in serious mountain ranges like the Denali. The Spantik is most likely the lightest most technical double boots on the market and it has a midsole that’s made from carbon fiber that ensures it is lightweight.
The inner boot of the Spantik can be removed and properly dried in a sleeping bag overnight so no matter how cold your location is, your mountaineering boot can be kept dry always. It is a durable and comfortable boot and it has a very efficient lacing system that makes it fit well to your leg.
The outer part of this boot is waterproof and it has a lacing design that functions without worries. If you’ll be going on mountain climbing as high as about 6000 meters on a multi-day trip in any cold climate, then the La Sportiva Spantik is the ideal choice.
* It is warm enough for mountaineering under 8000 meters
* It is very supportive
* It’s designed to allow climbing and walking like a very light boot
* It is easy to lace
* It has a cuff that bites after long term use
Best Mountaineering Boots Buying Guide
Let’s take a look at a few salient things to consider when purchasing a mountaineering boot.
Like every other boot type, they come in varying sizes and shapes. There’s no more we can say then you need to look for boots that fit you best. This is because your feet are unique to you. Getting the best fit will require due diligence because it might require a bit of research time. Nevertheless, it’s always worth it in the end.
* Crampon Compatibility:
The type of crampons you own or want to buy is also important in deciding which boots you should buy.
Weight is important when it comes to outdoor climbing; the lesser the weight, the better. Most mountaineering boots are heavy but you should look out of relatively lighter ones; meaning you’re looking out for boots weighing about 2 lbs per foot (4 pounds).
Another important factor to consider is the warmth of the boot as one of the things you want to avoid at heights is cold toes. Meaning you need to get a boot that will be warm enough even in extreme weather conditions (to help blog flow).
In no particular order, here’s a list of the best mountaineering boots on the market.
Conclusion and Recommendation
If mountain climbing is either your hobby or you climb professionally, then you’ve
chosen something great to do from time to time. The important thing is, mountaineering requires very specific apparel and gear. Mountaineering boots are designed basically for its purpose which is to climb mountains. So we wouldn’t recommend lightweight trail runners for the mountains, we’ll go into these on another article shortly.
Materials used are usually more durable and tougher than regular shoes. In this article, you’ve seen a list of the 10 best mountaineering boots currently on the market and we’ll go a step further by recommending our top pick.
Recommended Mountaineering Boot
The La Sportiva Batura 2.0 GTX mountaineering boot is definitely ahead of any other super-gaiter that’s on the market currently. This total package offers maximum weather protection and solid climbing capabilities.
The Batura 2.0 GTX makes use of two layers of Gore-Tex that ensures breathability and a very thin honeycomb carbon insole that keeps you close to what you’re climbing. Despite the fact that it is lightweight, it doesn’t sacrifice the warmth needed for mountaineering in very cold regions.
Finally and above anything else, when deciding on which mountaineering boot for you, your comfort should come first. The mountaineering boots that you choose must feel good on your feet and fit as best as it can. You don’t want to make any compromise that’ll cost you much more out there.
With this guide on the 10 best hiking boots, you should be ready and equipped with the knowledge needed to get value for your money.