Waterproof hiking boots can be the difference between a hike you’ll always remember, and a hike you’ll never forget.
Hiking in the rain can be a magical experience, or it can be the worst time of your life!
Most of the time you can get away with hiking in pretty much anything. Believe me! I’ve been the guy on a 5-day Peruvian hike wearing a pair of slip-on Vans, and I’ve gotten away with it. But it only took one bad trip in the Aussie Alps, and a pair of cold, soggy feet, to make me change my ways.
When it comes to footwear, it’s better to prepare for the worst than to hope for the best. Guarantee those ten little piggies are kept nice and dry by donning a proper pair of waterproof hiking boots.
There are some great hiking shoes out there, and here at We Are Explorers we’ve tested a bunch of them. So when it comes to hiking in the rain this winter, do your feet a favour and keep them nice and snug in some of the best waterproof hiking boots out there.
Editor’s note: bear in mind that even hiking boots have a big ol’ gaping hole at the top (hint, it’s for your feet) so think about adding a pair of waterproof gaiters or hiking pants to your arsenal for extra stay-dry points. While we’re at it, consider slipping on a pair of merino socks for added breathability and to keep your foot insulated and warm when wet, in case some water finds its way through.
TEVA Arrowood 2 Mid Waterproof Boots
Fashionable and functional, these leather boots from TEVA will get you out on the trails and swimming in compliments. Just ask our explorer, Lisa, who took them for a spin up in the Scenic Rim.
She was stoked on how well they handled the trails and especially liked how lightweight they were. Check out Lisa’s full review and see for yourself.
The North Face Hedgehog Hike II GTX
The North Face is known for making top-notch gear, and these hiking boots are no exception. Made from leather, and featuring a GORE-TEX® waterproof membrane, your feet will be bone dry no matter the weather.
We had Nick test these puppies out for us and he was super impressed with their rugged body and breathable upper. These boots sure are tough, but that strength comes at a price, as they’re a wee bit heavier as a result. You’ll also want to wear them in over a few hikes before the stiff leather softens up.
Once you’ve hit that worn-in sweet spot, you’ll be walking on sunshine (muddy puddles) for a long time to come.
Keen Targhee EXP Mid Waterproof Boot
We tested these boots a few years ago when they were the new waterproof boots on the block, and, with a few updates along the way, the Keen Targhee EXP are still up there with the best of them. Best suited to rainy day hikes on formed trails, these mid-height, lightweight boots will keep you on track and bone-dry while you’re busy getting out there.
Scarpa Kailash Trek GTX
Our trusty editor, Tim, strapped on these tough-as-guts boots for a good long while and he bloody loved them. Tough, check. Comfy, check. Handsome, check.
These boots tick a lot of adventure boxes and are one heck of a package, so it’s not surprising they’re on the steeper side of the pay scale. A GORE-TEX® waterproof membrane, fast lace-up system, and suede upper are among the features you’ll be getting for your investment, and Tim reckons they’re well worth the dollarydoos.
Merrell Moab 2 Mid GORE-TEX®
Classic hiker looks and a good ol’ GORE-TEX® waterproof membrane make these mid-height boots from Merrell the ideal boots for a rainy day. Not only will your feet stay nice and dry, but you’ll stay on track thanks to the Vibram® rubber soles. Merrell claims these are the Mother-Of-All-Boots™, and who are we to argue with that.
Feature photo by @eandrewsphoto