The terrain and conditions you face on a hike can vary considerably. So you should invest in hiking boots that’ll work best for where you’re heading. If you like a strenuous hike that hits high alpine areas with plenty of loose rock and rough conditions, a stiffer, burlier boot is going to serve you the best.
Heading into a temperate rain forest like the towering forests of the Northwest? You’ll definitely need boots with a waterproof liner to keep leaks at bay and grippy lugs for navigating slippery slopes. Just planning on doing some hiking around a local state park where there’s not much extreme terrain to travel over besides gnarled roots? A light and versatile boot will fit the trail.
To find your perfect hiking boot for summer/fall 2018, we tested a variety of options in varying conditions. We picked the top five that will make your experience in the outdoors a satisfying and safe adventure, no matter the terrain or weather.