Hiking is one activity that has a low barrier to entry. All one needs is a staunch mindset for walking difficult and uncharted paths and a pair of sturdy shoes. While both are equally important, the latter is more challenging to come by. Unlike gravel paths and concrete sidewalks, trails call for supportive and hardened footwear to combat streams, jagged rocks, mud, and dirt, i.e., hiking boots, and DSW has the best of them in hoards. The best DSW hiking boots, including brands such as Merrell, Columbia, Timberland, and more, range across preferences and budgets. While hiking boots are essential, they’re no longer burly and stiff models that weigh you down. Today, DSW’s hiking boots are lightweight, waterproof, and still offer excellent support. Some even come in non-waterproof versions!
Hiking might be a fun activity, but that doesn’t mean you forget the essentials. Besides hiking boots, this also includes small hiking daypacks, layering clothes correctly, food and beverage essentials, and so much more. But hiking boots are the most important of them all because it’s your feet that will be doing all the work. So, what are you waiting for? Here are the 13 best DSW hiking shoes, including brands such as Merrell, Columbia, and more.
Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Hiking Boot
We begin with the best DSW hiking boots, the Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Waterproof Hiking Boot. This boot, just like all other Columbia boots, features high-quality technology and materials. These Newton Ridge Plus boots combine comfort and durability while still stylish and lightweight. What’s more, the shoes feature an Omni-Grip outsole, which offers advanced traction and a high grip in a variety of rough terrains. So, you can handle everything from sand-covered rocks and gravel to wet stones while wearing these boots. Plus, you can wear these shoes in all seasons thanks to the lightweight midsole with TechLite technology. This provides comfort, impact absorption, and superior cushioning.
Furthermore, these boots feature an upper that combines suede, supportive leather, and waterproof mesh. So, they’ll keep your feet dry after a long day through the mud or rain. Finally, these lightweight hiking shoes provide excellent ankle support and require almost no breaking in. It’s no wonder that they’re one of the best waterproof women’s hiking shoes.
What We Love:
These super lightweight and comfortable hiking shoes are an excellent choice for different surfaces.
- Great for various kinds of surfaces.
- Super lightweight.
- Aesthetically pleasing.
- Slightly unsuitable for wider feet.
Merrell Moab 2 Mid-Vent Boot
One of the best DSW Merrell hiking boots for lightweight backpackers and day hikers is the Merrell Moab 2 Mid-Vent Boot. It’s the perfect value pick for hikers who stick primarily to maintained trails. Many factors make these boots so popular, beginning with its reasonable price of just 110 USD! Secondly, the boots are comfortable and lightweight while having good cushioning underfoot. Furthermore, they also feature a waterproof membrane for quick-drying during wet hikes and trusty Vibram outsoles that can tackle any terrain. However, the best of them all is that it’s a definite update over the Moab, with notable changes including a durable and waterproof suede upper, improved cushioning, and a new insole with a higher arch.
What We Love:
Hikers looking for a great value hiking shoe without compromising quality will love the Merrell Moab 2 Mid-Vent Boot.
- Good traction.
- Breathable and durable.
- Out-of-the-box comfort.
- Heavier than other shoes.
Salomon Women’s X Ultra 3 GTX Hiking Shoes
Another excellent pair of DSW hiking boots are the Salomon Women’s X Ultra 3 GTX Hiking Shoes. These combine hiking and trail running into one incredible, 100 percent synthetic shoe that’s highly breathable and waterproof. What’s more, it has two different rubber soles for a more intense grip over slippery or rough surfaces. Thanks to the synthetic upper and the GORE-TEX liner, which help keep your feet dry even in wet conditions. Moreover, the Contragrip sole is reliable for a tight grip on smooth or wet surfaces without slippage. And thanks to the brand’s descent control technology, the shoes are efficient for rugged terrains. Finally, the shoes come in a beautiful grey shade with contrasting aqua accents and black textured laces.
What We Love:
These hiking shoes are great for hiking and running because they are multipurpose and lightweight.
- Good for hiking and running.
- Not suitable for wider feet.
Merrell Moab 2 Mid Hiking Boot
One of the best DSW Merrell hiking boots is the Merrell Moab 2 Mid Hiking Boot. These things kick butt, especially if you’re going to be doing a lot of wet hiking. Even if you walk in the rain for eight-plus hours nonstop, and these boots still won’t give way. What’s more, these shoes are sturdy and give hikers incredible amounts of confidence with every step, no matter the terrain. Bye-bye, twisted ankles! If that wasn’t enough, these boots aren’t too heavy or hot, have an excellent sole, are well-constructed, waterproof, have a padded tongue and a wide toe. Oh, and they offer incredible arch support while lending about as good a fit as one can get without customizing them. What’s not to love?
What We Love:
The Moab 2 breathes well, is very comfortable, and has an excellent, wide base, offering one of the better values on the market for 100 USD.
- Super comfy and breathable.
- Glove-like fit.
- Good solid lightweight boot
- Not very flexible when walking on rocks.
Timberland Men’s White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot
One of the best DSW hiking boots also happens to be one of the best waterproof men’s boots, the Timberland Men’s White Ledge Mid Waterproof Ankle Boot. Timberland is one trusted brand for hiking shoes, and the White Ledge boot is a testament to that. These boots are made from 100 percent premium waterproof leather, thus keeping your feet dry in a rugged style. What’s more, the leather that the shoe features have seam-sealed construction that keeps the elements out. If that weren’t enough, features such as a fully gusseted tongue and rustproof speed-lace hardware would enhance the waterproofness.
Thanks to the oiled-leather finish, the shoe is breathable and durable, with the rear pull loops and lace-up vamps making them easy to take off and put on. Finally, they’re huge on comfort and traction thanks to a lugged rubber outsole, padded collar, and a removable, dual-density EVA footbed. It’s no wonder that this is also one of the best shoes for winter.
What We Love:
This is a casual-looking pair of rugged and tough hiking boots that you can use for multiple occasions.
- Padded collar.
- Removable dual-density EVA footbed.
- 100 percent waterproof leather.
- The sole isn’t so durable.
Merrell Erie Mid Hiking Boot
Discover new places and terrains with Merrell Mid Hiking Boot, one of the best-looking DSW Merrell hiking boots on this list. There’s a lot to love about these boots, starting with straight-from-the-box comfort. Secondly, the boot can tackle easy to moderate terrain, thanks to features such as a grippy traction sole, ankle-padded stability, and cushioned support. Additionally, this boot is jam-packed with a whole lot of excellent features, such as an aggressive sole and waterproofing, which makes them great for leisurely backcountry walks and day hikes. The well-designed and smart hiker laces are Rounding up the features, complete with D-ring hooks that ensure a tight, lasting fit, allowing you to be on your feet all day long.
What We Love:
This hiking boot offers out-of-the-box comfort with cushioned comfort and a rugged but flexible sole.
- Padded tongue and collar.
- EVA midsole and a rubber traction sole.
- Waterproof leather and canvas upper.
- Some might find this shoe a bit too bulky.
Hi-Tec Men’s Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
Yet another of the best DSW hiking boots that’s also one of the best men’s waterproof hiking shoes is the Hi-Tec Bandera Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot. There’s a lot to like about these boots, which feature a waterproof suede upper, along with striped nylon straps. So, this pair of boots are best for light, daytime hiking on well-established trails. But that’s not all. These shoes are great for wet walking, too, thanks to the breathable waterproof membrane that not only keeps moisture out but also keeps the feet warm.
What’s more, the midsole ensures that your feet are always in balance. That and the steel shank ensure that you always stay stable on them, no matter the terrain. Finally, the rugged rubber outsole provides traction in any
What We Love:
If you’re looking for a reasonable, budget, waterproof hiking boot, then this is the one.
- Minimal break-in period.
- Excellent waterproofing.
- Perfect for normal day-to-day use.
- The lace hooks are slightly inferior in quality.
Merrell Ontario Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
The Merrell Ontario Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots are a great pair of DSW Merrell hiking boots, combining looks and performance. The mid-rise boot is comfortable straight out of the box, complete with flexible ankle support and heel-cupping support that keeps your feet secure and stable. What’s more, the upper, waterproof membrane is breathable while keeping moisture out, thus keeping your feet dry and comfy. Plus, the lightweight EVA foam midsole with Merrell’s signature “Air Cushion” technology adds stability and absorbs shock. Besides being relatively light for a mid-rise hiking boot, the D-ring lacing system means that they’re straightforward to put on and take off.
What We Love:
This solid waterproof hiking boot combines the latest technology and retro design flair, adding waterproofing and comfort to the package.
- Sneaker-like feel, look, and fit.
- Appealing retro look.
- No break-in time needed.
- No wide sizing option.
Timberland Keele Ridge Hiking Boots
Are you planning a grand and challenging hike? Then the best DSW hiking boots to aid you in that effort are the Timberland Keele Ridge Hiking Boots. These rugged hiking boots are the perfect companion to overcome any obstacle en route to your hiking destination. Despite being only 6 inches high, the boots have excellent ankle support. What’s more, they feature a waterproof membrane that keeps your feet dry and warm even during wet walking. Besides the climbing rubber tip, these boots also have an OrthoLite footbed, which ensures improved comfort even when walking over not-so-smooth surfaces. Finally, the boots have excellent traction, with the soles featuring an aggressive grip that works well on wet rocks and in soft soil.
What We Love:
This high-performing, waterproof hiking boot has everything you’d want from a great hiking boot.
- Easy to take off and put on quickly.
- Excellent ankle support.
- Not very insulating.
Merrell Alverstone Waterproof Hiking Boots
The Merrell Alverstone Waterproof Hiking Boots are among the best DSW Merrell hiking boots on this list. The boot, which features a suede and mesh upper, offers excellent breathability and waterproofness while keeping your feet warm and dry. What’s more, they also provide oodles of comfort and support as you trail through some of the most rugged and wet terrains possible. Moreover, the lace-up shoe even features a contoured footbed for added support, with the D-ring lacing system ensuring a snug fit as you walk. The round toe provides ample wiggle room, while the EVA midsole and rubber outsole with lugs ensure traction with you not having to strain your feet. If there were one all-around hiking boot, then this would be it.
What We Love:
For just 110 USD, this is a great lightweight and comfortable hiking boot that’s also rugged and waterproof.
- Waterproof and breathable mesh panels.
- EVA contoured footbed and midsole.
- Flexible, lightweight, and rugged.
- Peeps with wider feet might have some issues.
Skechers Trego Rocky Mountain Hiking Boot
The Skechers Trego Rocky Mountain Hiking Boot is another excellent all-around pair of DSW hiking boots. Reach the pinnacle of surefooted comfort and outdoor style with these boots, which have a lot going for them. For one, the lace-up hiking boots feature a waterproof mesh, synthetic, and suede upper. Thus, your feet stay warm and dry no matter what amount of wet hiking you do through streams and rivers and mud. Secondly, the Air-Cooled Memory Foam insole ensures comfort no matter how uneven a surface you step on. It’s available in half sizes, allowing you to find the right fit according to your comfort. The all-terrain rubber outsole, which, true to its name, can handle all kinds of terrains, rounds up the features.
What We Love:
This all-around pair of comfortable trainer-style boots are perfect for wet and difficult terrains too.
- All-terrain rubber traction outsole.
- Air-Cooled Memory Foam cushioned insole.
- Suede, synthetic & mesh upper.
- The sizing is slightly off.
Merrell Forestbound Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
Few DSW Merrell hiking boots are versatile and stylish as the Merrell Forestbound Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot. Keep your feet well during your next great outdoors adventure with the Forestbound boots, one rugged, waterproof boot featuring multiple features to keep you supported, dry, and fresh. For one, these all-leather mid-cut boots have generous underfoot cushioning, ankle padding, a waterproof liner, and quality leather uppers. Moreover, the midsole even boasts an EVA foam midsole with an embedded molded nylon arch shank for flex and stability. These boots are certainly lightweight, weighing less than half a kg for a men’s size 9, and that too for a leather boot at that. So, you can rest assured that the boots will further alleviate foot fatigue during long and strenuous hikes.
What We Love:
This well-priced leather boot is protective and robust while providing excellent cushioning and all-around comfort.
- Protective yet stylish.
- Great everyday walking boot.
- Great cushioning for comfort.
Columbia Trailstorm Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
The Columbia Trailstorm Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot sits stop the list of the best DSW hiking boots, and for good reasons. Do you hate heavy and bulky boots? Well, this Columbia boot weighs less than 300 g per boot, making this the lightest hiker on this list. Secondly, the Trailstorm lives up to the waterproofing claims, keeping the feet dry when you’re striding through mud puddles or in the rain. What’s more, the boot is even breathable, with the soles featuring decent grip on established trails as well as valleys and fields. It might fit on the narrower side, but once you’ve got the right fit, the Trailstorm molds to your feet over time, offering trainer-like comfort. Overall, the comfy and relaxed design is perfect for casual hikers.
What We Love:
This Columbia Trailstorm boot doesn’t weigh you down but stands up fabulously to the elements.
- Trainer-like look.
- Flexible and comfortable.
- Very lightweight.
How To Choose The Best DSW Hiking Boots?
Types of hiking boots
Like winter shoes, hiking boots are made for particular kinds of trekking. Do you spend more time deep in the mountains, or are you a casual hiker? Knowing this is integral to determining which hiking boots suit your needs the best.
- Light hiking shoes – These are burlier running shoes and are ideal for day hiking.
- Mountaineering boots – Hikers who’re traversing snowy paths, glacial trails, or rocky territory will find these boots perfect. Not only can they handle the toughest terrain, but they can handle heavy loads too.
- Backpacking boots – These can handle a variety of on and off-trail terrains. Their durability and stiff soles are perfect for multi-day treks in any condition.
Material is of utmost importance when it comes to hiking boots. The wrong fabric can not only make your feet feel cramped but also uncomfortable and hot. So, you need to find suitable material for ultimate trail comfort.
- Full-grain leather – Most mountaineering boots are made of the extremely durable full-grain leather. So, it’s perfect for those who hike across unsteady terrains, but it’s very heavy and less breathable.
- Split-grain leather – This materual is half synthetics, half leather and is more breathable than full-grain leather. However, it’s not as durable or water-resistant.
- Synthetics – Finally, synthetic materials such as polyester and nylon are less water-resistant, but dry faster, feel light, and are easy to break in.
Hiking boots have different cuts, so this should be specially tailored to your kind of trekking. That’s because the wrong cut could cause rocks in your shoes or even a rolled ankle. So, what are the kind of cuts?
- Low-cut – These are perfect for casual, lightweight hiking as they’re just like running shoes. However, since they leave you vulnerable to ankle injuries, it’s best to wear these on well-maintained trails.
- Mid-cut – This style offers more buffer from trail debris, as well as more balance and ankle support.
- High-cut – With optimal ankle support and balance, this cut is for adventurous hikers who traverse all sorts of dangerous and rough terrains.
Trying them for size
It’s very easy to get swept off your feet by the bells and whistles and ignore the boot’s fit all together. So, you need to try on each pair of hiking boots and give them a size test run to ensure that they fit you well. For one, there should be lots of wiggle room in the toe box, as your feet could naturally swell. Secondly, the heel should stay in place, with the boot fitting snug around the ball of your foot. Floating heels cause blisters. Finally, don’t break in the boots directly on the trail, but wear them with trail socks or while running errands around your house. They help you break them in and allow you to get an accurate feel for fit and comfort.
What is the most popular hiking boot?
Most lightweight backpackers and day hikers who stick to maintained trails swear by the Merrell Moab 2. This boot is trendy because it offers a comfortable feel and is very lightweight.
What are lighter hiking boots?
Lighter hiking shoes and boots have half to three-quarter shanks, making them easy to walk in and flexible like a running shoe. Meanwhile, heavy hiking boots feature full, completely rigid shanks, thus supporting your weight when you’re edging up over boulders or rock slabs.
Should you buy hiking shoes a size bigger?
Many seasoned hikers suggest that the right pair of hiking boots are half or a full size larger than their regular shoe size. Even if a pair of hiking boots fit you perfectly, it’s better to go half a size up.