best hiking shoes for men

10 Best Lightweight Hiking Shoes For Men of 2024

When it comes to hiking in the great outdoors, it’s of utmost importance that you have the right shoes. In the case you neglect your footwear, you are not going to get far as blisters and cramps exact their toll on your weary feet. From boulder fields to mountain ridges, it’s only possible to conquer challenging terrains if you manage to acquire the best hiking shoes for men. Thanks to advances in fabric and manufacturing techniques, modern-day hiking shoes are tough, light and you have numerous choices. Nonetheless, the variety of styles and models generate confusion, especially if you are relatively new to hiking as a whole.  


Best Hiking Shoes For Men Comparison Chart

Hiking Shoes for MenMaterialsWeightPricesOur Reviews
Merrell Men’s Moab 2 VentLeather & Mesh
1.95 Lbs$$$*****
Vasque Men’s Grand TraverseTextile & Leather1.10 Lbs$$$****
Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent Mid Leather & Mesh2 Lbs$$$*****
Salomon 4D 3 GTXLeather & Synthetic2.86 Lbs$$$$$****
Salomon X Ultra 3Textile & Synthetic1.625 Lbs$$$****
La Sportiva BushidoFabric & Synthetic1.31 Lbs$$$***
Oboz Men's Sawtooth Low BdryLeather & Mesh2.08 Lbs$$$$*****
Altra AFM1855F Men's Lone Peak 4.0Leather & Mesh1.27 Lbs$$$$*****
Saucony Men's Peregrine 8 Textile & Synthetic1.27 Lbs$$***
Adidas Terrex Swift R2 GTXTextile1.53 Lbs$$$*****

Reviews Of Top Rated Hiking Shoes Available On The Market

Intend to pick up hiking as a hobby but unable to decide which pair of hiking shoes is good enough? If that happens to be the case then this article would definitely come in handy. Down below, you shall find some of the best hiking shoes for men money can buy along with their reviews. All you have to do is to crosscheck your personal preferences with the specifications and features of the listed products to make a sensible investment. So what are you waiting for then? Take a look at the following examples and see if one of them could match your taste.

1. Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent – Best Of The Best

Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent

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  • Material: Leather And Mesh
  • Weight: 1.95 Pounds

Why This Is The Best

Rugged, light and comfort, Merrell Men’s Moab 2 is the best hiking shoes for men when it comes to all-around performance. Utilizing experience gained from the previous version, the Merrel example provides the user with additional cushion and support. Thanks to that, the shoes fit straight out of the box and you could hike for days with relative ease. Moreover, a mix of leather and mesh permit your feet to breathe reasonably well in most weathers/climates which prevent condensation.             

Since Merrell Men’s Moab 2 retain Vibram tread pattern of its predecessor, the traction is superb on multiple hiking terrains. With a combination of circles, channels and lugs, the Merrel product minimizes the risk of ankle roll. At a weight of roughly 2 pounds, the shoes would not give you a lot of trouble. Depending on the hiking conditions, there are 2 versions for you to choose: waterproof and non-waterproof. Given proper care and usage, the shoes should be able to last for a long time.    


  • Great value  
  • Long lasting
  • No break-in period


  • Cake up easily  
  • Inadequate for heavy loads

2. Vasque Men’s Grand Traverse – Editor’s Choice

Vasque Men's Grand Traverse

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  • Material: Textile And Leather
  • Weight: 1.10 Pounds

Why It’s An Editor’s Choice

From hiking to trail running, Vasque Men’s Grand Traverse is capable of meeting a variety of purpose without trouble. Therefore, the Vasque model gains the title of the best hiking shoes for men in term of versatility and flexibility. A design for minimalist, the cushion of the shoes is not exceptional so you are going to feel everything that goes under your feet. Despite the relatively low ankle height, the stability of the shoes copes rather with most hiking courses on the planet.  

About the traction, Vasque Men’s Grand Traverse achieves tight grips on dry grounds and potentially wet rocks but that is it. The Vasque shoes cake up in a blink of an eye if you pass through muddy surfaces and things would get slippery fast.  So if you want the best lightweight hiking shoes for men, look no further than Vasque Grand Traverse. But if you want something for moist environments, it’s best to look for something else. Aside from that, the shoes earn high marks in various aspects from breathability to lacing system


  • Lightweight
  • Well made
  • Multi-purpose


  • Lackluster cushion
  • Mediocre endurance  

3. Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent Mid – Editor’s Choice

Merrell Men's Moab 2 Vent Mid

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  • Material: Leather And Mesh
  • Weight: 2 Pounds  

Why It’s An Editor’s Choice

A reinforced variant of Moab 2, Moab 2 Vent Mid receive praises for its strength and flexibility. With the presences of closed-cell foam tongue, people that wear the Merrell hiking boots don’t need to worry about moisture and debris. In addition to that, the air cushion on heel absorbs shocks and impacts without much difficulty. As a result, the stability of the boots remains excellent no matter how hard you hike. Because the upper part of the boots wraps around your ankle, the interior is somewhat protected from water immersion.

Featuring removable footbeds, Merrell Moab 2 Vent Mid allow you to accelerate the breathing process by detaching the footbeds after a sweaty day on the field. The ventilation of the Merrell boots also acquires boots via the incorporation of nylon mesh linings that quickly disperse moisture. In term of support, the ergonomic arch shanks reduce the strain on your muscles and prevent cramps. Overall, the boots seem to be a nice choice for 3-season hiking though the waterproof capability is barely acceptable.


  • Good grip
  • Light and breathable
  • Respectable toe protection


  • Unsuitable for wet expeditions
  • The soles could use improvements  

4. Salomon Men’s Quest 4D 3 GTX Hiking Boots

Salomon Men's Quest 4D 3 GTX

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  • Material: Leather And Synthetic
  • Weight: 2.86 Pounds

Why We Love It

A finely tuned example with generous cushion and plenty of stability, Salomon 4D 3 GTX is the best hiking shoes for men regarding durability. With the use of high-quality leather and synthetic, the Salomon shoes should tackle every hiking challenge without much difficulty. Possessing high collar and tough lacing system, the shoes hold your feet snugly and comfortably. Although certain people feel that the shoes slightly fall to the heavy side, the effect on your mobility is nonetheless minimal.  

Initially, the stiffness of Salomon 4D 3 GTX makes it unwise to use the shoes in an extended hiking trip right out of the box. That being said, you only need to take the Salomon shoes out for a few strolls to loosen the material.  For traction, the shoes receive a new tread pattern with extra spacing that addresses the caking issue. As a result, you could put the shoes to good use while navigating muddy grounds. The wall is thin but thanks to the padding, you feet nonetheless feel comfortable.      


  • Hold up well
  • Fantastic support
  • Commendable grip


  • Overkill for short hikes       
  • Might get hot in warm conditions

5. Salomon Men’s X Ultra 3 Trail Running Shoes

Salomon Men's X Ultra 3

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  • Material: Textile and Synthetic
  • Weight: 1.625 Pounds

Why We Love It

Combining the weight of trail runner models to the protection and comfort of hiking examples, Salomon X Ultra is held in high regard by hikers. Boasting well-padded collar and tongue, the Salomon product is often listed as one of the most comfortable hiking shoes. While the underlayer of the shoes is thin, your feet remain sufficiently isolated from the ground even with heavy backpacks. Similar to its competitors, Salomon offers the shoes in 2 distinct variants: waterproof and non-waterproof.

Equipped with new outsoles that consist of gill-like cutouts, the traction of Salomon X Ultra 3 manages to please even hardcore hikers and demanding veteran. Whether it’s dirt or mud, the Salomon shoes would secure a firm grip by biting deep into the terrain. In fact, the traction of the Salomon model on snow is so good that some people outright claim that it’s best men’s winter boots. The rubber compound that the outsoles use is rugged and it should stay intact after you expose the shoes to heavy uses.


  • Light and nimble
  • Aggressive traction  
  • Thorough protection


  • A bit narrow
  • Slightly complicated lacing system

6. La Sportiva Bushido Men’s Running Shoes

La Sportiva Bushido

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  • Material: Fabric And Synthetic
  • Weight: 1.31 Pounds

Why We Love It

With special emphasis on mobility and stability, La Sportiva Bushido is the best hiking shoes for men when it comes to trail running. Featuring resilient FriXion rubber outsoles, the traction of the La Sportiva shoes is superb. Moreover, the multi-directional lugs make sure that you are able to hit the brake at moment notice. Although the shoes attach firmly to the ground at each step, tripping is not a concern even while running downhill.  

Because La Sportiva Bushido wraps a stiff layer of plastic under your feet, the fitting is snug as you run through slick woods and slimy roots. The La Sportiva product possesses a moderate amount of cushion though so you are going to feel pebble, stones and so on. Due to the EVA rock guard and TPU shank, puncture is rare but the level of contact is quite considerable. Utilizing a slip-on design, the shoes would not rub the ankle as well as the socks aggressively.


  • Tough laces
  • Comfortable
  • Excellent grip


  • Less than ideal drainage
  • Flexibility is not very good

7. Oboz Men’s Sawtooth Low Bdry Hiking Shoe

Oboz Men's Sawtooth

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  • Material: Leather And Mesh
  • Weight: 2.08 Pounds

Why We Love It

Rough and tough, Oboz Sawtooth is what hikers need if they have to navigate primitive trails and similar terrains. Incorporating a sawtooth pattern for its outsoles and midsoles, the traction of the Oboz models could handle a multitude of surfaces. Hate the fact that your feet get sweaty and slimy a couple of hours into the hike? 

Then Sawtooth is the best men’s hiking shoes you could get at the moment. The B-Dry waterproofing system of the shoes permits sweat to escape and also prevent the penetration of moisture.  

Employing a series of mesh and leather offset panels, Oboz Sawtooth keep the temperature in the interior at an acceptable level. As long as the hiking condition is not too hot, the Oboz example could breathe just fine. About the lacing system, the laces would hold themselves tightly together for days without signs of loosening. In addition to that, the modeled heel cup allows the shoes to reduce side to shifting and increase stability. All things considered, the shoes would be a cost-effective purchase for demanding hikers out there.


  • Reasonable price
  • Stable and sturdy
  • Effective waterproofing


  • Slightly narrow
  • Inconsistent performance

8. Altra AFM1855F Men’s Lone Peak 4.0 Trail Running Shoe

Altra AFM1855F Men's Lone Peak 4.0

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  • Material: Leather And Mesh
  • Weight: 1.27 Pounds

Why We Love It

Altra is known for its brand of lightweight well-cushioned shoes and Altra AFM1855F is not an exception. The Altra shoes offer generous space for the toes so it’s possible to position your feet in any way you see fit. As shoes place the heel and the forefoot the same distance from the surface, getting in a low impact running form is fairly simple. The use of A-Bound compound let the shoes redirects the bouncing energy to clamp down muscle fatigue and add momentum for the next step.  

Employing tabs to accommodate gaiter attachments, Altra AFM1855F stop debris and dirt from building up beneath the shoes. With the presence of canted lugs at strategic locations, the Altra shoes achieve tenacious grips on the terrains. Because of the Stoneguard, users of the goes don’t need to worry about sharp rocks while running through trails. The Stoneguard shall defect incoming pebbles to the midsole and that would keep everything generally stable for the entire trip.


  • Nice fit  
  • Compact body
  • Plush cushion


  • Stiff
  • Fairly wide

9. Saucony Peregrine 8 Hiking Shoes

Saucony Peregrine 8

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  • Material: Textile and Synthetic
  • Weight: 1.27 Pounds

Why We Love It

Possessing an aggressive tread design, Saucony Peregrine 8 is easily the best hiking shoes for men concerning traction. With substantial lugs, the Saucony shoes have fantastic bites and the result is an admirable grip on all manner of hiking surfaces. Since the midsole got plenty of cushions, overall shock absorption is excellent on extended expeditions. You would be able to gain a lot of ground without experiencing cramps and other muscle – related issues.

Being primarily a trail running model, Saucony Peregrine is not as solid as hiking shoes. As a result, the Saucony product is not going to be a good choice if you have to carry heavy loads. That being said, if you have little need for significant ankle support, the shoes indeed work great in light hiking. The design of the shoes includes convenient drain ports as well so you don’t need to worry about condensation in moist conditions. For trail runners that are searching for robust footwear, getting the shoes shall be a wise purchase.


  • Dry quickly
  • Lightweight
  • Good traction


  • Too tight for some people
  • Unsuitable for challenging trails

10. adidas outdoor men’s Terrex Swift R2 GTX

adidas outdoor men's Terrex Swift R2 GTX

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  • Material: Textile
  • Weight: 1.53 Pounds

Why We Love It

Adidas has recently made considerable expansions into the hiking market and Terrex Swift R2 GTX is a notable example. The incorporation of sleek design and single pull lacing system make the Adidas model a high-quality option for hiking. Featuring Gore-Tex lining, the shoes keep waters and moistures away without making your feet feel swampy.  With all-around protection for the toes as well as feet, the shoes minimize the chance of injury while hiking in the great outdoors.

Made to be used immediately after you remove the packaging, Adidas Terrex Swift R2 GTX requires no break in period. Furthermore, as time passed by, the Adidas model would not loosen up or form hot spots. With deep and well-paced lugs, the shoes should have no trouble gripping on rock, ground and others. Despite the lightweight, the shoes manage to deliver a level of protection that proves compare to much heavier hiking boots. The low cut design might cause minor ankle turn incidents here and there but overall support is still acceptable.  


  • Did well into the ground
  • Commendable air circulation  
  • Impressive protection for its weight


  • Clunky, rigid laces
  • Lackluster flexibility

Men Hiking Shoes Buyer’s Guide

It goes without saying that different people often have contrast ideas as well as opinions when it comes to the best hiking shoes for men. The best model in the eyes of a particular hiker might seem mediocre to others.

most comfortable hiking shoes

Generally speaking, it always comes down to the values the hikers seek in their footwear.  That being said, there are several criteria that most people agree to be highly essentials for hiking shoes in general. Make sure that you keep them in mind while searching around the market for the best hiking shoes for men.

1. Weight

Back in the old days, hiking shoes tend to utilize leathers which provide endurance although they also weigh a ton. Nowadays, the modern approach is tough yet thin material so you don’t feel like having an anchor tied to your feet after every step. In most of the case, the weight you have on your feet requires more energy than the weight you have on your back. That means cutting the weight of your shoes down by 1 pound equals lightening up the load on your back by 4 – 6 pounds. Needless to say, on an extended trip with a heavy inventory, such a method of weight saving is surely helpful.

2. Traction

To put it plainly, traction is how well your hiking shoes could grip the ground. In order to traverse ledge and hillside, your hiking shoes need to have sufficient traction. One minor slip is more than enough to end the trip and send you straight home with a dislocated ankle. A simple way to judge the traction of hiking shoes is to check out the tread pattern on the bottom. The best hiking shoes for men must have an aggressive pattern that minimizes slipping incidents along with risks of injuries. Hiking is about navigating less than ideal surfaces and it’s hard for you to accomplish that with slippery shoes.

3. Comfort

You want your feet to fit your hiking shoes snugly as by all accounts, hiking is a physically demanding activity. If your shoes make you feel pain and constrained, it’s very difficult to reach the end of the trip. Depend on the specific needs and requirements of your feet, put together a short list of wanted features and specification. Some hikers want their shoes to be wide yet others show preferences for narrow examples.  

Take some time to work out what makes your feet happy and that would guarantee an acceptable level of comfort.

4. Breathability

Hiking is a great way to break a sweat but if your shoes fail to let the moisture escape in sufficient volume, there would be troubles. Not to mention the smell, the sweat and its moisture make your skin soft and leave you vulnerable to blisters. To prevent that from happening, it’s a good idea to prioritize shoes that have thin walls and a lot of mesh as they facilitate ventilation.  Of course, such shoes are not exactly waterproof and they get soak when it rain. On the other hand, well-ventilated hiking shoes dry quickly. Study the weather/climate of your hiking course to come up with a wise decision.

5. Waterproofing

To any hikers that have to deal with wet conditions along with moist environments for a short period of time, waterproof footwear truly works wonders. Nothing ruins your experience as extensive as soggy shoes and proper water-resistant shoes should be able to remediate that. However, it is worth mentioning that if you intend to go on hiking for days, waterproof shoes have little value. Water and moisture are able to reach the interior of any footwear as long as you give them the chance.  In addition to that, you have to wait quite a bit for a pair of water-resistant shoes to dry.

The Average Lifespan Of Hiking Footwear: An In-Depth Analysis

While people assess hiking shoes on the market, one the most common concerns is the overall durability of the footwear. Well, the fabric endurance varies greatly from case to case but the usual estimate tends to stay between 500 and 1.000 miles. Shoes that are made just for trail runners don’t last as long as actual hiking examples though in exchange, they have highly affordable prices. If you are simply a recreational hiker, it’s widely advised that you stick with trail runners products for now. You could move to high-end hiking shoes and boots later if you want to take things up a notch.

best waterproof hiking shoes

Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions About Hiking Shoes

  • Is it necessary to wear socks along with hiking shoes?    

Certain hikers decide to ditch the socks altogether and claim that they feel much more comfortable with only their shoes. People have the right to anything they like as there is no such thing as an absolute guideline for hiking. Nonetheless, a lot of experienced hikers and experts suggest that you secure a solid pair of socks to use in conjunction with your hiking shoes. Socks offer additional warmth, comfort and most important of all, they siphon away a portion of moisture inside your footwear. Wool and polyesters are excellent choices but keep the overall bulk appropriate, not too thick but also not too thin.   

  • How could I wash hiking shoes without accidentally running them?

Having the best hiking shoes for men means nothing if you mess up the maintenance. Sooner or later, you have to wash your hiking shoes and improper techniques might shorten the lifetime of your footwear. Here is how you wash the average pair of hiking shoes: wipe, brush and dry. Use a wet piece of cloth to wipe the inner and outer surfaces of your shoes to get rid of accumulated dirt and foreign materials. Next, use a combination of toothbrush and warm water to take care of stubborn remains. Finally, leave the shoes out to dry completely before use. Avoid using a hairdryer because the heat degrades the fabric and accelerate the aging process.     

  • Between acquisition cost and performance, which one must I prioritize?   

The rule of thumb is: “You get what you pay for”, don’t expect premium quality from dirt cheap examples.  That being said, expensive price tags would not always guarantee satisfaction so think it through. If you push yourself to get the most expensive product on the shelves without consideration, you might waste a lot of money for negligible gains. In order to avoid that scenario, read hiking shoes reviews to see what other users have to say about specific models including any underlying issues. Comprehensive researches should allow you to get the best deal possible at a minimum cost.    

  • Are there any brands in the industry that I must keep an eye out for?

As long as you certain that a particular pair of hiking shoes matches your hiking demands, feel free to buy it regardless of the brand. However, there is some truth to the saying that it’s much better for you to buy from popular names. Manufacturers are unable to stay in business if they repeatedly fail to turn out quality products and neglect customer feedbacks. So if you see a familiar name at the store, chances are that that brand must have done something right. Here a couple brands you need to pay attention to while shopping for the best hiking shoes for men: Merrell, Salomon, Columbia, The North Face, …

  • Do I absolutely have to wear purpose-design hiking shoes?

“I already have a good pair of running shoes, could I just use it instead?”  Well, there is an issue with that approach: hiking is far from a stroll in urban areas. In hiking trips, you are likely to run into rough, uneven grounds littered with rocks, roots, branches and so on. Running shoes are designed for paved roads so they are going to perform poorly if you use them as substitutes for actual hiking shoes.

Last Updated on January 1, 2024

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  1. Bear February 22, 2023

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