8 Best Waterproof Boots for Men in 2019 • Top Picks • Honest Reviews

best waterproof boots for men

Let’s hope those hiking boots are sealedWhether you are crossing rivers in New Zealand, hiking in the Malaysian jungle, or trekking across the high mountains in Nepal —one thing is sure—you’re going to need a good pair of waterproof boots.

And unfortunately finding an awesome pair of waterproof men’s boot isn’t easy. There are a ridiculous amount of choices out there and each pair of boots performs in different ways.

To set the record straight once and for all, I bring you this epic review of the best waterproof boots for men in 2019!

Believe me – I know boots, as I have logged well over three thousand trail miles on foot over the last five years. This brutally honest review will examine all the factors you need to know so you can easily find which boot is best for you (and your budget!).

Let’s dive right in and find the top waterproof men’s boots for men in 2019!

 

Quick Answer: These are the Best Waterproof Boots for Men in 2018

 

Waterproof Footwear: Top Picks and Performance Reviews

Below I break down my top picks for the best waterproof men’s boots in great detail. Depending on what type of traveler you are and what sort of adventures you have in store, you’ll need a waterproof boot to serve your own needs.

I have assembled my top picks of the best waterproof men’s boots into different categories to make choosing the perfect pair of boots easy and simple.

When it comes to the best waterproof men’s boots, I am all about finding the most practical, functional, and affordable boots for the job. Basically, I know how important it is to have an awesome pair of waterproof hiking boots and my goal in writing this review was to help backpackers find what will work best for them.

 

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
tbb-table__image Best Overall Waterproof Boots for MenBest Overall Waterproof Boots for MenSalmon Quest 4D 3 GTX

  • Price > $$$
  • Weight > 2 lb. 13 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Light weight
  • Price > $$$
  • Weight > 2 lb. 13 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Light weight
Check on REICheck on Amazon
tbb-table__image Best Lightweight Waterproof Boots Best Lightweight Waterproof Boots Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP

  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 2 lb. 4 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > M-Select Dry Membranes
  • Boot Category > Light weight
  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 2 lb. 4 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > M-Select Dry Membranes
  • Boot Category > Light weight
Check on REICheck on Amazon
tbb-table__image Best Mid Weight Waterproof Boots Best Mid Weight Waterproof Boots Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX

  • Price > $$$
  • Weight > 2lb. 6.4 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Mid weight
  • Price > $$$
  • Weight > 2lb. 6.4 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Mid weight
Check on REICheck on Amazon
tbb-table__image Best Heavy Weight Waterproof BootsBest Heavy Weight Waterproof BootsAsolo Fugitive GTX

  • Price > $$$
  • Weight > 3 lb.. 2 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Heavy Weight
  • Price > $$$
  • Weight > 3 lb.. 2 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Heavy Weight
Check on REICheck on Amazon
tbb-table__image Best Waterproof Boots for WorkBest Waterproof Boots for Work

  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 3 lb. 3 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Timberland Waterproof Membrane
  • Boot Category > Work/Heavy Weight
  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 3 lb. 3 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Timberland Waterproof Membrane
  • Boot Category > Work/Heavy Weight
Check on Amazon
tbb-table__image Most Stylish Waterproof Boots for MenMost Stylish Waterproof Boots for MenTimberland Pro Titan 6″

  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 1lb. 12 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Light Weight
  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 1lb. 12 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Light Weight
Check on Amazon
tbb-table__image Best Waterproof Hiking Shoes for MenBest Waterproof Hiking Shoes for MenNorth Face Hedgehog

  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 1lb. 14 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Light Weight
  • Price > $$
  • Weight > 1lb. 14 oz.
  • Waterproofing Material > Gore-Tex
  • Boot Category > Light Weight
Check on REICheck on Amazon

1. Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX 

Best Overall Mens Waterproof Boot

best waterproof boots for men

The Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX boots are my top pick for the best waterproof footwear for men. They’re awesome.

  • Price$230.00
  • Waterproofing Material: Gore-Tex
  • Weight: 2 lbs. 13.2 oz.
  • Boot Category: Midweight

 

If keeping water out and staying comfortable in the mountains is your top priority, meet my top pick for the best waterproof boots for men: The Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX boots.

The Quest 4d hiking boots are a marvel of footwear engineering. Completely waterproof, the Salomon 4D has technology created to eliminate fatigue and discomfort. They feature seam-sealed Gore-Tex membranes that offer excellent protection from water and allow vapor to escape in order to help keep feet dry and cool.

The outer boot material is long-lasting split suede leather and nylon mesh uppers that offer flexibility, breathability, and lightweight comfort.

For cushion, the Quest 4d hiking boots come with removable OrthoLite footbeds which absorb shock and harsh impacts. The inner sole is treated with antimicrobial stuff that deters odors inside the boots. That said, stinky boots are almost always unavoidable, at least for me.

I really value the excellent ankle support offered up by these boots. The Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX boots are the complete package when it comes to a fantastic waterproof boot for men. They won’t let you down.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Excellent Traction
  • Great Breathability

Cons:

  • Mixed reviews on durability
  • A little heavier than some of my other top waterproof boot picks.
  • Expensive

 

For even greater inspiration and to learn more about the Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX boots, check out my epic review of the best hiking boots to take traveling.

Check it on Amazon          Check it on REI

2. Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP 

Best Waterproof Hiking Boot (Lightweight)

best waterproof boots for men

Meet the best lightweight waterproof hiking boots for men: the Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP boots.

  • Price$130.00
  • Waterproofing MaterialM-Select dry membranes 
  • Weight2 lbs. 4 oz.
  • Boot Category: Lightweight

 

For the last several years my go-to lightweight waterproof hiking boots have been the Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP boots. Whilst the Moab 2 boots might not be as sturdy or well-equipped to deal with technical terrain like the Salomon Quest 4D boots shown above, they are still plenty badass. 

There are several schools of thought regarding Merrell waterproof boots. Some folks argue that the Moab 2 —while awesome— just isn’t tough enough to handle long distances and rough terrain. I simply do not agree with that sentiment.

I have worn these boots on many long distance hikes including the Anna Purna (Nepal), Gokyo Ri (Nepal), Appalachian Trail (USA), Nelson Lakes Circuit (New Zealand), Tour du Mont Blac Trek (Europe), and plenty more. They have always served me well.

I’ll be honest with you though about a few things. First, if you are looking for really excellent ankle support and grip, the Merrell Moab 2 boots do lack in that regard. Also, over time I have found that the “waterproofness” isn’t 100% after months of heavy use.

That said, I still love these boots and consider them to be the best lightweight waterproof hiking boots for men. For the price, you simply won’t find another pair of lightweight hiking boots that are  waterproof and performs at this level. 

Pros:

  • Super comfortable/well-padded.
  • Good Value/affordable .
  •  Little to no break-in time.

Cons:

  • I question the waterproofness long term.
  • Not as supportive as other waterproof men’s boots.
  • Lacks the traction of more aggressive hiking boots.

 

Check it on Amazon          Check it on REI

3. Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX

Best Waterproof Hiking Boot (Lightweight) #2  

best waterproof boots for men

For another great pair of waterprook hiking boots, check out the Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX boots.

  • Price$165.00
  • Waterproofing MaterialGore-Tex
  • Weight1 lb. 15.6 oz
  • Boot Category: Lightweight

 

Salomon has made it back my list, this time for the Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX lightweight waterproof hiking boot. This boot is built like a trail running shoes but offers the performance and the ankle support of a hiking boot, which is great.

For thru-hikers and long distance backpackers, the Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX is an ultralight waterproof hiking boot that will keep you crushing big miles in supreme comfort.

To keep moisture out, the boot features Gore-Tex waterproof bootie liners that let your feet breathe while protecting them from the elements. Ever stubbed your toe on a rock while hiking? I hate that! To the address that, the mudguards and integrated rubber toe caps provide durable protection from roots and rocks!

For grip and traction, the unique outsole pattern features a combination of two types of rubber that helps you grip terrain more aggressively, especially in wet conditions. Because the Salomon X Ultra 3 boots are ultralight, they are not built with the same toughness in mind as the Salomon Quest 4D boots shown above. But as you can see, the Salomon X Ultra 3 model is about one pound lighter, which is huge. 

If you have already joined the ultralight cult, the going with one of the best ultralight waterproof hiking boots for men—the Salomon X Ultra 3 boots—should be an easy choice.

Pros:

  • Great toe protection
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable for long-distance hikes.

Cons:

  • Not as tough as other waterproof shoes.
  • Thin under sole.
  • Lacks long term durability.

 

Check it on Amazon          Check it on REI

4.  Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX

Best Midweight Waterproof Boot for Hiking

best waterproof boots for men

For a midweight waterproof boot the Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX boots are comfy and tough as hell.

  • Price$250.00
  • Waterproofing MaterialGore-Tex
  • Weight2 lbs. 6.4 oz.
  • Boot Category: Midweight

 

For more intense hikes, you are going to need a more intense waterproof  boot. The Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX boots are the best midweight waterproof boot for hiking on my list.

The Zodiac Plus is a no-nonsense waterproof boot designed to handle the trials and tribulations of difficult/rocky hiking trails. What I like about these boots is that they are a full-bodied midweight unit with some of the characteristics of a lightweight mountaineering boot.

For protection against wet, it features suede/leather uppers with waterproof and breathable Gore-Tex performance. That is the sort of comfort that will keep your feet dry all damn day. To keep you balanced, the Vibram Drumlin soles provide excellent traction and edging on rock when you’re scrambling or boulder-hopping.

The Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX model is certainly not for everyone. This is not the boot I would pack to take on a South East Asia backpacking adventure. That said, those looking for a badass boot that can hold its own in tough mountain environments, look no further.

Pros:

  • Relatively lightweight, but stiff enough to handle difficult terrain.
  • Durable.
  • Excellent cold weather performance.

Cons:

  • Expensive.
  • Not meant for casual day hikes.
  • Bulky

 

Check it on Amazon          Check it on REI

5. Asolo Fugitive GTX

Best Heavyweight Waterproof Boot for Hiking

best waterproof boots for men

#Beasts! The Asolo Fugitive GTX boots have been known to crush a mountain or two.

  • Price$255.00
  • Waterproofing MaterialGore-Tex
  • Weight3 lbs. 2 oz.
  • Boot Category: Heavyweight

 

The Asolo Fugitive GTX waterproof shoes are more of a traditional hiking boot. They are a bit clunky and heavy but the come with unmatched support and durability built in for 4-season use.

Old-school hiking boots were notorious for trapping air inside. I am happy to report that the Fugitive GTX boots are not guilty of that. The Gore-Tex liners make these boots 100% waterproof yet breathable, for comfort in a variety of conditions.

For padding and general protection, the DuoAsoflex midsoles mix a shock-absorbing soft layer with a stiffer shank for movement control and a comfy base. A major plus of the Fugitive GTX model is that they can be resoled as needed. That will greatly extend the life of your boots! I’m talking years.

The stiffness of the boots is probably something you will either love or hate. The stiff quality does make for more protection but can make your feet feel a bit constrained. I’ll add that stiffness when heavy climbing is involved is a good thing. FYI sometimes these boots sell for cheaper on Amazon.

Pros:

  • Durable and tough
  • Can be resoled.
  • 4 season performance.

Cons:

  • Heavy.
  • Bulky.
  • Not so good for long-term traveling.

 

Check it on Amazon          Check it on REI

6. Timberland PRO Titan 6″

Best Men’s Waterproof Work Boots

best waterproof boots for men

The PRO Titan 6″ boots are some of the best Timberland waterproof boots for men you can find.

  • Price$154.95
  • Waterproofing MaterialTimberland Waterproof Membrane
  • Weight3 lbs. 2 oz.
  • Boot Category: Work Boot

As a backpacker who has spent years of my life working on farms and in gardens both whilst abroad and to fund my travels, I can say that having a good waterproof work boot is important. If you plan on getting a working holiday visa, doing some WWOOFing or volunteering on your next backpacking adventure, you may want to seriously consider a waterproof work boot.

The best waterproof work boots on my list are the Timberland PRO Titan 6” boots. Whilst not the lightest waterproof boot showcased in this review, the Pro Titan boots were designed for work, hard work.

The feature premium, soft waterproof leather with waterproof membrane for minimum break-in time and dry feet all day long. The molded polyurethane midsole provides lightweight, durable cushioning for those long days of weeding carrots or working construction.

Finally, the new low-profile Timberland PRO rubber outsole is abrasion and slip/oil-resistant. You can be sure that you will stay safe as well as comfortable in the Timberland PRO Titan boots.

If you’re a backpacker in search of the best men’s waterproof work boots you have arrived at the right choice for yourself.

Pros:

  • Lightweight (for a work boot)
  • Comfortable
  • Slip/oil resistant.

Cons:

  • Not ideal for genral traveling if you’re not working.
  • Heavy.
  • Takes up a lot of space in your backpack.

 

Check it on Amazon

7. Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX 

Most Stylish Waterproof Shoes

best waterproof boots for men

Yeah, I guess they are kind sexy, right?

  • Price$169.95
  • Waterproofing Material: Gore-Tex
  • Weight1lbs 12 oz.
  • Boot Category: Lightweight

 

Ok so I don’t have it in me to recommend a completely non-practical waterproof boot on sheer style points alone. That said, I know that sometimes on a backpacking trip you want to look half-way decent when you go out. I personally couldn’t care less about fashion trends, but I want to land somewhere in the middle for the sake of my fellow backpackers.

The Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX boots are sleek, functional, and won’t have you looking like a complete dirty hiker hobo when you go out for a big night. Hiking boots have a history of not being the most visually appealing pieces of gear. I’m thinking of neon orange boots with long green (neon) stripes on the sides. What the hell? 

With the Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift boots, you will have the perfect blend of absolute functionality and cool attractiveness. The outer design features ripstop mesh upper for breathability and lightweight, which make them very packable for extended backpacking trips.

My favorite thing about these boots (in addition to their attractiveness) is the Traxion outsole. This provides for an optimal grip in all directions. Plus, the built-in Continental Rubber provides extraordinary grip even in wet conditions.

Want to up your style game when you go backpacking Europe but don’t want to pack a boot that serves no other purpose other than looking good? The Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift boots are a sure bet to be both awesome in the mountains and at the bar. The all-black ones are my personal favorite.

Pros:

  • Sexy.
  • Great Traction.
  • A great long-distance hiking boot.

Cons:

  • Underfoot is a little stiff.
  • Can have a narrow feel for some users.
  • Lacks any stiffness.

 

Check it on Amazon

8. North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX

Bonus: Best Waterproof Hiking Shoes for Men

best waterproof boots for men

Crush your travels with the best waterproof hiking shoes for men: The North Face Hedge Hog Fastpack GTX hiking shoes. 

  • Price$120.00
  • Waterproofing MaterialGore-Tex
  • Weight1 lb. 14 oz.
  • Boot Category: Lightweight Hiking Shoes

 

The North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX Low Hiking Shoes are indeed not waterproof boots; they are waterproof hiking shoes. That being the case, you should still have the North Face Hedge Hogs on your radar which is exactly why they have made it onto my mens waterproof shoes review. 

Broke Backpacker founder Will Hatton has been rocking the Nort Face Hedge Hogs for a decade (not the same pair!). That says a great deal about the quality and performance of the Hedge Hogs. point being, they kick ass and perform at the highest level for just about every kind of adventure.

The outside of the Hedge Hogs features polyurethane-coated leather uppers and a waterproof, breathable Gore-Tex membrane that does the job of keeping your feet bone-dry.

For chaffing prevention and control the abrasion-resistant, breathable textile mesh lining virtually eliminates unwanted movement and rubbing.

For a versatile, lightweight, tough waterproof hiking shoes that are up for any adventure that you are, the North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX Low Hiking Shoes are a sure bet. Even better is the price tag. For $120.oo you can score a truly excellent pair of waterproof hiking shoes without breaking the bank. Sorted.

Pros:

  • Cheap.
  • Super Comfortable.
  • Very Versatile/packs easily for long-term travel.

Cons:

  • Limited Ankle Support.
  • Reports of long break-in time.
  • Not a proper waterproof hiking boot.

 

Check it on Amazon          Check it on REI

 

Best Waterproof Boots for Men Comparison Table

BootWeightHiking CategoryWaterproof?Price
Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX 2 lbs. 13.2 oz.MidweightYes/GoreTex$230.00
Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP 2 lbs. 4 oz.LightweightYes/M-Select$130.00
Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX1 lb. 15.6 ozLightweightYes/GoreTex$165.00
 Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX2 lbs. 6.4 oz.MidweightYes/GoreTex$250.00
Asolo Fugitive GTX3 lbs. 2 ozHeavyweightYes/GoreTex$255.00
Timberland PRO Titan 6"3 lbs. 2 oz.Work BootYes/Timberland Waterproof Membrane$154.95
Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX 1lbs 12 ozs.LightweightYes/GoreTex$169.95
North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX1 lb. 14 oz.LightweightYes/GoreTex$120.00

How To: Waterproof Boots and What to Look For

Like most pieces of outdoor gear, having the right tool for the job is the name of the game. Given that your shoes are probably the most important gear you own, you want to be 100% certain you are buying the best waterproof boot for yourself based on your own needs.

Will you be trekking hundreds of miles on the PCT? Are you visiting a particularly rugged area in Patagonia? Do you want to hike as fast as possible (fastpacking)? Will you be trekking in lots of snow?

Ask yourself some of these important questions and determine exactly (or more over less) what you plan on doing with your waterproof shoes. Working in them a lot? Make damn surer their comfortable.

Below I examine other factors that should be on your radar as you prepare to purchase some waterproof men’s boots for your next adventure. Thes important aspects include boot categories, weight, price, waterproof material, stiffness, breathability, traction, and more.

Let’s do it!

best merell waterproof boots

 

Weight Categories

Lightweight Waterproof Boot

Waterproof, lightweight boots are best for hikers and travelers looking to cover big miles and/or pack light. Light hiking boots make your legs work less as with each step you are simply lifting less weight.

Lightweight boots tend to be more flexible and generally have less padding than mid or heavyweight options. Materials used in the design are typically nylon, mesh, and a bit of leather, especially on the “upper” section of the boot. 

My absolute go-to lightweight waterproof hiking boot for men is the Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP boots. These babies have traveled with me all over the world and will be taking on the mountains of Pakistan at the end of this month. I love them and I have done plenty of big mile days (28 miles once) in them without an issue.

The Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX boots are a fine choice as well. Bonus points because they look cool.

best waterproof boots for men

The Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP is lightweight, durable, and up for just about any adventure.

 

Midweight Waterproof Boot

Midweight waterproof shoes offer up a little more durability, ankle support, and all around toughness to crush whatever may lie in wait on any given adventure. Often with midweight boots, we are only talking about a couple ounces heavier than lightweight ones. Certainly not pounds.

Even so, a few extra ounces here and there does provide a noticeable difference in terms of support and toughness. Midweight waterproof hiking boots are becoming more popular too.

The Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX boots are awesome because they pack in a lot of comfort, traction, durability, and support without weighing you down at all.

Keep in mind that midweight waterproof hiking boots tend to be more expensive than the lightweight alternatives. Also, they tend to be a tad bulkier and take up more space in your backpack.

best hiking boots for men

The Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX is a slightly more rugged boot in the midrange category capable of tackling even more burly adventure: Photo: Flickr

 

Heavyweight Waterproof Boot

This category of waterproof footwear is reserved for both traditional hiking boots in addition to more serious light mountaineering-style boots. Waterproof, heavyweight boots are probably the least versatile boots out there, but they are also totally necessary when the situation calls for them.

Heavyweight boots tend to be ultra-tough, (can be) stiff as a board, and are super reliable in the field. I’d say most of the great mountaineering achievements of the last century involved waterproof snow boots that are heavier.

The Asolo Fugitive GTX boots are great heavyweight hiking boots in the tradition of the old-school style, but with modern comforts and innovations built in.

These are the best climbing boots to have on your feet in deep snow or cold, wet conditions. On hot days, you’ll feel like you are cooking your feet in a hot, sweaty solar oven.

Due to their inherent stiffness, heavyweight boots typically require a long break-in time. Bear that in mind if you are plotting some epic accent shortly after purchasing some heavyweight mountaineering boots.

best waterproof boots for men

This sort of trekking requires some heavy-duty waterproof climbing boots and probably a set of crampons.

 

Weight Considerations When Buying a Waterproof Boot

Weight matters in the waterproof boot world. Personally, I have done most of my long-distance hiking in lightweight hiking boots. Also for traveling, lightweight boots that are waterproof are the most versatile, pack the easiest, and are comfortable even in the hot conditions of the tropics.

Every job requires the right tool. Again, consider what you will be doing the most of and go from there.

Honestly, though, most of the midweight hiking boots on my list will serve you in much the same way as any lightweight boot with a bit of added comfort and durability mixed in.

If you do plan on spending lots of time hiking through snow or traveling to particularly gnarly regions of the world, don’t shun the heavyweight boots as those are the exact type of scenarios they were built to do battle in.

best waterproof boots for men

For quick weekend missions or extended thru-hike marathons, going lightweight is the best option for waterproof hiking boots.

 

Prices of the Best Waterproof Hiking Boots for Men

As you can see, the prices shown in this best waterproof boot review are all over the place. Midweight/Heavyweight boots are almost always more expensive. The Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX, for example, run about $250.00.

That ain’t cheap. All said, they will probably last a whole hell of a lot longer than a lightweight, cheaper option.

The perfect budget option that will certainly not compromise on performance, go with the Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP or the North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GTX.

That said if you really like the benefits of a mid/heavy weight boot, go for it!

 

Waterproof Material

The material used in the construction of your waterproof boot will determine how effectively waterproof they are. Industry standard these days focuses around Gore-Tex products.

So what the hell is Gore-Tex anyway? Gore-Tex is a  waterproof, breathable fabric membrane that is able to repel liquid water while allowing water vapor to pass through. That’s the short story of what Gore-Tex is.

Nearly all of the waterproof footwear on my list is equipped with Gore-Tex with the exception of the Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP and the Timberland PRO Titan 6″ boots. These boots feature effective waterproof membranes as well, just not made by Gore-Tex. You get the idea.

Generally speaking, none of these boots are meant to be totally submerged in water for any length of time. If crossing a river, water will certainly enter in through the top where you insert your foot. That said, you can certainly trek through snow in some of the mid/heavyweight boot options from my list and stay 100% dry for hours.

Once wet, a lightweight waterproof boot tends to dry the fastest.

best waterproof boots for men

The science of Gore-Tex is pretty rad.

 

Waterproof Boot Traction

Traction is super important as well for obvious reasons. Often, hiking and trekking bring you on steep, uneven terrain where keeping good traction is the difference between life and death.

Now day-to-day, hikers aren’t faced with life and death scenarios but you get where I am coming from. The last thing you want is to increase your chances of having an accident; the possible result of a boot with poor traction.

You will certainly notice a difference in traction between a lightweight trail running shoe and a sturdy midweight hiking boot.

Vibram outsoles have long been hailed as an industry leader in term of badass soles and traction. Bear in mind too that just because a boot doesn’t have a Vibram outsole doesn’t mean it’s a shit sole or product. I am a big fan of how Vibram soles perform, though I am still optimistic that other soles have equal value and performance.

Also, not all Vibram soles perform in the same way. Each outsole they make is boot-specific. When considering what waterproof boot to go with, be sure to check out the sole description. That way, you can get a better idea of the type of traction performance you can expect from any given boot.

best waterproof boots for men

The badass sole of the Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX boot.

 

Breathability of Waterproof Shoes

When spending long hours with your feet inside your hiking boots, breathability is crucial. Without it, a serious funk and the resulting discomfort develops. Your hard-working feet need air, or at least a little bit. No waterproof boots out there will prevent your feet from sweating and/or getting hot. That said, some boots certainly breathe better than others.

The Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX ventilate just like any lightweight waterproof boot should. That is they ventilate well! Even with an effective waterproof (Gore-Tex) membrane, moisture is allowed to escape without letting water inside.

Heavyweight waterproof men’s boots certainly hold more moisture than lighter options. This is often due to the density of the leather making up the exterior of the boot. Generally speaking though, boots that are the best at keeping water out are typically the best at keeping moisture in as well. It can be difficult to find the right balance of waterproof and breathable.

Shout to the Merrell Moab 2 Mid WP boots again, as I have been quite pleased with their all-around ventilation performance.

best waterproof boots for men

For trekking in the desert and around rivers, you need a waterproof boot that will allow your hot feet to breathe in scorching conditions.

 

Boot Stiffness

This one is easy. Almost always without exception, the more heavy-duty (technical) any given waterproof boot is, the stiffer the boot will be.

This stiffness does serve a purpose, however, and it very much has value. On big pushes up mountains, a stiff boot holds the arch of your foot in place, instead of flattening out with each step. With support like that, the rest of your legs are not having to work so hard.

Sometimes the bit of plastic within the boot determining its stiffness is quite small, and thus the boots are quite flexible (which is great too for most situations).

Most lightweight waterproof hiking boots are designed less technical and more flexible, resulting in a good balance of stiffness, structure, and stability. The current trend is definitely moving away from ultra-stiff waterproof snow boots. You should really only find a super-stiff boot in the heavyweight/mountaineering category, where it belongs.

best waterproof boots for men

The more technical your activities are in the mountains, the more you need a stiff, supportive waterproof boot.

 

Insulation

Obviously, you’re going to need a pair of waterproof winter boots if you intend braving the colder climates. Freezing temperatures can seriously wreak havoc on your feet – just ask these guys who suffered from a combination of frostbite and trench foot while climbing. Granted, you won’t need mountaineering boots like those guys, but you’ll need something warm.

Winter hiking boots are different than regular hiking boots in that they offer a combination of weatherproofing and insulation. The insulation is there so that, even if water should get into your boots, your feet will still be warm. If there was no insulation and your boots became wet, they could freeze and then put your own feet in danger.

When buying a pair of waterproof winter boots, be mindful of what temperature they’re rated for e.g. 30 degrees, 10 degrees, etc. Granted, these numbers aren’t exactly exact – more like ballpark estimates made by the manufacturer – but they are at least indicators of good boots. Boots that can handle lower temperatures will keep your feet warmer and longer.

Also know that if you plan on using winter boots, your feet will probably be sweaty no matter what. This is because there is little in the way of breathability. The important thing is that they’re warm though, thanks to insulation.

best waterproof boots for men

When you’re out here, you want to be damn sure you have the best waterproof winter boots for the job.

 

Final Thoughts

Alas, the time has come for me to hit the trail. Well, not at this very moment, but we have reached the end of this best waterproof boots for men review!

As you have learned, there is plenty that goes into choosing an awesome waterproof boot. Choosing the right category of boot, function, weight, and price point are all important decisions to make. With all the options out there it can be hard to know where to even start looking.

After reading this epic review though, you are now prepared to charge forward into the great wet beyond and pick up a great pair of boots to serve your own personal needs.

I am a big fan of quality waterproof boots, and you can be sure that each boot featured on my list was selected with care and purpose.

No company paid me or sponsored me in any way to write this review. All of the knowledge and information I have shared with you is based on years of in-the-field use and countless hours of research.

If you are still on the fence about which men’s waterproof boot is the best on my list, I recommend that you go with my top overall pick, the Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX boots. They certainly kick ass and will keep your feet as happy as they’ve ever been in wet conditions.

Don’t agree with me? Lemme know your favorite shoe in the comment section below!

best waterproof boots for men

You can’t go wrong with the Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX waterproof boot!

 

 

Yay for transparency! Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you book your accommodation, buy a set of trekking poles, or sort your insurance, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only link to stuff I’ve actually used and never endorse crap. Your support helps me keep the site going.”

 

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