Making sure you have the right footwear when out walking is essential. This guide to three-season hiking boots will help you find a perfect fit that promises to last as long as you do in the hills.
All the hiking boots for women in this guide are three-season boots. Essentially, this means they are suitable for spring, summer and autumn, excluding winter use when a dedicated winter walking boot would be more suitable.
However, with advances in technology and materials, the lines between three-season walking boots and winter boots have become slightly blurred. Some hiking boots will be perfectly adequate for winter walking, especially on gentler slopes and below the snowline. More generally, these three-season boots are designed for everyday outdoor use – from country trails to moorland, hill, and mountain paths.
Our expert reviewer, Fiona Russell has put the best three-season walking boots for women through their paces. This guide focuses on the best walking boots for women exclusively. If you’re looking for men’s walking boots then see our guide to the best walking boots for men. For both, see our article on The best hiking boots 2023 for men and women.
If you’ve found yourself in need of a new pair of boots prematurely, you can support this investment by brushing up on waterproofing your walking boots to make them last longer. If you aren’t quite ready for a new pair of walking boots and are wondering what can be done to your current pair to make them feel fresh again, we’ve answered your burning questions on resoling or repairing walking boots.
Our picks of the best hiking boots for women
- inov-8 Roclite Pro G 400 | Price: $245 / £200 (Buy now from alpinetrek.co.uk)
- Vasque St Elias FG GTX | Price: $230 | £190 (Buy now from vasque.com US only)
- Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid | Price: $165 | £170 (Buy now from sportshoes.com)
- Haglöfs L.I.M FH GTX | Price: $170 | £160 (Buy now from alpinetrek.co.uk)
How we tested the best hiking boots for women
All the women’s walking boots in this guide were tested by Fiona Russell. Fiona has a narrow UK8.5 foot. She tested the boots on a range of terrain, from hard-packed trails to muddy and wet hill and mountain slopes. She often walks off the path and through thick vegetation. All the hiking boots for women were weighed on her home digital scales.
inov-8 Roclite Pro G 400 Gore-Tex women’s boots | TGO best buy
- Price: $245 / £200 (Buy now from alpinetrek.co.uk)
- Weight: 850g
- Pros: Comfort, flexibility, grip
- Cons: Price, limited larger sizes, weight quibble
- Rating: 4.5/5
Materials: Schoeller ceramic-coated fabric upper, Gore-Tex membrane, graphene-enhanced rubber soles | Features: sole with ‘iconic’-shaped studs and water dispersion grooves, ‘meta plate pro’, external heel cage | Men’s version: yes | Sizes: UK3.5 to 8.5 (including half sizes)
First on our list of the best walking boots for women is the Inov-8 Roclite Pro. Inov-8 has designed a boot that fits like a slipper, with a narrow to mid-width female foot and a lacing system with robust metal eyelets. It is lightweight and waterproof, with Gore-Tex membranes in fabric uppers and a stabilising external rubber structure at the heel area. The 6mm lugs are ideal for spring to autumn conditions, but the brand describes its graphene-enhanced rubber soles as “the world’s toughest grip”. The grip is generally good except on wet rocks and tree roots, and the uppers are durable and resist abrasion. Sole rigidity is lacking, so look elsewhere if you prefer a stiffer sole.
Read our full inov-8 Roclite Pro G 400 Gore-Tex women’s boot review
Vasque St Elias FG GTX | Recommended
- Price: $230 | £190
- Weight: 1332g
- Pros: Waterproof, durable, good protection, 2 widths
- Cons: Heavy, reduced breathability
- Rating: 4.5/5
Materials: upper: 2.2mm full-grain leather upper and Nappa leather cuff, Gore-Tex membrane; lining: moisture wicking textile, midsole: ATC (All-Terrain Compound), footbed: dual-density EVA compound; outsole: Vasque ‘exclusive’ Vibram Frontier | Features: midsole with EVA cushioning pods and TPU shank, rockered toe, positive lock heel pocket, rubber toecap, padded tongue, metal eyelets and hooks | Men’s version: yes | Sizes: UK4-9 (including half sizes)
The St Elias FG GTX is a solid, sturdy and stable walking boot with a supportive ankle design and three metal hooks for secure lacing. It has a belt-and-braces Gore-Tex membrane for protection from wet weather, puddles, mud and rocks, as well as a rubber toecap and a double layer of leather at the heel. The insole and underfoot cushioning are in the middle range, and the outsole offers reasonable traction on a range of terrain. The lugs are close together, so they can become clogged with dirt. This is a boot that could be worn into winter, but in warmer summer weather it may feel too heavy and warm.
Read our full Vasque St Elias FG GTX review
Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid Gore-Tex women’s boot
- Price: $165 | £170 (Buy now from sportshoes.com)
- Weight: 824g
- Pros: Comfort, durable, lots of sizes
- Cons: Weight quibble
- Rating: 4/5
Materials: textile /synthetic upper with PU-coated leather details, Gore-Tex membrane (free from PFCs of environmental concern), OrthoLite sock liner, rubber Contagrip outsole with ‘Chevron’ lugs, EVA foam midsole with ‘EnergyCell’ | Features: Advanced Chassis, PFC-free water repellency, SensiFit construction, protective mudguard | Men’s version: yes | Sizes: UK3.5-9.5 (including half sizes
The Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid Gore-Tex walking boot is a robust-looking upper with a high level of leather detailing at the toecap, heel and all the way around the rand of the boot. The fit is generous and would best suit a mid to wider foot, and the lacing system has fabric eyelets, metal eyelets and a metal hook at the ankle. Salomon suggests a weight of 370g per boot, but they are fairly lightweight at 412g each for the female UK8.5. The cushioning is medium, and grip is good in most conditions. The heel of the sole is shaped to dig into soft terrain when descending, making it a solid and stable boot with good levels of protection.
Read our full Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid Gore-Tex women’s boot review
Haglöfs L.I.M FH GTX Mid women’s boot
- Price: $170 | £160 (Buy now from alpinetrek.co.uk)
- Weight: 724g
- Pros: Lightweight, comfortable, cushioned
- Cons: Limited sizes, grip
- Rating: 3.5/5
Materials: 100% recycled polyester fabric, Gore-Tex membrane, FlyteFoam + GEL midsole, MaxLite-Moulded Ortholite 0.11D footbed, WET GRIP rubber sole. | Features: TPU protection on lateral and medial sides, ankle padding, folding external tongue, large finger hook at rear | Men’s version: yes | Sizes: UK4-8 (including half sizes)
The Haglöfs LIM FH women hiking boots are snug fitting and comfortable, especially for a narrow to mid-width foot. The upper is noticeably padded, but it feels a bit too padded and the mid-height cuff rubs a little on the ankle bone. The lacing system is minimalist with fabric eyelets until the final single top eyelet, which is metal. Out on the trails, the boots are cushioned, bouncy and comfortable, offering less ground feel as a consequence. The grip is basic but adequate, and the uppers are waterproof thanks to the Gore-Tex membrane. The rear finger hook is useful for pulling on the boots.
Read our full Haglöfs L.I.M FH GTX Mid review