Getting the right pair of shoes optimized for hiking helps you enjoy the hiking experience and offers protection to your feet. The best part is that you can get the right pair of boots for hiking without spending a fortune with some of the suggestions we have listed in this article. We did comprehensive research to compile the list and narrowed it down to the best hiking boots under $50.
Read on to see which of our suggestions suit you best and get useful tips to help you choose the right pair of boots when you want to buy a pair of hiking boots.
NORTIV 8 Waterproof Hiking Boots – Our Pick!
To start our list is the Nortiv 8 outdoor boot that comes packed with many excellent features to withstand brutal outdoor environments. The exterior is made of waterproof synthetic material that keeps water out and your feet dry. It comes with a removable and easy flex inner sole shaped to cup your feet for optimized arch support.
The front edge is made of a hardened rubber to protect your toes and the sole features multi-directional lugs that provide superior traction when you are walking or climbing with this pair of boots on your feet. Breathable mesh linings complete the look of this shoe’s exterior, which helps with air circulation around your feet to keep them cool and dry.
The traditional lace-up style with extra-long laces ensures that the boots remain on your feet with every step all day. The sizing of this boot starts at size 6 and goes all the way to size 13, thus giving every adult male hiker the chance to pick just the right option in terms of fitting.
This boot brings all the amazing features that come with high-end all-weather boots to you without the high price tags. The ankle-high boots feature suede exterior material with breathable mesh linings along the top, both sides, and behind the heel. The strong fabric offers protection to your feet and allows you to move on uneven terrain, spikey vegetation, or roads lined with sharp stones without hurting your feet.
Breathable mesh linings promote moisture-wicking capability to keep your feet dry all day long. The seams are lined with glue and are fused tightly, creating a waterproof seal. The shoe also has a guested tongue that prevents dirt and debris from entering the shoe’s interior, while the front part features a stiff toe protection edge.
At the bottom, the sole is lined with deep lugs that maximize traction to allow you to walk on slippery roads without slipping and tipping over. The interior comes with breathable inserts that offer excellent heel support and cup your feet to keep them warm in cold weather.
This HI-TEC outdoor hiking boot is made of a blend of leather and Nylon materials with rubber soles. The exterior features breathable mesh patterns that promote airflow into the shoe’s interior to keep your feet cool and dry in hot weather. The top part has a thick padded collar that keeps small stones, dirt, and debris from entering the interior, while the secure lace-up design with quick lace-up hardware holds the shoes securely on your feet with little chance of slipping out.
A quick pull-up loop attached to the back works to fit the boot on your feet quickly. The interior comes fitted with a removable molded insole for comfort and weight support. Additional support also comes from the cushioned EVA midsole that comes with the boot.
The rubber sole features unique patterned lugs at the bottom that maximize traction to allow you to walk on slippery or muddy roads. You get four color choices when buying this boot from online stores, which helps you match the shoe with other outdoor gear and clothing when you head outdoors.
These are the go-to boots when you want to explore snow-covered mountain peaks or ski the slopes during winter. The high-top design covers your feet up to a point above the ankle to prevent your feet from colliding with any obstacles.
This boot’s front features a toecap made with enhanced TPR material that protects your toes and prevents the front edge from yielding under pressure. This keeps the shape of the shoe intact even after years of use. Artificial leather material is used to mold this boot and is lined with a protective top layer that makes it water-resistant.
A thick, soft fur lines the interior of the boot to keep your feet warm even when you walk in snow. The shoe comes with a flexible EVA midsole and a TPR outsole shaped to resist skidding. Both work hand in hand to offer to cushion your feet while preventing hastened wear and tear.
The Quicksilk Boots from EYUSHIJIA solves the problem of fast-wearing outdoor shoes by providing hikers with a boot made from durable and stylish faux leather. Styling on this advanced fabric is easy and allows the manufacturer to provide buyers with a wide collection of color combination choices they can pick from to match their hiking style and personality.
The shoe’s interior features a soft fleece lining designed to keep your feet warm in the cold. Traditional laces hold the shoe, while the wide lace hardware makes it easy to push the laces through. The rear of the shoe has a loop handle that comes in handy when pulling up the shoe on your feet.
The bottom has a durable rubber sole with wide lugs that give better traction than the average outdoor boot. The boot has a wide fit, and the fact that the manufacturer has been able to avail this boot with all the features while keeping the price below 50 bucks is simply amazing.
Women can now join their male counterparts in exploring the outdoors with this unisex pair of boots. The boot features a suede exterior with a perforated design, which aids in breathability and moisture-wicking properties. As a result, your feet remain cool and dry throughout the entire period you have these shoes on your feet.
The interior comes with micro suede insoles with an open-cell form that cups your feet to give you superior arch support. The midsole is lightweight and absorbs impact when walking, while the outer sole features secure grip lugs for ultimate traction that allows you to remain upright even when walking on slippery wet roads.
The shoe gives further protection to your feet with the molded toecap and TPU heel. Long durable laces hold the shoes in place on your feet, while the wide lacing hardware reduces the amount of time you spend lacing up after wearing the shoe.
The Humtto low-profile hiking shoes are lightweight and sturdy for all-day protection of your feet. They come with a one-piece tongue that is padded for comfort and can cover the top edge to create a seal where the tongue meets the foot.
This works to keep dirt and debris from getting inside the shoe. The front tip features an anti-collision mechanism made to protect your toes from getting hurt should you collide with any obstacle when walking, running, or climbing. The sole is made of thick rubber, which balances firmness and flexibility for relaxed walking.
Multiple lugs shaped in all directions are etched at the bottom and maximize traction when walking on slippery and wet road surfaces. However, the fitting of this pair of shoes runs half a size large; buyers should pick a half size smaller than their regular fit.
What to look for in budget hiking boots?
Hiking boots come in many forms, and picking the best for hiking mainly depends on the environment you want to hike in. For instance, you can opt for low cut boots whose top edge does not go beyond the ankle.
Low-cut boots allow your feet freedom of movement and allow sufficient airflow in and out of the enclosed interior. You can also walk for a long time without experiencing fatigue or hurting your feet when wearing low cuts because they are super light.
One disadvantage of low-cut shoes is that they don’t offer much support. As a result, they are not the best shoes to wear if you are hauling a big load on your back for the entire day.
Mid-cut boots are another option you can use for hiking. These boots have a top edge that raises just above the ankle. They provide better protection to your feet than low-cut shoes with a raised profile, which works well to keep stones, dirt, and debris from getting inside the shoe.
You can also walk with them in the rain because they offer better waterproofing. The mid-cut boots offer average support when you are hauling a huge load over long distances.
High-cut boots have a top edge that goes a few inches above the ankle and offer the best support when traveling through uneven road surfaces when hauling a heavy load.
They also offer the best water resistivity and protection from debris, dirt, and dust. One issue you have to deal with when you hike with new high-cut boots is the break-in period, where the boots often feel a bit uncomfortable during the first few weeks you wear them.
The other things you should look out for in hiking boot areas are discussed in the section below.
Read more: Can You Hike in Doc Martens?
Material used on the exterior
The materials used to make the exterior part of the hiking boot significantly impact the breathability, weight, and shoe’s ability to resist water.
Leather material features on many hiking boots. Some have pure leather, while some come with artificial leather with almost similar properties to pure leather. Leather is a durable material that allows the hiking boot to retain its shape for a long time.
Leather boots are also able to withstand the harsh conditions of the outdoors without getting scuffed. Leather boots have to be broken in, and since leather is not good at wicking moisture, the leather boots are not good for hiking in rain or snow.
Split grain leather improves the moisture-wicking capability of pure leather by intersecting the exterior surface with breathable mesh patches. Hiking boots made of split-grain leather come at a lower price and take advantage of leather’s durability.
The breathable mesh improves on weaknesses of pure leather, thus permitting the free flow of air to the shoe’s interior. This works to keep your feet dry and reduces the chances of blistering. Split grain leather, however, is more susceptible to scuffing and scratching when put through tough conditions.
Read more: Are Classic Timberlands Good for Hiking?
Synthetic materials are also a good option when you are looking to buy a pair of hiking boots. Synthetic materials include nylon, polyester, and suede. The advantage of buying synthetics is that they come cheap, weigh less, and are quick drying. The downside of synthetics is that they are not very durable. They scuff easily and tend to wear out much faster.
The type of insoles and midsoles in the hiking boot
Insoles are placed inside the shoe, and their main function is to boost comfort and to cushion. Padded shoe linings are enough for foot comfort around the sides, but insoles provide comfort underneath the feet. Superior insoles act as shock absorbers from your foot’s impact, hitting the ground forcefully when walking.
Two major types of materials are used to make insoles and midsoles. The most commonly used is ethylene-vinyl acetate material or EVA. EVA insoles and midsoles have a cushy feeling that is great at boosting comfort. The other type of material used for insoles is Polyurethane, which is a bit stiffer.
Hiking boots have soles patterned on the underneath surface with deep lugs that aim to maximize traction when walking through slippery road surfaces. Most shoes come with rubber soles that are stiff and a bit flexible to allow them to bend easily when taking a step.
When choosing a hiking boot, consider lugs that are widely spaced since they have a lower probability of getting stuck on muddy roads. Remember that you will have to clean up whatever mud gets stuck between the lugs, which means that the spaces come in handy when cleaning your hiking boots.
Toe protection is also something you should consider when selecting a hiking boot. The front part on most hiking boots extends from the sole to the upper part for toe protection. Some shoe brands also make hiking boots with stiff rubber material that goes around the shoe’s tip.
Read more: How To Wear Shoes with Blisters.
The rand’s purpose is to prevent the impact of hitting stones and other items you may encounter on the hiking trail from reaching the interior. The rand also works to retain the hiking boot’s shape thanks to its sturdiness and capacity to withstand continued use.