If you’re about to set off for a hike and aren’t thinking about taking waterproof hiking boots, think again. Even if you won’t be hiking in a downpour, weatherproof hiking boots will keep your feet dry and comfortable, giving you the confidence you need to navigate puddles, rivers, mud, and slippery moss-covered rocks.
Waterproof hiking shoes have certainly come a long way, and you’ll find many pairs that now offer great breathability in addition to waterproof abilities. No matter if you’re taking a relaxing multi-day hike or keen for more intense trekking, there are now plenty of lightweight and stylish designs to choose from on the Canadian market.
Hiking boots in Canada come in a massive variety of styles, cuts and materials – each one offering a different experience for the wearer. It’s exactly for this reason that we decided to create this list of the best waterproof hiking boots for men and women, giving you the clarity you need to find the perfect pair.
From Merrell hiking boots to ever-popular Keen hiking shoes, we’ve scoured every corner of the internet so you don’t have to. If you’re looking at hiking in more extreme conditions and are expecting snow, yes a few on this list may suffice, or you may feel more comfortable checking out our winter snow boots list.
Or for example you need a waterproof work boot that’s going to offer a more solid toe area, made of steel or composite for example, or a more trendy waterproof boot for city shopping, you can check our other lists.
Alas, for the determined hikers, let’s get into it.
10 Best Weatherproof Hiking Boots for Men and Women
1. Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus
Suitable For: Women
Colour Options: Elk/Mountain Red
It isn’t typically easy to make a women’s hiking boot stylish and versatile for any outfit, but Columbia have done it here with the ever-popular Newton Ridge Plus. These are constructed with hard-wearing leather and suede, which are both naturally waterproof in addition to the solid rubber outsole.
This outsole doubles as an ultra-grip surface thanks to its multi-traction Omni-Grip design with specially formulated compounds and treads. You can get a solid, comfortable grip on a variety of surfaces, from icy, snowy grounds to rain-slicked rocky paths. Another notable design choice is the integrated TechLite cushioning along the midsole. It is high-impact and responsive, giving you the flexibility to wear these on multi-day hikes to months of backpacking.
The mid-cut at the ankle provides a decent amount of support without hindering breathability. We love the high-low tongue design, where the mesh tongue cushions your shin for added comfort.
- Lightweight Yet Tough Full-Grain Leather & Suede Build with Mid-Ankle Cut
- Highly Breathable Mesh Tongue & Comfortable Adjustable Lace-Up Closure
- Advanced Omni-Grip Traction Technology & Responsive TechLite Cushioning
2. KEEN Men’s Targhee II
Suitable For: Men
Colour Options: Shitake/Brindle, Black Olive/Yellow
Heavy-duty by nature, the Targhee II’s are definitely one of our go-to picks for severe conditions with especially rough terrains. They offer mid-height ankle support with a high-low tongue at 2.5” from the arch, which is perfect for those that need more coverage than a low-cut but more freedom of movement than a high-cut.
The 0.75” platform is made up of a thick rubber material, which has an External Support Shank (ESS) and a contoured heel for enhanced stability on abnormal terrains. Comfort is achieved through a padded tongue and collar, as well as a metatomical footbed that contours around the natural curves of your feet.
Another reason these are ideal for rough conditions is the beefy toe cap, where the rubber outsole stretches right up and over to cover above the toes. In terms of waterproofing, the leather and rubber materials are naturally waterproof, and there is also a built-in impermeable membrane to keep you dry all day long.
- Waterproof & Durable All-Leather Build with PFC-Free Treatment
- Metatomical Footbed with Mid-Cut Ankle Support Enhances Stability
- Hard-Wearing High-Traction Rubber Outsole
3. Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus II
Suitable For: Men
Colour Options: Black/Black, Light Brown/Red Velvet
It’s only normal that we include the men’s version of the highly-coveted Newton Ridge series, which comes in a sleek black-on-black design as well as a classic light brown colour with contrast red laces. We also included this model on our Best Men’s Waterproof Boots list, so check that out for even more of our top waterproof picks.
We like to see these shoes as a cross between a worker’s boot and high-quality walking shoe, where you’re getting the durability needed to handle tough environments, but you still have the comfort and support to handle long treks.
Constructed from 100% leather with a synthetic blend, the rubber outsole has the same Omni-Grip traction which has a multi-zone lug pattern for better grip on even icy surfaces. The upper measures 5” from the arch, which helps your ankles feel secure. This is combined with the comfort of the TechLite midsole that absorbs high-impact walking.
- Advanced Omni-Grip Traction Suitable for Multiple Terrains Including Snow
- High-Impact TechLite Cushioning Offers Lightweight Comfort
- Breathable Mesh Tongue Design & Mid-Ankle Cut for Added Support
4. KEEN Women’s Targhee II
Suitable For: Women
Colour Options: Goat/Crown Blue
After doing our research, it’s pretty clear to see that the women’s Targhee II’s are just as highly-acclaimed as the men’s version, with the same heavy-duty construction built for severe conditions.
As suggested in the name, this pair provides a mid-ankle cut, so there’s enough support to help you feel secure without restricting your ankles. Sweat is wicked away and your whole foot is able to breathe through the mesh lining, which can be found on the tongue as well as the collar. The collar is also padded on the inside, measuring 5” around for a comfortable fit.
For a high-traction grip, the all-rubber outsole has specially designed lugs that are made to enhance your stability on rocky roads. A compression-moulded EVA midsole not only assists with impact-resistance, but also reduces pain in your feet so that you can use them daily.
- Non-Marking High-Traction Rubber Outsole with Raised Toe Cap Area
- High-Quality & Waterproof Leather & Textile Materials with Breathable Mesh
- Compression-Moulded EVA Midsole Increases Comfort
5. KEEN Men’s Voyageur-M
Suitable For: Women
Colour Options: Black Olive/Inca Gold, Alcatraz/Legion Blue, Midnight Navy/Gargoyle
Aggressive traction, enhanced torsion stability, environmentally-friendly leather – these are just some of the standout features that make the Voyageur-M’s one of our favourite low-profile hiking shoes. Lightweight enough for long backpacking trips, yet tough enough to withstand long treks, featuring a rugged leather and synthetic construction with a solid rubber outsole.
This pair is actually quite well-known for its breathability, as it’s built with several mesh insets found throughout the upper, tongue, and collar. While they are low-cut, we’ve found that the padding inside the opening as well as inside the tongue helps them feel super comfortable during long hikes.
Among the high-grip outsole is a stability shank which means these are more than suitable for rough landscapes. A dual-density EVA midsole works with a Metatomical EVA footbed for a snug, all-day wear.
- Thick 4mm Multi-Directional Lugs with Torsion Stability ESS Shank
- High Comfort with Dual-Density EVA Midsole & Footbed
- Moisture-Wicking Materials with Waterproof Leather & Mesh Panelling
6. KEEN Women’s Terradora MID
Suitable For: Women
Colour Options: Dark Purple/Purple Sage, Raven/Rose Dawn, Astral Aura/Liberty, Duck Green/Quiet Green, Gargoyle/Magnet, Boysenberry/Grape Wine, Dapple Grey/Vapour
One of our absolute top picks for lightweight hiking shoes, the Terradora’s come in a wide variety of colours and feature a stylish and supportive mid-cut design. These are constructed from 100% synthetic materials, which is one of the reasons why they’re able to remain so lightweight.
Despite being light in weight, these offer hard-wearing protection for everything from intense all-day treks to months of backpacking exploring city streets. We love the running shoe-inspired design, which is versatile as well as comfortable for all-day wear.
Another highlight for us is the cushioned interior collar. It resists impact on your shins and ankles and also keeps out debris and water splashes. Other details include a high-raised toe cap to keep your toes protected from bumps, and the wide rear finger loop for a fast on-and-off process – perfect for airport security.
- 5” High Shaft with Highly Cushioned Collar for Added Ankle Support
- Comfortable & Ventilated EVA Footbed
- 100% Synthetic Materials Offer a Lightweight Waterproof Build
7. Columbia Men’s Redmond V2
Suitable For: Men
Colour Options: Cordovan/Baker, Graphite/Red Jasper
Next up we’ve chosen the Redmond V2’s from Columbia – a classic suede pair perfect for rugged multi-day hikes on the trail. They’re designed with a mid-ankle cut, so you’ve got some support without restricting your movements or decreasing breathability.
Speaking of breathability, this is one of the most ventilated designs we’ve seen, as it has quite a bit of mesh paneling throughout the tongue, upper, and collar. Following this is Omni-Tech technology, which ensures waterproof protection whilst ensuring a breathable wear. This combines with a high-quality suede and rubber build, including a raised rubber toe cap for increased protection.
Compared to the Newton Ridge, the Redmond V2’s have an Omni-Grip traction but with a different pattern – there are less lugs but they are significantly thicker for enhanced grip. A lace-up closure with dual metal eyelets at the top let you achieve a snug fit.
- Strong & Waterproof Suede & Mesh Upper with Beefy Rubber Sole
- Solid Omni-Grip Traction with Sturdy Rubber Toe Cap
- Omni-Tech Waterproof Technology Lets Your Feet Breathe
8. NORTIV 8 Men’s Waterproof Hiking Boots
Suitable For: Men
Colour Options: Varieties of Beige, Black, Brown and Grey
One for the budget-conscious hikers, the NORTIV 8’s are an extremely versatile mid-cut shoe. Available in tons of colours, these are made up of breathable and fully waterproof mesh paneling, waterproof synthetic leather, a memory foam insole with arch support, EVA midsole, and a tough rubber outsole.
Lightweight and comfy, the EVA midsole absorb quite a bit of shock to reduce the risk of foot fatigue after weeks of hiking or trekking. Inside, the memory foam insole feels dreamy, as it conforms to your foot whilst providing support to your heels.
Multi-directional lugs with a 0.25” depth ensure you feel stable along slippery terrains. In addition, the rubber outsole extends over the toe for better protection. The lace-up closure and rear loop make taking them on and off a breeze.
- Lightweight & Breathable Leather Synthetic Upper with Mesh Panels
- Rugged Rubber Outsole with 0.25” Deep Lugs for Anti-Slip Comfort
- Mid-Cut Design with 1” Tall Platform
9. Hi-Tec Women’s Bandera
Suitable For: Women
Colour Options: Taupe/Blush
Not only does this Hi-Tec Bandera boot look great with its fun blush accents and stylish design, but it is also rugged enough for use in some of the toughest conditions. Leather and textile blend to make a fully waterproof and heavy-duty boot, whilst remaining lightweight for use over extended backpacking or hiking adventures.
The mid-length cut sits around 5” from the arch of the foot, with a 1” platform to keep you well protected from deep puddles and water splashes. This platform is made from a sturdy rubber with multi-directional lugs that greatly enhance traction.
Before even slipping these on you can tell how comfortable they are just by the pink-coloured padding inside the collar and tongue. Further inside you’ll find an EVA sock-liner, which is conveniently removable for easier cleaning.
- 100% Leather, Mesh Textile & Rubber Outsole for Fully Waterproof Protection
- 5” Mid-Cut Shaft & Thick Cushioning Provide Ankle Support
- Sturdy 1” Thick Rubber Outsole with Multi-Zone Traction
10. Mountain Warehouse Adventurer Hiking Boot
Suitable For: Women
Colour Options: Black, Navy, Grey, Light Grey
Last up we’ve chosen the Adventurer shoes from Mountain Warehouse. These are another budget-friendly option on the list, as they range between $62 and $119 depending on the size. What we love so much about these shoes is their multi-functionality. The design is so sleek and simple that you can wear them one day to walk the dog on a rainy day, and the next hiking through rocky mountains.
A high-low mid-length cut cushions the shin and ankles whilst maintaining breathability with multiple mesh panels. The entire boot is impermeable with a waterproof membrane built into the synthetic upper. Since they are synthetic, they’re comfortably lightweight and won’t weigh you down.
Deep lugs line the outsole for extra traction and stability, plus the rugged rubber moves up and over the toes to protect from bumps. A cushioned footbed makes these cozy enough for daily wear.
- Tough & Lightweight Synthetic Upper with Waterproof Membrane
- Deep Lugs on Rubber Outsole Enhance Grip
- Interior Cushioned Footbed & Padded Collar & Tongue for Comfort
5 Things to Remember Before Buying Waterproof Hiking Boots
Try Before You Buy – This may seem pretty obvious as it’s standard with every shoe, but we can’t stress enough how important it is to know exactly what you’re looking for in terms of fit before you reach for your wallet. Make sure that you have all your foot measurements (including the width around your ankles) if you’re buying online, otherwise if you’re in-store ask them to measure your size. When the shoes are on, make sure you can wiggle your toes comfortably and that there is about ½ an inch of space between your toes and the end of the boot. Also, a good idea is to try on when it’s the late afternoon or night, as your feet will have swelled from walking around all day.
Break In, Break In, Break In! – If you don’t break in your shoes, you run the risk of forming serious blisters and other sores on your feet (no matter how thick your socks are). Always break in your shoes before setting off on your hike. Try doing 20-30 minutes round the block or around the local park to allow the material to soften around your foot shape. So if any abrasion will happen, you can get on top of it fairly quickly and wear them in before a longer hike.
Know When It Feels Right – Rule of thumb: If something feels wrong while you’re trying them on, then there probably is. This means that if you feel like something is cutting into your foot, like a lump or odd stitch, then you don’t have the proper fit. Make sure that nothing feels too lose, that there isn’t anything digging into your feet, and that your toes don’t reach the very ends of the shoes. Some total deal breakers will become apparent very quickly, smaller niggles can usually be worn in through wear. You will know yourself what feels right and what is totally off.
Reputable Brands – Purchasing from a reputable brand is absolutely important to consider, as this will ensure you’re buying high-quality materials, fit, and design. If for example we find a top selling men’s boot, we will usually check if they have the same model for women, or vice versa. It’s a little shortcut to save you time when searching. This is not to say that you shouldn’t buy off brand, actually an under-priced, budget hiking shoe is a good starting point for first timers. We didn’t fork out a lot for our first pairs, only after a couple of hikes we decided to invest in something more long-lasting, when we had more idea about what we needed.
Socks and Orthotics – A pair of thick socks or your orthotics/special insole will greatly affect the fit of the shoe. You always have to take into account that when we hike we generally wear a thick pair of hiking socks, that are 2-3 times thicker than your standard sock thickness. This has a big effect on the size of boot you’ll need. Also things like fur lining and inner soles can decrease/increase your foot space, depending on the design. Always try them on with the socks you’ll wear the most, as well as your orthotics, so that you’ll have a more practical test run, that best represents the real feel on a hike.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Waterproof my Hiking Boots?
Waterproof sprays are certainly one of the most popular ways to DIY waterproof shoes – these can include silicone sprays, but always check with the manufacturer before spraying anything as it could affect the materials.
Another common method is with wax or a waterproof cream. Depending on the product, you typically apply the wax or cream with a cloth in an even layer. Sometimes you need to buff afterwards, too.
In the long run, however, a DIY waterproof treatment only goes so far. Proper weatherproofed shoes from a credible brand will last you significantly longer and be more effective than an at-home alternative.
Are Waterproof Hiking Boots Different to Regular Hiking Boots?
Waterproof-specific boots are definitely different to regular models as they don’t share the same construction or materials.
Waterproof designs are specially crafted to withstand water penetration, so that you can use them in wet conditions. Many of the models on our list have waterproof membranes that have tiny pores that won’t let liquid through, but still allow your feet to breathe to prevent odours and sweat. Regular models don’t have this feature, and thus won’t keep you dry or comfortable in wet conditions.
Are Expensive Hiking Boots Worth It?
Expensive models are basically a long-term investment, as they are going to last you for years to come when compared to a cheap pair that will barely last a year.
We recommend thinking about how and where you’ll use your boots. If you need something for casual weekend hikes or on vacations, then an ultra-expensive pair isn’t necessarily all that important.
However, if you plan on hiking for longer periods at a time or more frequently, then investing in an expensive pair will guarantee high-quality shoes that will keep you dry, comfortable, and without foot fatigue for years to come.
Conclusion on Waterproof Hiking Boots
As you’ve now reached the end of our list, we hope you’ve found exactly what you’ve been looking for. Our choices were specifically selected based on tough criteria, from high-quality waterproof materials like rubber, leather, suede and synthetic textiles, to ventilation, ankle support, and overall comfort.
If you’re still not convinced on using waterproof hiking shoes rather than regular non-waterproof specific pairs, have another long think about the kind of terrain you’re often met with out on your hikes.
Soaked mulchy paths, slippery rocks, the odd creek or two, mid-track puddles, sudden rainfall – the last thing you need on a hike or trek is wet socks or frozen toes, and a solid pair of hiking boots made from waterproof materials will ensure those are easily avoided. Stomp through every track and pathway with the confidence and comfort you need by investing in your very own pair.