Best Women’s Backpacking Boots For Hikers

For when you need to step it up a notch, a backpacking boot offers a more protective upper and a slightly chunkier sole that can withstand long days, high miles, and heavy weight, while enduring multiple changes in terrain and weather. That through hike of the PCT, CDT, or AT? A weekend of 40 miles and 12k in gain while carrying a stove, food, tent, sleeping bag, water, layers, and more Swedish Fish than you care to admit? These are the type of boot you need when you need a little extra. These are your heavy hitters.


  • Uppers: Leather or a hardcore synthetic upper, rarely not waterproof. Leather offers excellent durability and abrasion resistance, but less breathability than its synthetic counterparts. Leather will require some break-in time but will also last many years if cared for properly. Backpacking boot uppers will always be extra-strong to protect your feet from sharp rocks, stabby branches, freezing cold nights, and ankle-deep mud, snow, or water.
  • Lugged sole: deeper lugs spaced farther apart give more traction and help shed mud and snow more easily. A prominent heel brake makes it easier to descend without sliding.
  • Ankle support: A high ankle provides extra insurance against injury and helps you balance a heavy pack, and is one of the main differences between a backpacking boot and a hiking shoe.


  • On- or off-trail travel
  • Multi-day trips
  • Rough terrain where an ankle roll is a hazard
  • Travel in areas with sharp rocks, downed trees, bushwhacking
  • Trips that require a heavy pack
  • Cold weather
  • Snow, rain, mud

Caring for Leather Boots

  • Clean your boots after each use or two: I like to stuff a small towel inside each boot, so it can absorb any dampness while I scrub the outside with a leather cleaner and a dash of water, using a rag or soft brush then rinsing them clean and rubbing them dry.
  • For full-grain leather, use waterproofing wax or cream. Squeeze it on and rub it in with a cloth, sponge, or bare hands, then wipe off any excess. Nikwax is the industry standard but SnoSeal and Kiwi make excellent products, and Aquaseal makes a combo waterproofing and conditioning cream for keeping the leather supple and soft.
  • Don’t let them sit in your car or outdoors after a hike, especially if they are wet but anytime really. Store them in a nice dry place.

Popular Backpacking Boots For Women

  • Lowa Tibet GTX
  • LaSportiva Trango Tech GTX
  • Asolo Power Matic 200 EVO GV 
  • Oboz Bridger Premium
  • Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX