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These Winter Hiking Boots Will Help You Tackle the Trails In the Snowiest Conditions

Before you venture off the beaten path, slip into these winter hiking boots to keep your toes toasty and dry.
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After being cooped up indoors for weeks on end, you might find yourself racing to a local hiking trail on the very first sunny (albeit snowy) day of winter. But the breathable boots you wear to traverse the trails throughout the summer may not be cut out for the wet, slippery conditions you'd often come across in colder months. Venture outside anyway, and you could be in for a nasty fall and, at the very least, soaked socks.

The solution: winter hiking boots. Designed to provide additional traction, waterproofing, and, in some cases, insulation, winter hiking boots will reduce the odds you topple over while walking across an icy patch and your feet become drenched over the course of your journey.

To make your next snowy or sleety outdoor adventure much less chilly (and potentially less painful), nab a pair of these best winter hiking boots now. (Promise, it's worth it; here's why taking a winter hike is the best way to enjoy the trails.)

KEEN Women's Revel IV Polar Boot
Credit: KEEN

KEEN Women's Revel IV Polar Boot

Buy It, $180

Tackling trails that are fit better for polar bears than humans? These winter hiking boots will be your saving grace. The shoes are built with a waterproof exterior, insulation that's rated to keep your feet warm in temperatures as low as -25°F, and three layers of heat-trapping materials under your foot. Plus, the multi-directional lugs provide supreme traction on snow and ice, which one reviewer says makes all the difference. "For once, I'm not slipping and sliding on everything," wrote the shopper. "I can walk on little hills and slippery snow surfaces and feel like I am sturdy. Way better than your typical snow boot that simply freezes up in the cold and becomes treacherous on your feet. Why all boots don't have these soles is beyond me."

Merrell Thermo Aurora 2 Mid Shell Waterproof Boots
Credit: Amazon

Merrell Thermo Aurora 2 Mid Shell Waterproof Boots

Buy It, $160

Thanks to the fleece lining, wool uppers, and added insulation, these winter hiking boots will keep everything from your ankles to your toes feeling cozy while you traverse through the tundra — or your backyard. The boots are equipped with all-terrain outsoles and deep lugs to provide traction on wet, icy, and mixed winter conditions; cushioning in the heel to absorb shock and add stability; and a waterproof shell to keep water and snow from seeping in. And according to one reviewer, these winter hiking boots are tough enough to handle the harsh conditions of the Midwest. "It's warm, comfortable, and taller than my previous boots that allowed snow to get inside while working in deep snow," they wrote. "The grip has been good and I felt secure." (Don't forget to pair your winter hiking boots with an ultra-cozy coat.)

Columbia Women's Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot
Credit: Amazon

Columbia Women's Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot

Buy It, $90

These winter hiking boots are living proof that you don't need to compromise on style to get the features you need for your snowy treks. The chic boots are designed with waterproof leather and mesh, supportive cushioning, and grippy rubber outsoles that allow you to trek over slick rocks and snowy surfaces without taking a tumble. Since the boots aren't insulated, reviewers say they can be worn in spring, summer, and winter — but don't worry, they'll still keep your feet dry in wet conditions. "I've worn them in the snow for hours and [spent] hours winter hiking high peaks, and my feet may have been sweaty but never wet from slush or snow," wrote one of the nearly 25,000 five-star reviewers.

Merrell Thermo Chill Mid Waterproof Boots
Credit: Merrell

Merrell Thermo Chill Mid Waterproof Boots

Buy It, $110

These winter hiking boots may look exactly like the ones you'd wear in the dead of summer, but as the saying goes, looks can be deceiving. The boots are crafted with waterproof leather and mesh uppers that protect you from wind and icy puddles, a tongue that prevents snow and debris from sneaking into your shoes, and lightweight insulation that helps keep your feet warm in the freezing temperatures. The insulating materials work so well, one reviewer says you don't even need to wear thick socks with the boots. "My feet tend to get cold, but not in these babies!" they wrote. "I spent hours out in foot-deep snow and my feet stayed toasty warm. I also noticed with these boots that after a long hike my feet didn't hurt like they normally do in my smaller-soled hiking shoes."

Merrell Women's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
Credit: Amazon

Merrell Women's Moab 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot

Buy It, $135

If a shoe's name stands for "Mother of All Boots," you know it's gotta be good. The winter hiking boot is crafted from suede leather and mesh, equipped with waterproofing that keeps water out while still allowing moisture (re: sweat) to escape, and contains a nylon shank in the arch to provide support and stability. Though the boots aren't specifically designed for winter conditions, reviewers say they still keep their feet nice and toasty. "Even without the multiple pairs of socks, the boots proved to be super warm and waterproof," wrote one five-star reviewer. "I wore them trekking thru Iceland winter glacier/hiking trails with snow and ice and never had a problem with my feet getting wet or not staying warm." (Related: How to Spend a Healthy Weekend In Iceland)

KEEN Women's Targhee III Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot
Credit: Amazon

KEEN Women's Targhee III Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot

Buy It, $150

If you're constantly heading outdoors in sleety conditions, stash a pair of these winter hiking boots in your closet. These boots, which are designed to help you tackle all terrains, feature a waterproof, breathable membrane that keeps your feet dry when you step in icy puddles, as well as rubber outsoles that provide traction on rocky surfaces. And trust, the shoes can stand up against the heaviest of rain and snow storms. "I've dunked my foot in a stream to test its waterproof-ness. It works!" wrote one reviewer. "I snowshoed in them today, feet stayed warm and dry." (Looking for ways to get active outdoors this winter? Turn to this guide for inspo.)

Oboz Bridger 7" Insulated Waterproof Boots
Credit: Oboz

Oboz Bridger 7" Insulated Waterproof Boots

Buy It, $185

Whether you're taking to the snow-covered trails or your driveway with a shovel, these winter hiking boots will keep you comfortable and standing upright. The waterproof shoes feature special winterized rubber soles that provide traction in even the slickest conditions, as well as thermal insoles that reflect heat back to your foot to keep you frostbite-free. The heels also have a lip to easily secure snowshoe straps, if that's your jam. TL;DR: "You'd be hard pressed to find a better boot than the Bridger 7 for hiking in cold country," wrote one reviewer. "I have been on a mission to find great boots for a while. These are so comfortable, snuggly warm, and fit perfectly."