The 4 Best Military Hiking Boots – Combat Boots Review 2023

best military hiking boots, combat hiking boots

Photo by Andrew Bowden / CC BY

Even though military boots are generally favored by those in the military and security, the durability and the endurance of military boots in general has resulted in many professional hikers and backpackers turning to them as a viable footwear option.

Granted, hiking in different environments will require different types of military boots, and we’ll dive into what criteria you should be looking out for when selecting the best military hiking boots (these details are in the latter half of the article).

First, however, let’s go to our recommendations for the top military boots for hiking:

Danner Men’s Desert TFX G3 Duty Boot

Danner is one of the most reputable names in the world of boots and footwear.  They’ve been making high quality boots for a long time now and each new model has been more innovative than the last.  Their Desert TFX G3 Duty Boot is one of their best sellers.

Danner designed this boot with both stability and speed in mind, which makes this one of the best combat hiking boots.  That’s why the G3 Duty Boot is made out of a very lightweight TFX platform so your feet will not be dragged down by weight.  Yet the upper part of the boot is made out of 1,000 denier nylon and leather just like our Tactical Research example, and the cross stitched design of the boot ensures that it is as durable as possible.

Tactical Research Mini-Milk Transition TR111 Boots

The Mini-Milk Transition TR111 Boots from Tactical Research are not exactly true “military boots.” As the name suggests, these are transitional boots are designed for those who are looking for something in between traditional military boots and boots made for a natural environment.

Nonetheless, don’t mistake the middle ground these boots (see full specs) are trying to make in terms of what they are designed for as being a poor choice quality wise. The upper part of the boots is constructed out of both 1,000 denier nylon and leather. The inside of the boots features both an EVA midsole and insole, while the outsole is constructed out of VIBRAM oil over a rubber that is already slip resistant.

In short these boots meet the same level of stability and reliability that Tactical Research has been known for while offering an overall improved feel. In other words, they’re among the best military hiking boots period.

Tactical Research MiniMil TR103 by Belleville Minimalist Boot Review

Garmont T8 NFS Lightweight Tactical Boot

When speed is something that you desire the most in a hiking boot, the Garmont T8 NFS Lightweight Tactical Boot should definitely rank among your top consideration.  But not only is the T8 very lightweight, it is also very high performing.

Ventilation and breathability are key features of the boot and it is quick drying even in a wet environment, which makes periods of long walking or standing significantly easier on your feet.  Many owners of the T8 have noted that the boot runs a little small, so you may want to buy a half size or full size larger than your normal shoe size.  Whatever the case, these are among the best military hiking boots around.

Danner Men’s Tachyon Military Boot

Danner is always designing new models of boots with one big notable characteristic about that boot in mind.  In this case for the Tachyon Military Boot, that characteristic is flexibility.  This boot weighs only twenty six ounces and yet it’s been tested to meet the same standards of Danner’s other products.

The upper of the boot (see full specs) is made out of a synthetic, fast drying material that largely aids in the lower weight.  The boot is still snug despite its low weight and will fit comfortably over your foot.  Additional neat things about the Tachyon military boot includes an EVA midsole, shock absorption material, open cell polyurethane airflow material, and a three layer comfort system.

Danner Tachyon 8" Boot Review

What to Look for in the Best Military Boots for Hiking Purposes

Military boots are commonly purchased by those in the military, law enforcement personnel, and individuals who work in security.  But in recent years, the quality and longevity of the boots has caused hunters, hikers, backpackers, and other outdoor enthusiasts to give them a more serious look for their purposes as well.  Let’s look at a few examples of what you should consider in combat hiking boots.

The first thing to consider is the weight of the boots.  A heavy duty pair of boots won’t be the right choice when you’re planning on spending several days on the hiking trail.  Two of the boots in our list are noted for their exceptional lightweight and will be perfect considerations.  Hiking boots are meant to be put through a lot of walking, which means that your ankle must be covered and supported.  If not, then you’ll be in a lot of pain on that sixth or seventh mile.

Keep in mind that different environments require different kinds of boots too.  In a jungle or swamp environment, something your boots will need is to be waterproof.  If mud and water gets through your boots and goes without attention, it can cause problems with your feet. On the other hand, there’s another opinion that boots in wet environments should not be waterproof but be able to dry quickly. Take your pick.

When hiking in the desert, you’ll want the most breathable boots that you can get.  Part of preparing for hiking in the desert is to be ready to get hot, so a military boot that is made out of a lighter leather with ventilation will be your best bet for these situations.

The environment where a heaver military boot would be more desirable is in a more cold weather environment.  Ideally, this military boot should also have thermal insulation on the inside to keep your feet warm and a water repellent material on the outside to keep your feet dry.

Military boots are a perfectly viable option to look into for hiking purposes.  Just keep your environment in mind when selecting one and remember to not buy anything that appears to be cheaply made or that doesn’t feel good on your feet.  Finding and purchasing the best military hiking boots will definitely make the difference in how much you enjoy your hiking trip!

  • Owner of, Boyd Smith is a major handgun enthusiast, and although he owns Glocks, he prefers the revolving wheel type. His go-to guns are a Smith & Wesson 642 Performance Center for carry and a Ruger GP100 in the nightstand biometric safe (he has kids). He loads both revolvers with old-school 148-grain Federal Gold Medal .38 wadcutters. It’s OK if you think he’s a wimp. Email him.

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