8 Lightweight Hunting Boots Tested And Reviewed In 2024

Written By John VanDerLaan 

Updated

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Are you looking for the best lightweight hunting boots?

You have come to the right place!

There is nothing worse than spending a lot of money on a pair of boots only to find that they give you blisters, or they are not waterproof, or they fall apart after a year of heavy use.

Our staff of expert hunters have spent countless hours hunting in these lightweight boots so that they could provide you with REAL REVIEWS for each boot below, so that you can make an educated decision about which ones are right for you.

Editor's Choice

Crispi Thor II GTX Boot

crisp thor ii gtx

Staff Favorite

Zamberlan 960 Guide GORE-TEX RR Lightweight Hunting Boots

Zamberlan guide 960

Best For The Money

Cabelas Treadfast Lightweight Hunting Boots

Cabelas Treadfast

List of Lightweight Boots That We Use For Hunting

These are the lightweight boots that our staff uses on a regular basis. These are only the lightweight boots. Visit our best hunting boots page to see our top picks for all hunting boots.

How We Chose The Best Lightweight Boots For Hunting

For this review, I interviewed hunters from across the country as well as members of your staff. I asked them about their favorite lightweight boots and also about any boots that they did not like. I asked them to elaborate by sharing what they liked and didn't like about the boots. It quickly became apparent that there were some boots that were coming up all the time and were favorites for comfort and durability.

Below are the boots that came out on top.

Best Lightweight Hunting Boots: Reviews And Recommendations

Editor's Choice: Crispi Thor II GTX

Crispi Thor II GTX Boot

I used the Crispi Thor II GTX boots on an elk hunting trip in September and they may be the most comfortable boots that I have ever worn.

They are super lightweight at only 1.25 lbs per pair, and that was much appreciated after a long day chasing the elk herd through the mountains.

The sole felt fairly stiff when I first got them, but after putting some miles on them, I really started to appreciate the stiffness and now I actually prefer a little stiffer hunting boot.

I found the fit to be perfect and did not have any problem with blisters or hot spots.

I really like the Vibram sole with the Crispy Claw design, which provides awesome traction, especially when attempting to quickly ascend and descend hills to get in front of moving elk.

Crispi Thor II GTX Crispi Claw Sole

The 8" height is pretty decent, but I would love to see these in a 10" height.

They have a Gore-Tex lining, but it does not extend all the way to the top of the boot. I discovered this when I crossed a creek that was slightly more than ankle deep, but not over the top of the boot and my feet got wet.

Pros:

  • Great fit
  • Excellent comfort
  • Crispi Claw outsole provides superior traction
  • Suede and rugged, breathable PUtek Spider fabric uppers
  • Polyurethane coated leather rand, triple-stitched with Kevlar
  • Excellent durability

Cons:

  • Short Gore-Tex lining

Here is a video showing all of the features of the Crispi Thor II GTX.

If I had to have only one pair of lightweight boots for hunting, it would be the Crispi Thor II GTX. I liked them slightly better than the Zamberlan 960 Guide boots that I was wearing before I tested the Crispis.


Zamberlan 960 Guide GORE-TEX RR Lightweight Hunting Boots

These Italian made Zamberlan guide boots are some of the highest quality lightweight boots that you will find at any price.

We used these boots on an elk hunting trip out west and then on a combination mule deer and antelope hunt.

During both of these hunts we covered over 10 miles per day of varied terrain and these boots performed flawlessly.

The only reason that they did not get our editor's choice for the best lightweight hunting boot is because of their price.

They are expensive, but well worth it if you can afford them.

Zamberlan 960 Guide GORE-TEX boots protect you through harsh terrain and changing weather. These boots are built to assist hunters in managing the unforeseen in comfort. 

Zamberlan combines rugged, durable Hydrobloc® Tuscan Nubuck leather uppers with a Stiff 4mm insoles to transfer the workload from your feet to the boot for all day comfort over long treks. These boots incorporate a Gore-Tex lining to keep your feet dry and allow moisture to escape. 

They have Vibram StarTrek tread that gives a multi-directional grip across many hunting planes and conditions. Hunters often find themselves trekking many different terrains such as rocks, moss, creek beds, and other slick surfaces.

Pros:

  • Super Lightweight
  • Gore Tex waterproof/breathable linings
  • Eliminates hotspots and pinch points
  • Multi-directional grip over multiple surfaces
  • No break-in required
  • Rugged and durable

Cons:

  • They are expensive

Zamberlan 960 Guide GORE-TEX Hunting Boots are the best lightweight hunting boot available. They require no break-in period and have an athletic fit. You can eliminate blisters and pinch with the correct fitting pair of Zamberlan boots.

RELATED: Best Lightweight Base Layers


Cabelas Treadfast Lightweight Hunting Boots

Cabela's Treadfast GORE-TEX Insulated Boots for Men are designed for the modern hunter. These boots have all the bells and whistles. 

Treadfast boots are lightweight but are durable and rugged. The 600-denier textile uppers feature a support cage molded of thermoplastic, providing the highest abrasion protection. 

The GORE-TEX lining is moisture-wicking and waterproof, with breathable membranes incorporating open-cell foam. This adds up to waterproof with excellent breathability. 

3M™ Thinsulate™ Insulation inserts 800-gram insulation into the toebox, 400-gram throughout the sole, and 200-gram in the heel for the lightest weight possible and ideal thermic comfort. 

Ultralight TC3 OrthoLite memory-foam insoles provide three layers of supreme cushioning, making those long treks in the field or mountains enjoyable.  All-weather and all-terrain footing are possible with the inspiration of the BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tire tread. This Treadfast's proprietary tread design performs in harsh terrain and inclement weather.

Pros:

  • Rugged yet lightweight, 600-denier textile uppers
  • Available in wide width
  • Ultralight TC3 OrthoLite memory-foam insoles
  • All-terrain outsoles - inspired by BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tire tread

Cons:

  • Narrow 
  • Hard to break-in

Cabela is a name hunters trust because of its dedication to outdoor sports. The Treadfast Hunting Boot was designed with you in mind. It is an attempt to check all the boxes with the latest footwear technology, and they succeeded, in our opinion. These boots are all-terrain and all-weather. Summer or the dead of winter, these boots have got you covered.


Best For Upland Hunting: Irish Setter Wingshooter Boots

Irish Setter Wingshooter Lightweight Hunting Boots

The team at Irish Setter have never stopped living for the chase and perfecting their skill in order to bring you the most advanced and top performing upland hunting boots on the market. 

We used these upland boots for pheasant hunts in South Dakota and Montana. The lightweight and durable construction really impressed us, as did the breathable, waterproof membranes.

Created with 100% full-grain, waterproof leather uppers, this boot from Irish Setter will keep you in style and comfort. This boot is completely waterproof thanks to  breathable moisture wicking nylon linings and 100% waterproof UltraDry™ technology 

Add the removable polyurethane footbeds, shock-absorbing rubber midsoles, lightweight composite shanks and Goodyear welt construction, and you have this top performer from Irish Setter. With premium stability and durability, you can’t go wrong.

Pros:

  • Full-grain, waterproof leather uppers
  • Famous white prairie sole that sheds mud and debris
  • Waterproof UltraDry™ technology 
  • Goodyear welt construction
  • Super comfortable

Cons:

  • White prairie sole is great for hunting, but not intended for working on asphalt or concrete

Irish Setter Wingshooters are the best lightweight boots for upland hunting. They are constructed of 100% leather. Comfort and protection come standard in this pair of boots. These boots will keep you warm, dry, and in style.


Best Rugged Lightweight Boot: Kenetrek Hardscrabble Boots

Kenetrek Hardscrabble Boots

The Kenetrek Hardscrabble boots are not as lightweight as our top picks, coming in at 3.2 lbs, but they are incredibly rugged and durable.

They feature a one piece full grain leather upper with no seams for excellent durability and it doesn't let water in.

Speaking of water, they also have a Windtex® waterproof breathable flexible membrane that allows sweat to escape without letting moisture into the boot.

I love the Lightweight K-Talon™ outsoles, they provide excellent traction without adding weight to the boot.

I found the fit on this boot to be excellent and very comfortable. They are a bit stiff and provide great ankle support, but that stiffness is what makes them so rugged.

Pros:

  • 2.8mm thick premium full grain leather uppers with one piece vamp construction
  • True to size
  • Comfortable
  • 100% waterproof Windtex® waterproof breathable flexible membrane
  • Lightweight K-Talon™ outsoles provide excellent traction
  • Excellent ankle stability

Cons:

  • Ruggedness adds extra weight

I love these boots and have worn them for years. The reason that they are not at the top of this list is because, while they are lightweight, they are heavier than our top picks above.


Under Armour Valsetz Reaper Lightweight Waterproof Hunting Boots for Men

Under Armour has entered the hunting boot market. These boots are the lightest in their class, weighing in at just 19 ounces each. Don’t let the weight fool you, though, because there are still loads of features.

Ultra Dry 100% waterproofing keeps your feet dry, and PrimaLoft insulation will keep them warm. Wet feet are miserable. 

One of the best features is the Rubber-RPM composite outsole. It is a rugged outsole that provides a superior grip and the feel of an athletic shoe. EnerG is a dual-density midsole with high-rebound EVA, which means support for each and every stride. A fusion of a polyurethane foam insole and an energy-returning midsole help keep fatigue at bay on those long days hunting or scouting.

Molded TPU toe caps protect your boots for durability and long-wear. Molded Contoura Support anti-odor footbed technology defends your feet from that awful stink at the end of the day. Micro G foam midsoles innovation helps reduce pressure on the top of your feet. This means no more blisters or sore spots.

Pros:

  • Tough suede leather uppers with abrasion-resistant ripstop fabric panels
  • Mossy Oak Country camouflage
  • Molded Contoura Support anti-odor footbed
  • Micro G foam midsoles 

Cons:

  • Laces are too short
  • snug-fit, so size up and go wide 

Under Armour Valsetz Reaper boots are the best affordable boots that we have used for elk hunting. These are our go-to boots along with lightweight hunting pants when we are chasing elk up and down the mountain in september.

These boots have a feature those around you will appreciate. ScentBan technology kills odor causing bacteria. Ultra Dry 100% waterproofing keeps your feet dry, and PrimaLoft insulation will keep them warm.


ROCKY Wildcat Lightweight Hunting Boots

These Rocky Wildcats are guaranteed to keep water out with proven Rocky Waterproof Construction. 

900D Cordura nylon may be light, but it is tough. Add a PVC outsole, and you have a boot that can withstand the long haul. You can be confident in those long hunts in the backcountry.  

The PVC outsole was designed to be resistant to oils, slippery terrain, heat, and abrasions. 800-gram Thinsulate Ultra Insulation makes sure your toes stay warm while chasing the big one. A cushioned footbed gives comfort for those long treks.

You really get a lot of value in these boots. A lot of great features at a very reasonable price and weighing in at only 2.9 lbs.

Pros:

  • 400 grams of 3M Thinsulate Ultra Insulation
  • Rocky Air-Port cushion footbed
  • Durable, heavy duty polyurethane outsole
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • Must be broken in
  • Not leather

Rocky Men's Wildcat Waterproof Insulated Boots are the best value we have found in lightweight boots for hunting. These boots may look like a throwback, but their cutting-edge technology is a part of the future.  They are 100% waterproof, durable, and warm.


Rocky Men's Lynx Waterproof Snake Hunting Boots

Rocky Men’s Lynx Waterproof Snake Hunting Boot was developed to be snakeproof. When hunting or scouting in known snakey areas, protecting yourself from dangerous snake bites is imperative. 

CORDURA fabric is rugged enough to be able to endure rough conditions but also lightweight. These boots with rubber Lynx outsole are able to endure many diverse terrains while remaining comfortable. 

Rocky Lynx boots offer abrasion protection on both the toe box and heel. The Terra Suspension polyurethane footbed absorbs shock and provides comfort. With laces and a side zipper, these boots are easy to get on and off. These boots are perfect for swampy and dense terrain to stay dry and protected.

Pros:

  • Lace-up hunting boot featuring D-ring hardware and cushioned footbed
  • Reinforced toe and heel cap
  • Snake proof

Cons:

  •  We have had a zipper fail
  • Requires break-in

Rocky Men's Lynx Waterproof Snake Boots are the best lightweight snake proof boots that we have used for hunting. These are a must if you know you will be trekking through a known snake-infested area. This pair of boots provide protection from snakes and are 100% waterproof.


Final Thoughts

Lightweight boots are a key for early season and warm weather hunting. We have used and tested all of the boots above in all different situations, different terrain and different weather conditions.

The most important thing is to find a good fit that provides comfort and protection from the elements, and fits your hunting style.

RELATED: What Is The Hunter's Most Important Item Of Clothing?

With proper care, cleaning and storage, your boots should last through years of heavy use. 

Your boots are one of the most important pieces of hunting gear. Take the time to choose the right pair for the kind of hunting that you do.

If you are having trouble breaking in a new pair of boots, you can try this trick. Soak them in hot water, put them on, and wear them until they are dry. This will help to form them to your feet for a quick breaking in period.

Photo of author

John VanDerLaan

John VanDerLaan is the managing editor here at DeerHuntingGuide.net. He oversees a team of editors, writers and pro staff that are subject matter experts in hunting and hunting gear. John's expertise includes thoroughly testing all types of hunting gear, as well as hunting all over the U.S. and Canada. While his hunting expertise includes game birds, small game and large game, his favorite game animal is the whitetail deer and he loves to share the knowledge that he has gained over 40 years of chasing the wily whitetail with both archery gear and firearms. John is an active member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America.

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