Top 7 Mountaineering Boots

Key Points

  • A quality pair of boots is essential gear for mountaineering.

  • Companies like Scarpa and Salewa sell mountaineering boots to fit any budget.

  • A good pair of mountaineering boots must have seven essential features.

Mountaineering means adventure. Brave climbers ascend mountains' frosty, frozen sides to reach the peak. They need solid mountaineering footwear to do that.

Whether you're clambering to the top of Everest or ascending Mount Kilimanjaro, you always need a quality pair of expedition footwear.

Good mountaineering boots must have seven features: durability, insulation, comfort, water resistance, good traction, adequate ankle support, and must fit properly. That might seem like a lot, but considering that such footwear might help you in life-or-death situations, it's not all that much.

If your ice-climbing boots don't hit all these marks, cast them aside. When taking on a feat like mountaineering, you need only the best alpinism shoes.

1. La Sportiva Nepal Cube GTX Boots

La Sportiva Nepal Cube GTX Boots are superb technical hiking boots for a brisk walk on the trail or a trek through ice and snow. While not without flaws, these boots provide ample traction to keep you upright and mobile instead of cruising around on the ice like a Slip 'N Slide.

The design is rigid, giving excellent support for your ankles. That rigidity comes at a price: weight. These boots are 5.2 lbs. — less than an average newborn, but not super light.

Under normal conditions, carrying five pounds is nothing. After six hours of mountaineering, your calves feel every ounce of your boots. Solution one is to get a lighter pair of high-altitude boots. Solution two is to prepare for the ordeal by doing calf raises till the cows come home.

Even with this yellow caution card, these boots are a good choice. They ease the burden of steep ice climbing, and the tongues and cuff gaiter combo work together to keep snow out of the boots so your feet stay warm.

These aren't boots for the upper echelons of mountaineering. If you're a lowly proletariat climber dabbling in climbing, these high-altitude boots are for you.

La Sportiva Nepal Cube GTX Boots

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2. Scarpa Mont Blanc Pro GTX Boots

Scarpa Mont Blanc Pro GTX Boots are top-of-the-line glacial boots for an almost-whole-paycheck cost of $630. That's a lot of cheddar, but it's money well spent for ice-climbing boots made for all types of mountaineering.

They have a Gore-Tex lining that acts as a force shield against H20. Crafted from rugged Perwanger leather with a Schoeller integrated gaiter, these technical hiking boots are durable, versatile, and secure.

A significant security feature is the lacing system. It takes a couple of tries to master the above-average complexity lacing on these boots. Once you do, it's easy to cinch up these bad boys to give you an incredibly snug fit.

They're not the lightest boots on the market — don't forget the calf raises — nor are they the warmest. Put on extra-thick wool socks to add warmth to your feet. Once you've overcome these two issues with some easy remedies, these boots are perfect for every type of climb.

Scarpa Mont Blanc Pro GTX Boots

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3. Mammut Nordwand 2.1 High Boots

Mammut Nordwand 2.1 High Boots help you slay the toughest mountain expeditions.

One stellar feature is the separate inner boot with its own lacing system. The outside system provides snugness and support; the inner system allows for easy, minute adjustments.

Mountaineering is hard work. You're going to sweat a lot. These boots have chimney ventilation to keep your feet dry during the climb.

The high gaiters with a rubber rand work to seal out snow and debris. The soles at the base of the boots give excellent grip on rocks and snow.

This is high-performance mountaineering footwear for a high price tag. If you're among the elite climbers who take on some of the world's highest peaks, these boots are for you.

Mammut Nordwand 2.1 High Boots

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4. Salewa Raven 3 GTX Boots

Salewa Raven 3 GTX Boots are highly-regarded, inexpensive high-altitude footwear with the comfort of snow mountaineering shoes. The boots' sturdy material provides stable ankle support but may feel too stiff for some.

Staying warm is vital in cold, snowy mountain terrain. The Raven 3 GTX features layers of insulating fabric and a Gore-Tex lining to keep your feet dry and warm in chilly conditions.

They perform well in wet, icy, and cold conditions, making them quality glacial boots for the price. As noted, the boots' stiffness may be uncomfortable. If you prioritize low prices and great support, these are the climbing boots for you.

Salewa Raven 3 GTX Boots

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5. Lowa Mountain Expert GTX Evo Boots

Lowa's Mountain Expert GTX Evo Boots are a versatile piece of mountaineering footwear able to handle various terrains. These boots offer balance, support, flexibility, and durability, making them an excellent choice for mountaineering adventures.

They're not the best vertical climbing footwear on the market, so more extreme climbers need a different pair of alpinism shoes. These boots are no match for steep, icy terrain. Steeper terrain reduces the support from the boots and leads to more instability in the ankles.

These climbing boots are ideal for casual-to-moderate mountaineering. They offer many durable features and provide ample support on flatter surfaces.

To tackle more hardcore climbs, invest in other vertical climbing footwear capable of handling more demanding terrain.

Lowa Mountain Expert GTX Evo Boots

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6. Asolo Elbrus GV Boots

Asolo Elbrus GV Boots are highly-praised expedition footwear. They boast exceptional comfort, excellent arch support, and a precise fit. They cost about $430, making them a top pick for high-end climbers seeking a secure fit and comfort.

With a lightweight design, these boots are well-suited for long-distance hikes and technical climbs. They sport an eye-catching design that adds a unique flare.

A limitation of these boots is rocky terrain. You might experience instability on rugged surfaces, so be sure you're sure-footed.

Despite this, Elbrus GV Boots are a worthwhile investment for almost every climber and their mountaineering needs.

Asolo Elbrus GV Boots

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7. Zamberlan 1110 Baltoro Lite GTX Suede Boots

Zamberlan 1110 Baltoro Lite GTX Suede Boots are versatile hiking, backpacking, hunting, and mountaineering boots that deliver technical excellence and a lightweight design. A snug fit and durable suede leather makes these boots your mountaineering foot buddies for many future climbs.

They can get you through harsh backcountry terrain. The durable, sturdy suede leather provides reliable ankle support. The footbed is textile-lined for extra comfort, allowing you to wear the boots for long periods without discomfort.

The midsole acts as a shock absorber in case you take a tumble. Be assured your feet are going to be just fine. Slipping is all too common on mountain slopes, and it's nice to know these boots have the cushion and traction to protect your feet.

1110 Baltoro Lite GTX Suede Boots are a superb choice for those wanting quality boots at a moderate price. They handle a range of backcountry activities, and their construction ensures they provide reliable comfort and stability on your outdoor adventure.

Zamberlan 1110 Baltoro Lite GTX Suede Boots

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Scaling Epic Heights Requires Quality Mountaineering Boots

Environmentalist Rachel Carson says, "Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature — the assurance that dawn comes after night and spring after winter."

Nature's beauty is healing, and mountaineering allows you to experience it in its rawest form. It's not an activity for the fainthearted; you need the right scaling gear to take on the challenge.

Your snow mountaineering shoes are the foundation of mountaineering, so choose a pair wisely.

For the restless and adventurous soul seeking a new experience, try mountaineering. It's tough, but the connection with nature is unbeatable.

It's time to gear up. Go make those peaks your playground!

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