If you need an ATV of a boot that’s supportive enough for big-load backpacking or mountaineering, the Croda (Syncro is the women’s) is your ride. “When I hiked the North Fork Quinault River Trail in Washington, the Croda bulldozed through river crossings, branches, mud, and snow,” says one tester. The cut is the highest in the test, and the midsole is rigid and thick. Break-in required. $215; 3 lbs. 3 oz.; 8-14; Syncro GTX: $235; 2 lbs. 9 oz. (7); 6-11; garmontusa.com
Fast-paced hikers requiring the agility and lightness of a running shoe but with the support and traction of a hiking boot.