Best Military Boots of 2019 – Tactical Boots


Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid

Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid

Whether you are a soldier, law enforcement officer or a hunter, you need good tactical boots which are comfortable to wear and protect your feet from injuries. Military boots differ greatly in weight, breathability, ankle support and traction. Hence you should choose your boots according to the activities you plan to do. In the following we selected the best military boots. To suit everyone’s wishes and needs we listed different types of military boots – from those that are suitable for carrying heavy loads to those that are best for lightweight day tasks. The qualities these military boots have in common are robustness, durability and good value for the money.

In case that you are not strictly looking for military/tactical boots also check out our review of the Best Hiking and Backpacking Boots.

1. Buying Military Boots – What is important?

Weight:

The lighter the boots, the more comfortable they are to wear. In this selection we only included lightweight military boots which utilize sophisticated materials to withstand extreme field use (such as the Cordura fabric which is very sturdy but lightweight). The heaviest pair of boots in this selection weighs around 3 pounds.

Height:

Low-cut boots are best for lightweight day tasks while mid- and high-cut boots are best for tasks that require carrying more equipment (tactical backpack, tactical vest etc.). The higher the boot, the better ankle support and protection it provides. However, keep in mind that high-cut boots don’t provide as good breathability as low-cut boots as they cover more of your calves.

Upper Material:

Military boots typically have uppers made of leather and synthetic materials because such uppers provide good durability, abrasion resistance and breathability.

Different types of leather are used for uppers; full-grain leather, split-grain leather and synthetic leather. Full-grain leather is very durable but not as breathable as split-grain leather. Split-grain leather provides superb breathability but on the other hand it does not match full-grain leather when it comes to abrasion resistance. Synthetic leather (artificial leather) provides good durability but is not air-permeable and thus boots that are equipped with such uppers often make your feet warm and sweaty.

Lining:

The lining is the fabric on the inside of the boot and is typically made of a breathable, moisture-wicking and odor-resistant material. Some boots have waterproof lining (for example Gore-Tex lining). Waterproof boots are slightly less breathable than non-waterproof boots and dry longer. In this selection we listed two pairs of waterproof military boots and three pairs of non-waterproof military boots.

Sole:

The sole consists of an insole (footbed), midsole and an outsole.

The midsole provides cushioning and is made either of EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) foam or PU (polyurethane). PU midsoles are more durable than EVA midsoles (they don’t get “flat” as fast as EVA midsoles) but on the other hand they are also more expensive.

The outsole provides traction and is equipped with lugs. The deeper and thicker are the legs, the better traction it provides.

2. The Best Military Boots Review

Best Military Boots

Best Military Boots

The Best Military Boots – List

  1. Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid
  2. Adidas GSG 9.2 Boots
  3. 5.11 TacLite Boots
  4. Under Armour Valsetz RTS
  5. Magnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip

Comparison

Feature/Product Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid Adidas GSG 9.2 Boots5.11 TacLite Boots 6Under Armour Valsetz RTSMagnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip
Weight (pair)2 lbs. 7 oz. (1100 g)2 lbs. 10 oz. (1200 g) 2 lbs. 7 oz. (1100 g)2 lbs. 7 oz. (1120 g)3 lbs. (1400 g)
Upper MaterialSplit Grain Leather & CorduraFull Grain Leather & TextileSplit Grain Leather & CorduraSynthetic Leather & TextileSplit Grain Leather & Textile
LiningGore-TexClimaproof PolyesterPolyesterPolyester
MidsolePUEVA EVA & PU stabilizerEVA & PU stabilizerEVA
OutsoleLowa Cross II Traxion 5.11 UAMagnum
HeightOver-the-ankleFull-height Over-the-ankle (6 in.)Over-the-ankle (7 in.)Full-height (8 in.)
WaterproofYesYesNoNoNo
Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid

Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid

1. Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid

Suitable for:

  • Military
  • Law enforcement
  • Hunting
  • Everyday use

The Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid boots are very popular among soldiers because they provide superb support and cushioning. Furthermore, they are also lightweight and very breathable. The Lowa military boots feature split-grain leather/Cordura uppers for good abrasion resistance. They differ from the other products in this review by having polyurethane midsoles. Due to the polyurethane midsoles, these military boots offer a great level of comfort and support when you are carrying heavy loads such as a tactical vest, backpack etc. However, the PU midsoles also make the Lowa boots more expensive than other boots in this review. The Lowa Zephyr GTX Mid boots are equipped with Gore-Tex lining which keeps your feet dry on a rainy day. These boots are perfect for those who often carry heavy equipment in the field. Lowa also offers these boots without Gore-Tex lining (Lowa Zephyr TF). They are available in several different colors.

 

Pros:

  • Quality
  • Weight
  • PU midsoles
  • Cordura fabric in uppers
  • Support

Cons:

  • Price

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Adidas GSG 9.2 Boots

Adidas GSG 9.2 Boots

2. Adidas GSG 9.2 Boots

Suitable for:

  • Military
  • Law enforcement
  • Hunting
  • Everyday use

The Adidas GSG 9.2 tactical boots are slightly higher than the Lowa Zephyr boots mentioned above. They are primarily intended for urban combat and are used by SWAT teams in the US and GSG 9 unit in Germany. The Adidas boots have robust full-grain uppers which provide great protection and durability. The boots are equipped with Climaproof lining to keep your feet dry in wet conditions. Furthermore, the Climaproof lining is odor-resistant. The midsole is made of EVA foam, but the boot also has an ADIPRENE insert under the heel for better cushioning.  The Adidas GSG 9.2 tactical boots are, due to their durability, functionality and low weight, perfect for urban combat situations. They are only available in black.

 

Pros:

  • Durability
  • Full-grain leather
  • Cushioning (ADIPRENE inserts)
  • Weight

Cons:

  • /

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5.11 TacLite Boots

5.11 TacLite Boots

3. 5.11 TacLite Boots 6

Suitable for:

  • Military
  • Law enforcement
  • Hunting
  • Everyday use

The 5.11 TacLite 6 military boots are very light and breathable. They are designed for various tactical tasks in hot and arid climates. The 5.11 boots feature split-grain leather/Cordura uppers which provide good durability and breathability. Unlike, the products mentioned above, these military boots do not have waterproof lining. Therefore, they dry slightly faster. The midsole is made of EVA foam but features a polyurethane stabilizer for better stability. The outsole has multi-directional lugs for good traction and is oil- and slip-resistant. The 5.11 TacLite boots are also available in black color (these utilize full-grain leather instead of split-grain leather) and in full-height version.

 

Pros:

  • Breathability
  • Durability
  • Support
  • Traction
  • Price
  • Weight

Cons:

  • /

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Video

Under Armour Valsetz RTS

Under Armour Valsetz RTS

4. Under Armour Valsetz RTS

Suitable for:

  • Military
  • Law enforcement
  • Hunting
  • Everyday use

The Under Armour Valsetz RTS is another very light military boot. It has a synthetic leather/textile upper with a welded, abrasion-resistant film around the perimeter of the foot for good durability. Synthetic leather is not air-permeable but as the majority of the upper consists of textile, the Under Armour boots provide good breathability nevertheless.  The midsole is made of EVA foam and features a polyurethane shank for mid-foot support and the right amount of rigidity. The lining is odor-resistant but not waterproof. The Under Armour Valsetz RTS tactical boots are, due to their low weight and good support, perfect for just about any tactical task in moderate weather. They are available in the colors black, coyote and desert.

 

Pros:

  • Weight
  • Support
  • Traction
  • Price

Cons:

  • Synthetic leather

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Magnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip

Magnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip

5. Magnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip

Suitable for:

  • Military
  • Law enforcement
  • Hunting
  • Everyday use

The Magnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip boots are extremely rugged and durable while being the least expensive boots in this review. However, they are also the heaviest boots in this review. The boots have split-grain leather/textile uppers for good breathability and abrasion resistance. The midsole is made of EVA foam, but also features a fiberglass shank for mid-foot support. The Magnum boot is equipped with an aggressive slip and oil-resistant carbon rubber outsole for good traction. It also has a high-quality YKK zipper on the side which allows you to quickly put the boot on or off. The Magnum Response III 8.0 Side-Zip boots are very durable but also heavier than other boots in this review. We recommend them to those who don’t mind wearing slightly heavier boots.

 

Pros:

  • Durability
  • Side zipper
  • Breathability
  • Price

Cons:

  • Weight

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3. The most attractive product in the review

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Post Author

Post Author

Blaz

Outdoor enthusiast with experience in all types of hiking and mountaineering. Hiked in the Alps, Iceland and other countries. In love with via ferrata trails and snow-covered slopes. Check out my hikes.

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