Waterproof, versatile and lightweight – what’s not to love?
Not a traditional boot
Slightly large fit
By Faye M Smith
Looking for a new pair of walking boots? The Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes is one of the best women’s walking shoes – and they are guaranteed to be 100% waterproof.
How to be sure they are the right hiking boots for you though? We’ve put a pair through its paces from the moment they were unboxed, so you can see if you think they are worth the investment.
Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes specifications
Size range: UK 4-8
Who will the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes suit?
The Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes will suit someone who mixes both city hikes with off-road adventures.
What are the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes like to wear?
These are easy to slip on, lightweight to wear, plus very breathable. Although feet feel secure, as these are more of a shoe than a traditional walking boot it meant I didn't feel quite as restricted as usual. A big bonus for me is that they don’t look like walking shoes, so while they are great on long and treacherous walks, you also won’t look out of place nipping to the high street. Plus, they are not too chunky if you are wearing them with leggings or shorts. They remind me of a wider version of Keen’s Terradora Waterproof Hiking Shoes.
These have a wide toe box, so plenty of room to move and wiggle toes, but are still supportive around the heel. The laces are a good length and didn’t need tucking out of the way.
The Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes design
At first glance, these look like a chunky trainer. The black design with dark red (almost burgundy) trim is stylish and modern. Plus, both shoes have a reflective triangular pattern on each side, which is a nice touch for safety if some of your hikes take you on country roads at dusk.
The versatility of the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes
Despite looking like a trainer, these walking shoes are very versatile, especially as they are 100% waterproof. In fact, they do everything a boot does – without the extra bulk! That means that, from walking the dog in wet grass to hiking up the side of a mountain, these are a great alternative for anyone who hates the feel of a traditional walking boot. Plus, they are smaller and lighter than a lot of the more traditional boots, so they are easier to pack in a suitcase if you have limited allowance. These also work for a commute in snowy and wet conditions.
Sizing and comfort of the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes
I tried and tested a pair of the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes in a UK size five. Wearing a thin sock, I found them to be slightly too large, but perfect with a pair of thick socks. The extra space was in the width and toe box, which is large and just a fraction too long. Available in half sizes, I would recommend going down half a size if you plan to wear these on a daily basis without hiking socks.
Out of all the walking boots tried and tested, these were definitely one of the most comfortable, which is thanks to the OrthoLite Multisport footbed. Despite being walking shoes, not boots, my ankles were still very well supported. They are a great alternative if you find boots too restrictive to wear. And, while my feet felt slightly hot after wearing them for extended periods, I wasn’t overly sweaty, as the mesh design is very breathable.
How well do the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes grip?
I often find that while walking boots grip well on grass or gravel in the countryside, they can easily skid on a slippery train platform floor. However, these ones felt very secure and non-slip. This is thanks to the VIBRAM OPTI-STUD sole, which provides excellent traction.
How do the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes rate online?
Online reviews are good, with many users satisfied with how sturdy, well made and comfortable the shoes are. All the reviews I found online confirmed this Berghaus pick is fully waterproof, even in very heavy or torrential rain.
Are the Berghaus Women’s Explorer FT Active Gore-Tex Shoes worth buying?
Yes, these are definitely worth buying, simply because you don’t have to climb mountains to get the most out of them. They are comfortable, look good and perform just as well on a school run in the snow as during longer treks across the countryside.
Plus, despite being very well made, they are still covered by the Berghaus lifetime guarantee. This means that they have to keep delivering the same performance as when they are new, according to the product’s expected lifetime, or you’ll be entitled to a replacement.
Faye M Smith is an award-winning journalist with over 15 years experience in the magazine industry. Her continued work in the area of natural health won her the coveted title of theHealth Food Manufacturers’ Association (HFMA) Journalist of the Year Award 2021.
Currently Acting Health Editor across several brands including woman&home, Woman and Woman’s Own, Faye specialises in writing about mental health, the menopause, and sex and relationships. In fact, having previously been the go-to sex columnist for Now magazine, there isn't much she won't discuss when it comes to women's health. This makes her the best person to review must-buy sex toys, describe how to have a mind-blowing orgasm or explain how to navigate sex in the shower without it ending in a medical emergency.
While not anti-gym, Faye’s fitness routine is more focussed on finding inner balance rather than burning excess calories. An advocate of mindfulness, she loves power breathing, yoga and plenty of walking in nearby woodlands rather than a sweaty HIIT class. Follow her @fayetuned
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