If you’re a woman who likes a rugged, ready-for-anything hiking boot with great ankle support, the LOWA Mauria GTX will get the job done. It’s made specifically for a woman’s foot, which means you get the flexing action you need, where you need it, and the traction you want all along the outside of the foot bed. This is a trekking boot, ready for that hut-to-hut European adventure or that long distance hiking trail. You get a 100 percent waterproof GORE-TEX lining, and the boot comes in a wide version, too, which can be rare in such a technical boot.

The sole is VibramĀ® Apptrail, and the upper is nubuck. There’s an ingenious back lip to the high ankle support that keeps sand, dirt and tiny pebbles from making their way into your shoe. It’s all wrapped in a pretty burgundy/navy color combination, but don’t worry: this boot is a workhorse, the German workmanship obvious. It’s fairly stiff, but not as stiff as I expected a substantial boot to be, and it’s not terribly lightweight, but again, not as heavy or clunky as I feared. (It’s 1290 grams.) Pick up a pair in women’s size 5-10.5.

If you’re taking the Mauria on a trip, you might opt to wear them onto the plane, as they’ll take a decent amount of space in your luggage, but for backpacking trips that are accessible by car and train, the extra space will be well-worth making. They come at a hefty price of $325 on the LOWA site, but you can look at other online retailing sites as well to perhaps snag a deal. Either way, these are ‘longtime investment’ type boots, ready to serve you for a long time. Pick up a pair and take them on a test drive!

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