Columbia vs Merrell Hiking Shoes: Everything You Need to Know!

Merrell and Columbia are the most well-known hiking shoe brands you can find out there. Their women’s shoes are specifically designed to support the shape of women’s feet; they also offer superb design and cushioning for men’s feet.

As a general rule of thumb, your hiking shoes need to resonate with where and how frequently you hike. Gone are the days when you used to pick the most popular shoe off the rack.

Nowadays, it would help if you chose the right lightweight hiking shoes to ensure you have a smooth journey on the rocky trails without injuring yourself. That said, Merrel and Columbia excel at manufacturing exactly what you need to have a fantastic way to enjoy your hiking.

However, with competition this close, it can be daunting to choose the best one for you. Here’s an honest comparison that breaks all the unknown truths about the two brands to help you bring the real picture and make a choice.

Columbia vs Merrell Hiking Shoes: The Brand

About Columbia

In a market for quality hiking shoes? Your hunt stops here. Columbia started in 1937 to complete a mission to solve all of the problems you may face with your feet. The initiation embarked when Gert’s parents fled Nazi Germany and settled in Portland to create a small company called Columbia Hat Company.

From there, they have been excelling every footwear collection using its signature Omni-Grip feature and extra comfort that no one but Columbia offers.

About Merrell

If you are into outdoor activities, there is no way you haven’t heard of the revolutionary footwear brand Merrell who is a favorite for every hiker. For over a decade, they have been making out-of-the-box designs for over 20 million people worldwide and helping them achieve their goals.

Their super lightweight and technology- advanced shoes can tackle any trail and boost your confidence in any outdoor activity you may want to try. Their shoes are specifically designed for the go-getter personalities who see nothing but victory ahead of them.

Columbia vs Merrell Hiking Shoes Comparison

1. Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge™ Plus Waterproof Amped Hiking Boot Review

We all know how women’s feet have a relatively different structure than men’s. Most of the brands generalize their collection; Columbia makes sure to create women-specific features that trigger your problem areas and help you get your ideal fit. Here are some of the pros and cons you need to weigh the effectiveness of this shoe


1. Feminine Style

Nothing can beat Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge in its aesthetics. To help you flaunt these hiking shoes on the streets, this waterproof hiking boot is armed with excellent style with contrasting color combinations and a soft suede exterior to keep you fashionable yet safe.

2. Omni-Grip

Although I have touched on this feature before, it needed more emphasis for this gorgeous Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge shoe. The multi-terrain traction system with Omni-grip is specially formulated with a special thread to give you maximum support and traction you need to walk on a slippery surface.

Not just that, whether it is the bitter ice roads or highly wet trails, with this shoe, you can rest assured to be safe in all.

3. Adjustable Features

This incredible shoe features a lace-up closure to offer you maximum adjustability to keep your feet secure at all times.


1. Not great for heavy wear and wear

Although the shoe has shown excellent results for people who occasionally like to indulge themselves in the thrill of hiking, it lacks the right durability to help you wear this to hiking every day.

2. Merrell Women’s Moab Speed Mid GORE-TEX® Review

As with everything that’s evolving, Merrell is also going along with time to develop unique and advanced shoes packed with features offered by no other brand. The supportive footbed and versatility, without a doubt, are what Merrell stands for.

And if we are especially considering Moab speed, this bestseller leaves no stone unturned to offer you everything you need for an ideal hiking shoe.


1. Gore-Tex

Gore-tex is a high-performing layer that offers exceptional breathability to allow air ventilation in your shoe. This prevents the inevitable odor and keeps your feet from infections.

2. Vibram

The Vibram present in the rubber sole offers unmatched durability and slip resistance that you need in every hiking shoe. Its waterproof body ensures to allows you to walk on any surface without worrying about injuring your body.

3. Air Cushion

Air cushioning is needed to give you support and balance out the weight to cover your entire foot.


1. Not very durable

There have been a few complaints about the durability and the effectiveness of the shoe. To state it specifically, it makes your feet feel soggy after a few months of wear.

3. Columbia Men’s SH/FT™ Aurora OutDry™ Shoe Review

Columbia Men’s SH/FT™ Aurora OutDry™ Shoes are everything you need to look stylish and have a strong body for your shoe. Although they look like your ordinary sneakers, the OutDry laminates the wicks moisture and blocks out any wetness you may encounter throughout hiking.

It is engineered to cover all types of trail conditions all whole, offering the ever-needed comfort.


1. Aesthetically Appealing

This is especially needed when you don’t want to break your bank buying a different shoe for every other outdoor activity. Thus, it is a little investment; in the beginning, you get to avail yourself of countless benefits and years of satisfaction with this specific shoe.

2. High Performance

Its soft yet stable structure offers underfoot support, ideal for wearing on rough and rocky trails.

3. Wet-dry Traction

The protective toe cap comes with an Adapt-Trax outsole which offers a superior cushion that you need to divert the strain away from your knees and improve performance. The slip-free movement and rubber sole are great for keeping your feet planted while aiding flexibility for advanced movement.


1. Not suitable for wide feet

Due to its structure fit at the top, it is relatively tight for people with wide feet. However, this problem can be eliminated by opting for half a size bigger.

4. Merrell Men’s Moab Ventilator Hiking Shoe Review

This water-resistant hiking shoe is known for its breathability and how relaxed it makes you feel. The rubber toe bumper aid movement and the heel counter are excellent for offering ever-lasting comfort and stability. Here are some of the pros and cons to help you weigh its effectiveness.


1. Breathability

This shoe offers unprecedented air ventilation, which can keep your feet feeling cool and dry at the end of your hectic hiking day. Its structured fit and support make sure that this shoe suits your everyday wear of intense hiking routine.

2. Support

Merrell Men’s Moab Ventilator Hiking Shoe is armed with a high-performance footbed that comes with an EVA midsole to offer stability and comfort that is second to none.


1. Insole not removable

Remove insoles can be handy to allow you to have full control over your shoe. It can also be useful if you are someone struggling with arthritis or prefer more adjustability. However, this shoe doesn’t allow you to add external insoles to avail of these benefits.

Merrell vs Columbia Women & Men Shoe Comparison: Things to Consider Before Investing your Hard-earned Money

1. Price

Price is inevitably the most important factor to consider when it comes to shopping. If we specifically talk about hiking shoes, bear in mind, a good one-time investment can result in a more sensible choice than spending money on a cheaper product twice or thrice a year.

2. Outsoles

Rubber is usually ideal for hiking shoe outsoles. You can also find carbon in some mountaineering boots to improve durability.

However, their increased hardness can make your shoe feel stiff during travel. Therefore, go for hiking shoes with rubber outsoles with lug patterns to increase traction to help you move around the wet mud easily.

3. Midsole Support

The cushioning in the midsole is the key to having the perfect support and comfort. When you have a stable shoe, oy are more likely to stay indulged in your outdoor activities rather than focus on the excruciating pain in your foot. Thus, go for midsoles that are made up of EVA and polyurethane.

Features & Benefits – Similarities & Differences

Benefits of Merrell Vs Columbia Women & Men Shoe

Support and stiffness

These hiking shoes come with highly durable support to prevent snake bites from keeping you safe throughout the journey. One of the things that make them ideal for hiking is the excellent ankle and arch support that can make it effortless to walk for miles on rough surfaces.


Their all-weather versatility and comfort can easily ensure snow, dust, and rocky surfaces you might encounter in hiking terrain. Luckily, you can rest assured with these Merrell and Columbia shoes to feel energized even hiking for hours.

Merrell Vs Columbia Women & Men Shoe: How Are They Different?

One of the biggest differences between these two hiking shoe brands is how one focuses on aesthetics and is signature traction. In contrast, the other is all about using unique technology to overcome fears you’ve never experienced before.

Another thing that distinguishes between the two is that Merrell is excellent for ventilation to keep your feeling airy and comfy when Columbia is for people who favor safety and practicality over anything else.

Merrell Vs Columbia Women & Men Shoe: Are They The Same?

Regardless of how many minor differences they may have, if we look at the bigger picture, they both are great at fulfilling their purpose of being waterproof and durable for hiking. You can surely wear them if you wear shoes that offer style and functionality at the very same time.


All in all, to make sure you make a sensible decision, it is never a bad idea to do your side of the research and choose a brand that works for you rather than something that has been rave by the general public. Therefore, I’d suggest you compare all the shoes mentioned above, weigh the pros and cons and get your priorities straight before taking your pick.

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