Merrell vs Columbia Hiking Boots

Merrell is a noticeable hiking boot brand for its comfortable out-of-the-box boot. Likewise, Colombia is also a famous hiking boot brand that never compromises quality. However, a few differences make a diversion among these boot brands.


The main difference between Merrell and Columbia hiking boots is that the Merrell hiker’s boots have higher traction, and grip on the ground whereas Columbia boots have somewhat lesser traction. Also, Merrell's boots are more ventilated than Columbia's.

Still, both hiking boots are reliable and best for day-long wearing, comfort and quality. You don’t have any reason to ditch any of this footwear. Now let’s take a quick sneak peek at both boots’ differences that help you make decisions.

Comparison Between Columbia vs Merrell Hiking Boots

FeaturesMerrell Hiking BootsColumbia Hiking Boots
Imagemerrell hiking boot for buyA columbia hiking boot
Check Current PricePrice of Merrell BootsPrice of Columbia Boots
BreathabilityIdeal breathability to keep airflow regulated. The mesh uppers are excellent for moist-wicking Less breathable and work best on cold days
Weight Super lightweight and never put a strain on feet A bit heavier but offers stability on hiking
Durability It may get wear and tear soon, lesser durable Extremely durable and reliable quality for hiking
Best forHikers who prefer well-maintained trailsTrail running shoes, comfortable outdoor shoes, or snow boots.
Traction/outsoleIdeal feet functionality but may lack in traction at timesIdeal traction and grip on all terrains with Omni-grip technology
Ankle supportLake in ankle supportSolid and best ankle support
SizeThey are wider and have a roomy interior, comfortable out of the boxNot wider and a bit narrow toe box, some models may run half a size up 
WaterproofingUnspecified technology for waterproofing, less waterproofGore-tex waterproofing for keeping feet dry and warm
Comfort/ paddingComfortable but not for snow hiking, minimal interiorComfortable especially in snow, It has thick padding
PriceReasonably priced bootsExpensive boots but available in different ranges
StyleSubtle style and sober aestheticsMore stylish and offer a range of aesthetics
BrandKnown for being ultra-lightweight hiking  bootsKnown for the Omni-Grip feature in hiking boots
Best PicksCheck Best Merrell Hiking BootsCheck Best Columbia Hiking Boots

Merrell Hiking Boots Pros and Cons

  • Affordable in price
  • Lightweight material
  • Best ventilation with breathable mesh
  • Comfortable and waterproof
  • Ankle support needs improvements
  • Less stylish

Columbia Hiking Boots Pros and Cons

  • Stylish and trendy design
  • Supreme durability
  • Best for keeping feet dry in snow
  • Best traction with Omni grip
  • Gore-Tex waterproofing
  • Expensive
  • Can be a bit heavy
  • A bit tighter: need a break-in

Video Comparison of a Boot Review From Both Brands

A Merrell Hiking Boot

A Columbia Hiking Boot

Features Compared Between Merrell and Columbia Boots

And now, let’s compare the features of Merrell and Columbia hiking boots with slight details.

1. Traction and Grip

Merrell hiking boots have lesser ground traction, whereas Columbia bots have shown ideal results for maintained stability and traction. Moreover, Columbia offers the best non-skid property in the hiker boot, which is appreciable, which means Columbia boots help with hiking in rain. However, both brands (Merrell and Columbia) are reliable for feet functionality and outsole resilience. For example, I found during hiking that Columbia’s Newton Ridge Plus II has far better traction and grip than any Merrell boot.

2. Breathability and Ventilation

Sweaty feet are notably bad for ideal grip but also for foot hygiene.  Therefore, breathable boots are best for hiking. In view of comparison, the Merrell hiking boots are known for robust breathability and best airflow, while the Columbia hiking boots are warmer and work best for snow hiking. Columbia brand has a more padded interior; therefore, they are less breathable than Merrell. Regarding breathability, Merrell Moab 2 Mid Hiking Boot is a winner and one of the best Merrell hiking boots.

3. Price

The price factor is always essential in hiking boots. However, when it comes to Merrell and Columbia comparison, Merrell offers you a reasonable price for a more significant chunk of purple. On the contrary, Columbia hiking boots can be expensive. However, the deals, sales offers, and other enticing offers can certainly make the price reasonable.

4. Style and Design

If you are one of those hikers who prefer styling in boots, the Merrell hiking boots may be dull for you. On the other hand, the Columbia boots are more stylish and offer modern details on the uppers, colors, and overall design.

Columbia boots are more aesthetically appealing, whereas Merrell boots look more solid, professional, and subtle.

merrell hiking boot design
Merrell Hiking Boot Design
Columbia Hiking Boot Design
Columbia Hiking Boot Design

5.  Waterproofing Performance

Dry feet add to better gripping and are the best feet hygienic for hikers. That said, Merrell boots are good for keeping feet dry but may not be suitable for hardcore hiking while you pass a water stream, whereas Columbia boots are best for waterproofing with Gore-Tex membrane usability.

I would say if you are snow hiking, go for a Columbia boot like Columbia Women’s Ice Maiden Ii Snow Boot, and if you are going in muddy or wet areas, then Merrell’s Moab series is good for you.

6. Ankle Support

Ankle support is best for keeping the feet well-fitted and ensuring every footstep is from. In Merrell vs. Columbia, the former hiking boot has rather less ankle support, whereas the former hiking boot has added ankle support.

Columbia boots ensure solid and wrapping ankle support that maintains the balance for climbing, ascending, and descending.

merrell hiking boot ankle support
Merrell Hiking Boot Ankle Support
columbia hiking boot ankle support
Columbia Hiking Boot Ankle Support

7. Durability

Durability is the primary factor that tells you about the quality of the footwear. The Columbia boots are more durable for hiking and have extremely powerful feet functions for sharper cuts. They offer you a thickset outsole with quality material choice and neat seams.

On the flip side, the Merrell hiking boots are less durable and make the best performance for mid-range hiking based on my experience. The seams may get worn out, and the sole may come off over hardcore hiking.

8. Weight 

Merrell boots are known for their lightweight material, and white Columbia hiking boots are a bit heavyweight. If you want to hike with a maintained pace, the lightweight Merrell boots will help you in hiking and ascending waves if you want to go on a mid-range hiking trip, Columbia boot with a comfortable, warm, and stable design is your go-to boot.

9. Size and Toe Box

The size of the boot may vary from brand to brand. Merrell hiking boots are somewhat wider for their interior, and the roomy toe box goes well with hiking boot socks. However, Columbia hiking boots are somewhat narrow and may need a break-in.

10. Brand

Both Merrell and Columbia hiking boot bands are the best in quality and comfort. However, Merrell boots are lighter in weight, and they are best for outdoor feet functionality. However, the Columbia boots are rather durable and have the best warmth for snow hiking. However, both bands are best for hiking with dedicated design and thickness in the outsole. People show a 50-50% trend of use on both brands.

Other Relevant Comparisons


Tim Campbell

I am Tim. Getting the inherited hobby from my father when I was a child to the fully grown individual I always loved boots. I live in hilly areas and love to explore the world at heights. That's where my profound hobby of boots collection comes in. I have tried a lot of boots and now helping my community to do better when having fun in different conditions like hilly areas, work, or farming. In this very blog, I have covered some awesome reviews and information that you may get hard otherwise. All of my self-experience and expert advice I have incorporated in this blog.

Leave a Comment