Hoka One One Anacapa Mid GTX Review
Cons: Not waterproof, relatively low flood height, limited support
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Hoka One One Anacapa Mid GTX
$185.00 at REI
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|Pros||Lightweight, wide base, easy to slide on and off||Top-level hiking boot performance, excels in all metrics||Incredibly lightweight, comfortable||Well-cushioned, waterproof, durable||Good all around performance, lightweight, supportive and comfortable|
|Cons||Not waterproof, relatively low flood height, limited support||Expensive, not as great for hot and dry climates||Less durable than heavier models, thin sole||Heavy for their height, feet get especially sweaty||Could be more breathable, not great traction on smooth rock|
|Bottom Line||This is a lightweight hiking boot for those who move fast and don't need the support or stability of heftier footwear||The gold standard of what a great hiking boot should be, and we heartily recommend it for those seeking the best possible performance on and off the trail||This mid-top hiking boot is ridiculously lightweight, though it offers excellent stability and traction for fast and light objectives||This affordable boot is super comfortable right out of the box and has the durability to go the distance||This boot brings a shoe-like comfort but with the support you would expect from a hiking boot|
|Rating Categories||Hoka One One Anacap...||Salomon Quest 4 Gor...||Salomon X Ultra Mid...||Merrell Moab 2 Mid...||Salomon X Ultra Mid...|
|Water Resistance (15%)|
|Specs||Hoka One One Anacap...||Salomon Quest 4 Gor...||Salomon X Ultra Mid...||Merrell Moab 2 Mid...||Salomon X Ultra Mid...|
|Weight (per pair)||2.11 lbs (size 10.5)||2.90 lbs (size 11)||1.85 lbs (size 11)||2.48 lbs (size 10.5)||2.28 lbs (size 11)|
|Boot Type||Lightweight hiker||Midweight hiker/backpacking boot||Midweight hiker/backpacking boot||Midweight hiker/backpacking boot||Midweight hiker/backpacking boot|
|Width Options||Regular||Regular||Regular||Regular and wide||Regular and wide|
|Waterproof Lining||GORE-TEX||Gore-Tex||Gore-Tex||M Select DRY||Gore-Tex|
|Upper||Nubuck leather, Gore-Tex textile||Leather and nylon||PU coated leather||Suede leather, mesh||Waterproof PU coated leather|
|Last Board/Shank||Not specified||4D Chassis||Molded shank||Nylon arch shank||Molded shank|
|Midsole||Compression-molded EVA||EnergyCell||SensiFit||EVA||Injected EVA|
|Sole||Vibram Megagrip rubber||Contagrip||Contagrip||Vibram TC5+ rubber||Non-marking ContaGrip|
Our Analysis and Test Results
With some novel hiking boot technologies like the high rocker of a sneaker and a tab at the back for Achilles support, the Anacapa is certainly trying to blur the line between lightweight shoes and traditional boots. The upper is a combination of nubuck leather and recycled polyester textile that makes for a blend of durability and breathability. Taking these out on trail, their performance matched their design.
The thick outsole and compression-molded EVA midsole provide a comfortable ride across rocky terrain. We wouldn't describe these boots as uncomfortable, but the primary downside to their comfort is that they feel sloppy. The upper material is flexible, and because there is so much of it, we found that it just warped and folded in odd ways that didn't support the movement of our feet.
Having said that, the series of three lace hooks start where most boots would have another set of eyelets. What this means is that the bellows tongue opens up nice and wide, and they are exceptionally easy to put on and take off — no wriggling to get your foot in.
Being as light as they are, there are some stability tradeoffs with the Anacapa. The upper isn't nearly as stiff as a traditional boot. This might be good for a particular hiking style, but it also means that they don't have the ankle support that we would expect from a boot. The same goes for the top of the foot. It's not an area that tends to take a ton of impact on hikes, but there is notably less protection against dropped objects or getting feet pinned or pinched between rocks.
On the plus side, the outsole far outflanks the upper, meaning that these boots have a nice wide base that makes balancing much easier and reduces lateral sway.
Traction is one area where this boot performs well as many of its more robust counterparts. The Vibram Megagrip sole lives up to its name, grabbing both wet and dry surfaces. The heel extends backward far beyond the foot, which helps with bracing on descents.
These boots are light. At 2.1 pounds, they are designed to have the weight and feel of a shoe — and they mostly do. The materials are sneaker-esque, making the Anacapa more versatile than most boots. When we picked up our pace, we noticed that this boot doesn't have that same glug, glug feel and instead rides like something closer to a hiking shoe.
Though they are Gore-Tex lined, we didn't find that the Anacapa stood up particularly well to prolonged exposure. These boots got us through some sticky situations in muddy trail conditions and kept us dry enough in light rain. However, once we took them across a few streams and fully submerged the upper, it became clear that water was finding its way in somehow.
These boots also have an especially pronounced dip in the back which reduces the flood level to around 6 inches — about an inch lower than many other boots.
Durability was sufficient during testing. The multi-material upper relies on a lot of stitching to bring all of the panels together, so we are curious to see how the thread fairs in the long run. Also, having generally thinner materials and less leather, we anticipate seeing some nicks and tears appear at some point.
Should You Buy the Hoka Anacapa Mid GTX?
This model has the heart of a hiking shoe in the body of a boot. It's lightweight with a combination of a thick outsole and thinner running-shoe-like material in the upper. We appreciate Hoka's innovative approach to footwear, but this particular model doesn't differentiate itself enough from other hiking boots that provide more stability, traction, comfort, and waterproofness — which is primarily why hikers look to boots in the first place. All things considered, this is a nice option, but we would look elsewhere first before choosing this model.
What Other Hiking Boots Should You Consider?
The primary features that make this boot stand out are its light weight and breathable upper. If you want to minimize ounces on your feet, we also recommend the Speedgoat Mid 2 GTX, which we found to be more comfortable than the Anacapa Mid GTX. The Salomon X Ultra Mid 4 Gore-Tex is also lightweight and provides additional stability.
— Ben Applebaum-Bauch
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