The Claim: Not only can the Montara handle packs up to 40 pounds, Ahnu asserts, but the company’s Numentum Hike technology also provides arch support while evening out your stride.
Field Test: Over four weeks this summer I hiked dirt mountain trails and walked to restaurants, too—it’s Boulder, so that’s cool. The mid-cut uppers protected my weak ankles on steep rocky trails, while the easy-gait Vibram outsole and Numentum tech made them smooth enough for sidewalks. Waterproofing and low weight made them ideal for everyday use. The heaviest pack I carried was 20 pounds, but with improving ankle strength I’d see no problems hauling 40—there’s plenty of protection underfoot.
Why It’s Timeless: In Boulder, Colorado, where hiking boots take you from the office to the trail to the bar, the Montara delivers quality without sacrificing style. $165; ahnu.com —Kiran Herbert