A proper pair of adventure motorcycle boots are more than just oiled leather and a shin guard. Here’s how to separate the best from the rest on any budget.
Adventure riders are a diverse lot. We’ve seen KTM 690 owners who have never gone off pavement, and we’ve seen riders tackle singletrack trails on 600-pound BMW GSAs loaded down with camping gear. As you might guess, adventure boots vary as much as the people who ride them, and there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to the ADV equation.
To that end, we’ve put together a list of our favorite adventure motorcycle boots currently on the market, all of which have been worn, tested, and approved on our ADV rides over the years. Before we get into the boots themselves though, let’s take a quick look at what landed each one on our list to begin with.
In a hurry? Here’s a quick list of the Boots
Alpinstars Toucan On road/Off-road bias: 40/60
Sidi Adventure 2 GTX On-road/Off-road bias: 50/50
Dainese Seeker GTX On-road/Off-road bias: 60/40
Klim Adventure GTX On road/Off-road bias: 70/30
Forma Adventure On-road/Off-road bias: 80/20
TCX Infinity 3 GTX On-road/Off-road bias: 90/10
O’neal Sierra WP Pro On-road/Off-road bias: 90/10
How to Choose Adventure Motorcycle Boots
We’ve always found it best to think of adventure riding as a continuum of its two main components: Long distance touring and offroad riding. For this reason, our first recommendation when choosing a pair of adventure motorcycle boots is to figure out where you fall on that continuum, relatively speaking.
Are you a road warrior?
Are you more the long-haul highway rider, out exploring the open road on a big comfortable bike like a BMW GSA or Yamaha Super Tenere? Do you limit your off-pavement antics primarily to well-groomed gravel roads? If so, chances are you want an adventure boot geared more toward comfort and walkability.
Or are you a dirt explorer?
Or do you find yourself on the opposite end of the spectrum, avoiding highways at all costs and opting for backroads, dirt roads, and off-road trails whenever possible? If that’s the case, you’ll likely want to focus on protection first and touring comforts second.
As a general rule of thumb, the more protective an adventure motorcycle boot is, the more rigid it is, and thus the less comfortable it will be and the less natural it will feel to walk in. Our best advice is to simply be honest about the type of riding you’ll be doing 90% of the time, and choose your boot accordingly.
Regardless of which boot you choose, our one non-negotiable in this category is weather protection: Adventure riding will always lead you to water in one way or another, whether it’s rain, river crossings, or crashing through puddles.
Wet feet simply don’t travel well, so whether your boot is uber-flexible, uber-rigid, or somewhere in between, it should be 100% waterproof, otherwise you’d be better off with an actual motocross boot, which is a topic for another day.
In keeping with that advice, we’ve listed each of our favorite adventure motorcycle boots of the year below, and broken them down according to their dirt v. street bias. We’ll also touch on each boot’s weather protection, standout features, and pros/cons as well to help you decide on the best boot to fit your budget.
Our Favorite Motorcycle Adventure Boots of the Year
I or the crew have had real experiences with these boots and below is a list of some of the best we’ve had. This list is in no particular order.
1. Alpinestars Toucan Gore-Tex
On road/Off-road bias: 40/60
We’ve put thousands upon thousands of miles on the Alpinestars Toucan adventure motorcycle boots, and have come to think of them as a Tech 7 given the premium touring treatment. As such, they deliver an impressive array of motocross-derived safety features, but also benefit from bombproof Gore-Tex waterproofing, which kept us dry without fail through a week-long rainy slog through Colombia.
Safety-wise the Toucan is covered end to end in protective TPU panels, something you’ll typically only see in the most protective motocross boots on the market. The same goes for the integrated ankle hinge, a direct import from the MX world that limits flexing in all directions to protect the rider from twisting or hyperextension injuries.
Despite all that protection, the Toucans are still relatively comfortable to walk in. Alpinestars did a great job working flexible bellows into the front and rear of the boot, so although they’ve got confidence-inspiring rigidity where you want it, there’s enough range of motion left over for hiking around off the bike.
Another standout feature of the Toucans we love is that they do all of this yet weigh just over two pounds a boot, which makes a huge difference over the course of a long day.
- Motocross derived protection
- Excellent walking comfort and flexibility
- Tall Gore-Tex waterproof liner
- Solid walkability, but not the best
Alpinestars Toucan Gore-Tex
2. Sidi Adventure 2 GTX
On-road/Off-road bias: 50/50
The Sidi Adventure 2 GTX is another premium player on the adventure motorcycle boot market, going toe-to-toe with models like the Toucan above and the Seeker below.
Much like the Toucan, the Adventure 2 GTX borrows its safety tech from Sidi’s premium MX offering, the Crossfire: This includes a dual ankle hinge, tongue-in-groove protection at the Achilles tendon, and tons of TPU reinforcement throughout.
The Sidi Adventure 2 GTX makes for a slightly better touring/road boot than the Toucan, however, as it’s a bit more flexible, a bit more comfortable to walk in, and squeak-free thanks to a design update in 2016 that got rid of the plastic-on-plastic action of the outgoing model.
We also love that the Adventure 2 GTX features the highest GoreTex protection on the market, sporting a full-length gaiter with a whopping 14 inches of coverage height.
While the Sidis are 100% dirt worthy, our main gripe with them is that they don’t deliver the Toucan’s degree of feel off-road when gripping the bike with your legs.
We chalk this up to the inner hinge mechanism, which is by no means bulky but protrudes enough to be noticeable against the frame. Both are utterly bombproof options though, and you can’t go wrong with either.
- Motocross derived protection
- Tallest GoreTex liner on the market
- Comfortable, squeak-free walking
- Inner hinge sacrifices some on-bike feel/feedback
Sidi Adventure 2 GTX
3. Dainese Seeker GTX
On-road/Off-road bias: 60/40
We had the pleasure of testing the Dainese Seeker GTX on a recent romp through Patagonia, and it’s the ideal adventure boot for the kind of riding you’ll encounter there: Ribbons of twisty pavement, hundreds of miles of gravel roads, and a sprinkling of slightly sketchier dirt tracks mixed in for good measure.
The Seeker certainly doesn’t carry the same degree of motocross-style protection as the two options above, but we appreciate that Dainese gave these boots upgraded hyperflexion protection at the ankle via articulating TPU panels along the front of the boot.
They still allow a good deal of lateral flex though, so while Seekers wouldn’t be our first choice for more aggressive off-road duty, they’re a damn good all-rounder just the same.
Speaking of well-rounded, we’ll also give the Seeker serious props in the touring department. This is one of the easiest-walking boots we’ve tested to date, and we had zero complaints hiking them up and down hundreds upon hundreds of stairs around Perito Moreno Glacier.
Their tall GoreTex membrane handled hours of non-stop rain without complaint, and their combination of an Ortholite footbed, flexible toebox, and lightweight Groundtrax sole delivered solid all-day comfort.
- Outstanding comfort and walkability
- Proven GoreTex weatherproofing
- Above-average off-road protection
- Not ideal for aggressive off-roading
Dainese Seeker GTX
4. Klim Adventure GTX Motorcycle Boots
On road/Off-road bias: 70/30
We’ve been riding in the Klim Adventure GTX boots since they first dropped back in 2020, and they’ve been a capable and protective companion for us all around the world. They’ve gotten us through rain storms, hot deserts, and more crashes than we care to admit, and we have yet to experience a single wet toe or mangled foot.
On the touring side, Klim equipped the Adventure GTX with a Gore-Tex liner, an outstanding Michelin rubber outsole, both gel-stable and Ortholite foam insole options, and a premium BOA dial closure system which delivers outstanding fit and adjustability.
But what about saftey on the Klim Adventure GTX?
Safety-wise they boast name-brand Poron XRD impact protection in the ankle and midfoot, as well as hard TPU supports at the shin, toe, and ankle.
We can confirm that their polycarbonate midsoles are thoroughly crushproof as we’ve dropped at least one full-sized adventure bike on them in the dirt, yet they’re also shockingly comfortable for exploring off the bike.
Our main gripe with Klim’s flagship adventure motorcycle boots is that while they certainly deliver above-average protection for an ADV boot, they don’t quite go toe-to-toe with other premium offerings from brands like Alpinestars and Sidi when it comes to outright protection.
Again, there’s an abundance of high-quality padding and TPU reinforcement here, but the Adventure GTX boots still flex somewhat freely in all directions at the ankle, which seems like a shame considering their otherwise top-tier construction.
- Premium construction and GoreTex waterproofing
- Crash-tested safety features
- Grippy Michelin rubber outsoles work great off the bike
- Looks and feels like a premium boot
- Expensive for the protection offered
- BOA system gets sticky over time when exposed to dirt
- Might need to adjust your clutch lever to fit it’s big toe
Klim Adventure GTX
5. Forma Adventure Motorcycle Boots
On-road/Off-road bias: 80/20
While we can’t say you’ll win any fashion contests in Forma’s mid-level Adventure Boot, we can promise your average adventure rider will get a lot of bang for their buck here.
The Forma Adventure boot are a bit too flexible for more aggressive offroad pursuits, but still offer a solid array of protection features with rigid internal TPU reinforcements at the ankles, toes, and heel.
Their lugged dual-density soles are grippy on the pegs and rigid enough for extended riding in the standing position, but still offer tons of easy flexibility for walking around off the bike.
We’ve found their proprietary Drytex waterproof liner holds its own through extended wet weather riding, and because it continues up above the second buckle of the boot, the Forma Adventures are also well suited to the occasional water crossing.
Naturally we’d prefer to see a bit more rigidity around the ankle as well as a name-brand Gore-Tex liner, but considering these adventure motorcycle boot’s agreeable mid-tier price point, they’re still a solid value all-around.
They also sport the popular oiled-leather look many riders are looking for, so that’s sure to be a potential plus for many of our readers.
- Tall full grain leather construction
- Reasonably protective yet extremely comfortable to walk in
- Commendable proprietary waterproofing
- Much too flexible for regular off-road duty
- Not our favorite buckles
- Polarizing “adventure” style
6. TCX Infinity 3 GTX
On-road/Off-road bias: 90/10
If you’re mainly riding on the street but fancy the occasional gravel detour, the TCX Infinity 3 GTX is an utterly premium touring boot with a few added perks for the dirt-curious among us. As far as touring features go, this adventure motorcycle boot lacks nothing, and sports a tall Gore-Tex liner, all-day walking comfort with an Ortholite footbed, and a slick BOA-style rotary dial system to quickly dial in a perfect fit on the fly.
In terms of off-road worthiness, we’ve found the Infinity 3’s Groundtrax lugged sole to be properly crush-proof and plenty rigid enough for standing duty while also being flexible around the toebox for serious walking comfort.
The taller version of the boot we tested also benefits from a reasonably tough shin panel for debris protection, as well as a large suede panel along the inside of the boot for heat protection and better grip/feel when moving around on the bike.
This adventure motorcycle boot’s strong pavement bias leaves much to be desired in terms of rigidity at the ankle, and the boots flex easily in all directions which doesn’t bode well for the potential twisting injuries common in off-road situations.
That’s the price you pay for all-day comfort on and off the bike though, and one many riders will be all too happy to make.
- Outstanding comfort on and off the bike
- Gore-Tex waterproofing with above-average coverage
- Slick rotary dial sinch for fast and precise adjustment
- Premium construction = premium pricetag
- Lacks serious off-road protection
TCX Infinity 3 GTX
7. O’Neal Sierra WP Pro
On-road/Off-road bias: 90/10
If you’re digging the Forma Adventure’s oiled-leather style but aren’t looking to spend Forma money, check out the O’Neal Sierra WP Pro. O’Neal is widely known for its bottom-dollar offerings in the off-road world, and the Sierra WP delivers the same value in an adventure-focused package.
These boots are extremely comfortable, waterproof, and deliver the extra height/shin protection adventure riders want for the occasional romp in the dirt.
Their rigid nylon soles and internal steel shank give adventure riders the support they’re looking for on the pegs, and reliable crush-protection should things go sideways on-road or off.
The main downsides of the Sierra are that they’re a bit shorter than the other offerings on our list, and are arguably the least protective in terms of dirt-worthiness.
While they may appear nearly identical to the Formas above, the Sierra’s heel cups are considerably less rigid than those found on the Forma Adventure, and their ankle protection is limited to a single exterior slider per boot.
Still, there’s nothing else out there that’ll get you in the ballpark for less money, and the O’Neal Sierra WPs deliver all-day comfort and weather protection with some off-road accouterments to boot.
- Most affordable option out there
- Reasonably tall with added shin protection
- Least protective of the lot
- No CE rating
- Polarizing “adventure” style
O’Neal Sierra WP Pro
The Final Word on Adventure Motorcycle Boots
Typically when we talk about riding boots, we’re faced with an age-old dilemma: Price, protection, and comfort. Pick two, as they say.
Adventure motorcycle boots can be particularly tricky in this regard because more money doesn’t always guarantee a safer boot. With that being said, most ADV junkies aren’t out riding a BMW GSA like it’s a KTM 300, and we’ve weathered our fair share of pavement and dirt crashes in fairly flexible footwear.
As is often the case, the best recommendation we can make here is to buy as much boot as you can reasonably afford.
Remember, adventure touring is still touring at the end of the day, and any boot that’s tall, comfortable, waterproof, and CE-rated will check all the major boxes for the overwhelming majority of adventure riders.
READ MORE: 7 Adventure Motorcycle Jackets for All-Terrain Protection or Our 5 Favorite Summer Motorcycle Gloves to Beat the Heat
I’m a digital content creator who has been rippin’ two-wheels across remote lands and building a content creation business in the motorcycle industry since 2014. Fast forward to 2022, I have decided to develop my own website to offer tips and tricks on long distance adventure motorcycling and beyond. Enjoy!