KEEN Men’s Targhee 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot

Last updated date: August 14, 2020

DWYM Score

8.8

KEEN Men’s Targhee 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot

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We looked at the top Hiking Boots and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Hiking Boot you should buy.

Editor's Note August 14, 2020:
Checkout The Best Hiking Boot for a detailed review of all the top hiking boots.

Overall Take

This lightweight choice has a stiff shank, aggressive tread and excellent toe cap protection, but does not require much time to break in. Plus, they are highly breathable, so you can wear them in the warmer months. These work well for those with wide feet.


In our analysis of 85 expert reviews, the KEEN KEEN Men's Targhee 2 Mid Waterproof Hiking Boot placed 3rd when we looked at the top 11 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

Here's a waterproof hiking boot that offers four-wheel-drive performance for your feet. It's designed to keep your feet dry and let them breathe, and the aggressive outsole bites into the terrain. The mid-cut height adds ankle support. The Targhee Mid II from KEEN offers four-wheel-drive performance for your feet. The shoe is revamped with the KEEN.DRY waterproof breathable membrane to keep your feet dry and comfortable. The aggressive outsole has 4mm lugs to bite into the terrain, providing excellent traction control. The ESS shank provides torsional stability for a secure ride, while the mid cut height increases ankle support through canyons and over mountaintops.

Expert Reviews

Expert Summarized Score

8.5
13 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

8.6
2,836 user reviews

What experts liked

Ultra-dry waterproof exterior. Comfortable lightweight construction. Minimal break-in period.
- BestReviews
Has been a favorite of our testers for years now, and has a strong following among the hiking community. It's often been our Best Buy Award winner, and we've come back around to it again. It retails for less than half the price of some of the hiking boots in our test line up, and it remains a good value, combining sound on and off-trail performance with an inexpensive price tag.
- Outdoor Gear Lab
In terms of breathability, the Targhee perform pretty good so you can wear them at hotter times of year with no major concerns. With regards to break-in, the Targhee come up trumps with nearly all users indicating that no break-in period is required.
- Cool Hiking Gear
They’re great for hiking or working in the city and can handle a lot of miles whether it’s on pavement or the trail. The Targhee II’s are very water resistant with some nice ventilation.
- Adventure Sacks
The KEEN Targhee II Mid earns a lot of praise from buyers and gear testers alike for being an insanely comfortable hiking boot. Its lightness astonishes a majority of users.
- RunRepeat
Two years later, he updated his reviewer, commenting, “They have never let me down, and gave me confidence on some really sketchy routes on a 13er last year.” One even thinks they’re so good, he owns multiple pairs, writing, “I was so impressed with how comfortable and durable these boots are, when I saw them on sale, I bought two more pairs.”
- New York Mag
The Targhee hiking boots have toe protection built in, so you don’t have to worry about stubbing your toes. The best part about these boots is that you don’t have to break them in at all. You can wear them straight out of the box, and your feet won’t feel a thing.
- Expert World Travel
The Targhees also have an impressively stiff shank, aggressive tread, and excellent toe cap protection for such a lightweight boot. I’ve been surprised with how good they feel when hiking rough trail with and without a backpack. One standout feature in the Targhee is the toe area which is extremely roomy for a hiking boot.
- Section Hiker
This was one of the most impressive boots in our test. Best for wide and high-volume feet, it provided to be a stable, durable, stiff shoe that can handle longer treks on variable terrain without the comfort penalty associated with overly macho boots.
- Gear Institute
Your best bet for commuting and casual purposes. Fits very well and decent supporting offers highest comfort among other Targhee's. It's also probably the prettiest of all. Targhee II is more comfortable than the Targhee III, and hence a better pick for casual use.
- Outdoor Crunch
These shoes are built with some of the best waterproof technology in the current market, and you will be amazed at how dry your feet will be. If you are going on a hiking trip that blends walking with a water activity (such as kayaking), I strongly recommend these boots.
- Hikers Shop
Providing astounding ankle support, traction and breathability, the KEEN Men’s Targhee II Mid Waterproof hiking boot will master the roughest trails. Lightweight and comfortable this shoe keeps you energized mile after mile without allowing water in. Through a range of conditions, you will be able to conquer changing terrain while being protected from debris and rock.
- The Boot Lover
Ideal for camping, backpacking, hunting, snowshoeing, trail hiking, and fishing, as well as everyday use in city life. The mid-cut hiking boots provide the wearer with all-day comfort and terrific arch support for a comfortable and long-lasting feel.
- Gear We Are

What experts didn't like

Sizes tend to run small.
- BestReviews
Its one failing during our traction tests was when scrambling, as the blocky forefoot didn't allow for precise foot placement or weight transference. The rounded edges did not hold as securely when working through difficult talus as those boots with a more precise edge along the outsole.
- Outdoor Gear Lab
When the lace eyelets wear out the boots are cooked, some issues reported with the outsole wearing out quickly. A few people saying that you need to have very specific laces for these boots. However, they also pointed out that in many cases, when they broke after not much use, and they contacted KEEN, they were sent a pair out for free.
- Cool Hiking Gear
The problem is the craftsmanship is kind of cheap. The stitching is not put together well, the soles of some people’s boots have come apart, and the heel tends to get worn down pretty quickly. The insoles wear down over time and the shoelaces don’t take much to tear.
- Adventure Sacks
A considerable percentage of shoppers complain about the KEEN Targhee II Mid’s outsole by saying it comes apart after a few uses. Some outdoor enthusiasts say that it is not breathable.
- RunRepeat
Since it’s an ankle shoe, it doesn’t provide ankle support.
- Expert World Travel
The Keen Dry layer in the Targhee is billed as being waterproof, but I think water-resistant would be more accurate. I tested this out by submerging a boot in a pan of water for 15 minutes and could feel the inside of the boot slowly getting damp.
- Section Hiker
A bit on the roomy side - narrow feet, take caution.
- Gear Institute
If you'll be hiking out in the nature, superior stability, traction and water resistance of Targhee III pay off on tougher and more slippery terrain.
- Outdoor Crunch
Not enough choices for style. Ugly colors.
- Hikers Shop
Some parts of the bottom soles may seperate after months of use.
- Gear We Are

An Overview On Hiking Boots

If you like exploring scenic terrain, wandering through forest trails or just going for long walks in the wilderness, it’s important to have a good pair of hiking books. This kind of footwear is designed to protect your feet and ankles during your hike, ensuring you don’t get injured. The construction of hiking boots makes it easy to walk over rough and uneven terrain. They are stiff around the ankles, which can help to prevent sprains.

There are three main types of hiking boots, each designed for a specific kind of hiking, with their own benefits and features. Hiking shoes are low cut and are perfect for day hiking. They have flexible midsoles and will work for long-distance journeys. Day hiking boots, on the other hand, are mid- to high-cut. They work for all-day hiking trips or multiple-day backpacking trips. They are flexible and easy to break in. Backpacking boots are the most durable of the three options and are designed for multi-day trips with a heavier backpack in the backcountry. They are cut high above the ankles so they provide added support. They have stuff midsoles so they work well for off-trail travel. Be sure to consider what kind of hiking you do most when selecting your hiking boots.

The fit of your hiking boots is important for your safety and comfort. If your boots are too big or too small, you’ll have trouble enjoying your hike, and blisters could even cause you to cut it short. Make sure you look at the sizing chart before you buy and measure your feet accordingly. Try your boots on at the end of the day, which is when they are their largest size due to normal swelling. Be sure to wear socks that prevent moisture build-up, which leads to blisters.  Break in your hiking boots long before your first trip on the trails to ensure your feet don’t get sore during your hike.

The Hiking Boot Buying Guide

  • One of the most important elements to consider when buying hiking boots is durability. Hiking boots handle rough terrain and weather and need to be strong enough to last through it all. The uppers of the boots, which is the material the boot is made out of on the outside, impact their durability, water resistance, weight and other factors like breathability. The most durable material for uppers is full-grain leather, which is commonly used in hiking boots. It’s perfect for those who want to go on multi-day trips through rugged terrain. However, it’s not as light or breathable as nylon or split-grain leather. Keep in mind that with leather hiking boots, you need a long time to break them in, so don’t buy them right before your hiking trip.
  • Synthetic uppers, which can be made from nylon or polyester, are lighter than leather and don’t require as long to break in. However, they are not as durable, though they do dry faster than leather. Keep this in mind if you frequent wet trails.
  • When you’re walking on rough terrain, you want to ensure that your feet have the support you need to stay comfortable. The midsoles, or the cushioning, affect how stiff your boots are. Opt for stiffer boots for long hikes on uneven terrain. This way, you’ll get more stability.
  • Be sure to take a look at the outsoles. You want to make sure they have enough grip so you don’t slip on the trails when they are wet. The lug pattern is what provides traction on the soles; in general, the deeper the lugs, the better the grip. If you frequent muddy trails, then look for widely spaced lugs, which will shed the mud more quickly.