If you have ever been out hiking in heavy snow, thick brush, or sharp or thorny plants, then you know just how important a good pair of leg gaiters can be. This is especially true for hunters, who often have to leave groomed trails to scout through dense brush in search of their quarry.
We’ve picked the 15 best hiking gaiters for your outdoor adventures, whether you’re in snake country or trekking in snowy terrains.
There are many different types of gaiters, from lightweight hiking gaiters to snake gaiters. Also, you will find that some leg gaiters can also be used as snow gaiters and other challenging terrains.
Certainly, we’ll cover what type of leg gaiters that requires tougher fabric to those that need to be light for fast hikes. While on the subject of fast hikes, take a read on hiking shoes vs. trail runners if you like to travel light. Take a read below to see which best suits your next adventure.
See our Comparison Guide to see which gaiters are right for you.
What is the Purpose of Hiking Gaiters?
Hiking gaiters are meant to protect your legs from moisture, brush, and sharp objects as you walk through wooded areas that are not smooth and easy to traverse.
Gaiters can help prevent ticks and other insects from getting into your boots as well, which can be really nice in areas of the East Coast where Lyme’s Disease is common.
If you are hiking through areas with snake infestations, then you might be wondering, do leg gaiters stop these bites? The answer is yes, actually.
You can be fairly certain that leg gaiters or snake chaps will protect your lower legs from snake bites of all kinds, even venomous snake bites.
Should I Buy Snow Gaiters?
Many gaiters offer up the proper protections for hiking in the rain and the snow, and the best gaiters are often fit for all kinds of weather.
You might be wearing basic hiking boots, but you can elevate your boots to mountaineering boots with the addition of some good snow gaiters for hunting gaiters.
Are Leg Gaiters Comfortable?
So long as you buy the right size leg gaiters, you will probably never even notice that they are there on your legs. Still, you should always wear long pants or jeans with your gaiters unless you buy running gaiters or short gaiters.
There are lightweight hiking gaiters for people who are hiking in the summer or in deeply wood areas. If you need a heavyweight pair, then mountaineering gaiters that can handle deep snow are ideal to keep your legs protected and warm.
Remember that you should consider the kind of weather you will be using your gaiters in before committing to a lightweight or heavyweight pair.
Picking the Right Leg Gaiters Doesn’t Have to be Tough!
If you are still unsure which leg gaiters are the right ones for your needs, read on to check out our list of the 15 best leg gaiters for your outdoor adventure needs.
Best For: Lightweight and Waterproof
Helium lightweight gaiters are perfect for both long and hard miles hikes where you could scrape your legs with a brush, snow, and med. Additionally, you won’t need to worry about getting debris out of your shoes with these.
Moreover, they fold up and pack easily into your bag, when you don’t need them anymore. This is a highly adjustable pair of gaiters that comes in many sizes.
You can fit any kind of shoe under them as well, and you will not sacrifice the waterproof coverage with heavy shoes or lighter weight footwear.
- Easy to fold
- Both Waterproof and snowproof
- Adjustable fit
- Straps can get stretched out over time
- Might be too lightweight for heavy and wet snow
Best For: Heavyweight gaiters in extreme conditions
Outdoor Research is known for making quality products all around, especially in this case, their durable Expedition Crocodile gaiters. Surely, these will protect your legs from both the heaviest snow and brush.
Perfect for hunters or people who are going to be out walking through lots of heavy snow, these gaiters will not snag, rip, or get punctured while you are out being active.
You will be happy with the comfortable interior lining, which will not chafe your legs. In addition, they’re tall enough to keep snow from falling into the top of your boots.
- Highly durable
- Comfortable interior lining
- Great in heavy snow
- Won’t puncture or snag
- Sizing chart runs large
- Velcro not as strong as would be ideal
Best For: Close Fit and Comfort
Design wise, the Hillsound Armadillo LT is one of the best looking and a great choice for your leg gaiter needs. If you want to have lightweight and waterproof protection, then you’ll like these. Also, it is reinforced with a zipper and Velcro closure, ensuring there won’t slide down.
Moreover, these gaiters stay up really well in all kinds of terrain, and they are very breathable. You will not feel hot and sweaty when you wear these gaiters.
What’s more, is that you can fold and put it into a bag with ease. Even though its more expensive, you’ll avoid tick bites and briars with these gaiters. If you want an extra layer of tick protection, then spray them down with Sawyer insect repellent.
- Close fit
- Superior comfort
- Waterproof zipper
- Both Flexible and breathable flexia fabric
- Reinforced Velcro at the top
- Run small
- Calf fit can be tough
- Might be too wide at the bottom for anything but hiking boots
Best For: Mountaineering boot fit and sturdy neoprene straps
- Easy to work closures
- Neoprene instep straps reinforcement
- Made to fit mountaineering boots perfectly
- Velcro front entry allows easy access to boot laces
- Bottom strap can get worn out quickly if fitted too tightly
Best For: Easy to fit and price point
Heading into snake country means wearing snake gaiters is non-negotiable. While there are some known issues with riding up for certain wearers, you should have no problems if you use the manufacturer’s guides to secure the gaiter.
The fact that these are both durable and lightweight gaiters means you can always keep a pair in your bag. Overall, they’re a great value for their price point.
- Strong grommets
- Tough and sturdy material
- Perfect for preventing snake bites
- Zippers can be quite stiff
- Can ride up for some wearers
- Can get warm under the gaiters
Best For: Hunting in summer and reliable fit
These are a decent pair of gaiters if you are looking for a lower price point. They’re meant for summer use and perfect for light hiking or hunting in the brush that isn’t too thick.
In contrast, these aren’t rated for snow or heavy brush, and the foot straps can be too lightweight for heavy snags. Also, since the only closure method is velcro, once the material gets muddy or dirty, it may not hold as well.
On the upside, it comes in a wider range of colors and is harder to lose in a duffel bag.
However, this is a great pair of gaiters for hiking or light use in the snow or during summer hunting trips. We wouldn’t recommend these if you have thick calves or extended outings.
- Included carry bag
- Easy to fit for tall people or long legs
- Lightweight for summer use
- Can be too tall for shorter wearers
- Foot straps are a bit flimsy
- Not for hard use
Best For: Overall quality and durability
A heavy-duty, made for mountaineering and trekking snow gaiters is the description that comes to mind for Sea to Summit Alpine eVent Gaiters. These leg gaiters are well-constructed, durable gaiter yet is lightweight. Additionally, you can use these gaiters in even the toughest of conditions, because they’ll keep your feet and legs, dry and warm.
What’s more, you won’t have to worry about snags or punctures, since these lightweight gaiters will not make your legs sweaty or uncomfortable, no matter how long you wear them.
- Easy to fit long legs
- Durable for snow and tough brush
- Quality eVent fabric construction
- Might be slightly too tall for shorter wearers
Best For: Snake Protection and Durability
- Superior snake protection
- Flexible and sturdy construction
- Perfect for heavy snow as well
- Can rub the calves and back of knees
- Can be quite stiff at first
Best For: Stretchy and lightweight hiking gear
If you want the ultimate breathable and lightweight hiking protection, these leg gaiters are the perfect choice for your needs. Perfect for use over sneakers for running on trails with long grass, or you can use them to keep snow out of the tops of short boots.
Surely, they’re the perfect short, lightweight gaiter for your outdoor hiking camping adventures.
- Very lightweight
- Perfect for use over light shoes like sneakers
- Provides SPF 50+ protection
- Made to conserve the environment
- Not sturdy enough for brush or snow
- Not protection for snake bite
Best For: Easy on and off
Ideal for trail runners, these ankle gaiters are a wonderful choice if you want to be able to put them on as the terrain changes. What’s more, since they have a strap around your ankle and under your shoes, they won’t fall off on day hikes or trail running.
Although low gaiters won’t protect you from deep snow or snakes, it does prevent rocks or debris from traveling into your boots as you hike or walk.
These are easy to both put on and take off, and they pack well in your bag. Overall, these are lightweight, comfortable, and will keep out the gravel from your shoes. If you’re racing, you won’t need to stop and lose valuable time.
- Sturdy strap
- Padded ankle protection
- Easy to use Velcro closures
- Only fits boots well
- Sizing runs large
Best For: Lightweight Hiking Use
If your next hike involves wide trails or warm weather, these are great lightweight gaiters that are perfect for light use. You’ll get excellent protection from water and debris with these. Although they’re breathable, these are not meant for hunting or heavy brush.
Even so, they’re ideal for active treks with light brush and debris.
- Very waterproof
- Not sturdy enough for snow or heavy brush
- Can be a bit short for some wearers
Best For: Stretchy and Comfortable
These are great lightweight gaiters that are perfect for running or hiking on trails or in the very light brush. However, they will not protect against snake bites well, but they are perfect for outdoor use on trails as long as you are not in heavy brush.
Still, they will also do well at keeping wet out of your shoes as well.
- Easy to use
- Won’t get hot
- Can be hard to fit
- Not able to withstand serious snags
Best For: Running use and nighttime use
These are great fitting gaiters that are easy to put on, and that stay put even in the heaviest of snow. These are great and very waterproof. The straps are very flexible but can be too tight for larger boots.
- Great fit
- Good construction
- Great stitching
- Tall enough to keep heavy snow out
- Don’t always fit over snow boots
- Sizing runs small
Best For: Running use and nighttime use
Practical, reflective, and adjustable, these are really great gaiters to choose if you love to run on trails or at night on roads.
The stretchy nylon fabric materials have an adjustable cord that you can tighten to custom fit the ankle. It also has a rear anti-slip rubber band around the heel of the shoe so the gaiter won’t ride up. In addition to the rubber band, these trail gaiters also have a sole fixing strap with a quick-release buckle.
All in all, mud, scree, and debris won’t find its way into your socks or shoes. When there are 8 color options to pick from and priced under $16.00, you can buy several to match your trail outfit.
- Keeps out debris and insects
- Stays on – ideal for running
- Great reflective materials
- Perfect for being active on the trails
- Flimsy straps
- Can run small
Best For: Price Point and Basic Use
These are solid leg gaiters to keep water out of your boots and if you’re heading into the medium brush.
Also, they may not hold up to more demanding terrain or heavy snow. But they’re a decent pair of gaiters for basic use and will keep water, debris, and snow out of your boots with ease.
- Great price point
- Easy to fit
- Can be flimsy
- Clips can break
Hiking Gaiters -Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Black Diamond GTX FrontPoint Gaiters
This is a great overall leg gaiter that offers up superior protection as well as sturdy construction and is easy to fit any size wearer. You will be able to hike, hunt, and use these in the snow, and they will not let you down.
Best for Snake Bite: Razer Gaiters Snake Gaiters
These gaiters will never let you get bitten by a snake, and they are very durable for use in areas with other pests like ticks and ants.
Best for Lightweight: Khatoola INSTAgaiter
These are great, stretchy, and are so comfortable that you will not even know that you are wearing gaiters. In addition, they’re a great choice if you need lightweight protection and want to be able to run or climb with ease.
Comparison Guide to Gaiters
Outdoor Research Men’s Helium Hiking Gaiters
|4.9||4 x 4 x 2||Velcro|
|Pertex® Shield Diamond Fuse 2.5L, bluesign® approved 100% nylon, 30D ripstop upper leg panel, 100% nylon 420D Packcloth with PU Coating Foot Panel|
Outdoor Research Men's Expedition Crocodile GORE-TEX Gaiters
|12||53.34 x 3.81 x 26.67||Double Stitched Front Closure|
Hook/Loop Front Closure
|GORE-TEX® 3L, 100% nylon, 70D plain weave leg panel, Cordura® 2L, 100% nylon, 1000D woven foot panel, Cordura®, 100% nylon, 1000D woven back leg panel|
Hillsound Armadillo LT Gaiter
|11.04||20 x 8 x 2||Velcro strap to tuck zipper away||Upper section: Flexia 3.0|
Lower section: 1000D nylon
YKK Waterproof zipper
Black Diamond GTX FrontPoint Gaiters
|8.82||7.09 x 4.72 x 4.72||Velcro, snap||GORE-TEX, ballistic nylon|
TurtleSkin SnakeArmor Snake Gaiters
Price not available
|12||9 x 9 x 2||zipper, cinch strap||high-strength ballistic fibers & polyester|
Pike Trail Leg Gaiters
|-||15” (38cm) tall||Velcro||Light, Polyester Fabric|
Sea to Summit Alpine Gaiters
Price not available
|9.7||16.5||Velcro, hooks onto laces||500D|
Razer Snake Gaiters
|13||12 tall||tightening straps |
REI Co-op Low Gaiters
|6.5||9.25||Velcro, ladder lock and loops,|
Salomon Trail Gaiters, Low
Price not available
|4.06||5 x 1.5 x 6||Side hook-and-loop closure||Polyester,78% polyamide/22% elastane|
Kenetrek Hunting Gaiter
|16||21.1 x 5.7 x 1.9||hook and loop closures and secure snaps||Nylon|
Price not available
|2.6||8in / 20.3 cm||Top adjustable|
Zips bottom up
Triwonder Gators $13.99
|4.23|| 8.9 x 6.14 x 1.5||Velcro||600D Oxford fabric|
Triwonder Reflective Running Gaiters
|2.47||5.91 x 3.54 x 3.54||Buckle||600D Oxford Fabric|
Frelaxy Leg Gaiters
Price not available
|6.03||11.93 x 7.87 x 2.4||Buckle||Nylon, 900D & 420D Anti-Tear Waterproof coated Oxford Fabric|
Leg Gaiters Are Essential for Safe Hiking and Hunting in Brush or Snow
There is no way that you’ll ever be comfortable in snow, rain or heavy brush without a quality pair of gaiters on your side! Once you invest in a great pair of gaiters, you will wonder how you ever got by without them!
Gaiters come in many sizes and shapes as well as many different weights, therefore, picking the right gaiter for your needs is easy.
In summary, our list of the 15 best gaiters makes it easy for you to find the right hiking gaiters for your outdoor adventuring needs!
Last update on 2022-02-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API