Out-of-the-box comfort is one thing. Tecnica Outdoor takes it to a whole new level with the Forge waterproof hiking boot ($250–$270). Using the same heat-moldable process developed for the brand’s Alpine ski boots, a shop tech will custom-fit the upper boot and insole to your foot in about 20 minutes. The tongue extends into an overlapping collar that snugly wraps your forefoot and ankle, further enhancing fit. The verdict? The Forge would be overkill for going up Smuggler, say, but on the rocky, rooty trails I tested it on this spring, I felt completely at one with my boots—secure in every step—in a way I’d never experienced. tecnicausa.com 

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