Best Sandals?

My dog chewed through the straps of my Tevas last September. I managed to get through fall, winter and spring without sandals, but now that its warm, my feet are screaming to get out of hot stinky shoes. I’ve got a small amount in my REI dividend, and they’re having a 20% off one item sale this week. The Keen’s look good. So do the Chacos and the Tevas. Anyone love/hate any of these, and be willing to share their thumbs up/thumbs down before I click the buy button? I’m leaning toward Keen Newports, because it seems you could do anything in them. But they do box in your feet a bit more than the standard sandal.

Really Like My Chacos
But I’ve never had the others. I can’t compare and contrast.

arch support
Chacos have more arch support. For me good arch support makes a big difference. YMMV

Keens are my favorites. The leather ones hold up to salt water well - I was skeptical when I bought them. Very comfy and I like having the toes covered so I can scramble around the rocky islands.

Gets my buisness. Long lasting, and comfortable from day one. Have also owned Columbia, seems ok, but Teva feels better.

Try to see if they are running any closeout deals…


My only comment on the Keens is that your feet feel wet most of the time. I have a 20 dollar pair of Tevas that I switch to after kayaking on the way home. Since using the Keens, no more broken toe nails.

Keen is my favorite
They work well for both hiking and kayaking. I tend to drag my foot from time to time so the covered toe design provides me a lot of value. I wear them over my Palm Stikine dry suit fabric socks.

I won’t wear toe-less sandals; a childhood friend’s brother ripped his toenail off while riding a bike.

The Keens have sticky rubber that allow clambering up and down steep boulders–very nice for Lake Powell.

I don’t wear sandals while paddling, though.

Airwalk® Connect Sling

Some seem to like these.

can’t argue with the covered toe box
it’s just such a wise idea to reduce the potential for foot injury in a harsh environment.

having said that, the Chaco’s, especially with the Stealth rubber made for extreme grip in the wet, are the best made sandals money can buy and offer incredible foot support- approved by the American Orthopedic Association, for insurable claims. and Chaco are still made in the US to boot.


– Last Updated: May-07-06 9:28 PM EST –

on eBay.

I mean, how can you beat this?

can’t live without mine now…

sorry…never really wore sandals…this is an interesting thread to me.


Chota’s or Chaco’s
I currently have some Chota sandals and like them a lot, although they are not as airy as some. They provide nice protection and have a nice stay lacing system that stays on well. They also have a nice tread.

I used to have some Chaco’s and probably still would but they got lost in travel. They also have a bulletproof lacing system that is probably better for swift water use. I also never worried about them when I was carrying a full load of gear or loading/portaging. I will probably buy another pair of the Z1’s soon. I do some wade fishing in rivers and they were excellent for walking in current and rock and staying on when the mud tried to claim them and my leg.

BTW, I will probably also get another pair of the chota’s when they wear out as well. I have had many types of sport sandals, name brand and otherwise. Be wary of the velcro closures that you find on some shoes as they may not hold well when you need them the mosts

I have a pair of Keen Newport H2s and love them for the purpose for which they were bought. I wanted something that would protect my cute little toes while I was wading around in the rocks. They do a great job at that, not so great a job if you’re gong on a long hike on dry land. Very comfortable shoe overall. I wore them once in place of neoprene booties over the Gore-Tex socks on my dry suit. I won’t make that mistake again. The toe cap that does such a great job of protection pushed my ankles up off the ankle blocks in my canoe and caused some extra strain that I didn’t need. I give them 4 of 5 stars because they won’t do for an alpine hiking shoe in winter.

I have a pair of Teva sandals and over a period of about 4 years I have about worn them out. They worked in the water but your toes did take a beating. They also carried me all around town and on numerous short hikes all over the United States. They are beginning to look pretty ragged and I had to glue the sole back on one sandal about a year ago. They are very comfortable and I would also give them 4 of 5 stars because they too make a poor winter alpine hiking shoe.

I have a pair of Crocks and wearing them has been almost a religious experience. When I bought them I just wanted something to wear back and forth to the shower at the campground or to put on when I got off the river. When the weather is cool I have them on my feet almost all the time now. They are very comfortable and seem to almost find their way onto my feet without any conscious effort of my own. They get 4 of 5 stars because I find them to be a bit warm in hot weather but they could work very well as a replacement for your hiking boots after a winter alpine hike.

I plan on buying a pair of Chaco ZX1s as soon as I can find a pair in a store so I can try them on. I have heard numerous reports that the Chaco Z1s are about a good a sandal as you can find and I like the look of the straps on the ZX1s. I’ll try out a pair and make the determination about how wonderful they are myself. I still suspect that they won’t make a very good winter alpine hiking shoe.

All I really want is one of everything.

one word- Chaco
had MANY others and Chaco wins for my feetsies.


I’ve worn a couple of Tevas out , but
my vote goes to the KEEN H2. I live in them in warm weather.

Keens, Love em
Had Tevas for years and went through many pairs. I’ve worn them so much that I developed a bone spur at the achillies tendon calcaneus because of the back strap on the Teva.

Another Chaco fan

– Last Updated: May-07-06 10:21 PM EST –

When I want the sandal "experience" I go with my Chacos Z1's. For more protection, an old pair of Teva Ricochets do just fine.

Thought about trying a pair of Keens, but I've read that some find them too warm on their feet in hot weather, which seems to counter the whole idea of wearing "sandals". Also not too "keen" (sorry...) on the idea of having to stop and take them off to empty debris that enters the open slots and collects under your soles. Finally, one of my co-workers had a pair of Newport H2's that "blew-out" after, what seemed like, a fairly short time. Granted they were her everyday work wear in and around salt water, but it seemed like they should have held up better.

With the Chacos, I do like the option of resoling (and if necessary, re-strapping) when they wear out. Being made in the U.S. (at least the Z and ZX models) is a nice plus. Then again, the Chaco's high arch supports might not be the best for everyone. I guess if the shoe fits...

For flips flops, nothing beats Reef

– Last Updated: May-08-06 7:30 AM EST –

Agree with prior poster about Keens; if I wanted warm holey shoes, I'd wear my old Converse All-Stars circa 1980.

Chacos -- I just never liked the Jesus of Nazareth single convoluted strap thing.

Tevas and Reef.

Note: if you buy the wicked cool Mick Fanning model Reef with bottle opener bottoms, great for brewskis, but wear outdoors only -- will snag the shag indoors.

Rock on and don't forget to tell everyone what you ordered, wk.

But they aren’t in business any more. So I will vote for my Chacos.