I’ve had the pleasure of working with KEEN for a number of years, and absolutely love it when they send me something new to try out. This time around it is their new season Terradora II Open Toe Sandals, which I featured over in my recent Currently Loving post after knowing they were a favourite having worn them for just a handful of miles (check out that post here).
Now that I’ve had chance to walk a fair few more miles in these sandals it’s time to write my full review. I always like to wait until I’ve had time to test products out properly before sharing what I think, which means that sometimes you have to wait a good few weeks before I get to featuring things on here – I have had these since mid-June-ish and am not ashamed that it’s taken me until now to put my thoughts online.
The timing of the delivery was perfect. Although we have had our fair share of rain this summer, we’ve also had some super-hot spells, and with lock down meaning I haven’t needed to wear “proper” shoes for the last few months, having a pair of rugged sandals for my lunch time and weekend wanderings has been very nice indeed.
You already know I’m a big fan of the Terradora mid-height boots, more like trainers than hiking boots to wear (I often consider buying a new pair to replace my worn out ones), the Terradora sole is really very good on the trail when you want to be flexible and move quickly. I think I’ll be mentioning that outsole a few more times in this piece, so bear with me!
Terradora II Open Toe Sandals | The Short Version
These sandals have the super grippy and flexible sole of the rest of the KEEN Terradora footwear range, which I already love, but with a sandal as an upper. This makes them great for days out when it’s hot, or for when you want something that can be a bit amphibious whether you’re on the beach or a boat.
I know hiking sandals aren’t for everyone, but I like wearing them in the summer, they’re a great asset to have in your outdoor gear cupboard and I do rate these ones very highly compared to others I’ve worn.
The KEEN Terradora sandals are comfortable, fit well (with good levels of adjustment), are easy to put on and take off, dry quickly, grip well, and will continue to have a place on my shoe rack for the rest of the summer and hopefully years to come.
What KEEN Says
KEEN have made these sandals for those who want to hike with support underfoot, but without wearing a closed in shoe or boot. They’re for hikers who want to leave the socks behind. They have used the same all-terrain outsole as their popular hiker with a feminine, open-toe design. And I think that is the primary value in these sandals, it really is a good sole.
As always with any outdoor gear, the spec of these sandals is full of technical acronyms and silly names… We have multi-directional lugs, zonal flex grooves for natural movement, recycled PET plastic tubular webbing, high traction grip, EVA midsole and insole, and quick dry lining. In short, these are designed to take you wherever a hiking shoe can take you, but without the need for laces.
Look and Fit
I admit I’m not wholly enamoured with the way these look. I mean, they’re hiking sandals aren’t they, they’re not something I’d wear with jeans out for dinner or to a work meeting. That’s not to say I don’t like the way they have been designed, I am more than happy with something that has function over fashion. But if you’re looking for a more day-time to evening sandal then there other styles around you may prefer (I rather like these Elle Backstrap Casual Sandals that are in the sale at the moment).
I have the KEEN Terradora sandals in the navy colourway, ordered my usual “hiking” size (half a size bigger than my everyday shoe size), and reckon they both look and feel the part. They adjust easily at both the ankle and toe, have a seatbelt style clip to fasten them (rather than velcro or elastic, which can wear out quickly), and there is plenty of room for my toes to spread out as I walk making these comfortable for miles at a time. They were also comfortable right out of the box, no breaking in needed here.
On the Trail
I have found these great for quick walks along footpaths to the shops, my lunchtime walks around the fields, and for half-day and day hikes in the local area. With the exception of actual mountains, I’ve had these on all kinds of terrain, and have not hurt my feet or been anything less than surefooted.
I’ve probably walked in excess of 60 or 70 miles in these over the last couple of months, mostly in three- and four-mile stints. The furthest I’ve done is eight miles, in incredibly hot weather, and these were great.
I knew the KEEN Terradora were going to be nice and flexible, thanks to my experience with their siblings, but I was surprised how much cushioning there is. Sandals can be very sold feeling after just a few minutes, and easily cause hot spots all across the soles of the feet, but I’m very happy to report that I have found these nice to walk on. I mean, after that eight miles in very hot weather, it must have topped 28 that afternoon, my feet were indeed pretty sore – these aren’t perfect, but they were as good as I would hope.
Most interestingly, I clambered across the seaweed and mud covered rocks Middle Hope Bay, and other than getting dirty feet, which has never really bothered me, I didn’t wish I had hiking shoes or boots on at all – my feet stayed on the footbed, I didn’t slip around, and I arrived back at the car without a single cut. The last point there is something of a miracle, as I’m very good at cutting and bruising myself when out and about, I’m hardly careful when I wander! But I think what I’m trying to say is these are great hikers, they do the job very well indeed.
Back Home and Final Thoughts
After my muddy clamber on the beach, having washed my feet, I realised I would have to tackle the sandals too. One thing that puts people off sandals is how the insole can get very dirty, which is rather unsightly. Thankfully a bit of soap and water did the trick, no bother there. Phew!
These really are a great hiking sandal, and I do recommend them. They’re not completely perfect, but they’re pretty close. The Terradora II Open Toe Sandals are lightweight, flexible, very grippy, easy to adjust, and very comfortable for all kinds of terrain. If you are looking for a hiking sandal to actually go hiking in, these will do very nicely indeed.
You’ll find the KEEN Terradora II Open Toe Sandals on the KEEN website for £59.99.
These sandals were a gift from KEEN so that I could wear them this summer and let you know what I think about think. As always, views are my own based on my own experience, and are never press release copies.