Keen has just the thing for you.
Living in Texas, we don't really get much in the way of snow, so I've already had an early start on the spring hiking. Recently I've been hitting the trail with a new pair of Keen Alamosa WP's on my feet, and once again I'm very impressed with what the company has to offer in their new line of hiking shoes.
The Alamosas are lightweight, yet durable, with an aggressive tread on the soles that holds tight even on slick wet rocks. Crafted from a great mix of breathable fabrics and nubuck leather, the shoes look great and feel even better. Like nearly every pair of Keens that I've tested over the past year or so, these shoes require little to no break-in, and the first time I put them on was prior to a three hour hike in the Texas Hill Country. At the end of that hike, the Alamosa's still looked like that had just come out of the box, but they felt like a pair of hiking shoes that I had owned for years. Better yet, my feet felt well rested and protected throughout the hike, and there wasn't a blister to be found anywhere.
The "WP" on this pair of shoes stands for "Water Proof," and they certainly live up to that billing as well, I've walked through puddles, across streams, and through mud, and in all cases, my feet stayed dry. Of course you'd expect that from any shoe that bills itself as water proof, but on the other hand, those types of shoes often don't allow your feet to breathe, resulting in hot sweaty, feet on the trail. Those conditions can also lead to blisters, but fortunately the Alamosas breathe quite nicely, helping to keep your feet comfortable for extended treks in warmer weather.
As with the rest of their catalog, Keen has another excellent shoe on their hands. I was very impressed with how durable these shoes were while still remaining very lightweight. I'm not sure how they do it but Keen has come up with the perfect blend of protection for our feet, without making the shoe bulky or heavy. Something I'm sure we can all appreciate. If you're in the market for some new light hikers this spring, you could do a lot worse than the Alamosa WP from Keen. (MSRP: $110)
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