Destinations Magazine

Did Our Waterproof KEEN Shoes Survive 15 Months of Constant Travel?

By Livingthedreamrtw @livingdreamrtw
Our KEEN shoes after 15 months of travel Prior to leaving to our 465-day trip around the world, we were really excited to be given a few pair of KEEN shoes by the company to wear on our journey.
We were particularly interested in these shoes as they were clearly designed by someone who had our type of journey in mind.  Comfortable for city walking, rugged for mountain hiking, and waterproof just for good measure, the shoes had just about everything we could have asked for in a multi-purpose travel shoe.
But did they live up to the hype?  After 15 months on the road, visiting 38 countries on 5 continents, you could say that we put them through the ultimate test to find the answer.
The Ultimate Shoe Test
Angie's KEEN shoes after 15 months of travel Jeremy's KEEN shoes after 15 months of travel
When we say we put our shoes through a good test, we really mean it.  Our Siskiyou and Alamosa waterproof shoes underwent some pretty incredible feats (pun intended).   From trekking to Everest Base Camp, climbing snowy mountains in Switzerland, hiking in Patagonia, walking through the desert of Oman, going on safari in Africa, to walking miles upon miles in the cities of Europe, there is no element they didn't see.
This wasn't our original choice.  If we had it our way, we probably would have picked up a few other pairs of shoes during our travels.
We were very close to buying proper hiking boots in Nepal for the trek, and we're really glad that we did not.  Had we bought new hiking boots in Kathmandu, we would have been in extreme pain.  By having broken in shoes we saved ourselves from the countless blisters that come with hiking in new boots, and as it turns out we really didn't even need that ankle support after all.   A win-win!
Throw in many more situations like this throughout our journey, and you can imagine why we can't speak nothing but positive things about the shoes as we quite literally put them through every situation imaginable.
What Do They Look Like After 15 Months?
As you can see, Jeremy's KEENs are tore up in the ankle. Angie's KEENs have similar wear, but not as bad. Some of the padding on the soles were damage, but nothing serious.Our shoes also got very, very dirty.
Normally my shoes have an average lifespan of about one year.  Stretching out an additional 5 months (accounting for the month we wore them before we left and the month we've worn them since being home) and they have stood up quite well.
I am personally quite hard on my shoes.  I never untie the shoe laces and generally wear out any ankle support they have very fast.  You can see this in my KEENs very easily as the padding around the ankle started to disappear at the 9 month mark and became even worse by the end.   Still, other than looking bad they performed just fine.
Angie's shoes are starting to show similar wear, but it is to a lesser degree because she actually unties her shoes like a responsible person.
Other than these two noticeable differences, one pair of broken shoe laces at the end of our trip, and the general layer of dirt that builds up on the outside of the shoes after wearing them for a long time, we had no performance reducing wear that we could point out.
There was one feature we wanted to find out more about prior to publishing this review, and it was this: are our shoes still waterproof?  The fact that they survived everything we put them through on our trip gave us a thumbs up and made us want to purchase another set right away, but how did the waterproofing hold up?
For this one, we needed to perform a test.
Video Review of the Waterproof Test
For our waterproof test, we simulated crossing a rather deep stream and submerged our shoes for several seconds each and filmed the results.   Check out the video below to find out how they did!

We'd like to thank KEEN Footwear for giving us our shoes to use throughout our long-term trip. They exceeded our expectations on all levels and we cannot recommend them enough.   To pick up your own pair of KEEN Siskiyou (Mens) or Alamosa shoes (Womens), click the links to head on over to Amazon!

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