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Initial Report: Keen Taos (jjoy)

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  • yjjoy
    If I m supposed to call this a sandal, let me know. I have trouble calling it that. There are some ommissions (measured weight, warranty) which I will fill
    Message 1 of 3 , May 31 2:05 PM
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      If I'm supposed to call this a sandal, let me know. I have trouble
      calling it that.

      There are some ommissions (measured weight, warranty) which I will
      fill in, but I thought it would be better to get this out as it is a
      day late already, I believe.

      I still need to add pictures. Being gone for the holiday weekend
      made it hard to get the report out. I took the pictures, but I'm
      slow with the HTML part.

      Also, I'm not 100% sure on MSRP.

      Thanks in advance to my editor.

      jen

      ----------


      Keen Taos: Initial Report

      Reviewer Information

      Name: Jennifer Joy
      Age: 36
      Gender: Female
      Height: 5'4" (1.63 m)
      Weight: 150 lb (68 kg)
      Email address: jjoy AT io DOT com
      Location: Austin, Texas
      Date: May 30, 2005

      Backpacking Background

      I have been camping and hiking since I was a small child. I used to
      not be very weight conscious, but I am actively working to move
      towards lightweight backpacking and plan to replace much of my gear
      in an effort to help an extreme tendency for tendonitis. My
      backpacking trips tend to be over a weekend or day hikes within a
      multi-day kayaking trip. Multi-week hiking is a long-term goal. I
      could be considered an intermediate backpacker but an experienced
      camper.


      Product Information

      Manufacturer: Keen
      Year of manufacture: 2005
      Website: http://www.keenfootwear.com/
      Listed weight: 11.0 oz (312 g)
      Weight as tested: xx oz (xx g) -- oops, still need to do this, will
      be in web report
      MSRP: $99.95 US
      Warranty: (Email in to Keen, other sites say 1 year)
      Material: Upper is waterproof leather, webbing and mesh
      Color: Fuzz/Loden (tan with spruce green accents)
      My shoe size: 8 (U.S.)
      Shoe size requested: 8 (U.S.)
      Notes on fit:
      According to the website, these shoes might run a bit large, but I
      did not find this to be true in my case.

      Product Description

      <pict of shoe goes here>

      The Keen Taos lies somewhere between a shoe and a sandal. In my
      mind it is more shoe than sandal because if you covered the open
      holes with mesh you'd have a fully enclosed shoe. The secure shoe-
      like heel cup is also very non-sandal like. The women's shoe is
      built on a B width last (the men's sandal is built on a D last). The
      shoe has a beige leather upper that is very soft. The straps are
      somewhat stretchy and what appeared to be stitching along the beige
      stripe on the straps is reflective. The straps are connected with a
      thin bungee-like lace system. A small plastic toggle is used to
      snug the laces. The tongue is made of a padded mesh material. A
      thickly lugged, semi-stiff sole wraps around to the front of the
      shoe providing a very hard toe covering. The footbed is treated
      with AEGIS Microbe Shield (TM) which is supposed to protect against
      odor, staining and deterioration. The entire shoe is machine
      washable.

      As delivered:

      The shoes arrived in a normal shoe box with the usual paper stuffed
      in the toes and wrapped around the shoes. There was a surprising
      lack of product detail with the shipped product. At a minimum I
      would have expected care instructions as well as information on the
      warranty. Instead there is a small 2005 product guide which does
      nothing more than list models and colors available.

      The website was a little more informative, but I had to hunt to find
      the information. From the sales brochure and the website, I get the
      impression it's all about the models and how they look and what
      color they are! On the website I could roll my mouse over the
      colors and see how they would appear on my model of choice. As far
      as product information the website states:

      The Taos elevates performance footwear to the next level. It
      combines all of the support and function one would expect from a
      functional trail shoe with the open breathability of a sandal
      and Keen's patented toe protection. This redefines the meaning of
      Hybrid.

      The website goes on to list these features and benefits:

      1. Waterproof Leather, Mesh and Webbing Upper
      Encapsulates the foot, functioning as a sandal
      2. Patent-pending Dual-density EVA Midsole/Shank
      Provides balanced support and toe off
      3. Non-marking, Deep Lug Cabon Rubber Outsole
      Excellent traction in loose dirt, scree, or rock
      4. Secure-fit Lace Capture System
      Integrates lacing with foot to prevent heel slip
      5. Metatomical, Removeable Footbed
      Cushioning under foot, accommodates orthotics

      I never could find any warranty information on the website. The
      website offers a limited selection of FAQs but they center around
      the Newport model.

      That all being said, the product was as I expected from my prior
      research on the website.

      First use and impressions:

      I had tried on a similar model of Keen shoes on at a retail store to
      make sure I requested the correct size, so I had no sizing
      surprises. The shoes fit well both with and without socks, although
      I found it hard to snug the heel quite as tight as I might have
      liked.

      The Metatomical (TM) insoles seem sturdy and well-made. <insert
      picture of insoles> It has a ridge across the toe line which helps
      keep the foot in place, although the shoe fits snuggly enough this
      isn't too much of a problem. The insole is not made of a single
      material. Beside the soft fuzzy top, on the underside can be seen a
      softer yellow material which is placed where the foot contacts the
      footbed. The insole is contoured to help support and secure the
      foot. One of the nice features of this sandal-like shoe is that you
      can remove the insole and put in an orthotic. My 3/4 length
      orthotic fit well but I had problems with it sliding around when I
      put the shoe on. Once the shoe was on successfully, which sometimes
      required a second try, I had no further problems with orthotic
      movement. My experience is that this is because I have a short
      orthotic so it is free to move forward in the shoe.

      The sole has thick lugs on the outside and a stiff shank. Dry
      traction was good, but I have not gotten the shoe wet yet. The deep
      lugs in the sole did hold mud.

      The lack of laces is nice. The shoes came with the plastic-secured
      ends tucked under the laces and that approach has worked well so
      far. <insert pic of laces> The only problem I've had so far is
      fine-tuning the adjustments to get the heel tight enough without
      getting the rest of the shoe too tight.

      It is a good looking shoe with an aggressive-looking tread. My
      brother remarked to me that they looked like climbing shoes, and
      with the wide black wrap-around toe cover.

      I've worn the shoes around the house and yard and have found the
      only problem with them to be is that even without socks my feet were
      getting rather hot.

      Field Test Plan
      Locations for Test:

      1. Month-long trip in July in Michigan/Wisconsin
      Description: Multiple kayak and hiking day trips
      Weather: I'm not sure of the weather patterns but I would guess
      from
      the 70s F (21 C) into the low 90s F (32 C).
      Goal: Durability, functionality, intense use. I will endeavor to
      make this shoe my main shoe for the trip.

      Other activities and tests:
      2. Kayaking (Texas)
      Description: You can never have enough kayaking.
      Weather: See #3 below.
      Goal: Determine comfort while wet, drying time and of course, to
      administer the funky smell test.

      3. General use
      Description: Normal activities around the house, yard work and trips
      around town
      Weather: Seasonal variation with highs in the low 70s F (21 C) at
      the beginning of the test period to highs at the middle to end of
      the test period going in to the hot range (95-105 F / 35-41 C).
      Overall, I expect a lot of hot weather.
      Goal: How does it hold up to yard dirt, how well does it breathe,
      long term use. Use in the heat. Comfort and fit.

      Considerations for Test:

      Fit/comfort:
      -General comments on fit (heel, toes, and so on).
      -Comments on general fit without the orthotic and a lot more
      attention on comfort and use with an orthotic.
      -Stability and support of the sandal as a whole.
      -General sandal worries such as the frequency of grit and dirt in
      the shoe and how difficult it is to remove.
      -Will the shoe remain comfortable when wet?
      -How well does the lace system work?

      Materials:
      -How well does the material hold up to repeated wet use?
      -Will the AEGIS Microbe Shield work or will it get a funky smell
      over time and will washing cure it?
      -Will other dirt and stains come out of the material?
      -What does repeated machine washes do to the product over time?
      -How quickly does the material dry? The claim is air dry in a few
      hours.
      -Is the sole non-marking as claimed? (Pirouettes on the linoleum
      usually can confirm this.)
      -How well does the sole grip on wet rocks or loose dirt trails?

      Summary of initial likes:
      • Initial impression of fit is good
      • Orthotic support in something like a sandal
      Summary of initial concerns:
      • Hot feet
      A final note:

      Thank you to BackpackGearTest and Keen for the opportunity to test
      the Taos.
    • Coy
      Hi Jennifer P, (I did not realize there were two Jnnifers on this test...could get confusing) here is your official edit. Actually I see no edits. I hope I
      Message 2 of 3 , Jun 2, 2005
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        Hi Jennifer P, (I did not realize there were two Jnnifers on this
        test...could get confusing) here is your official edit. Actually I
        see no edits. I hope I answered your questions. When you have your
        weights, warranty info and pictures in place, upload as an IR to the
        proper folder.

        Coy Boy

        --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, "yjjoy" <jjoy@i...> wrote:
        > If I'm supposed to call this a sandal, let me know. I have trouble
        > calling it that.

        Your sentence "The Keen Taos lies somewhere between a shoe and a
        sandal." and later "sandal like" seems fair to me.

        >
        > There are some ommissions (measured weight, warranty) which I will
        > fill in, but I thought it would be better to get this out as it is a
        > day late already, I believe.

        No problem.

        >
        > I still need to add pictures. Being gone for the holiday weekend
        > made it hard to get the report out. I took the pictures, but I'm
        > slow with the HTML part.
        >
        > Also, I'm not 100% sure on MSRP.

        Jenifer Pope had the same MSRP. I guessing this is right.
        >
        > Thanks in advance to my editor.

        and thank you for a fine report. made my job easy!

        >
        > jen
        >
        > ----------
        >
        >
        > Keen Taos: Initial Report
        >
        > Reviewer Information
        >
        > Name: Jennifer Joy
      • Coy
        I promice I meant Jennifer J. I sure wasnt trying to prove my point (that it could get confusing). carry on! Coy Boy
        Message 3 of 3 , Jun 2, 2005
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          I promice I meant Jennifer J. I sure wasnt trying to prove my point
          (that it could get confusing). carry on!

          Coy Boy


          --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, "Coy" <starnescr@y...> wrote:
          > Hi Jennifer P, (I did not realize there were two Jnnifers on this
          > test...could get confusing) here is your official edit. Actually I
          > see no edits. I hope I answered your questions. When you have your
          > weights, warranty info and pictures in place, upload as an IR to the
          > proper folder.
          >
          > Coy Boy
          >
          > --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, "yjjoy" <jjoy@i...> wrote:
          > > If I'm supposed to call this a sandal, let me know. I have trouble
          > > calling it that.
          >
          > Your sentence "The Keen Taos lies somewhere between a shoe and a
          > sandal." and later "sandal like" seems fair to me.
          >
          > >
          > > There are some ommissions (measured weight, warranty) which I will
          > > fill in, but I thought it would be better to get this out as it is a
          > > day late already, I believe.
          >
          > No problem.
          >
          > >
          > > I still need to add pictures. Being gone for the holiday weekend
          > > made it hard to get the report out. I took the pictures, but I'm
          > > slow with the HTML part.
          > >
          > > Also, I'm not 100% sure on MSRP.
          >
          > Jenifer Pope had the same MSRP. I guessing this is right.
          > >
          > > Thanks in advance to my editor.
          >
          > and thank you for a fine report. made my job easy!
          >
          > >
          > > jen
          > >
          > > ----------
          > >
          > >
          > > Keen Taos: Initial Report
          > >
          > > Reviewer Information
          > >
          > > Name: Jennifer Joy
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