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Old 01-29-2010   #1
North Bend, Washington
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 476
Footwear- Keen vs NRS attack?

I love my KEEN sandals. I own KEEN hiking boots too. I'm needing a new pair of warm bootie/shoes for spring rafting.

So- do I assume because I love my other KEENs that I will love their Hood River or Payettes? Or do I go with something like the NRS Attack shoe? Thoughts?

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Old 01-29-2010   #2
bobbuilds's Avatar
x, x
Paddling Since: x
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,634
My thoughts would be to go with something closed off from sand/gravel. if you are open to options and money is not an issue I'd look at 5/10 or salomon water shoes. more of a canyon er shoe but rugged and durable. If your not dropping the creeks of North bend you could get by with mion or stick with keens open style. I know the creeker shoes from keen are stout too. my .02

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Old 01-29-2010   #3
Airborne2504's Avatar
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 420
I just recently picked up a pair of the Keen Payettes, but have only used them in the pool so far in my kayak. They're comfortable, have good ankle support.

I personally like having my feet closed off to sand/gravel. I'm a also a raft guide and last season I wore the NRS Desperado shoe, held up okay, but being used for guiding (Mostly Parkdale and Browns, with a few Gorge trips) and also while kayaking, the soles came apart at the end of only 1 season. (NRS customer service/repairs took care of me though)

I like the idea of having a more rugged and more durable bootie when in a raft, thinking that the Payettes would be a better choice over the NRS Attack Shoe.

If money is not an issue, check out the NRS OTB Abyss Boot...I mean, they're designed and engineered for Navy Seal(s), so, I would guess they hold up quite well in/on water as well as a good boot to wear while in the boat house, put-in, take-out, rescue situations...

Abyss Boot:
OTB Abyss Boot

** This is only my 3rd season on the river as a kayaker and rafter. ** I'm sure that there is better info out there from the more experienced.
If you're going to stick it out there, don't be afraid to get it cut off.
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Old 01-29-2010   #4
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,097
Hood river has horrible traction. Walking around on slippery rocks in the PacNW is a nightmare in the hood river booties (I tried it). The NRS attack shoes are better, but still lacking. The traction of the NRS shoes is pretty weak, and the protetion, sole etc aren't too good.

5.10 makes some great boating shoes. Stickiest rubber soles there are, good traction, solid sole. The savant is the low top version and the canyoneer is the high top version. I have the canyoneer and I love it. Kinda big though. After the canyoneers wear out, I will likely go with the low top savant. Same grippy sole, less bulk and weight.
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Old 01-30-2010   #5
North Bend, Washington
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 476
Good thoughts. I'll look into the 5/10. I asked specifically about the KEENs and NRS as money is always in issue.

I breifly looked at the OTB Abyss. Yikes! I'm a gal, so anything that huge might be tad over kill.

Yeah, I want it all, good traction, warmth, not bulky- for a good price. A girl can dream right?
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Old 01-30-2010   #6
Durango, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 390
FYI... Keen is discontinuing the Payette. So if you really want a pair (or need a spare) I'd try and snatch a pair up before they disappear for good.
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Old 01-30-2010   #7
Spits Hot Fire
N. Cascades, Washington
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 978
I would have recommended the teva avators but teva can suck it. I thought these things were great until I got a little more use out of them. By day 30 or 40 the soles were coming off and completely unglued. The things just opened up swallowing every pebble you walked on.

I talked to Teva at the end of the season, they said they its been happening to many of them. I know of a couple others myself that this has happened to. Said there was something wrong with the glue used or something. Told me to send them back and they would get me some new ones.

2 or 3 months go by and nothing. Called them again and they acted like they never heard of me and said they were discontinuing that shoe, he didnt even know if it was for the season or for good. So I paid to ship my busted booties to teva for nothing. They pretty much said I was hosed and didnt offer to help out.

I think some of the other teva booties had the same soles so they're probably just as useless...ymmv...if you use and abuse your gear find something better than the attacks,keens or teva's. I'm looking into the 5.10's.

Sorry had to rant about teva.
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Old 01-30-2010   #8
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Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 689
i returned the Teva Avators as well, but i went through the return process as explained on their web site and got a Teva credit for another purchase. i bought the Gnar shoe, and that sole has held up way better, but the skate style show is a little weird for fitting in your boat. it's great for guiding though.

a good friend of mine whose girlfriend worked for Keen got plenty of their booties for free and completely hated them. he destroyed several pairs.

i would spend the extra money and get some 5.10 Savants.
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Old 01-31-2010   #9
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,239
platform Chuck Taylors in tri -color or flannel
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Old 01-31-2010   #10
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 566

There's a new piece that KEEN is launching this Spring that is perfect for rafting. It's called the Hydro Guide and is a great compromise between rugged platform and open air sandal design + toe protection. Should you want to keep your feet a little warmer then slip on a neoprene sock and away you go.

It is true that the Payette is going away this Spring, so if you're interested find them fast. I know that 4Corners has them for a banging rate right now...Check it.

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