Chaco Z/Volv 2
These are durable hiking sandals that adjust to and stabilize your foot. They’re great for day trips, leisurely walks, and short hikes involving mud or water.
- Good fit
- Not good for long hikes
- Need worn-in
I originally bought these sandals to take on a trip to Mexico where I would be doing a couple of short day hikes around the Zapatista perimeters, but spending a significant amount of time in a tour bus or sightseeing. I wanted something that would hold up well to walk in all day, but also work with the outfits I had chosen.
These sandals were a great fit. They’re a better transition to city wear than hiking boots, but provide more stability and traction for hiking than tennis shoes would.
Before the trip, I wore them around for a couple of days and did get some blisters, but once they were worn in, I stopped having that problem. However, every time I put them on after I haven't worn them in a while (like every winter), I get blisters from use where the straps hit.
Also, sometimes when they’re wet, I get cuts on my feet where the straps hit. I tried one summer mountain hike in these shoes and ended up with blisters on the bottoms of my feet so big I couldn't walk the next day. But that hasn’t deterred me from using them over and over again!
I love that they're waterproof, easy to clean, and barely show any signs of wear after having them nearly three years. They support my feet well (and give me ankle support that I didn’t expect when I bought them) and never slip—even walking on the rocks in a stream. The straps are also adjustable, so they fit right to your foot.
Another unintended use for these shoes, is they’ve become my go-to canoeing shoe. They do great in the water, and I never have to worry about them coming off or floating away.
These shoes are really perfect for a walk in the woods where you'll encounter mud or streams, and transition well to daywear. However, I wouldn't recommend them for more vigorous hikes and definitely take some time getting used to them before your adventures.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $99
Chaco improved everything I didn't like about the ones I had in 2002.
- Chaco solved the cons of the previous model
- Matching Z suntan LOL!
I've worn these for six months each of the last two years and they're the first footwear I go to if it's the high 50s and warmer. That's because they're so comfortable and my feet can breathe.
I had two pair of the same in the early 2000s and they sucked. Those were painful to wear due to the self-tightening of the big toe strap to the point of cutting off circulation causing pain. Add to that whatever the material was that made up the footbed caused a butt stink in a few hours of wear that filled the room even if they were washed and put on clean feet. In frustration I threw them in the trash and swore off Chaco.
Two years ago I again bought two pair from Sierra Trading Post, knowing that if there were any gripes I could return for a full refund. I was delighted, to my surprise neither issue existed with the current model. They're comfy, supportive, and no stink even after several days of wearing them.
I highly recommended them, especially at the $55+/- price point they can be had on sale.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $55 non-current closeout sale, so I bought two pairs