Summer really feels like the season of opportunity. The world just opens up and relaxes a little, settling into a groove of warm weather, beach adventures, and hiking new trails. With this in mind, the search for the ultimate summer adventure shoe began, and where this quest ended up should really come as no surprise.
Teva has been making hardcore adventure sandals for over thirty years and it continues to do so today with its extensive lineup being bolstered by flip-flops, slides, and shoes for men and women. Today, we get to take an up-close look at the Terra-Float Universal, one of Teva’s latest and lightest. Read on to find out how the rather minimalist Terra-Float Universal performs while strapped to a 230 pound adventure seeker.
Full disclosure: Though familiar with Teva, I’ve never actually worn a pair before. I just didn’t see how something so minimalist could be good in any way. You’ll soon find out how wrong I was.
Once all strapped in, the Teva Terra-Float Universal becomes one with the foot. This has as much to do with the leather-lined and padded straps as it does with the excellent footbed to which they are anchored. The fit is so good it is hard to believe that the only thing making it happen is a couple well-placed straps and some Velcro.
The excellent footbed mentioned above is the other part of this Teva comfort equation. This footbed is made from EVA and, though not overtly anatomical looking, interfaces with the foot (my foot, at least) perfectly. Where the (synthetic) rubber hits the road Teva has built an outsole from something called FloatLite. Whatever this material is almost doesn’t matter, how it performs, however is a different story. Despite being exceptionally light, this FloatLite material is all the things one would want in an outsole. These sandals grip like a scared spider monkey, have the cushion and rebound of a desert pre-runner, and they feel like they are ready for anything.
The fact that these sandals are awesome in the dry is only half the story. In the wet, on the rocks, in the muck, all of it, the Teva Terra-Float Universal reigns supreme. With the sandal strapped securely to the foot, the suck of muck means nothing. Thanks to the mighty grip of the FloatLite sole, wet rocks, though still treacherous to be sure, are barely a challenge to the Terra-Float. Lastly, in the water, just like on the land, the Terra-Float’s great fit and minimalist design means that this sandal will not slow you down while providing a robust layer of protection between you, the yucky lake bottom and the crayfish that live under the dock. Nice.
If you are looking for a lightweight adventure beast of a shoe, the Teva Terra-Float Universal is just the thing. Available in 5 colors to size 14.
Featured photo: Teva