KEEN is the master of versatile footwear (though they have yet to make a killer pair of wingtips), shoes that effortlessly go from trailhead to casual Friday to happy hour. And just when we thought they couldn’t possibly make another cool day hiker, they come out with a new one – the Ambler. Rather than reinventing the wheel by making it out of Kevlar or bowing to the barefoot hiking fad, KEEN sticks with their tried-and-true formula while still keeping it fresh.
The trademark toe bumper is still there, as is the familiar rocker shape and aggressive tread, all of which manage to be highly functional in the woods without looking too woodsy in town. The waxed suede uppers, heel pull loop and to-the-toe lacing lend a Euro climbing shoe vibe while the moisture wicking lining and conforming footbed maintain the brand’s reputation for supreme comfort. Of course, as the Ambler’s name suggests, it’s a shoe that doesn’t insist on being taken too seriously so they’re perfectly fine for ambling around town or propping up on a table surrounded by empty microbrew bottles, at which point it might be good to change the name to “Stumbler”.
Buy Now: $100
Photos by Gishani for Gear Patrol