Note: Astral provided a sample to us at no charge in order to use. All thoughts and opinions are our own.
You have to take care of your feet while hiking. If my feet aren’t happy, then my whole hike is ruined. But with so many variants of hiking trails, sometime you find yourself caring multiple types of shoes. Video Editor Crystal tested the Astral TR1. Read below to see what she thought!
Living in Florida we have many different ground conditions to hike through. If you hike near the beach you’ll encounter sugar sand, some trails are gravel, and some are covered in tree roots. But one thing is always the same, not being able to find a pair of shoes to use on all the types of trails. I had two different shoes depending on where I was planning on hiking, and neither were exactly what I needed. That is until I tried Astral TR1 shoes. These shoes were super comfortable, the most light weight shoes I’ve ever owned, amazing grip, and simply perfect for almost any terrain.
I first wore them on a hike near the beach, and then climbing up the tallest lighthouse in Florida. Normally, I’d have to bring two pairs of shoes with me on this hike. One for the sandy trail, and one for the climb. But not anymore! These are the only shoes I’ve ever owned that didn’t accumulate a massive amount of sugar sand inside of them while hiking near the beach. I was able to complete the hike and immediately climb the lighthouse. The grip on the bottom of the shoes felt like they grabbed into the surface. I never once felt like I was going to slip on the steps that were moist from a recent rain storm.
Another path I wore them on was more rugged (for Florida). It had mostly foliage debris on the trails, slick tree roots, gravel in some sections, and old wooden bridges covered in mildew. Once again these shoes were perfect for the job. Crossing the mildew covered bridges was so easy. The grip on the shoes felt as if they were clinging to the planks below my feet. Another benefit was their strength against broken limbs. Most of these limbs are sharp and are covered in pine needles that always seem to penetrate the netting in my shoes. Therefore, I am being poked constantly and having to stop and fix this problem. However not with the Astrals! The pine needle never penetrated the netting! It was the first time I’ve ever hiked this trail without having to stop to fix my shoes!!!!
Lastly, they are said to be water resistant! Well, let me say this, THEY TOTALLY ARE!!!!! Here in Florida we have a never ending supply of rain, and it’s almost a given at some point you will get caught in a torrential down pour while out hiking. On my most recent hike this was the case. About a half a mile into the hike it started to pour down rain. I, of course, put my poncho on and kept hiking. Normally, every part of me would be dry and protected under the poncho, while my feet would be soaking wet. This made for a very uncomfortable hike. But, not this day! As the rain poured down it literally just slipped right off the tops of my shoes. My feet were dry as a bone! I couldn’t believe it. The shoes even have drain holes in case you step in deep puddles (which I haven’t down yet, but I’m sure it will happen).
I love these shoes so much that I’ve convinced my husband to buy the men’s pair for himself. I am mostly excited to hike with these shoes this coming summer when I head to Tennessee and then Wyoming. It’ll be the ultimate test to see if these will be my one and only shoe, but for now they are my favorite hiking shoes.
Things I loved:
* Super Lightweight – just under 9 ounces
• Repels water (even pouring down rain)
• Keeps sand out of your shoes. What I mean by this is that I didn’t have to dump a pile of sand out of my shoes after hiking. My feet still had some dirt on them but nothing like my other shoes.
• Grip on the bottom of the shoes acts like cleats to grip the ground or any other surface.
• Extremely comfortable with very little breaking in required.
• Sale Price $93.71@ Backcountry.com
Things I didn’t like:
• I’m wider at the ball fo my foot (especially when I’m pregnant, which I was in the beginning of this review). In the beginning the shoes felt a little more narrow. However, after wearing them a few times my feet formed really well to them, and I had no further issues.
• They didn’t come in Neon Pink! I’m known for looking like a giant neon highlighter hiking in the woods. Therefore, I traded the laces recently for neon colored ones to help ease my crazy color obsession. But, good news for those of you who like wild colors like me. They now come in red and green (mine are the dark blue, almost black, version).