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Backpacker Magazine – 2010 Editors' Choice/Gear Guide

Gear Review: Chaco Pro Sandals

Supportive, comfortable trail sandals with great traction.

by: Berne Broudy

Chaco Pro (BP Photo Department)
Chaco Pro (BP Photo Department)

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How do you improve one of the grippiest, most durable, most supportive sandals out there? Make it even more grippy, durable, and supportive. That’s what Chaco has done with the Pro, and if you want an open-air hiker, this is it. In collaboration with Vibram, Chaco developed a new rubber formula with less elasticity. The result: a sole that bites into micro nooks and crannies underfoot—in and out of water—almost as well as a climbing shoe, and is even more durable than previous models.

And a polyurethane midsole gives the sandal the underfoot feel of a light hiker that has exceptional arch support. On New Zealand’s Inland Pack Track, one tester reported that it had more support and better traction than the lightweight boots he left at home. "And I didn’t have to take off shoes and socks at each of the 22 river crossings," he says. “It held even on underwater boulders when I was getting pushed off balance by the current."

Desert hikers also loved the Pro, since there’s no upper to trap sand and dirt (but keep an eye out for thorns). It comes in two models: Z/1 (no toe strap) and Z/2 (pictured). $105; 2 lbs.; m’s 7-15, w’s 5-12

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FULL PRODUCT SPECS: Z/1 PRO



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READERS COMMENTS

Mike Downs
Dec 20, 2011

Where can I find the Chaco Z/2 PRO SKU: 100121?
I have looked but dont find this product.

Paul Skaar
Jan 29, 2011

Just finished 100 miles of trail/off in the Grand Canyon in my Z2s. Fantastic light-footed experience! Heavy pack and winter conditions required only heightened awareness of my feet/ankles and a single pair of injinji socks. Cheers to Chaco!

One Backpack
Nov 13, 2010

I just put up a review of Chaco's on my blog. I've been wearing them for years and love them for a lot of reasons. Take a look: http://www.one-backpack.com/2010/11/3-necessary-questions.html

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