Steve Kalclash – First Impressions of the Trek Ascent

Steve Kalclash, a die-hard vegan and barefoot running fanatic, normally does the bulk of his running on the road, but we wanted to get his verdict on the new Trek Ascent. So he’s recently been putting in the miles off-road, trail running, and he made this short video to let us all know his first impressions of the Trek Ascent.

Who is Steve Kalclash?

For those of you that don’t know Steve, he is an inspirational character. His YouTube channel is growing bigger all the time and his videos range massively; from his vegan diet to product reviews, and training tips involving running, cycling, and weight lifting. His favourite Vibram FiveFingers model (given he is a road runner) is the Bikila EVO, but he’s a massive fan of the KSO EVO too. He also reviewed the KSO EVO earlier this year for us. See the video here. 

The Trek Ascent – An Overview

In the Trek Ascent ‘Family’ there are three styles all featuring the same patented MEGAGRIP sole. They are all great for trail running, hiking, trekking, and casual use. The sole offers great grip on all surfaces, but is not too aggressive, making it still a good choice for road running too.

The TREK ASCENT is the original, featuring a synthetic upper fabric. The lightest in the range, the Ascent is fast and grippy, ideal for off-road racing and mud obstacle events (i.e. Tough Mudder). The synthetic, lightweight upper fabric means the shoe dries quicker should you get it wet.

The TREK ASCENT LR is exactly the same as the TREK ASCENT, expect the upper fabric is a combination of Hemp and Kangaroo Leather. This combination of materials makes the shoe naturally water-resistant and more durable.

The TREK ASCENT INSULATED is the newest style in the range, and is reinforced with wool inside the shoe making it really warm. Ideal for winter and cold weather.

 

Kids Vibram FiveFingers from Feetus.co.uk

Vibram FiveFingers for Children

Research published in podiatry journal The Foot in 2007 suggests that structural and functional changes can result from the foot having to conform to the shape and constriction of a shoe, rather than being allowed to develop naturally. And the younger the foot, the greater the potential for damage.

Crucial: Well-Chosen Footwear for Children

The human foot at birth is not a miniature version of an adult foot. In fact, it contains no bones at all and consists of a mass of cartilage, which, over a period of years, ossifies to become the 28 bones that exist in the adult human foot. This process is not complete until the late teens, so it is crucial that footwear – when worn – is well chosen.

Research has shown that when children spend more time in bare feet, even in just two months, i results in increased foot strength, balance, mobility and ankle function. You child’s shoe should reflect this ‘barefoot feel’, with the shoe offering as much of the following:

  • A completely flexible sole,
  • A wide and deep toebox,
  • An anatomically correct last (the ‘mould’ that a shoe is built on),
  • A closure at the back and an adjustable closure at the top, such as laces or Velcro

By wearing Vibram FiveFingers, children get the health benefits of going barefoot whilst offering protection. Here are the Vibram FiveFingers styles available for children, most available between sizes 29 and 25:

KSO for Kids

We love the KSO for Kids. The ‘closed’ upper fabric keeps out any debris when the kids are out playing and the Velcro fastening makes it easy for kids to secure the shoe (without any farcical laces!). The KSO is the biggest-ever seller of Vibram FiveFingers and the most popular shoe for men, women, and children.

Speed for Kids

Breathable and more conventional-looking than some of the other Vibram FiveFingers styles, we love the Speed for Kids. This shoe promotes natural (barefoot) movement of your child’s feet and the sole provides good grip for all activities. Available in a lace-up.

Sprint for Kids

The Sprint allows your child’s feet to move as nature intended, the thing we like best about this shoe is the open top. Having an open top makes it so much easier for kids to get their dainty little feet in to the shoe and position their toes in to each pocket. They don’t even have to worry about tying the laces either, as the Sprint is a simple Velcro strap fastening.

All the children’s Vibram FiveFingers are available NOW at Feetus.co.uk. Some are available as ‘on order only’ but this only adds typically 2 days to your order time. We also sell matching toe socks from Injinji.

Kids Vibram FiveFingers from Feetus.co.uk
Kids Vibram FiveFingers from Feetus.co.uk

The Best Vibram FiveFingers for Winter 2015

Following on from our recent Best Winter Socks article and our Top 5 Tips on keeping feet warm in winter, here we look at the best winter shoes from Vibram FiveFingers. Please note, this is a new article. 2014’s top winter shoes can be found here

Admittedly, minimalist shoes aren’t always the best choice for colder months. Such footwear is low-profile: the soles are thin which means your feet are closer to the ground and receive less ‘protection’ from the cold underfoot.

Barefoot purists may tell you to grin and bare it, but winter is long, and we believe that with the correct footwear, you can enjoy the best of minimalist running whilst keeping your fitness up during the whole of winter.

An Overview of the best winter Vibram FiveFingers

In case you don’t want to read the whole article, we’ve made it easy for you to pick out the best shoe depending on what activity you’re likely to use the shoes for most:

Spyridon MR

Lightweight and low profile whilst offering adequate grip, the Spyridon MR is a favourite for those seeking speed and stability both on and off road. The ‘MR’ stands for Mud Runner, and these were designed with events like Tough Mudder in mind.

  • Best for: Mud obstacle events, winter racing (short-medium distance)
  • Worst for: Very wet weather, extreme cold

Click here to buy the Spyridon MR

Trek Ascent LR

The leather upper is naturally water-resistant, strong, and durable. Sure, leather also weighs a little more than synthetic materials but the compromise is well worth it due to the added warmth and toughness this shoe offers. The LR‘s MEGAGRIP sole is thicker than most other Vibram styles and therefore offers more resistance to cold coming up from the ground through the soles. Just the few extra milimetres really does make a massive difference. The MEGAGRIP sole is also Vibram FiveFingers’ hands-down best sole for off-road running, trekking and walking.

  • Best for: Water resistance, long distance outdoor use, all winter
  • Worst for: Short-distance racing

     

Click here to buy the Trek Ascent LR

Trek Ascent Insulated

THE BEST WINTER SHOE from Vibram FiveFingers in 2015: The Trek Ascent Insulated comes higher up the ankle so it keeps more than just your feet warm; your ankles are kept toasty too! Not only that, but the wool lining is outstandingly warm – a total godsend for winter!!

Please note: The insulated padding inside this shoe means it fits smaller / tigher than all other Vibram FiveFingers styles. We strongly recommend you opt for +1 size up than you normally would.

The MEGAGRIP sole on this insulated shoe also features Vibram’s patented ICETREK technology, offering incredible grip on ice, snow, and cold surfaces. The sole is thicker, offering protection from the cold ground, and also features aggressive grip for fantastic stability on and off-road.

  • Best for: All winter use (running, trekking, casual, all terrain)
  • Worst for: Very wet weather

     

Click here to buy the Trek Ascent Insulated

CVT WoolVibram-FiveFingers-CVT-Wool-Navy-Grey-Casual-Smart-15M501-Feetus.co.uk-Barefoot-01

You guessed it, this shoe is largely made from wool making it warm and comfortable. The CVT Wool features a higher ankle for added warmth and the overall look of the shoe is stylish and ideal for smart and casual use. This shoe is surprisingly light yet cozy and warm.

For added grip on ice, snow, and cold ground, the CVT Wool features ICETREK pods in the sole.

  • Best for: Casual and smart winter use
  • Worst for: Sport

Click here to buy the CVT Wool

Don’t Forget About Toe Socks

Add extra warmth to your precious feet by wearing toe socks under your Vibrams. Some of the thicker socks (such as Injinji’s NuWool OUTDOOR range) can add too much bulk. In most cases a ‘normal’ thickness sock is more than adequate. See our guide to the best toe socks for winter (which also includes tips on keeping your feet warm).

Massive Vibram FiveFingers Discounts

Vibram FiveFingers – Sale now on!

We’ve just received our Autumn/Winter delivery of Vibram FiveFingers and are celebrating the release of the brand-new Trek Ascent Insulated. But there is one problem… We’ve got so many Vibrams that we can’t fit them on our shelves!

So we’re having an impromptu sale with some MASSIVE savings to be had.

CLICK EACH PRODUCT NAME TO TAKE YOU TO THE PRODUCT.

Here’s the list:

Men’s Vibram FiveFingers Sale

KSO Evo (road, gym, leisure) SAVE 22%

Bikila Evo (road, gym, leisure, walking) SAVE 28%

EL-X (road, gym, cheapest!) SAVE 20%

Spyridon MR (trail, off-road, mud obstacle, walking) SAVE 24%

KMD Sport LS (gym, leisure, walking) SAVE 26%

Trek Ascent (trail, off-road, walking, mud obstacle, hiking) SAVE 23%

Trek Ascent LR (trail, off-road, walking, mud obstacle, hiking) SAVE 21%

KMD Evo (parkour, gym, walking, leisure) SAVE 28%

CVT Hemp (leisure, travel) SAVE 26%

 

Women’s Vibram FiveFingers Sale

KSO Evo (road, gym, leisure) SAVE 22%

Bikila Evo (road, gym, leisure, walking) SAVE 28%

Alitza Loop (fitness classes, gym, leisure, travel) SAVE 20%

Vi-B (fitness classes, gym, leisure, travel) SAVE 27%

Spyridon MR (trail, off-road, mud obstacle, walking) SAVE 24%

KMD Sport LS (gym, leisure, walking) SAVE 26%

Trek Ascent (trail, off-road, walking, mud obstacle, hiking) SAVE 23%

Trek Ascent LR (trail, off-road, walking, mud obstacle, hiking) SAVE 21%

 

Rock-Bottom Clearance Vibram FiveFingers

Once these are gone, they’re gone forever! 

Trek Sport Sandal (Men’s sizes remaining) SAVE 39%

Seeya LS / LS Night (Men’s and Women’s) SAVE 42%

CVT LS (Men’s and Women’s) SAVE 45%

Lontra (Women’s winter shoe, size 37. Last pair) SAVE 61%

 

Cleveland-Mountain-Rescue-Logo

A BIG Bike Ride to Support Cleveland Mountain Rescue

Between 5 – 12 June, we’re going to donate 5% of money received on ALL ORDERS to Cleveland Mountain Rescue.

Supporting Outdoor Enthusiasts

Feetus HQ is sandwiched between the North Sea and the beautiful North York Moors in Middlesbrough, Cleveland. We’re lucky to have big hills, vast open spaces, and sandy beaches on our doorstep, so it seems only right that we support a local charity that supports outdoor enthusiasts like ourselves.

TransAndalus, TransMurciana, Hardmoors Trail Marathon

During this 8-day period, Feetus company owner Lee Firman is embarking on a solo bikepacking adventure through Southern Spain. Riding from Malaga to Murcia via the TransAndalus and TransMurciana MTB routes, he will cover around 850 off-road kilometres, cover the elevation of Mt Everest TWICE. And to top it off, the day after he returns, he will run the Hardmoors Osmotherley Trail Marathon (in the North York Moors).

All for a Good Cause

Camino de Santiago 2014 (Via de la Plata route)
Camino de Santiago 2014 (Via de la Plata route)

To some it may sound a little crazy, but its all for a good cause; to raise money for Cleveland Mountain Rescue.

“I love adventuring in rural places, so I’m really excited to tour round the biggest mountains of mainland Spain and explore the hidden gems of Andalusia. I do confess to being nervous about the long climbs; I’ve cycled multi-day trips before, but have never encountered such long, grinding, off-road climbs. It’s gonna be challenging!

…and of course, I’ll be sporting the gear we rave about here at Feetus, including my KSO EVOs (the PERFECT lightweight travel shoes!), Injinji toe socks, the FirmAppa neck tubes (I don’t leave home without!), and some new Feetus t-shirts. I’ll also fuel-up on MuleBar” 

So if you place an order during the week between 5 – 12 June, we’d like to offer an EXTRA THANKS.

And if you’d like to give a little more to this worthwhile cause, please visit Lee’s JustGiving page here.

How Do Women’s Injinji Socks Compare to Unisex Toe Socks?

Do you ever wonder if its just a gimmick when a sports company offers an alternative for women?

We do.

Earlier this year, Injinji released their Womens-Specific range of toe socks. They claim that these lightweight no show toe socks ‘better accommodate the female foot’ and offer ‘increased heel-to-toe stretch’. There is a two-way stretch through the mid-point of the arch to provide better compression through the female foot, and the toe pockets have been re-designed for a ‘better, snugger fit’. It all sounds great – but is it marketing-speak or can these socks cut the mustard? 

Earlier this month, we asked one of our super-customers to compare the new ladies-specific Injinji Performance 2.0 Lightweight No Show Women’s Toe Socks to the existing unisex toe socks. We like open, honest, and candid reviews (see this one from last month) and welcome criticism and feedback. We’re not all about sales, sales, sales; we care about our customers so its important to get an unbiased review from customers just like you… So without further ado, here’s Cath’s review.

A look at the Women's Specific Toe Socks form Injinji
A look at the Women’s Specific Toe Socks form Injinji

Injinji Performance 2.0 Lightweight No Show Women’s Toe Socks – A Review

I have to admit to being a bit sceptical when I was asked to review Injinji’s women’s socks to see how they compare to unisex toe socks. I wear both ToeToe and Injinji toe socks on a regular basis and have never noticed a major problem with wearing a sock which wasn’t specifically designed for girls. I run almost exclusively in Vibram FiveFingers, usually with a lightweight liner.

First Impressions

My first impression when I took the socks out of the packet was that I liked the funky pattern (not that anyone’s going to see it once I’ve got my shoes on!) but that the fabric felt quite thick, especially for a sock described as “lightweight” with “ultra-thin” cushioning.

 The Fit

Getting the sock on was easy – the toes and heel fit in the right place first time with no need for adjustment. This is where I sometimes have issues with unisex socks – the toes tend to be a bit long and I have to tug on them to get them to fit snugly. Oddly, the ribbed band which is meant to support the arch sat too high on my foot but this didn’t cause any discomfort or chafing. The thick feel of the fabric was noticeable between the toes but overall, the sock felt snug – it hugged my foot without being constrictive.

As soon as I donned my Fivefingers, I completely forgot the socks were there – just what I demand of a toe sock. I’m always a bit wary of socks described as “no show” in case they’re too short and don’t protect my ankle from the cuff of my shoe, but these socks are a perfect length – they do show over the top of both FiveFingers and “normal” shoes but this doesn’t bother me as I prefer the protection this provides.

Buy Women’s Injinji toe socks from Feetus.co.uk

Blister Prevention 

While running, the socks stayed in place perfectly, felt comfortable and prevented the blisters I get if I run without socks.

On Test

The initial test run was a 4-miler on a cool Spring morning, and the socks kept my feet nice and warm, which makes me wonder how they will hold up to Summer conditions. However, when I got home I discovered just how good the “moisture management” properties are – the socks were damp on the outside but when I took them off, my feet were totally dry. In comparison, after a similar run, both my ToeToes and my feet feel damp.

Overall, I liked these socks. I was surprised to find that the women’s socks do fit better than the unisex version and was very impressed with the wicking properties. In Summer, I would probably continue to use my ToeToes – even though they don’t wick as well as the Injinjis; they’re much thinner and cooler so I would expect my feet to sweat less in them. However, this particular Injinji sock looks set to become a favourite in the cooler months and if there were a thinner version it could well become the only sock in my drawer.

So… by the sounds of it, the Injinji Women’s-Specific toe socks do exactly what we expect.

Way to go Injinji! Keep up the good work!

Buy Women’s Injinji toe socks from Feetus.co.uk

Vibram Fivefingers Trek Ascent. Off-Road and Trail Running Shoes. Available at Feetus.co.uk

2015’s Vibram FiveFingers. An Overview.

An Introduction to 2015’s Vibram FiveFingers

2015 is here and we’re delighted to present to you a wonderful range of Vibram FiveFingers. We truly believe that this year there is something for everybody. Old styles such as the Trek Sport and the Seeya LS have made way for new releases, and we’re thrilled with the offering.

We’ve given them all a quirky name so hopefully you’ll be able to use this to figure out which style is best for you and your preferred uses. Each style has a quick overview so you can easily understand what the shoe is designed for:

  • The Big Hit – Trek Ascent / Trek Ascent LR
  • The Mud Racer – Spyridon MR
  • The One For Water – Signa
  • The Elegant Choice – Alitza Loop
  • The Classic – VI-B and EL-X
  • The Bestseller – KSO Evo
  • The Revolutionary (aka The Expensive One) – KMD Evo
  • The Indoor Favourite – KMD Sport LS
  • The Road Runner – Bikila Evo
  • The Waterproof One – Bikila Evo WP
  • The Casual One – CVT-Hemp

Have a read through the article and click the images to see the full product description of each.

The Big Hit – Trek Ascent / Trek Ascent LR

NEW FOR 2015

  • Trail Running
  • Trekking / Hiking
  • Mud / Obstacle Events

The Trek Ascent replaces the Trek Sport and the leather (LR) version has been released to satisfy the huge demand for an off-road leather shoe.

The shoe offers incredible rugged traction for all surfaces but is most capable on off-road adventures. The MEGAGRIP sole compound ensures you’ll have a firm and grounded experience when you’re on the trails.

The Trek Ascent LR does exactly the same job, except you can expect more durability with added water resistance from the leather and hemp upper fabric.Vibram Fivefingers Trek Ascent. Off-Road and Trail Running Shoes. Available at Feetus.co.uk

The Trek Ascent – Available for both men and women in a choice of different colours

The Mud Racer – Spyridon MR

  • Mud / Obstacle Events
  • Trail Running

If you’ve ever ran a muddy obstacle event you will have no doubt seen people lose their shoes in the mud or witnessed people losing their grip on the wet and muddy sections. That’s where the Spyridon MR comes in. MR stands for ‘Mud Runner’ and the shoe is equipped with a multidirectional lug pattern to ensure solid grip in all directions. Additionally, there is a molded 3D cocoon nylon mesh in the midsole to disperse impact.

Spyridon MR from Feetus.co.uk

 Men’s and Women’s Spyridon MR

The One For Water – Signa

  • Surfing and Watersports (Kayaking, Rowing, SUP)

FiveFingers’ signature water sport shoe, the Signa is ultra-thin, flexible and lightweight. The Signa offers incredible grip thanks to the WAVEGRIP sole compound and is very comfortable, both in and out of the water.

Vibram FiveFingers Signa - Watersports shoe from Feetus.co.uk

 The Signa – Available for men and women

The Elegant Choice – Alitza Loop

NEW FOR 2015

  • Yoga, Pilates, indoor sessions
  • Fitness Classes
  • Casual & Leisure

Available for ladies’ only, the Alitza Loop replaces the incredibly popular original Alitza. Favoured by yoga, pilates and barre practitioners, but is also great for any indoor activities. Lightweight, breathable and perfect for fitness classes and studio sessions as well as travel and casual use.

Vibram FiveFingers Alitza Loop from Feetus.co.uk

The Alitza Loop. An elegant, ladies-only style

The Men’s Classic – EL-X

  • Indoor Training
  • Travel

Available for men only, although women with wider feet often prefer the EL-X. This simple ‘barefoot’ shoe has no fastening mechanism and is versatile, comfortable and easy on and easy off. Equipped with Vibram’s thinnest sole (just 3.5mm), the EL-X offers incredible ground feel. The minimalist nature of the shoe, its flexibility and its low weight make it a perfect travel companion.

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X from Feetus.co.uk

 The EL-X. Available in black and red/black. Designed for men but also suitable for women

The Women’s Classic – VI-B

  • Fitness Classes
  • Casual & Leisure
  • Yoga, Pilates, indoor sessions
  • Travel

Available for women only, the VI-B is for the elegant minimalist. Consider this an ‘evloved ballet flat’; featherlight, breathable and slim-fitting. Great for indoor training, casual use and for no-fuss travel. Also comes with a free polyester mesh bag that matches your shoes!

Vibram FiveFingers VI-B from Feetus.co.uk

 Available in a choice of colours, the beautiful VI-B

The Bestseller – KSO Evo

  • Indoor Training
  • Road Running
  • Casual & Leisure
  • Travel

The KSO Evo replaced the original KSO back in 2013 and has become a firm favourite since. Ideal for pretty much anything, it is difficult to say what the KSO Evo is actually best for. Its great for hitting the gym, for tarmac running, and due to its sleek design (that isn’t quite as ‘outrageous’) as some other styles, the KSO Evo is popular as an everyday shoe.

Vibram FiveFingers KSO Evo from Feetus.co.uk

Always a hit! The KSO Evo available in various colours for both men and women

The Revolutionary – KMD Evo

NEW FOR 2015

  • Parkour, Free Running & Similar
  • Indoor training
  • Casual & Leisure

Inspired by the rise in parkour and free running, the KMD Evo is a revolutionary new shoe from Vibram Fivefingers. The upper fabric is made from 100% low elastic polyester filament (similar to Nike’s FlyKnit material). The sole is fantastic for dynamic movement, for climbing, leaping and balancing. Its true that this shoe is expensive, but the KMD Evo certainly feels like a luxurious product.

Vibram FiveFingers KMD Evo from Feetus.co.uk

 

Leap, bound, climb, run. The KMD Evo for men and women

The Indoor Favourite – KMD Sport LS

  • Indoor Training
  • Walking

Previously known as the Komodo Sport, the KMD Sport LS is hands-down the best indoor training shoe from Vibram FiveFingers. The multi-drection lug pattern on the soles makes it great for agile, lateral movements and intense workouts. The flexibility of the shoe provides great feedback (barefoot feel) and the upper fabric is reinforced in places to support the likes of rope climbing and other CrossFit-type exercises.

KMD Sport LS from Feetus.co.uk

The KMD Sport LS: Available for men and women in various colours

The Road Runner – Bikila Evo

  • Road Running
  • Indoor Training
  • Walking

The Bikila Evo is an ideal shoe to transition in to barefoot running. At 6.5mm the sole is about halfway between the thinnest and thickest making it a perfect indtroductory shoe.

But that’s not all. The Bikila Evo is the premium road running shoe from Vibram FiveFingers. The lightweight EVA midsole provides a thin blanket of cushioning that really helps during races and long runs.

Vibram FiveFingers Bikila Evo from Feetus.co.uk

 Rapid! The Bikila Evo, for road running

The Waterproof One – Bikila Evo WP

  • Road Running
  • Snow and Ice
  • Poor Weather Running

Introduced in late 2014, the Bikila Evo WP was a godsend to many. Finally, we have a ‘barefoot’ running shoe that is 100% waterproof. A total revalation, the Bikila Evo is startlingly good-looking, and the ICETREK sole compound acts as a sticky grip on ice and snow.Bikila Evo Waterproof from Feetus

 

The Casual One – CVT Hemp

  • Casual & Leisure
  • Travel

Minimalist shoe lovers will be impressed by the CVT Hemp. Lightweight, breathable and stylish; there’s no fastening mechanism – it’s a simple slip-on shoe where the heel can also fold down to act like a clog. Durable and comfortable.

Vibram FiveFingers CVT Hemp from Feetus.co.uk
CVT Hemp, available for both men and women

 

What do you think of 2015’s Vibrams?

With the increase in people participating in muddy obstacle events and the growing popularity of trail and ultra running, we believe the Trek Ascent is going to be the big favourite five-toe’d shoe of 2015. But there seems to be a massive movement in people getting fit, going to fitness classes and PT sessions so the KMD Sport LS and the KSO Evo are likely to be big hits too.

Which is your favourite style for 2015?

If you could, what else would you have liked to see?

Pre-Order the Bikila Evo WP

Vibram FiveFingers releasing limited no. of Bikila Evo WP early

We released a Sneak-Peak of the Bikila Evo WP earlier this year, heaping praise on Vibram for FINALLY creating something waterproof. We were critical about it all too. Vibram had planned to release the shoe AFTER winter, and had also slapped a whopping £180 price tag on the shoe. Outrageous.

Click here to buy

Influencing for the Better
Shortly after that article, we learned that Vibram decided to put more gusto in to the production of the Bikila Evo WP in a bid to release them BEFORE winter. Coincidentally, the RRP was also reduced to £150.

Now for the Good Bit

  • We’ve secured a limited number of Bikila Evo WP and they’re expected to land in the UK mid-November.
  • We have also slashed an extra 10% off!

Click here to buy

And as always – You’ll get these delivered for FREE (within the UK). 
PLEASE NOTE:
  • This offer is only exclusively available during the Pre-Order period. 
  • Bikila Evo WP stock is extremely limited. We expect to sell out during pre-order. Once our quota has sold, it’s gone; so claim yours early! 
  • Payment is taken at the time of order.
  • Any add-on items made during your purchase of the Bikila Evo WP will be despatched in full once the Evo WP arrives in stock. 

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE BIKILA EVO WP

Exclusive look at the Bikila EVO WP

2015 Vibram FiveFingers. Sneak Preview No.4: Bikila Evo WP

Waterproof Vibram FiveFingers!

The Bikila EVO WP is now available to buy from www.feetus.co.uk.

…At Last!  

Every year, when winter rears its head, we are bombarded with customers all asking the big question: “Which pair of Vibram FiveFingers is waterproof”? And we shrug, answering “Well, there is the Lontra, but it is only water-resistant, but you these other styles are also worthy of consideration in winter…”. Until now, we usually point customers to this article What Vibram FiveFingers Shall I Wear In Winter?.

We never expected a waterproof style of Vibrams to ever become available. In all honesty, I had questioned how you could actually make a ‘barefoot shoe’ that also could keep the water out. But now, in principle at least, Vibram have developed just that, and we’re proud to present the Bikila EVO WP.

Introducing the Bikila EVO WP

During a Vibram FiveFingers presentation last year, a spokesman demonstrated the power of this new sole technology they had created. One man attempted to walk over an ice rink in a standard shoes while the other, equipped with a Vibram ICETREK compound sole, made his way over the ice without any trouble at all. Vibram FiveFingers went on to develop this technology further, creating their first waterproof shoe.

ICE Trek Sole by Vibram FiveFingers
ICE Trek Sole by Vibram FiveFingers

Due for release early 2015  (NOW AVAILABLE – CLICK HERE) the Bikila EVO WP is like a cross between the Bikila EVO and the below-par Lontra. The WP has this super grippy sole and a waterproof tri-layer stretch fabric equipped with a waterproof zip that comes to ankle height. A lot of customers who bought the Lontra had trouble with the neoprene cuff either being so tight it dug in to their calf/achilles; or is was too slack, ultimately letting in water. Vibram have sensibly removed this neoprene cuff and replaced it with a much improved abrasion-resistant tricot lining.

Exclusive look at the Bikila EVO WP
Exclusive look at the Bikila EVO WP

The sole thickness is exactly the same as the Bikila EVO (6.5mm). The shoe is around 20% heavier (just 150g total weight!) than the original EVO, which isn’t bad considering the extra benefits of the shoe.

  • WEIGHT: M43 = 5.29oz W38 = 3.88oz
  • MAX SOLE THICKNESS: 6.5mm (2.5mm
  • Rubber/ 4.0mm-EVA)
  • INSOLE: Waterproof Fabric
  • UPPER MATERIAL: Tri-Layer Stretch
  • Waterproof Fabric
  • VEGAN
  • Hand Wash Cold/Air Dry

The official Vibram blurb: “Same minimalist design as our hard-working Bikila EVO, but with waterproof stretch-membrane construction, taped seams and a water-resistant gaiter to keep the wet environment at bay. An ideal running shoe for those looking for grip, and durability on ice.”

The Feetus Verdict

My concern is that this waterproof shoe has been developed on the Bikila Evo. The Bikila Evo features an EVA midsole, and this EVA material is partially exposed. My experience of EVA is that it is like lightweight, dense rubber. This rubber can contract with each step and return back to its former shape. As the EVA rubber is so light, there is obviously air inside. When the rubber reduces in size, it pushes the air out. Then when the rubber returns to its normal state, it takes air in.

My experience of running with shoes with an exposed EVA midsole is that, (and this becomes more prominent over time, as the outer sole wears thinner), when the EVA ‘breathes’, it soaks up water. While this may be a tiny amount of water with each step, but over the course of a run, when the terrain is completely wet, the EVA begins to soak up the water and your feet get wet.

Vibram FiveFingers Bikila EVO WP from Feetus.co.uk
The Bikila EVO WP

Of course, I may be completely wrong about the Bikila Evo WP. I haven’t tested this shoe yet, but for me it would have made sense to have built this waterproof shoe on the new Trek Ascent. The Trek Ascent also features a 4mm EVA midsole, but at least this is not exposed in any way – with the outsole completely covered with durable rubber.

Save up now, or get wet feet

Only time will tell… but again we feel Vibram have let themselves down with the price tag again. The Bikila EVO WP comes in at a whopping £180 RRP (UK RRP now lowered to £150 – Buy the Bikila EVO WP from Feetus.co.uk now)

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