Karrimor keeps dipping in and out of the outdoor market as the backroom boys and girls find they have new owners every few years. However, it seems they are back for good this time with some niche product to tempt the old faithful and the fresher into the fold. The Karrimor Kiwi sandal does look striking similar to the classic Teva Terra Fi, which is no bad thing as the Terra Fi is a classic water sports sandal. The Karrimor Kiwi is equally suitable for water sports, but it’s also fine for general use too. It is made with synthetic straps, making it fast-drying. The straps are Velcro fastened, which is quick and easy (for my money this works perfectly well and there is no real need for the clips that are also provided on some sandals). The footbed is designed to be antimicrobial, so in theory these won’t get too smelly. The sole unit is very stiff, and this makes these perfect for wandering along rocky footpaths as well as crossing rivers. The sole unit is also well profiled, which means these allow a very natural walking action. The lug pattern on the outsole is particularly aggressive and resembles a tractor type, so you can really claw your way up muddy grass slopes of over sand for that matter. Overall this is a superb sandal, with performance features that make it ideal for the world traveller, backpacker and water sports enthusiast. The price is excellent for what you get too. But the basic strap design is not as comfortable or as protective of the foot as the more enclosing straps that are featured on some other sandals such. The weight of the sandals is also very high compared to some others. This is not necessarily a major drawback, but for the backpacker every gram counts, especially for an item that you may carry in your pack more often than actually wear. These drawbacks mean these are ideal for many situations, but if you favour low weight and maximum comfort they are not the best.
Upper: synthetic straps with neoprene padding
Sole: Karrimor Quest Lite
Trail fit profile: forefoot 2; heel 2; volume 2; length 2
Sizes: 7-12 (men’s); 4-8 (women’s)
Weight: 796g (pair, size 11)
Made in China
Stores in UK: England 320; Wales 45; Scotland 75; Ireland 8
Verdict: Buy it if you want a low-priced sandal that is fast-drying, with excellent support and traction, but don’t need the lowest of weight and the highest level of comfort.