Review: Unshoes Pah Tempe Sandal

I hear ya. You’re all like, “Karen, you wacko! It’s January and you’re talking about sandals?” But guess what folks? It’s the perfect time to order yourselves a pair of Unshoes if you’ve been hankering for a minimal sandal for all your adventures. If you’re a southern hemispherist, you can take advantage of the north’s winter lull to get your order in now for the remainder of your summer. That’s right, they ship internationally.

Terral Fox over at Unshoes makes all of these custom by hand. And as soon as the weather starts to warm up and look inviting—not too far away for those of you in the southern climes of the US—he will be flooded with orders. So get ’em ASAP for a quicker turn-around.

Please see my review of another one of their models, the Wokova Feather. After that, I obviously needed to try the Pah Tempe. Why? Just look at ’em:

Unshoes Pah Tempe

These guys are built to handle the lateral motion that my outdoor, MovNat-styles workouts demand. Especially when there’s water involved, and in my life, there’s often water involved whether it’s the creek in my fave local park or a weekend kayaking expedition. Not to mention tree climbing, rock scrambling, and hiking.

Everything in my original review of the Wokova Feather holds here. The Pah Tempes are lightweight, flexible, and have great ground-feel. There are no knots under your toes, no chafing straps, and no need for bandages to soak up the blood from your authentic Mexican-made huaraches. These are quite simply the most comfortable minimal sandal I’ve tried for all sorts of crazy activities. I keep waiting for some issue to pop up—because there’s always an issue, right?—but it just doesn’t. These sandals are in it for the long haul.

Where they differ is the Pah Tempe has a thicker sole, compared to the Feather’s 5mm. My Pah Tempes have a 6mm sole, but if you need something burlier, you can get a 10mm sole.

Bridge Crossing When I first put them on, you have to go through an initial strap adjusting session, but once you do that, they’re easy to get on and off every time thereafter. I was a bit concerned about how the big buckle sits right on top of my foot, and I shifted around a little bit to try to get it settled. In the past, I’ve had issues with ganglion cysts developing on the tendons of my hands and feet, and a buckle on one of those suckers wouldn’t work very well. But they’ve all disappeared since going Paleo, so that’s no longer a concern. Hmm…veddy eenteressteen…

Once I got moving, I blissfully forgot all Bridge Climbabout the buckle, and indeed, all about the darn sandals on my feet. What more could you ask for in a minimal sandal? The times I got to take them for a spin before the weather got all wintry, they did everything I asked of them, as evidenced by my bridge conquering here. Now I know some of you barefooters out there are far more hardcore and less image-conscious than I, and you can indeed wear some warm, wooly socks with these. Just adjust your straps out accordingly.

On appearance, as a vain lady, these are a little less appealing to me than the Wokova Feather. But the heftier straps make for a slightly more stable ride, so the function is definitely worthwhile. So if you, like me, have a burning desire for something a little more invisible and lightweight, get the Wokova Feather. If you’re going to use the heck out of these, go for the Pah Tempe. If you want to do both, why choose? Get them both and use them interchangeably. You can get two of these for the cost of one pair of minimal shoes. For my part, both pairs of Unshoes will be traveling with me in April to Costa Rica for my one-week MovNat workshop.

I don’t want to reveal any trade secrets, but Terral and crew have been testing some new designs for the womenfolk. That’s right—a minimal shoe company is thinking about us ladies. Can you believe it? I’ll report back when I have some official news on that.

They also have a children’s line. I can’t wait until my daughter’s a little bit older so I can order her a pair.

Go here to order your Unshoes. Please note that you’ll need to draw an outline of your feet and send it to Terral after you place your order. I did this by tracing on paper, scanning it as an image, and then emailing it. A bit of effort, but a small price to pay for a custom pair of sandals that will fit you and only you. Then you’ll have to be patient and wait a few weeks, but it will be worth it. If you order now, you can have them ready to go when the sunshine calls you.

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One Response to “Review: Unshoes Pah Tempe Sandal”

  1. Pah Tempe’s are simply the best minimalist sandals out there. From hiking in the Andes to training for a marathon there are no other’s that compare. I liked their first design but love the re design. So of course my wife and I both have a pair.Just make sure if you want to run in them you order the runner’s fit ( a little narrower )

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