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Reviews > Footwear > Sandals > Oboz Campster Sandals > Test Report by Michael Pearl

OBOZ FOOTWEAR MEN'S CAMPSTER
TEST SERIES BY MIKE PEARL
LONG-TERM REPORT

INITIAL REPORT - May 06, 2018
FIELD REPORT - July 11, 2018
LONG TERM REPORT - September 18, 2018

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Mike Pearl
EMAIL: mikepearl36ATyahooDOTcom
AGE: 44
LOCATION: Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 5' 9" (1.75 m)
WEIGHT: 155 lb (70.30 kg)

I have a great appreciation for the outdoors and get out at every opportunity. I am a three-season, learning to be a four-season backpacker and year-round hiker. Currently, my trips are two to three days long as well as an annual week-long trip. I utilize the abundant trail shelters in my locale and pack a backup tarp-tent. I like to cover big distances while still taking in the views. I have lightweight leanings but function and reliability are the priority. I mostly travel woodland mountain terrain but enjoy hiking beautiful trails anywhere.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

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Manufacturer: Oboz Footwear IMAGE 2
Year of Manufacture: 2018
Manufacturer's Website: www.obozfootwear.com
MSRP: US$90.00
Listed Weight: 9.2 oz (260 g) per 1/2 pair size Men's 9
Measured Weight: 20 oz (573 g) per pair size Men's 9

Sizes Available: 8 through 14
Size Tested: 9
Colors Available: Dark Shadow/Russet, Black, and Olive
Color Tested: Dark Shadow/Russet

Upper Material: Polyester webbing
Outsole: Non-marking rubber and EVA*
Midsole: Dual density EVA

*EVA (ethylene vinyl accetate) two plastics, ethylene and vinyl joined to make a copolymer and turned into a foam making a light weight, water and corrosion resistant, insulating and shock aborping material.

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

The Campsters arrived in a standard shoe box wrapped in the standard shoe tissue paper. Well they're almost standard, having prints of topo maps on them makes them unusual. This is a theme that runs through the Oboz product line.

Taking the Campsters out of the box they look stylish and sturdy. The outer sole is solid and hard to the touch. The midsole is firm but spongy when I press it with my finger. Both the heel strap and the forefoot straps are lightly padded. The heel strap is connected to the body with what looks like a plastic rivet. The heel strap moves freely but stays in place where it's positioned. There are little loops sewn on the heel strap and forefoot to pull on and assist with putting the Campsters on. The webbing is symmetrically placed over the body of the sandal. All materials and assembly of the Campster appears to be of high quality and well executed.

The Campsters look like cool and comfy sandals ideal for short hikes, playing in the water or even just lounging around.

READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

I find no instructions or care information for the Campsters. Nor do I feel any or necessary. The shoe box does have information about Oboz I feel is meaningful enough to mention. It's Oboz Footwear's One-More-Tree, Oboz plants a tree for every pair of Oboz sold. Not only do they make good footwear they also help support worthwhile causes. IMAGE 3

TRYING IT OUT

I first put the Campsters on with the heel strap up in "slipper mode". On first wear I find they match the shape of my foot quite nicely. From the slightly rounded toe box, fair amount of arch and cupping of my heel these sandals feel good. Walking around the house the Campster have an almost flip-flop feel in the click-slap sound of the heel. However the webbing provides support and protection to my toes giving a more shoelike feel. I like the ease of simply slipping my foot in hands free.

IMAGE 4Turning the heel strap back down to "sandal mode" the flip-flop click-slap goes away. The Campster are still fairly easy to get on and the little pull straps really help. The heel strap keeps the sandal firmly on my foot. I didn't feel my foot lose contact with the midsole and shift or slide around on a quick 1 mi (1.6 km) walk. The outersole and poly strapping provided good support and protection to my feet and toes. The midsole was cushy and comfortable all the way home.

SUMMARY

The Campster are neat, comfortable sandals. I like the simple yet versatile design. The materials and assembly are of good quality and well done. I look forward to getting outdoors with the Campsters.


FIELD REPORT

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Day HikesIMAGE 1

Bridal Veil Falls - Franconia, New Hampshire
Distance and Elevation - 5 mi (8 km) from 994 to 2100 ft (303 to 640 m)
Pack Weight - 15 lb (7 kg)
Temperature and Conditions - 55 F (13 C) clear and cool

Connecticut River - Hanover, New Hampshire
Distance and Elevation - 3 mi (5 km)
Pack Weight - 8 lb (3.6 kg)
Temperature and Conditions - 98 F (37 C) hot and humid

Sculptured Rocks - Groton, New Hampshire
Distance and Elevation - 4 mi (6 km) from 790 to 1060 ft (240 to 323 m)
Pack Weight - 10 lbs (4.5 kg)
Temperature and Conditions - 85 F (29 C) sunny and clear

Overnight Backpacks

Galehead Hut - Twin Mountain, New Hampshire
Distance and Elevation - 16 mi (26 km) from 1500 to 4902 ft (457 to 1494 m)
Pack Weight - 25 lbs (11 kg)
Temperature and Conditions - 35 to 58 F (2 to 14 C) clear and sunny with strong winds on summits

Guyot Shelter - Mt Zealand and West Bond, New Hampshire
Distance and Elevation - 14.5 mi (23 km) from 2000 to 4540 ft (609 to 1384 m)
Pack Weight - 25 lbs (11 kg)
Temperature and Conditions - 77 to 55 F (25 to 13 C) sunny and humid light breeze on summits

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

The Campsters have been fun, comfortable and functional during this phase of testing. I've worn them in place of my hiking boots when crossing streams to access waterfalls, around camp in the evening and on a short hike to the river for a swim. Additionally I have worn the Campsters around the house, around the yard and during short walks to the corner store.

When moving at more than a slow shuffle I use the heel strap. When just needing protection for my feet or socks on short trips around camp or home the slipper mode is really easy and convenient. I place the Campsters just outside my tent or next to my bunk with the heel straps up. Then when their needed I simply slip my feet in and I'm on my way. When returning to my resting position they are just as easy to slide out of.

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In all seasons I enjoy visiting natural waterways. Each is always unique in its own way and presents anew in each season. I made it to three falls so far this year, one in spring and another two in summer. The first trip, the stream below the falls was flowing wide, fast and cold. I used the Campsters to cross the stream to and from the falls and while exploring the rocks below the falls. The Campsters held very good footing on the rocks in the stream and out both while wet and dry. They provided great protection to my toes from bumping rocks and branches. On the second, the weather was much warmer but water still quite chilly. I hiked upstream over and through a small stream to reach a pool under a refreshing cascade. This was a great side trip after an overnight hike to get a natural shower. Again the Campsters did a great job scrabbling on the various rocks along the stream bed. The third waterfall was more of a swimming trip with a small hike. After a short hike to the river I changed out of my boots into the Campsters and walked down through a shallow river. The river reached an area that has been carved into a small slot cavern with several small falls. At the bottom of each is a small swimming hole. This involved a mix of river walking, scrambling and climbing. The Campsters were comfortable and held every step and every position I moved in. This outing was super fun and a great way to beat the heat.

The heatwave continued and the only answer was more swimming. We took the 1.5 mi (2.5 km) walk down the Connecticut River, I in the Campsters. Lucky for us most of the walk is through a pine forest with a nice trail rolling up and down the ravines to the river. At the river I swam with and without the Campsters. This proved insightful as I discovered that they float. Good thing I was able to swim faster than the current that day! The Campsters did better on the way there than back home. On the way home both my feet and the Campsters were wet. By the time I was back home I developed a hot spot on the inside of my right foot right at the heel strap rivet. Not overly painful or long lasting but mentionable. I chalked this up to my foot being soft from soaking in the water for a few hours and the sandals being wet as well. This hadn't happen before or since.

When carried in for hiking and backpacking trips the Campsters have hitched a ride two different ways. When dry I will put them in a plastic bag and carry them inside my pack. When wet I will strap them to the outside of my pack. The Campster Sandals lay flat enough and have plenty of points to run a strap through to lash them to my pack. Both ways work fine all though I slightly prefer inside the pack, pack space permitting.IMAGE 3

SUMMARY

The Oboz Campster Sandals are really nice water and around camp footwear. They are slightly on the heavier side as far as sandals go. But, for the level of traction, foot protection and comfort I feel it's a fair trade off. Additionally the movable heel strap almost makes them two sandals in one, allowing for wider range of use. The Campsters have worked very well in all settings thus far and only once caused a mild comfort issue. However I believe this was more of a "waterlogged" foot than a sandal problem. At the end of this phase of testing I am overall very pleased with the Campsters.


LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Monadnock - Sunapee Greenway, New Hampshire - Five days / Four nights
Distance and Elevation - 52 mi (84 km) from 1200 to 3165 ft (370 to 965 m)
Pack Weight - 38 lbs start / 28 lbs end (17 / 13 kg)
Temperature and Conditions - 78 to 50 F (25.5 to 10 C) sunny and pleasant except for one night into
morning of heavy rain

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

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I continue to be very happy with the Campsters. On the Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway I used the Campsters twice a day. Each morning and evening I wore them around camp. They were extremely comfortable on my feet after hiking all day. They made moving around camp easy and safe for my feet while allowing them to air and dry out. Before bed I flipped the heel strap up so in the morning I could quickly slip my feet in. This allowed for quick exit from my bag and the shelter. I could carry out my camp chores of making camp, dinner, breakfast and breaking camp in the Campsters. Even at the cooler temps in the mornings my feet were happy in the Campsters as they still fit when wearing socks. When ready to hike again I would strap the Campsters to my pack. With the soles facing outward I looped them through the shock cord attached to the pack. They packed well and stayed in place while hiking.

I had only one mishap with the Campsters. I am not sure how it happened but pulling the strap over my heel caused the strap detached at one of the rivets. I was shocked as it was not at all a forceful pull. Luckily I was able to find both sides of the rivet. I matched everything up and snapped the rivet together again securing the heel strap. I flipped the strap up and down several times then went through a few cycles of putting the sandal on and taking it off. All held tight and the Campsters were back in service. This has not happen but that one time.

In addition I have worn the Campster sandals to walk to the pool and around town on warm days. They work just as well in this setting as on the trail. They are sturdy enough to handle asphalt and cement walkways. And provide enough cushion and support to keep my feet happy.

SUMMARY

The Oboz Campster are great sandals for hanging out and moving around camp, moving through or playing in the water and walking around town or short distances on trails. They provide plenty of traction and protection for my feet. The heel strap is a really cool feature. I like being able to use the Campster as a slipper then easily switching to sandal and vice versa. They are easy to securely carry on my pack. At 1.25 lb (0.5 kg) the added weight is worth the in camp comfort and secure footing when crossing waterways.

The Campsters remain in good condition after many miles, submersions and one minor breakdown. All materials are intact and in good working order. I will continue to use the Campsters when the need for camp footwear or water shoes arises.

This concludes my Long-Term Report and wraps up this test series. I would like to extend my thanks to Oboz Footwear and BackpackGearTest.org for making this test series possible.

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This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.5 Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.

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