Sometime in 2018, I was nearing the end of a day climbing at Smith Rock. My feet were tired, but I still had the need for a bit more movement, so I tied in and climbed a cruiser route in my Tevas (a different model back then). When my partner lowered me back to the ground, a guy from a neighboring party came up to me. He said, “You know, my girlfriend always says there’s a Teva for everything.” That stuck with me. There is a Teva for everything. It’s not necessarily because Tevas are well suited for every activity – they’re terrible for climbing, for instance – but just that they’re comfortable and endlessly versatile. In my testing and review, I’ve found that the Teva Hurricane XLT2 is no exception.
Teva Hurricane XLT2 Features:
- REPREVE® recycled polyester webbing uppers are durable and dry quickly after getting wet
- REPREVE polyester is made from recycled plastic bottles
- Injection-molded strap ends offer quick and easy grip and adjustability
- Easy hook-and-loop closures come on and off quickly and provide a just-right fit
- EVA foam midsoles provide lightweight cushioning
- Nylon shanks stabilize and support your feet on uneven terrain
- Rugged Durabrasion Rubber™ outsoles stand up to abuse and supply excellent traction
- Weight: 10.25 ounces
- MSRP: $75.00
There’s a Teva for Everything
Teva has long been the big name in active sandals, and while the classic Teva Original Universal continues to deliver on the well-established expectations of the brand’s fans, the Hurricane XLT2 takes it up a notch. The straps and general strap design remains almost unchanged from the classic Teva, but the body and sole are bolstered significantly for these sandals.
The Hurricane’s strap design offers 3 points of adjustment: the heel, the top ankle, and the toe. When I bought my pair, I adjusted the heel and toe straps, then never touched them again. With the secure and reliable velcro closure design, I never had to. The adjustability in these areas can be nice over the long term if your different activities require vastly different fits or if you plan on lending the sandals to your ogre-footed friend, but I find that the top ankle strap alone gives me most of the day-to-day adjustability that I need.
These sandals’ straps use webbing made from recycled plastic bottles, which is a nice environmental plus. They also receive a small padded cushion at the heel. This little feature is an upgrade from the classic Teva design, and I’ve found that it makes wearing the sandals over long days considerably more comfortable. Over the course of my time with these Tevas, I’ve hiked numerous days with multi-digit mileage and never had any heel chafing whatsoever. The only point of discomfort I’ve had with the Hurricane’s straps is after wearing them in water. For a water shoe, these straps stay wet for a while, making them somewhat unpleasant to put on the morning after a long day of wading in the river.
The Hurricane XLT2 gets its main upgrades in the midsole and outsole areas. Its midsole is a single EVA foam unit with internal nylon shanks. Immediately upon wearing them, I was taken by their plush, but non-sloppy feel. My feet sink into them ever so slightly, and they very effectively cushion the impacts of footfalls and jumps. We can thank the EVA foam for that softness and comfort. These sandals also have a certain rigidity and springiness when bent, making the shoe less of a formless noodle and offering more support for longer walks and hikes. For that, we must give credit to the nylon shanks. Both the EVA foam and the internal nylon shanks do their job swimmingly, and the result is a very responsive and comfortable footbed.
These sandals outsoles are visibly more aggressive and thickly lugged than the classic Teva. When you’re on the trail, you can feel that difference. The lugs of the Hurricane XLT2 grab onto the features of rocks and roots easily, and inspire a fair bit of confidence. In using my tevas for a variety of activities – walking about town, hiking, approaching climbs, wading while fly fishing – I never came across instances where the rubber of these sandals performed poorly. They offer the same traction and reliability while wet as they do when they’re dry.
I wear my pair of Hurricanes almost every day, and I have for over a year. The nylon straps have held up well. The EVA foam is heavily abraded in sections around the edges, but functionally unaltered. The one part of the sandals that hasn’t aged with grace is the rubber outsoles. With miles and miles of abuse behind them, I’ve worn through the rubber lugs, revealing that the larger lugs are hollow. It took a long time to get to that place, but it’s worth noting that these sandals, like all others, have a limit too. I still wear them.
Fit: I regularly wear size 10.5 or 11 shoes, and opted for an 11 for these sandals, which fits perfectly. Most active sandals have a bit more foot movement and play in them, so opting for your larger size (or sizing up by a half size) is a good decision with the Hurricanes.
- Easy to adjust to a good fit
- Heel pad is comfortable for longer walks and hikes
- EVA midsole and nylon shanks make the sandals plush, but responsive
- Rubber outsole has excellent traction
- Good aesthetics
- Rubber outsole has hollow lugs, reducing their lifespan
- Nylon straps dry slowly
The Bottom Line: Teva Hurricane XLT2
Teva remains the big name in active sandals for a reason, and the Hurricane XLT2 is a wonderful upgrade on their classic design, marrying a comfortable fit with increased durability and padding. With more grip and responsiveness than the ol’ classic, this might just be the Teva for everything. It certainly fills that role for me.
Buy Now: Available at REI