In their pursuit of footwear domination, Keen continues to expand their product lines with both niche products and expanded products for the masses. Every time I get the rundown of the Keen product line, I’m impressed with both the product quality and sheer expansiveness of the line.
Not only does Keen offer some of the most protective and trail-friendly sandals on the market, but they also produce river shoes like the Keen Hood River Boot, casual shoes for a walk around town, bags and packs and also left and right-specific socks.
A couple of new products that I’d like to highlight represent both product refinements and an expansion into a new market.
Keen Springwater Bike Shoes
Fresh off the Commuter Sandals, Keen is trying to make their mark in the mountain bike shoe market by introducing the all-new Springwater for 2009. Though not a race-worthy shoe, this new design sports a full SPD-compatible shank, removable footbed, non-marking outsoles (to keep your wife happy as you traipse across the wood floors in the kitchen), three velcro straps for a secure fit and Keen’s patented toe protection.
As a great everyday MTB shoe, the Springwater looks like it has enough features to be a great performer for most people. Not as stiff as a race shoe, but much more comfortable on and off the bike, the Springwater will be in stores January 2009 at $100 MSRP.
Keen Powerline Trail Runners
Keen has produced trail runners for a few years now, but the all-new Powerline looks to be their most solid entry into the category to date. As the new flagship trail shoe, the Powerline is a powerful and supportive shoe for daily trail runs. Not a featherweight race shoe, but a workhorse that’s built to take a beating.
Notable features include a TPU stone bruising plate to protect your feet, S3 heel support structure, extra cushioning, asymmetrical flex lace system and a 3mm lug outsole. Available in two colors: Rust/Charcoal and Black/Bossa Nova, look for the Men’s Powerline trail running shoes in Spring 2009 at $100 MSRP.
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I just got out on my first actual trail run on the Keen Powerlines. They are definitely more on the trail side of trail running. Stable with tons of traction, but not race-worthy by any stretch of the imagination.
Great trail running/hiking shoes. More updates later.