As a fan of huarache sandals for running and casual wear, I welcome the chance to try another interpretation of the classic minimalist footwear. Bedrock Sandals began as a Kickstarter project in which the two friends and founders, Nick and Dan, were successful at raising their initial funding. Their Kickstarter investors got the initial batch of sandals, but now everyone can order a pair.
The Bedrock Sandals are truly minimal with just three simple parts. The sole is a 6mm Vibram rubber sole. The strapping is 1/2″ nylon, and each sandal uses a plastic buckle for fastening the strap. Slits slightly forward of your ankle anchor the strap along with a toe hole between your first and second toes. The strap is held in place under the sole by melting it to create a knot-like plug. The strap is tied using a commonly used huarache style. Like other huarache sandals, your feet can truly flex naturally with no support or cushioning.
At 6mm, the soles strike a good balance between providing protection and still giving you plenty of ground feel. The bottom of the sole is comprised of hundred of tiny nubs. These provide some traction and a very nice feel. As as thin as these soles are, I was surprised at how pleasurable they felt underfoot belying their thickness. There’s nothing added to the sole so you get a clean rubber surface that grips to your foot very nicely.
With the nylon straps, you won’t have to experiment with huarache tying methods, and the buckle system simplifies fastening. The nylon material doesn’t have any give so you will have to experiment with the tightness of your straps. Too loose and it will slip off your heel, and too tight can cause your foot to migrate forward in the sandal. I found myself stopping a few times the first time out running to make some minor adjustments to get the perfect fit. Since the straps are secured between your toes by melting it in place, road repairs would be difficult unless you carry a lighter or some matches. I make sure to inspect them before each run.
Walking and Running
Bedrock Sandals are terrific for casual wear. Unlike most huarache sandals which use a narrow cord for lacing, the wider strapping of the Bedrock Sandals give off a more polished look. They are definitely less obtrusive than my homemade huaraches, and they blend in with the flip-flops and other sandals you commonly see.
I’ve been running in my Bedrock Sandals on a variety of surfaces from roads and sidewalks to dirt roads and easy trails. The soles will keep the smaller rocks and sticks from causing you any concern, but scanning your way ahead is still necessary. I found the sole material to be the strength of this sandal far exceeding the Vibram Cherry rubber I’ve used before. Getting the straps to the proper tightness was an annoyance though. I prefer a material that can stretch a bit so you don’t have to be so precise with the fit. Like all huarache sandals, you’ll enjoy the pleasures of nearly nothing on your feet (2.5 ounces) and the cooling benefits of open-toed footwear.
Bedrock Sandals provide another good, basic huarache sandal for casual wear or running competing with models from sandal makers like Xero Shoes and Unshoes. Bedrock Sandals’ stated goal is “to create affordable minimalist sandals that fit comfortably and perform well on both trails and sidewalks,” and I think they’ve achieved that goal.
Ordering, Pricing, Availability
Bedrock Sandals are available in unisex sizes from 4 to 13, and there is an option to get them custom made at no additional cost. Instructions on the website will help you properly create a pattern for your foot. Other than size, the only other option is the strap color. Straps are available in yellow, black and three shades of green: olive drab, sage, and basic green. Bedrock Sandals are available from the company’s website for $45.