If there is one major thing that has changed since becoming a runner, it is the way that I treat my feet. Even while trying out new running gear, training to increase my times, and utilizing technology to get the most out of my runs, if my feet are hurting it doesn’t really matter what else I have going for me. I have had two significant injuries in my running “career” – plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis – and both were some of the most depressing times in my lives. While injuries aren’t always preventable (though admittedly the risk can be lessened), they have made me increasingly in tune with ways to keep my tootsies safe and comfortable.
One such way I have done this is by ditching dollar store flip-flops for arch supporting sandals, as well as forgoing bare feet for comfortable and supportive slippers. My feet thank me every day as a result. We recently received a pair of slippers from Chaco – the Ramble Puff.
Meet the Ramble collection, your favorite house slipper updated with outdoor capabilities. The Men’s Ramble Puff features water resistant rip-stop nylon with custom quilted diamond design and synthetic overlays for added durability. Designed for basecamp, at home next to the campfire, the Ramble Puff is made with Chaco’s signature LUVSEAT™ footbed for all day comfort. Add an irresistibly soft fleece lining and you get your new favorite puffy jacket, just for your feet.
If a sleeping bag and a boot hooked up and made a mutated baby, you might just end up with the Chaco Ramble Puff. Even with that weird image in your mind, these shoes are, in fact, quite stylish in their multiple color stylings (brown, tan, black, and navy).
While it definitely looks a little different than most shoes you have probably come across, they are really more eye-catching and discussion-inducing than actually “odd” of “weird”. The nylon on the upper presents a classic quilted wave design, and a simple strap and buckle run across the top to keep things secure. The rubber sole looks like any standard pair of shoes – albeit it this one includes some small lugs.
Surprisingly enough, these Ramble Puffs work in a variety of settings and – as I have mentioned before – wearing slippers in public is vastly underrated. They work great as a warm pair of slippers at home, at a campground around a fire, or out and about casually to the grocery store or restaurant.
But really, the name “Ramble” really drives the point home – these are designed to be worn outdoors in the actual outdoors. These just scream to be worn and utilized in a campground, in the backwoods, or after a long race. And you can actually look good and feel good about it.
The upper is where the eyes are drawn to and the water-resistant, rip-stop nylon is reminiscent of a puffy jacket. The inner is lined with a comfy fleece to keep the feet both cozy and warm.
Moving downwards in the shoe the midsole the midsole out the outsole are sort of a combo, with the sole coming up the side of the slippers and being sewn into the upper for additional protection. Chaco’s patented LUVSEAT footbed is implemented directly into these in these for support as well.
The 3mm lugs are probably not really all that necessary – it’s unlikely you are doing any serious trail running or hiking in these – but still provide a little grip and could absolutely be used to do some short trekking out and about.
This is also a vegan-friendly shoe, if that is your thing.
While looks and construction in many types of footwear are positive, it all doesn’t matter if the fit and comfort don’t rise to the challenge – and the Ramble Puff shoes absolutely do in my opinion. I love these. They are very comfortable and warm – a true sleeping bag for the feet – and supportive to boot (no pun intended). They are also surprisingly light for the amount of sustenance provided. The adjustable strap allows for a desired level of security, and the second embedded strap that runs around the sides to the back of the heel really allow for the shoes to stay in place. The back of the shoe is fitted with a couple of shoe tags, making for ease in pulling on easily on the go.
I found these run pretty true to size, but you maaaaay consider sizing up if you are worried about it. My size 12 feet fit snugly in a size 12, but I could see some people feel a little tightness in the midfoot – especially with thicker socks. I personally don’t mind the snugness, but I could see people wishing there was a tiny bit more room due to the added cushion.
While I personally don’t have a ton of negatives about these yet, there are some things to note. These don’t come with a removeable insole (by design – see above), which may be a dealbreaker for those who have that need. I also didn’t find that footbed provided as significant of arch support as others in Chaco’s catalog. Personally, I need and seek out slippers and sandals with arch support, and I actually quite like the support in these. Though it is not as pronounced as what I usually desire, I have experienced no issues in my feet from them yet and don’t feel its a significant drawback – at least to me. However, those who expect a more pronounced support, or feel it will mimic Chaco’s arch support sandals, may not enjoy as much.
In wearing these over the past few weeks, I have found the Ramble Puffs as a great multi-use footwear option that is PERFECT for the PNW outdoorsperson. Over this time period, we have experienced loads of rain, and I have ventured out in these during testing. The water resistant qualities are true to form (“thanks” for the continual rain for testing, Mother Nature) and I love that these can be utilized in multiple settings. The sole holds up admirably on both wet pavement AND in more rugged terrain. We tested in some easy outdoor settings, but the nonstop precipitation downpour and flooding over the past few weeks really limited access in a lot of spots we would normally go). We can’t wait for the mud to dry on the trails and watch how these tackle dirt and sand on an ongoing basis!
Even with a solid sole on the bottom, these shoes are light and flexible enough to be stuffed into running bag or camping pack without taking up space or weight. I have pulled on after a couple of longer runs and my feet have thanked me as a result. And really, as a runner, can we ask for much more?
- Ramble Puff | $80
More About Chaco:
In 1989, a Colorado rafting guide had a vision: To create the ultimate footwear for outdoor adventures in and out of water. He gave it a symbol — the gecko — because of their ability to adapt and thrive in nearly any environment. Then he gave it a name, Chaco.
Thank you to Chaco for providing us with a sample pair. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.