Cover image: Oboz Women's Sawtooth Low—Sandy's hiker of choice. All images: Sandy Tarburton
For twenty years I bought a new pair of the same brand of shoes every other year for hiking. Four years ago, I was shopping for my old standbys when I decided to try on a different brand for comparison. I had never heard of Oboz. I wasn’t even sure how to pronounce it. But as soon as I put my feet into the Sawtooth Lows, I paused and wondered how it could be that they already felt broken in. They felt so soft, like my feet were buried inside a pillow.
Sandy surrounded by pinnacles hiking in the “land of standing up rocks” in Chiricahua National Monument in Arizona.
Shortly after, I took those shoes on a three day traverse of New Hampshire’s Presidential Range with a full pack. My friends ended up using my first aid kit for blisters instead of me.
The Imp Trail, a 6.1-mile moderate hike near Gorham, New Hampshire, offered a terrific view of Mt. Washington.
Vermont’s Long Trail is my backyard, and the rocky terrain takes a toll on your feet. The Sawtooth Low Nubuck leather takes a beating, and looks half its age. I have suffered in the past from plantar fasciitis and these shoes are incredible at stabilizing my arches as I’m hiking up and down hill. The beefy sole has incredible traction yet is lightweight and fun for trail running.
Sandy demonstrates the versatility of Oboz by adding microspikes to the Sawtooth Lows for a hike up Mt. Moosilauke.
The Sawtooth Low’s solidness also makes it a terrific shoe for wearing microspikes. I couldn’t be more comfortable and confidant hiking on icy mountaintop terrain.
Put simply, the Oboz Sawtooth Low is my all-time favorite hiking shoe. I’ve hiked in places like the Rockies, New Zealand, and the Arctic Circle in Norway, and I have never been more comfortable than the last four years wearing my Oboz. The Sawtooth Low is not only my chosen shoe for all day hikes but also my everyday go-to for walking the dog. If you are looking for a lightweight pair of low hikers that are great for either a morning hike or a multiday adventure, these are a well-fitting and reliable pair of hiking shoes.
Sandy Tarburton lives in Waitsfield, Vermont and enjoys hiking, skiing and planning her family’s next adventure.