Outbound Tested: The Vivobarefoot Tracker FG

Multi-terrain & waterproof minimalism in an everyday boot meant to be worn just about anywhere.

By now the history of Vivobarefoot is well known, but for those of us late to the sustainable, minimalist swimrun footwear scene: Vivobarefoot was founded in 2010 by Galahad and Asher Clark (of Clark Family footwear nobility) with the goal of making a sustainably sourced, minimalist-to-near-barefoot shoe that allows your feet (and entire body) to move in a more natural way. And in doing so they nearly created an entirely new footwear category.

The FG Tracker is Vivo's attempt at creating a stylish, everyday boot that can also be used in all but the most extreme situations: good for long hikes, good for Class 4 scrambling, and good (and styling enough) for sloshing through the snowy streets of Telluride to duck into the The Buck. 

But at a $230 price point does it deliver?


To answer that question we took a couple pairs of FG Trackers for a week long road trip from Colorado to Arizona, marching up and almost-all-the-way-down into the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, day-hikes around Telluride, scrambling/bouldering in Bears Ears, and on longer hikes in the Grand Canyon: in all cases the FG Tracker stayed tough, grippy, and waterproof. 

The laces are durable (and beautiful), the insole warm (but not too warm), and the high ankle support made it great for longer hikes. The unique Vivobarefoot soles meant we could feel the contours of the rocks and ground beneath us, giving that great "grab" that off-road minimalist shoes provide. By the fourth day we were slipping them on without thought: they were just the boots we wanted to wear each morning.

That is not to say I would take the FG Tracker on a winter backpacking trip through Nepal, but in all but the most extreme situations they have become my go-to boot.



Published: August 22, 2018

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San Francisco

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