Travel ready hiking sneakers that can hike, run and swim (seriously!), and stay stylish every step of the road…and trail
Long term travelers and minimalist travelers need durable clothing and gear that looks good and performs as many functions well as possible in order to keep their bags light – The Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoe fits the bill as the best men’s travel shoe available with bulletproof construction built to withstand hiking, running, and even swimming and a lifetime guarantee to boot.
UPDATE: As awesome as these shoes are, they’ve been discontinued by Grunt Style, but you can purchase the exact same shoe as the Altama OTB Maritime Assault Shoe
To top it off, the classic canvas shoe styling of this this hiking sneaker looks good with everything from shorts to chinos. In the hunt for the best men’s Travel shoe available, that does it all while looking good, Grunt Style achieves it with the Low Tide Raid Shoes. (This is a review of the Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoe and Altama Maritime Assault Boot)
Overview of The Low Tide Raid Shoe: Stylish, functional, and tough…for better or worse
Pros | Cons
- Stylish and classic canvas shoe design looks 10x better and more stylish than any other hiking shoe I’ve seen
- Function focused design means the Raid Shoes perform very well hiking, running, and even in the water
- Extremely durable construction means these shoes will last through long term travels and hard adventures
- You can have any color…as long as its black (or tan…or camouflage)
- Waterproof insole may need to be swapped for a more breathable and cushioning insole (e.g., Superfeet)
- After 2 months of testing, I love these shoes as they do everything well, which is exactly what adventurous long term backpackers and onebag travelers need. I’m comfortable making the Low Tide Raid Shoes my only shoes (along with the Xero Trail minimalist sandals) for 6 months of traveling around the world in search of adventure – from running with the bulls, to scaling Kilimanjaro, and plenty of nights out in between
- Highly recommended for long term travelers and travelers that pack light but do a wide range of adventures
- Paired with the Xero Trail minimalist trekking sandals, these shoes will have travelers ready for anything (Read the Xero Z-Trail Minimalist Sandal Review to see why these are my favorite travel sandals)
To purchase the Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoe, with a lifetime warranty head to Grunt Style
To purchase the Altama Maritime Assault Boot (same shoe without the warranty), head here
Looking for more travel worthy footwear? Check out our review of the Xero Z-Trail minimalist running sandals
Full Review of the Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoe and Altama Maritime Assault Boot
The Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoe does what most boots and “travel shoes” can’t – it looks good
- The Grunt Style Raid shoe has a classic, canvas shoe design (think Chuck Taylors or Lacoste Canvas Trainers) which makes them look great effortlessly in any situation and go from adventurous and sporty to classy in a heartbeat, while still being incredibly durable. Paired with chinos, jeans, or shorts for a day on the town, or hiking pants for a 10-mile adventure, the shoe looks great no matter what.
- If you plan to get sporty most of the time (shorts and relaxed style) consider the high tops (the “high tide” shoe).
- If you’re the type that likes to class up at night with nice jeans, and chinos stick with the low top “low tide” raid shoe. I opted for the low top Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoe
- In contrast to the chunky look of a traditional hiking boot, the shoe’s low profile looks better and makes for easier packing by conserving space
….But don’t stop here! The strength in these shoes is that they’re durable and designed for hiking and hard use, but still look good…so keep reading
Weight | Size | Packability
The Raid Shoes’ light weight and low profile make for easy packing and light feet
- A pair of the Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoes weigh in at just under 1 pound (13.5 oz.) and pack away much smaller than a traditional boot – making these shoes just heavier than your running shoes but likely lighter than your hiking boots and shoes
- Length: 11″ (size 10)
- Sole thickness: ~3/8″ (with insole removed)
- Collapsed/Packed Height: 1 1/2″ per shoe
Break-in takes a couple weeks, but after that these shoes form to and move with your feet
- The rugged 1000D Cordura Nylon fabric uppers, “SEAL Rubber” soles, and waterproof insoles can take a couple of weeks of use to break in, but once the materials do they’re supple and move easily with your feet. I experienced no hotspots or blisters to date over the sockless 3 mile runs and a few hikes, even during the break-in period
- The waterproof EVA insole is perfect for getting wet but when worn without socks on a hot day, moisture can build up at the bottom of your feet, especially while the insole breaks in. To prevent this, just grab a good pair of wool ankle socks or swap out the insoles with a fabric, moisture wicking, softer insole such as Superfeet and you’ll have the perfect hiking shoe
All-around performance, whether hiking, running, swimming with fins, in addition to looking good, is what make the Grunt Style Low Tide Raid shoes the best men’s travel shoe out there
From my experience hiking, running, and daily wear, the Low Tide Raid Shoe performed extremely well, staying comfortable and adapting to my foot while showing little sign of wear.
- Running: 3 Mile Run Test: On the 3 mile run tests (three of them) of the Low Tide Raid Shoe started out stiff but broke in quickly. Lighter than your average hiking boot (but heavier than your average running shoe), I didn’t get any blisters or hotspots from the shoe. Unless you’re used to running in minimalist shoes with dense soles, like Chuck Taylors, I wouldn’t recommend this as your primary running shoe. I, on the other hand, will make this my only workout and running shoe and will do a marathon in it sometime during the next 6 months.
- Hiking (5 Miles): The shoes are lighter than my favorite hiking boots but the soles are a bit more dense and stiffer – but the tradeoff of stiffness for durability is absolutely worth it. The “SEAL Rubber” outsoles gripped just as well as my normal hiking boots and are actually designed to grip just as well when wet. If you normally hike with high top boots consider the “High Tide Raid Shoe” to maintain the ankle support.
- Working Out: The “zero drop”, minimalist sole design (similar to Converse Chuck Taylors) makes these a solid workout shoe – especially for the minimalist runners. Good for Crossfit style workouts, powerlifting, and sprints
- Beach Run and Getting Wet: After a mile of trotting on the beach and briefly stepping into the waves, I had no sand in the shoes and the water made it into my shoe drained out of the drain ports easily while running
- Fighting Funk and Smell: The waterproof insole doesn’t absorb water or moisture and the durable nylon uppers are quick drying, so if you insist on going sockless (like I do) cleaning these shoes to keep them fresh is a synch. Just pour water in, let it drain out, and set them out to dry
Things to consider
- Insole: The waterproof insole comes with pros and cons. Pros: Makes swimming and getting wet a possibility without worry and makes cleaning the shoes and fighting funk easy Cons: For heavy foot sweaters, when sockless you may feel the moisture under your foot. You can easily counter this by adding insoles or getting a great pair of wool ankle socks to wick away sweat
- High tops for support: If you require ankle support in your shoes, get the high top “ Grunt Style High Tide Raid Shoe” to maintain the support you’ll need when hiking and adventuring
With extremely durable materials and high-quality construction these shoes will last through travels & adventures and perform well the entire way
- All military grade materials (e.g., 1000D Cordura Nylon uppers, SEAL Rubber Outsole, heavy duty nylon thread stitching) make these shoes the toughest “normal looking shoes” I’ve seen
- High durability Cordura Nylon Uppers: extremely rugged, made of abrasion resistant 1000 Denier Cordura Nylon which dries quickly and is tested to a 400lbs+ tear strength. This is the military grade fabric used in my favorite backpacks (from GORUCK) and my most reliable military gear used on combat deployments. Bottom line: these shoes are tough as hell and damn near bullet proof and much more rugged than any other hiking sneaker you’ll find.
- Highly Breathable Inner Mesh Construction: The shoes’ interior is designed with a mesh-like construction of high durability materials that lets your foot breathe and stay dry and comfortable without compromising durability. This design felt like gold while running on hot concrete sockless during my test runs.
- Solid, durable, high grip soles: Made of single, solid piece of rubber created for the US Navy Seals from rock climbing shoe rubber, the soles maintain maximum traction in dry and wet conditions, making these shoes perfect for hiking anywhere and everywhere
- Heavy Duty Nylon Stitching: Makes for a highly durable welt between the uppers and outsole
- Water Draining eyelets: drainage ports built into the front of the shoe mean you can literally swim in these shoes and then get out of the water without removing the shoes and all of the water will drain out as you keep going
- Grunt Style’s Lifetime “Beer Guarantee” backs up these shoes by promising if anything happens to these shoes, meaning you wear out the soles, break the shoes, or somehow destroy them, just send them back to Grunt Style and you’ll receive a replacement set…simple as that
- **Note** Try on the shoes before you start wearing them. Grunt Style’s Beer Guarantee promises to replace the shoes no matter what, but once the shoes are worn (and not re-sellable) you won’t be able to get a refund, just an exchange or store credit.
- Sizing considerations: Go at least one size up! I normally wear an 8.5 to 9 in shoes, but with this shoe I had to go with a size 10. Also note that these shoes do tend to run narrow (which is perfect for weird people like me with skinny feet)
Comparison to other reasonable men’s travel shoe options’
More durable than sneakers, more versatile and better looking than hiking boots
Regular Canvas Shoes (Chuck Taylors)
- The Low Tide Raid Shoes look just as good as your typical canvas shoes but perform better when hiking, running, or working out and are much more durable. The downside is these shoes only come in black, tan, and camouflage
Hiking sneakers and hiking boots
- The Low Tide raid shoes perform well when adventuring (hiking & trekking) but due to the solid rubber sole aren’t as cushioned as most hiking boots and aren’t waterproof
- If you are not used to wearing minimalist footwear (like Toms, Convers) upgrade your insole to a softer, cushier insole for the long hikes and treks
- If you’ll be in snowy areas consider sticking with a traditional, waterproofed, high top boot
- The Low Tide Raid Shoes are IMMENSELY better than the Palladiums in my experience, from a durability and performance standpoint. Though the Palladiums have a softer sole, the rubber began to come off in chunks after a week. Also, the cotton canvas of the Palladiums began to abrade after 3 days of trekking and threads came undone. After several runs, hikes, and workouts, the Raid Shoes show no signs of wear.
The Bottom Line for the Grunt Style Low Tide and High Tide Raid Shoes Review
Recommended for travelers and adventures trying to keep their bags light, especially if used to minimalist/rugged footwear
- Travelers attempting to carry everything in one bag and pack light but need gear that performs multiple functions well
- Travelers with a wide breadth of adventures: If your adventures will take you througha variety of climates and terrains but will still pass through posh urban jungles, this is the shoe/boot for you
- Suggestions: Pair with the Xero Trail minimalist trekking sandals to cover all of your footwear needs without hampering your adventures. (Read the Xero Z-Trail Minimalist Sandal Review to see why these are my favorite travel sandals)
- Pack wool performance athletic socks for long walk days
- Price: ~$100 with discount code “Liberty20” + free shipping
- My take: An extra $10-$25 is worth the assurance of a lifetime guarantee on a pair of shoes
The Bottom Line for the Altama OTB Maritime Assault Operator Boot Review
- The Altama OTB Maritime Assault Operator Boot is essentially the Grunt Style Low Tide Raid Shoes without the lifetime guarantee and the Grunt Style badges
- For Amazon Prime subscribers and those who don’t plan on wearing the shoes for adventurous and hard use, the Altama version through Amazon is an excellent option
- Use this 30 day free Amazon Prime Trial to order the Altama Maritime Assault Shoes with free shipping
- Price: $75-$90 + shipping
Details & Buying
- As the Grunt Style Raid Shoes have been discontinued, consider purchasing the Altama Maritime Assault Shoes. This is essentially the same shoe without the Grunt Style badges and without the lifetime guarantee. Personally, I think the extra change is worth having a pair of shoes I can trade in for new ones at any time.