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Hands-on Gear Review

Teva Hurricane XLT Review

Teva Hurricane XLT
Best Buy Award
Price:   $60 List | $59.95 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Lightweight, minimalistic, comfortable
Cons:  Lacks support and stiffness
Editors' Rating:     
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Manufacturer:   Teva

Our Verdict

The successor of the shoe that launched the Teva empire, the Teva Hurricane XLT is one of the most simplistic shoes we tested—which to some buyers equals saved weight and ease of use; to others it appears as a lack of innovation or features. However, we quickly realized with this awesome shoe that the lack of features . . .well, we didn't really miss them. Instead, we just loved the lightweight and open design, the simplicity, and the ability to get a truly custom fit through the strapping system. Straight up, this is a no-nonsense technical sandal, originally built for the river, but has far exceeded its basic expectations through our testing.

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Score Product Price Sizes Weight Sole Material
Editors' Choice Award
7 to 16 1.34 lbs Spider Original rubber
Best Buy Award
7 to 16 1.25 lbs Durabrasion RubberĂ»
7 to 14 1.43 lbs Durabrasion RubberĂ» outsole for durable traction
7 to 15 2 lbs Polyurethane
Top Pick Award
7 to 17 1.78 lbs Non-marking rubber outsole with razor siping
Top Pick Award
7 to 15 1.75 lbs Polyurethane
7 to 17 1.8 lbs Non-marking rubber outsole
6 to 16 1.5 lbs Rubber Outsole

Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results

Review by:
Tommy Penick
Review Editor

Last Updated:
October 31, 2013


Performance Comparison


The Teva Hurricane XLT boasts a nice, cushy footbed, that doesn't have an aggressive pattern that requires your feet to toughen up like the Chaco z/1 Unaweep or the Chaco Yampa z/2. Instead, from the very first time trying on the shoe, we were happy with how comforting the footbed was. Through time, we found that the footbed slowly conformed to our testers' feet, and left us with an even nicer, positive grip and a footbed profile that aids in long-term comfort.

While the straps appear uncomfortable at first glance, we felt like they were plenty soft against our skin, and the width helps displace the pressure nicely.


With almost an identical design as the Teva Terra-Fi Lite, the Hurricane supplies its wearers with a surprising amount of stability, based off of its three strap design which enables a custom, secure fit.

The overall stiffness, support, and stability of the Hurricane's chassis is a little bit lacking in comparison to some of the burly sandals we tested such as the Chaco Unaweep. While traversing sharp rocks, we could definitely feel a little bit poking through, and occasionally the shoe would fold upon harsh stress. If you'll be spending a lot of time walking on road blast rocks, or live in a place with blocky, hard rocks, maybe take a look at a more substantial shoe that has a bit more protection.

Fit and Design

Teva's iconic strapping system offers three points of adjustment, which at first seems a bit short of "custom", but it offers everything you need to dial in your fit. The heel strap catches most feet at the apex of the Achilles' tendon, providing great support.

Be patient while adjusting these straps. Try some different configurations out. You can really adjust where your foot will sit in the shoe based on the rear strap first (setting your front to back movement), then your front strap, and finally your main instep strap. And yes, while you can always change it, as mentioned above the shoe will start to mold to where your foot sits, so try to lock down your fit before starting to clock miles on these shoes. Our testers reported they would occasionally tighten the front strap when the terrain got rough, but generally keep the Achilles' strap locked in one place.

On the left  is the bare strap of the Teva Hurricane XLT  while the plush padded strap of the Teva Terra-Fi 3 is on the right.
On the left, is the bare strap of the Teva Hurricane XLT, while the plush padded strap of the Teva Terra-Fi 3 is on the right.


Like a lot of other shoes in the open design category, the Hurricane doesn't have a whole lot of failure points. We were fortunate enough to test this model for five years…with a lot of wear. Over the years, the only thing that has happened is that we started to wear through the sole. In a shoe that's only a half pound, five years of abuse is pretty good.

Similar to the Terra-Fi Lite, the Hurricane has Teva's triangular rings, may be a questionable piece for some folks, but trust us—they're strong.

The sole of the Teva Hurricane XLT after five years of heavy use.
The sole of the Teva Hurricane XLT after five years of heavy use.


Though the Hurricane doesn't have as aggressive soles as the Terra-Fi or the Dozer, the rubber compound used by the folks at Teva is great. The soft compound sticks to anything you can throw at it, from mossy rocks to dry dirt, the Hurricane feels equally comfortable.

In addition to the compound, while the tread pattern isn't nearly as aggressive as the shark tooth design on the Terra-Fi, the lugs do a fine job in keeping your feet below you.

Teva Hurricane XLT
Teva Hurricane XLT

Best Applications

The Hurricane works great as a utility shoe—it was our go-to camp shoe when backpacking, our go-to shoe for hiking into waterfalls, and our go-to shoe for heading out around town. We can't think of a use that this shoe doesn't handle, if not, excel in.


As the winner of our value award, the Teva Hurricane XLT is the least expensive shoe we tested, listed at $60 and available for quite a bit less through many retailers. For a shoe that is as solid, durable, and versatile, we haven't been this impressed with a value on any outdoor gear in a while. You can't go wrong by picking up a pair, even if you're on the fence.


As the utility shoe of our fleet, the Hurricane XLT is an amazing value for a very great shoe. While some elements, such as extra padding through the straps, have been removed, we still think this shoe is an absolutely stunning value, extremely versatile, and well built.

Other Versions

Teva Dozer 4
  • Cost- $75 ($15 more than the Hurricane)
  • Open style shoe
  • Only available in two colors

Teva Terra-Fi Lite
Teva Terra-Fi Lite
  • Cost- $85 (same as the Hurricane)
  • Weight per pair- 1 lb 2 oz (2 oz less than the Hurricane)
  • Higher arch support than the Hurricane
  • Editors' Choice Award winner

Terra Fi 4
  • Cost- $100 ($15 more than the Hurricane)
  • Weight per pair- 1 lb 13 oz (9 oz more than the Hurricane)
  • Only available in two colors

Hurricane XLT - Women's
  • Women's version
  • Cost - $60 (same as men's version)
  • Weight - 1lb (4 oz less than men's version)
Tommy Penick

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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews

Most recent review: November 14, 2013
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   Nov 14, 2013 - 01:37am
Barker · Hiker · Auburn, Maine
I picked up a pair of Hurricane XLT's when looking for some shoes for water crossings during a 5 day Grand Canyon trip. I was surprised to find them in a local shop for $36. I was kind of skeptical of them really but I new we might need to do some water crossings and they were almost half the weight and price of the Keen's I was looking at. During the trip we didn't end up doing any water crossings but used the Teva's every night in camp and they really helped my feet recover from some damage that my feet had received along the trail. At the end of the day I felt like I could have finished the hike in these Teva's if my boots finally gave up the ghost.
I have had a few chances to use them on slippery surfaces and they have been amazingly grippy in my admittedly limited experience. I was also impressed at how light and easy to pack they were. I really can't believe that these were $36. I have seen them a couple more times in local stores for $36- $39.99 over the past year.

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this product to a friend.
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