Gear Review: Keen Targhee II Waterproof Shoe

Keen refers to the Targhee II as a “4-wheel drive for your feet” – and that’s no lie. This is certainly a shoe I would recommend to any snowshoer and off-season hiker.

But, for snowshoeing the Targhee is flawless – and I really mean that. For several snowshoe outings, I’ve used the Targhee with a pair of gaiters (my trusty pair of Outdoor Research GORE-TEX gaiters) and have never experienced frozen feet. A+ from me.

So, there’s my two cents. Let’s get down to the nitty gritty.

The shoe’s upper construction is made of leather and mesh webbing, which helps the snow and water stay out. Another feature that makes the Targhee primo for snowshoeing is its weight: 16 ounces (per shoe). Other features include a moisture wicking synthetic liner and a carbon non-marking liner.

The sole of the shoe molds over the toe. This helps fit your foot into a pair of snowshoes, no matter the binding system. This also brings a stylish feature to the Targhee – it doesn’t look like other shoes on the market.

What it comes down to is that Keen makes a great shoe – hands down. Not only do I wear the Targhee for snowshoeing excursions but I also wear it as a casual shoe.

Though, I have two complaints:

First, the Targhee shoe lace system makes the fit fairly tight. When strapping snowshoes to your feet, that fit becomes even more tight – slightly uncomfortable.

Second, the upper part of the Targhee has outlasted the sole. I’ve had a few sole separations from the shoe (and it’s nothing drastic), but it hasn’t been anything a little super glue hasn’t solved.

Nonetheless, the Targhee II is the best shoe I’ve reviewed to date. I love it…and I would bet you will as well.

Other features of the Targhee include:

*Toe protection. EVA midsole
*Removable anatomical footbed
*eVent® Fabric
*S3 Heel Support Structure

For more information on the Keen Targhee II, visit


About the author

Ryan Alford