Iconic whitewater brand Astral made its big debut into the hiking market with the TR1 Series last year, and since then, Astral’s “water ready” trail shoes have been well received by many respected athletes, including newly signed ultra-athlete and thru-hiking legend, Jennifer Pharr Davis.
JPD has been wearing and testing Astral footwear for over a year, and the brand is welcoming her as a part of the official Astral Family.
As Astral expands the TR1 series to include the TR1 Merge and continues to grow in the hiking world, the brand will rely on input from core athletes like JPD.
Said Davis: “The fact that Astral was a local Asheville company with a focus on sustainability made me want to try their trail shoes, but it was the comfort, performance, and durability that made me a die-hard Astral fan.”
Astral’s TR1 Trek went with JPD on her 1,175-mile Mountains-to-Sea Trail thru-hike last Fall and said this shoe was a must-have for her along the trail. “I’ve never had a shoe that’s as breathable as the TR1 Trek. In the beginning, we had lots of rain with the hurricanes coming through and my feet were soaked constantly, but as soon as the rain stopped, the shoes dried out. I’ve had no blisters and haven’t struggled with moisture at all. In addition, the TR1 Trek performed on both the road and trail. For such a lightweight shoe, they’ve held up really well… I’ve gotten 600+ miles out of them!”
Old school paddler and VP of Sales & Marketing Christie Dobson explained, “Jenn brings not only expert feedback on product, but her expertise and knowledge of trail and hiking will help us navigate this market as we grow and expand. I think it’s incredible that the best kayakers in the world wear our shoes because of their trust in our brand and we are now seeing similar parallels in the hiking and trail world. It’s the ultimate compliment. We are humbled by this.”
In conjunction with JPD’s sponsorship, Astral is also kicking off 2018 by partnering with the American Hiking Society and committing to support the organization’s conservation efforts within our nation’s trails. Protecting wild places while simultaneously inspiring people to get out into Nature is of the utmost important to Astral’s company culture, the brand told PaddlingLife.
Established in 2002, Astral has grown to specialize in high performance footwear alongside its industry-leading safety gear for paddlers. Independently owned and operated with a sincere commitment to making products of the highest performance and style for use in Nature. Astral is based in the year-round outdoor wonderland of Asheville, NC and has satellite offices in Bend, Saigon, Ketchum and Nottingham.