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   The North Face Hedgehog XCR

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A prickly little number that has been designed to repel rough terrain, allowing you to pick your way across scree slopes, around boulder fields and over terminal moraine.
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The North Face Hedgehog XCR

   The North Face Hedgehog XCR Reviews

  Reviewed by Oliver Wilson (Cumbria) on 2007-05-05:
General comments: Bought the hedgehogs after finding them at a reduced price of £50, however after owning them for a while I would probably pay the RRP. I use the shoes for trail and road running as well as general leisure. The gore-tex lining comes in to its own when running in the rain, or more commonly through wet grass. The shoes are some of the lightest trail shoes available and are constructed very well. Haven’t had any rubber coming apart yet and have owned them for 6 months, wearing them pretty much everyday. The grip pattern is very aggressive and is obviously tailored towards trails, however handle roads excellently. The innersole is very comfortable and has. Have recently being using the shoes for descending steeply off of rock climbing routes, it is here where I was very impressed with the purchase of the vibram soles on the rock. I was able to descend very steep ramps and rock features with ease. The only downside I have found is that your feet are prone to getting hot very quickly when conditions are remotely warm, this is due to the XCR lining. All in all a great all round shoe, worth the RRP.

Pros: Lightweight, very well constructed, waterproof, Aggressive tread pattern

Cons: Feet get hot quickly

  Reviewed by Rachel S (Stockport) on 2007-09-29:
General comments: I bought these a few months ago primarily for cycling to work in the rain so I wouldnt have to bring another pair of shoes to wear round work all day. They were pretty comfortable straight out of the box, but I wasn't totally convinced by tsupport provided by the 'Northotic' insole and have replaced them with Superfeet (although I do this with all shoes). What you notice immediately when wearing the Hedgehogs is the sole. You can really tell that you have a good Vibram sole on these and it has performed well in all the situations I have used these in, both wet and dry. In my opinion, they would be a little stiff to run in but I'm sure it would be possible. The XCR performs well but as with all waterproof shoes, can leave your feet a bit hot during everyday use. The only problem I have discovered is that the laces seem to loosen up a bit during the day - i think it's because they are round laces and dont seem to have enough friction to keep them in place. As with all North face shoes, you have the added advantage of the availability of 1/2 sizes to find the perfect fit.

Pros: Sole, fit, comfort, looks

Cons: Lacing system

  Reviewed by Simon Longworth (Llandudno) on 2007-11-04:
General comments: Purchased these shoes recently in the USA which due to the strength of the pound only cost approximately £50.00. You are first struck by the weight - they are extremely light and wearing them all day hiking on either a trail or around a city is effortless. The vibram sole which appears more agressive than most similarly priced competitors provides excellent grip on rock or grass, however, as with any vibram footwear care must be taken when stepping on wet metal (eg. drain covers and gratings) as it is comparable to walking on ice! The waterproof lining works extremely well and protects feet when walking in showers or through wet grass. If you do experience wet feet, it is probably due to the water getting through the show opening or from dripping off trousers - they are fairly low cut. The shoes can get quite warm (due to the lining) but there is an anti-bacterial footbed which has so far prevnted any odours). Longevity has so far not been a problem. After some fairly hard wear they look as good as new. As regards problems, there would only appear to be the one so far. The tongue whilst well padded needs careful placement when lacing up shoes. If not, it can easily slip to one side causing the lacing to dig into the foot. Overall, I consider the shoes an excellent buy (even at the UK RRP) and I would recommend them to anyone looking for a lightweight waterproof approach shoe.

Pros: Extremely lightweight. Good quality vibram sole Antibacterial footbed.

Cons: Tongue needs careful placement

  Reviewed by Andrew Munro (Durham) on 2008-08-05:
General comments: I have had these appproach shoes for over two years now and its hard to fault them; in fact recently I have been wearing them almost every day to work. The vibram soles have a variety of deep cleats and 'aggressive' lugs and they certainly do the job, providing buckets of grip on steep scrambles, slippy mud and wet wood alike. The goretex liner in the upper seems to work fairly well though after prolonged usages the inside can get a little damp but this is likely to be due to condensation. also I have never experienced over hot feet- something many people cite as one of goretex liners main faults. The heel cup is very supportive and I have never suffered injury due to lack of support or misalignment such as a sprain while wearing these shoes. The materials used seem fairly durable especially the reinforced rand around the toe. Despite this i did have to return my first pair due to excess wear at the ankle after their very first usage but I reckon this was most likely a rogue pair rather than a standard fault. Overall these are a very comfortable and practical shoe that are a great option for day hikes and general outdoors wear and i wouldn't be afraid to try them on gentle backpacking either.

Pros: Tough, great sole flexible but grippy, gtx liner keeps your feet dry

Cons: expensive, some find gtx makes your feet too warm

  Reviewed by R Morris (Nottingham) on 2008-12-11:
General comments: These shoes are NOT made for walking or running. Initially very satisfied with the comfort but after about 8 months of use the synthetic material started to crack and the lining around the ankle started to wear. Emailed North Face using their website but received no reply. After a further 3 months I tried again, as by this time the defects were getting really bad. More serious was the rubber moulding, connecting the sole and the upper, was coming away and my feet were getting soaked. Eventually took them back to retailer who sent them off for ‘investigation. Seven weeks later I have been told that the ‘faults’ are normal wear and tear. Fortunately there are enough suppliers of quality footwear out there so I won’t have to buy from North face again.

Pros: Comfort

Cons: Materials and quality of manufacture
This review has 1 comment(s):

Stinky responded : Ouch! My girlfriend just bought a pair last week - I knew she should have asked my advice first. :) North Face need to be careful - these days they just churn everything out by the bucket load but the quality can be dubious at times. (2008-12-11)

  Reviewed by Derek Robertson (Edinburgh) on 2009-11-01:
General comments: I've been wearing these three times a week for the past six months, using them as I train for the big hills by climbing a relatively small hill by various routes. During these outings they've been used on grass, mud and rock. On the grass and mud their grip is excellent and on dry rocks it's pretty good. On wet rock I'd be as well wearing roller skates, but from experience there's not a lot out there that handles wet rock too well - though I expected it to be better than it is due to the soft compound used in the sole. The shoes are roomy and comfortable and I would be extremely happy with them if it wasn't for the fact that their build quality is dreadful. I'm on my second pair in six months; the first having been returned because the sole was coming away from the shoe at the toe. My second pair have already developed several extensive leaks, in both shoes, around the seam area. They clean up well when they've been covered in mud, but underneath there are severe defects in their basic structure due to poor manufacturing - I am assuming it is the manufacturing rather than the materials because it is the areas where the materials are joined together which have failed. They are not inexpensive shoes, and I have been happy with previous North Face products, so I am disappointed in these problems.

Pros: Comfortable. Good on grass and mud.

Cons: Terrible build quality.

  Reviewed by David Pomphret (NW England) on 2009-11-02:
General comments: Oddly I've never had shoes of the 'net before.. I've been too picky over what shoes feel like when on to take the plunge and get something on 'spec'. And to be honest I'd not have tried these TNF Hedgehogs on in a shop as they 'look' like the inner lining just doesn't have enough support ( I'm used to HiTec with their very contoured in-sole ), and has blobs and strips of Gel in odd potentially uncomfy places. But, after walking the dog around the meadow ( He's a Collie so walking is an understatement), I was very pleasantly surprised by the attention to detail that had gone into the shape of the anti-bacterial in-sole, And yes it isn't the convoluted shape of a HiTec, but it does provide great comfort and support where needed. got mine from here:

Pros: Grippy, very comfy, stiff sole and classy looks

Cons: the goreTex does leak a little on the left foot. :-(

  Reviewed by Gethin (sheffield) on 2010-09-22:
General comments: I got these shoes pretty much because they were reduced to £50. They aren't that comfortable (there was a hard spot in the tongue of one of the shoes where there was a spot of glue or something stuck to the inside of the goretex lining) and even when i sorted this problem they haven't been great. The sole is grippy on mud and grass but rubbish on solid surfaces like rock because the tread is knobs are small and unstable. The laces are really thin and keep undoing themselves no matter how tight you do them up in a double knot. The goretex liner is nice in the winter and does keep your feet relatively dry but also makes them hot and sweaty in the summer. If I'd paid the RRP of £80 I'd be really annoyed but I doubt I'd buy these shoes again even at £50. TNF appear to be better at making fashion gear these days.

Pros: they keep your feet vaguely dry

Cons: The built quality is mediocre, the laces are rubbish, the insoles are rubbish, the are hot and sweaty in the summer and they are expensive.

  Reviewed by bob (northampton) on 2010-10-06:
General comments: The material around the front is not up to standard, because it failed with very little use. Shoes returned to retailer for refund after the fronts came completely away at the join between the sole and capping material at the toe, on both shoes. Material actually cracks and shoes clear structural failure. Never again.

Pros: comfy and good looking

Cons: total structural failure and leaked from day 1
This review has 1 comment(s):

Nick responded : Exactly the same happened to my pair. Leaked from the first day that i used them, river fishing, in dew soaked grass. My feet were soaked. In just a few uses, the material on the fronts cracked all the was around the fronts and came away. Returned to TNF, who to their credit, refunded my outlay after about 1 month. Clearly the frontal material is inferior. Superb, cool shoes in terms of their design, but let down by the materials buyer and testing departments. (2011-10-04)


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