(Review) Vibram Spyridon LS

My whole purpose of purchasing the Spyridon LS is for snow, glacier travel and alpine traversing. I have no desire to hike with these footwear any other time, because of the weight increase and rocker plate.

  The new sole design defiantly made my eyes perk up the first time seeing them.  As an hiker in the Olympic National Park, I was in need of more traction when in certain conditions such as heavy mud, shush, snow, ice and bushwhacking.

Vibram Spyridon sole
Sole (Tread Pattern)

Hiking with the Spyridon (High Instep Foot Shape)

  Right away I didn't like the thick tongue feel of the LS system, so I took scissors to my pair.  Cutting it all the way out of the footwear.  Then i connected a small piece of bungee cord to keep the top closed from debris collection.

  Within the first first mile walking on a wet trail I noticed the rocker plate in the sole.  Gave my foot a burning cramp like feeling, but also could've been caused by the stiffness of the upper.

I do not know what target market the VFF designers were going for when they put this upper onto such an aggressive sole pattern.   The rear 75% is almost shoe like and  provides way too much protection.

Design in Extreme Conditions

 Weight, Breathability and Flexibility is severely affected.  I will continue to modify these to get my foot to breath better.

  As I got into the snow however the lug like pattern really got put to work.  I felt very secure to the trail while sidehilling, ascending, descending and bushwhacking all in snow.

While camping, next morning with temperatures dropped to 22 degrees overnight. I had completely frozen solid blocks of ice to put on my feet that morning, because of cold overnight temps.  I never had this issue with the KSO upper, which had been down to 17 f in the past.

Vibram Spyridon snow
Ankle deep in white stuff

Vibram Spyridon snow
Wandering through the forest

Overnight Hiking in Snow and Slush (Winter)


  • Cat like Grip
  • Sole design
  • Tear resistance
  • Weight
  • Flexibility
  • Breathability
  • Loss of Ground Feel
  • Upper Thickness

Who Would I Suggest Buy These?

  New to minimalist footwear or plan on doing long fastpacking days?  This is a perfect sole for you.  Plenty of protection against sharp objects and your feet will not feel as tired with the rocker plate; on longer distance trips.

  If you walked up and asked me.  Should I purchase these?  I would ask you what you were going to use them for first and then probably direct you toward the Vibram Five Finger Seeya which has been working out great for me on the road and trail.

Looking to protect your feet against lots of walking on rocks? Hiking off trail or in snow, and need additional traction? Give the Vibram Spyridon {affiliate link} a try!

Related: Full hiking story of the adventure pictured above.

Updated in January 2017 by Barefoot Jake