16
Aug 14

Bedrock Sandals 2.0 Launching Soon

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We are very excited for large and epic changes coming to Bedrock Sandals over the next months and upcoming year. Nick and myself (Dan) started Bedrock at age 23 pretty informally during an Americorps program we both did in Northern California. We both worked in Salmon Fisheries walking up and down Nor Cal streams counting numbers of Steelhead and Salmon for research.  In early 2011 we started to get into making our own sandals mostly for running and backpacking. We made our first sandals with the idea to use nylon straps and a backpack buckle for adjusting strap tightness in lieu of the traditionally used huarache knot. We discovered that a buckle would be easier to adjust and nylon straps would be more durable. Our friends we’re interested so we launched a kickstarter to raise some money in pre-sales. We dreamed of having our own small company making a product that let our feet roam free and our lifestyles independent.

Soon after the kickstart we moved our manufacturing to Nick’s home state in Virginia – Harrisonburg and Charlottesville. I decided to ditch my apartment in California and set off traveling North America living in my 86′ Subaru Powered Vanagon. Life was too short to stand still and I was restless to explore. For the first year and a half of Bedrock, Nick and I both worked side jobs  - me as a web design contractor for Patagonia (mobiley) and Nick on an organic co-op farm. During that time we worked to improve our product design + quality, customer service, and ultimately to grow our small business. Between when we first started in early 2011 and now we have made 53 improving changes in product design and materials used. We have always striven to make the best product we possibly can with no exceptions.

Earlier this year we decided to move back to California to live in a climate where we could wear and test our sandals year round. We enlisted the help of some idealistic friends to build a sandal making fortification within an art community space in West Oakland. A few months later Fort Bedrock was born and our small crew moved out to the Bay Area living aboard small sailboats.

Over the past 6 months we have worked tirelessly on some innovative new sandal designs and upgrades to our current ones – improved performance, comfort, and durability. During that time we have also been distracted by the decisions whether to work with large global retailers ready to carry Bedrocks and already placing large volume orders. After finishing our first big order early this summer we decided wholesale was far too much of a distraction from the essence of Bedrock and our commitment to our direct customers. Our number one goal remains making the highest quality and most innovative minimalist sandals available – all built in the USA in our shop. In order to continue making that goal a reality we have decided to close all our wholesale accounts and focus on bringing our direct customers the best products and customer service available on the market – period.

We are super excited to announce the upgrades to old products and the brand new product available in Bedrock Sandals 2.0. We will launch these products for pre-sale on Tuesday, August 26th along with a brand new website. Pre-sale orders of Bedrock Sandals 2.0 will be built and shipped 4-5 weeks later and at the end of September.  During this time we will be putting Bedrock 1.0 Earthquake / Syncline Sandals on sale until our sole inventory runs out. Once they run out Bedrock 1.0 will not longer be available.

Early in 2015 we will be launching a new line of hiking Bedrocks with some super innovative patent pending designs and a new custom Vibram outsole. Beginning in Early September I  (Dan) will be diving into a 3 month adventure with Bedrock ambassador and our new Head of Business Development Naresh Kumar. An entire country will be tramped and new sandals will be tested the #$%# out of.

Your undying minimalist and Bedrock Co-Founder,

Dan Opz

For more of Dan’s posts read his short essays on van and boat dwelling, and follow him on instagram


   
05
Aug 14

Bedrock Internship!

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Please get in touch with friends and family who are looking for an epic paid internship experience for our growing company in Oakland, CA!

We are hiring a Bedrock Sandals Intern for 4 months! The position is from September 1 – Dec 20 with the possible opportunity to stay on our team permanently full time in 2015. The internship includes a housing option aboard one of the Bedrock sailboats on the East Bay.

We are looking for someone who is passionate about helping people, is outgoing, and has excellent communication skills. You’ll be helping with our social media, customer service, exchanges, returns, and some fulfillment. Flexibility and eagerness to learn are a must! Also a must to have a laptop and an iPhone (or tablet) that you’d be willing to use for work.

The position is paid and is 20 hours per week. Email dan@bedrocksandals.com with info about yourself, experience, and why you’d be stoked to work with us!

Deadline to Apply is this Friday, August 8th. We will begin getting back to applicants next week!


   
11
Jul 14

Solstice Hike – Rae’s Lake Loop

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Naresh Kumar and Bedrock co-founder, Dan Opz, set out on a 2 day long, 46 mile loop around the famous Rae’s Lake in Kings Canyon / Sequoia National Park. Naresh wore his Synclines and Dan wore some new prototype Bedrocks on the loop. The hike began June 21st – Summer Solstice – at Road’s End Ranger station in Kings Canyon National Park.

The hike is a loop and can be run either counterclockwise or clockwise. The counterclockwise approach takes the more gradual ascent up to Rae’s Lake and ultimately Glen’s Pass. The loop starts at the Road’s End Ranger Station at 5,035 feet , peaks at 11,978 feet at Glen’s Pass and follows along the PCT/JMT for about half it’s distance. Around 26 miles in from Roads End you will reach the beautiful Rae’s Lake at 10,544 ft. Rae’s lake is home to an incredible amount of brook trout. The lake is so transparently clear that we saw trout from a distance very clearly swimming around the banks. On this hike, Dan fortunately brought a 5wt fly fishing rod and caught a small brookie on nearly each and every cast.

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Naresh cruising down from Glen’s Pass.

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Water break nearly at the top of Glen’s Pass.

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Dan hiking with fishing rod in tow.

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The weather was in the upper 80′s during the day and hardpacked snow fields like this were a nice cool down for our feet.

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Naresh Looking out towards Fins Down and Rae’s Lake.

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One of the pools along the trail towards Rae’s Lake.

Kings Canyon

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Reflections in a high alpine pond.

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Summer Solstice Sunset over Rae’s Lake.

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Naresh  - stoked out of his mind on how beautiful this lake is!

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Naresh hiking in his trusty Synclines.

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Dan casting his fly rod.

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One of the many small high alpine brook trout we caught in Rae’s Lake.

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The trail to Rae’s Lake.

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A bridge that connects the Rae’s Lake Loops with the PCT / JMT.


   
12
Jun 14

Emigrant Wilderness

Post written by Bedrock Sandals Ambassador Naresh Kumar. To Learn more about Naresh and his adventures watch Run Free.

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After a long week in Fort Bedrock, we made a last minute plan to head out on a weekend hike. It was tough to decide between the Rae Lake Loop in SEKI or the Emigrant Wilderness. Since we weren’t planning to leave until Saturday morning, Emigrant wilderness was a viable choice. This glaciated and wilderness beauty is situated just north of Yosemite National Park in Stanislaus National forest in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  140 mi from Oakland, it was an easy drive to get to the Trailhead.

We arrived at the Crabtree Trailhead by 11:30 am on Saturday and started the hike towards Camp lake. I personally hate out and back trips and my friends were with me. We decided to do a  loop and the goal was to get to Deer Lake by evening.

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It was a gradual climb from Crabtree Trailhead to Camp Lake with an elevation gain of about 500 ft over 2.6 miles. Camp Lake is a beauty. Bedrock Co-Founder, Dan, who is an enthusiastic fly fisherman noticed that the lake was filled with rainbow trout. We regretted not bringing a fishing pole. It was getting warmer by now and after a quick break we headed towards Piute Lake. We missed our trail on our way and ended up at dead end where we found an awesome swimming hole and decided to take a quick dip to beat the heat. The water was ice cold but  so refreshing.  A Couple of hikers who camped nearby warned us about the apocalypse that was awaiting us. They warned us about the swarms and swarms of mosquitoes near Gem Lake and all the lakes that lay ahead in our loop. In fact they just couldn’t camp anywhere near Gem lake so they hiked back all the way to just to avoid the mosquitoes. We thought they were exaggerating the mosquito situation. We ignored their warnings and headed towards Piute Lake.

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Right as we entered the Piute meadow, we were given a warm welcome by a few hundred blood thirsty mosquitoes. Coming from India and growing up in a poor neighborhood, I have seen some gnarly mosquitoes until that moment. Sierra Nevada mosquitoes were just relentless. If only I had 10% of their perseverance, I would have won a couple of 100 mile races. It was that bad to the point that even running didn’t help. At one point I was running a 7mph downhill and they kept up with me. Soon we reached Piute lake and Gem lake. It was beautiful scenery but a very short lived one. The very few seconds we stopped to take pictures, we were surrounded by hundreds of these crazy suckers, literally.

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mosquitos!

If God had granted me a wish that time, I wouldn’t have asked him for the world’s riches, rather I would have begged him to kill all the mosquitoes on planet earth and make them an extinct species. They are of no good use. Even as I am writing this post, I am taking a scratch break every 5 minutes just to ease of the itches from those nasty bites. With another 300 ft climb, we passed through Jewelry Lake and made it to Deer Lake.

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Deer lake was definitely our favorite of all the lakes we passed by. After a couple of quick pictures, we decided to camp on higher grounds just to avoid the mosquitoes. We found a peak that was so high that we could see the entire Deer Lake and the distant mountains in Hoover Wilderness.

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I peeked outside at around 3:00 am in the morning. It was a beautiful starry night with balmy temperatures around 60 degrees F close to 9,000 feet ASL.

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We woke and quickly packed our bags, headed towards Whitesides meadow.

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Here’s where the misadventures began. Dan and I hiked together the next day and Nick, Co-Founder of Bedrock, stayed with Erin. Along the way, we marked the trail with arrow signs especially on the confusing sections of the trail since Nick didn’t have a map. The trail to the Crabtree via Chewing Gum lake ended up to be more confusing than we expected. Since in was an infrequently maintained trail, there weren’t very many signs and there were overgrowths at couple of sections. We ended up taking a wrong turn that ended up to be a dead end with couple of hundred feet of vertical drop. From there we got a stunning panoramic view of the Bear Lake.

Bear-Lake

When we realized that we had no business to be hanging out at a ridge so close to the Bear Lake we started the long and strenuous climb northwards to find the trail. After about an hour of bushwhacking we finally ended up on the right trail. Mind you, all the while we were enduring those painful bites.

It was all downhill from there. With just about 3 miles to the finish line, we picked up our pace to get to a place where there were no mosquitoes. As soon as we got further south of the ridge line, the mosquitoes were vanishing slowly but steadily. By the time we reached Crabtree trailhead, there were no sign of them. I almost cried at that moment. No more agony and no more pain. I can finally lie down in peace without waving my hand around non stop like a fool. Right before the bridge crossing I took a dip in the ice cold waterpool. It felt heavenly and at the same time painful due to those bites.

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Nick and Erin showed up within half hour. We laughed about our misadventures. Experiences like these makes a trip a memorable one. I will remember this loop forever.

Lesson Learnt: Do your homework. Carry mosquito nets and bug sprays.Man Vs Sierra Nevada Mosquitoes – Mosquitoes Won

Route – Follow the upper blue loop highlighted in the map

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05
Jun 14

Corded Toe Strap Photos

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The Bedrock Sandals crew along with all our customers are raving about the incredible comfort and strength of our new corded toe straps. Here are some recent customer photos shared on our instagram!

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arches japan   EQ-sandals