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KBob
2007-01-30, 06:43
Went out last weekend for an overnighter with the local backpacking club. We did 17 miles along the Palmetto trail covering part of a swamp. Waterworld. A good part of the trail was under water, some parts had foot bridges but we still did alot of wading. Good thing it was in the 60s. No bugs to speak of but one 3 1/2 cottonmouth. Many were wearing Sealskin socks and sandals, with Keen sandals being the top choice. Anyone hiking in sandals? The Keens have a toe box. I may try those out.

PKH
2007-01-30, 08:13
I've had great success hiking in Chacos over the last three years. Now, recommending specific brands of footwear is a mug's game in my opinion. The only good shoe is the one that works just right for you - it may be horrible for someone else. I would suggest giving sandals a try, but get your feet used to them before going backpacking, and this will take some time. Also, it's a good idea to bring along a light pair of trail shoes, runners, etc on your first sandal expeditions just in case they don't work out for you.

Cheers,

PKH

Mutinousdoug
2007-01-30, 12:00
I used to day hike alot in Teva sandals when they first came out, 20+ years ago. They were great until they broke in half across the sole after about 3 years of hard use. My current sandals are Northface and give me a blister under my left ankle bone if I cinch them up too tight, so I say they suck. They'd be fine with wool socks or Sealskins. I have soft little girly feet so I have to wear boots when I'm carrying a pack. Last year or so I've been carrying Crocs for camp shoes. They only weigh 10 oz for the pair and with the heel strap make pretty fair water crossing shoes. Good toe protection but minimal sole protection against rocks and particularly cactus thorns. Any failure would be catastrophic I'd think (altho Crocs sent me some spare heel strap rivets when I asked), where you could cobble something up with awl or Duct tape for a Teva/Chaco type sandal.
Went on a canoe trip last summer where some of the others had those Keen sandals that I looked at with some interest. Only complaints they had were the closed toebox trappped alot of gravel; requiring removal of the shoe to clean out and they were serious Stank machines after awhile when they weren't hiking under water.

Hollowdweller
2007-01-30, 12:10
I like to hike in sandals but if there's a lot of mud my Teva's eat holes in the outside of my foot near my big toe.

I'd be interested in knowing any good brands that are more shoe like that might not do that.

dropkick
2007-01-31, 23:53
I hiked all last summer in my Crocs. Not real good when going over sharp rocks, but other than that extremely comfortable. I'm a big fan.
Summer before I wore Tevas. Summer before that another pair of sandals.

I have my hiking boots, but lately I end up packing them along and using my "camp shoes" for hiking instead.

I still carry my boots as I have twisted my ankle on the trail before and I want something with ankle support if needed.

Actually bought a pair of cheap slippers last fall and carried them along too - I'm big into changing footwear at the end of the day.

blackdog
2007-02-11, 06:54
I can honestly say that i like my chaco z2's very much. I'm thinking about buying a second pair this summer with the newer (lighter) sole.

The HotDog
2007-02-12, 01:13
I have both keens and crocs. I just got the crocs about a week ago and have had keens for a little over a year. So far I prefer my keens over the crocs if I am planning on walking very far but, got the crocs as water shoes. I haven't had the crocs long enough to really test'em but, they are pretty comfortable. They do not have a very sturdy foot bed or straps compared to the keens imo, which for me makes me worry how durable they are. I have noticed after I get my keens wet the fabric straps will stiffen and it does take quite awhile to dry, not a major problem just a pet peeve.

The HotDog

dropkick
2007-02-13, 02:42
The crocs held up for me through a lot of hiking, plus I wore them as my regular shoes quite often. I also read of a through hiker on the AT that made the whole trip in one pair.

As water shoes they have a couple problems:
1) If they come off in a creek or river they will float quickly away.
2) They don't stay on well when you swim across a pond or lake.

On the other hand I walked down a lot of ditches and through many creeks last summer with them on and never had any real problems.

-On one of my favorite day hikes, towards the end I swim across an irregation pond (one reason it's one of my favorite day hikes).
It was a real pain in the neck that I kept losing my crocs when swimming.
I finally started tieing them to my walking stick with a length of cord before I went in. That way when they came off I didn't have to try to catch the dang floating things and figure out how to hold both them and my stick while swimming.

P.S. I have one gimp foot that dangles and some types of shoe/sandals don't stay on well (i.e. I can't wear flip flops) but I've never had a problem with the crocs.