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Cutting Tounges From Shoes
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Bernie Bower
(Bernie) - F

Locale: Southern Indiana
Cutting Tounges From Shoes on 05/10/2006 20:12:52 MDT Print View

Has anyone in the last 5 years cut the tounges from their trail runners ala Jardine?

For the "Ray Way" it seems a requirement but do any of the rest of feel the need?

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: Cutting Tounges From Shoes on 05/11/2006 01:38:54 MDT Print View

Personally, I find the padding that the tongue provides important to reduce the pressure from the laces which would otherwise be pressing directly against the tops of my feet for many hours each day during the course of a hike. The tongue also helps to eliminate some debris, sand, etc. from entering the low cut trail runners.

My last pair of boots and my current trail runners are as close to a perfect fit as i've ever had. Yet the roughness of the terrain and its poor footing requires that the laces, particularly on low cut trail runners, be quite tight to keep from losing a shoe as the ankle and foot tries to roll with most steps. I suppose if the terrain/footing is so mild that "flip-flop"/thong sandals are appropriate then loosely tied trail runners would work fine too. ok. I'll admit it - a bit of hyperbole - I'm exaggerating a bit on my last statement - just for the sake of effect.

I would hate to think of the pressure that the laces pressing directly on small surface areas would exert and the localized reduction in surface blood flow in those areas that might result. One or two pairs of think Smartwool liners probably wouldn't do much to alleviate the pressure is my thought (i could be mistaken???). Another round of Decubitus ulcers, anyone? Possibly? As is, with tongue in place, I'm all too glad to loosen the laces at rest stops and sometimes take off the trail runners too for a few minutes.

I'm glad it worked for RayJ. I'm not willing to try this one though. If you try it, i hope it works well for you too.

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Cutting Tounges From Shoes on 05/11/2006 07:20:50 MDT Print View

Nope, but I've *added* tongue padding to other hikers' shoes on long trails when they started to get lace bruises.

Remember, Jardine recommends very light, flexible trail runners. Flex is the key. Stiff shoes or shoes with stiff aftermarket inner soles have more lace pressure - and need more padding.

Re: Cutting Tounges From Shoes on 05/12/2006 01:08:49 MDT Print View

Interesting post. I went back and read over the footwear section in BB. If you read carefully Ray only recommends this for hiking in hot weather to prevent feet from swelling to the point of discomfort. It says the the modification is to loosen the shoe and increase ventilation. No where did I read that it was required.

Haven't tried it myself because I haven't walked far enough for it to be a problem. For the long distance hiker though, it may be a different story.

Bernie Bower
(Bernie) - F

Locale: Southern Indiana
Knobstone Thru hike on 05/14/2006 11:44:43 MDT Print View

Thanks for your thoughts.

I just finished a 19 hour, 46 mile hike on Indiana's Knobstone Trail with 3 others. It was agreed by all that it was the hardest physical thing any of us has ever done.

My feet were wet all day in trail runners and now I have blisters across the front of both feet. Is there much I could have done? My pack weight with foot and water never got over 6lbs.

David Bonn
(david_bonn) - F

Locale: North Cascades
Re: Knobstone Thru hike on 05/14/2006 12:12:15 MDT Print View

There is never one answer.

A good book to invest in is
"FIxing Your Feet" by John Vonhof (Wilderness Press).

Adam McFarren
(amcfarre) - F
Knobstone Trail/Blisters on 05/14/2006 17:33:30 MDT Print View

Congrats, the Knobstone is one tough trail. I completed a 50 mile hike on it last April (by making a backwards "S" at the top section) as part of an ultramarathon event (I was the only "walker" doing it). People who have only seen the northern part of Indiana may be surprised to know that the 50 mile course has 9,750 ft of gain (plus that much loss).

I had a few blisters, but I believe trail conditions were drier last April than they probably are now (especially in the flooded Elk Creek area - which the Hoosier Hikers Council is working on rerouting above the flood elevation of the dam). My blisters have since been tamed with the use of:

1) Superfeet insoles (solved the blisters on the bottoms of my heels)
2) Injini tetrasocks (solved rubbing of two toes that slightly overlap)
3) Hydropel (helps keep feet dry and slows skin prunning)
4) Always wearing shoes that are plenty roomy in the toe box (New Balance works great for me)
5) pre-taping other parts of my feet where I've had blisters before

And I'd highly second the recommendation of _Fixing Your Feet_.

And to directly address your question, if your blisters were on the balls of your feet, then I'd recommend pre-taping that area with something like Elastikon (NFI in ZombieRunner, it just has been my source for this tape in the past).

If the ends of your toes are blistering, then look at Injini socks and sizing up your shoes or going to a brand with a larger toe box.

Good luck,

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Knobstone Thru hike on 05/15/2006 08:52:35 MDT Print View thoughts. Wet feet all day on a flat trail in non-waterproof shoes might be fine.

If it looks like you may be facing wet feet all day on difficult uneven terrrain (not flat trail), you have to do something different. Wet regular socks aren't going to prevent friction in this situation IMO. A goretex oversock might work for you.

Ryan Faulkner
(ryanf) - F

Locale: Mid atlantic, No. Cal
Re: Re: Knobstone Thru hike on 05/15/2006 15:40:04 MDT Print View

Have you ever tried the wrightsock double layer coolmesh sock?

it is my favorite sock, because I tried the liner thing, but it was very uncomfortable, But this sock has two very thin, very breathable layers sewn together, so you have a liner to prevent blisters, and a fast drying breathable sock to keep your feet dry and comfortable.

they are available at REI

Bernie Bower
(Bernie) - F

Locale: Southern Indiana
THANKS on 05/16/2006 19:13:32 MDT Print View

I'm amazed by the wonderful spirt of this forum community. I can't wait to print out your suggestions and head for my favorite outfitters (they're great people but not much ultralight to shop from) and try out all your ideas.