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Recent article on lightweight shoes
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Chad McClenathen
(cmcclenathen) - F
Recent article on lightweight shoes on 06/01/2006 16:19:46 MDT Print View

I enjoyed the article but would have been interested to read about how the non-waterproof shoes absorbed, retained, and lost water weight under normal hiking conditons as compared to waterproof shoes. Most of my hiking is done under conditions where my shoes are not submerged. Instead, the shoes are subjected to dew on trails in the mornings, rain, and water-soaked trails. Waterproof shoes are designed to handle those conditions and keep your feet dry as long as the water level on the trail is not over your shoe. It appears to me that the non-waterproof shoes are likely to absorb and retain water under those same conditions. What is the trade-off? The obvious disadvantage to waterproof shoes is the relatively slow rate of evaporation of sweat. My question is if the sweat build-up is an acceptable trade-off as compared to the water gain that the non-waterproof shoes will absorb during a normal day. It seems to me that it is possible that your feet will be wetter overall if subjected to dew every morning and occassionally rain. What do you think? I wish Carol would run an editor thread on the subject.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Recent article on lightweight shoes on 06/01/2006 18:03:13 MDT Print View

I too am intrigued by these quick-drying shoes. Up to now, I've just used the "conventional method" of changing into and out of "water shoes" upon stream crossings. Not a huge burden, but a series of annoyance nevertheless.

I enjoyed the article as well, and would like to see it expanded (perhaps in another article) to a discussion of socks also. When it comes to crossing a stream and then squishing out the water as one continues to hike, I can only assume that the socks one wears will have a direct impact on water retainage, drying speed, and in the end, feet comfort?

Edited by ben2world on 06/01/2006 18:04:32 MDT.


Locale: South West US
Recent article on lightweight shoes on 06/01/2006 21:52:25 MDT Print View

Ditto what Ben said about the socks. From my experience it makes a pretty significant difference. With nylons socks (wright double socks) my shoes seem to dry faster that with wool ones. I do perfer the wool though, because they are more comfortable wet or dry.

I live next to a wash so I've been walking the dog daily and testing two shoes, the inov-8 terrocs and the nike orizaba. I've notcied that the terrocs hold much more water than the nike's. I'm pretty sure it's because the nikes have a drainage port by the toes. When walking you can see the water getting sqeezed out the port. Here's a picture

The terrocs don't have this feature. It would be interesting to identify specific features (besides fabics) that drain the shoe most efficently.

BTW i've only been using the nikes for two weeks but they're quickly becoming my favorite shoe. The fine monofilament mesh does a really good job of keeping small debris out of the shoe. The lace system is a bit out of control but gaiters (not the integrated ones) help keep things tidy.


Edited by oiboyroi on 06/01/2006 23:32:47 MDT.

Mitchell Keil
(mitchellkeil) - F

Locale: Deep in the OC
Re: Recent article on lightweight shoes on 06/05/2006 16:43:26 MDT Print View

I too am impressed with Carol's article. And like the others in this thread have been wondering for a long time about the trade offs between waterproof "breathable" boots and shoes and ventilated non-waterproof shoes and boots. I used to own a pair of Merrell chamelion ventilator high tops. during one hike that involved more stream bed than trail I finally got sick and tired of changing my shoes out for my nike surf shoes that doubled for camp shoes and added 17 oz to my pack weight. So, I just said the hell-with-it and hiked the last 4 miles in and out of the water still wearing my Merrells. I made better time was fully supported in crossing the stream and found much to my suprise that my boots dried out pretty much by the end of the day and were dry by morning. I did not have prune feet and did not get blisters from the moisture in the boots. As Carol found out, most of the water does get pushed out pretty quickly and the inside of the boots aren't particularly squishy after about 45 minutes of brisk walking. Admittedly, these boots are not made for stream walking and I don't think they would last very long if I made a habit of doing so, but they got me thinking about my XCR and regular Gortex boots which are nasty and steamy most of the time during Southern CA spring and summer. I never get blisters but I must say that hot feet are not fun to walk on.

So, I have purchased a pair of Turocs. I will be testing them for comfort and the ability to dry out after a day of 12 stream crossings that normally leave my feet hot and damp from the XCR lining of my boots but not wet from the crossings. I did buy different sock than I would normally use. Normally, I wear a single layer of Smart Wool medium weight socks. I purchased REI's Coolmax cross trainer socks that are about equivalent to the smart wool lightweight socks. Let the games begin!!

Ryan Faulkner
(ryanf) - F

Locale: Mid atlantic, No. Cal
Re: Recent article on lightweight shoes on 06/05/2006 17:11:17 MDT Print View

R K,

how do you think the gaiter works compared to others on your nike orizaba


Edited by ryanf on 06/05/2006 17:32:09 MDT.