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Shoes for PCT 2012
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Jace Mullen
(climberslacker) - F

Locale: Your guess is as good as mine.
Shoes for PCT 2012 on 08/04/2011 20:59:08 MDT Print View

Hey Team,

I am looking at getting a new pair of shoes (My old pair just but the dust). I am also planning on hiking the PCT in 2012. So I thought that I might want to get a pair of shoes that will be comparable to the ones I will be wearing then. I am thinking about Innov8 shoes but I am not sure wich model would be best for my hike. The Key for me is a mix of lightweight, durability and traction (I will most likely be buying the same shoe to send to KM).

This will also be the shoe that I do all of my training hikes in.

Any recommendations?

Dirk Rabdau
(dirk9827) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Just a few thoughts on 08/04/2011 21:59:09 MDT Print View

Jace -

Oh, that's great to hear that you are hiking the PCT!

I honestly have very little to add in the discussion of particiular shoes, only because it is a very personal decision.I haven't tried Inov-8 shoes But there are a lot of threads on particular models on this site.

I will offer just a couple of other thoughts.

Getting 700 miles out of a pair of trail runners (from the border to KM) is really stretching it, in my opinion (though people do it and get way more miles out of them). I think I got about 500 miles per pair of shoes, generally. I was on my sixth pair of shoes at the end.

I think the one experience I will share is that my feet swelled in the desert from a 9.5 to 11.5 pretty quickly. Unlike the past two years, when the desert was relatively cool (but the mountains extremely snowy!), 2009 had a very warm stretch early in the hike. My feet swelled and pretty much stayed that way for the majority of the hike. This is pretty common, and many people took knives to shoes to cut away hot spots and toe boxes. Whatever you do decide, find shoes that breathe easily. The downside is you end up getting more dirt in your shoes, but airflow helps cut down on the blisters, at least it did for me.

Early on, a lot of people switched out shoes because of hot spots/blisters/etc. if you got a pair now you could definitely make sure it's to your liking and start the hike in those, and replace them down the line....By the time I reached Yosemite, I was in need of a third pair, as the first bit the dust early, the second I received around Big Bear and were shot 1/3 of the way into the Sierra and were on their very last legs as I arrived at the post office in Yosemite.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Shoes for PCT 2012 on 08/19/2011 18:16:09 MDT Print View

Your biggest 'Key' should be comfort. In the same vein, replace your shoes more frequently or your feet will suffer for it and you may be limping home early.

Take a look at Inov-8's new releases. It seems that they're using a new anatomical last that provides a wider toe box. A narrow toe box is the biggest complaints that hikers have with their Inov-8's, so hopefully this fixes that problem.

Now if you absolutely want durability, then get the new Inov-8 shoe that doesn't have a midsole. Not having a midsole means that there's no padding to go flat and/or wobbly after 300-500 miles, so you may be able to wear those shoes until they fall apart or get holes worn in them. Of course you get no padding, so your feet may suffer horribly from bruising. I don't recommend these shoes, but I do plan on trying them out asap.