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layering footwear
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John Reichle
(mammoman) - M

Locale: NE AL
Wet Cold Shoes on 01/25/2013 18:51:06 MST Print View

Carry an EXTRA extra pair of socks. Even if you end up with cold wet or frozen shoes, just being able to put on a truly dry clean pair of socks first is psychologically helpful....sure, they'll get wet as soon as you're walking, but they won't be too cold.

I once hiked 3 days in 15 degree weather with soaked Roclites (slipped into a creek one mile into the hike) and as long as I was moving and started the day with dry socks, I was ok. As soon as I stopped to camp, the down booties with overshoe went on, a fire got built, and I did my best to dry my shoes out. Never fully got dry though :)

Dale Caldwell
(dalemc) - F

Locale: Coastal Georgia
Bogs, on 01/25/2013 20:39:33 MST Print View

I do have some Microspikes that I plan to bring. I've never used these before but they look like they could be useful on ice or mayve with certain types of snow. Even though the size that I bought is supposed to be for a size 10.5-14 shoe, I don't like how they crunch my foot and toes over a size 12 shoe. It seems like this could affect circulation.

Speaking of circulation.... I HATE how most socks on the market seem to fit so tight (when you buy them for your foot/shoe length/size). Sizing up doesn't work well either because you have an excess of material that is not needed and uncomfortable. I will be spending the next few weeks trying to stretch all of my socks that I plan to bring including these Hydroskins. For any of you that share this disliking, I have learned that following brands are better or worse with being too tight:

Too tight:
Darn Tough

Not so bad:

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
2c worth on 01/25/2013 22:38:56 MST Print View

Hi Dale

> If I am going to use a vapor barrier layer in between the shoes and
> insulation AND in between my sock layer and insulation, then are two pairs
> of merino wool socks going to be warmer (better) than a pair of merinos with
> hydroskins over them as the insulated layer?
Never been very impressed with things like hydroskins for insulation.
When canyoning in freezing water we wear 1/4" wet suits - but they
don't keep us warm either.

It all depends on what terrain you are crossing. If it is dry ground,
no worries. If it is cold dry snow, not too many worries. Snow which
is just sub-zero and wet is a bigger problem as your shoes get wet

Me, I would probably wear GTX joggers with GTX gaiters. When the snow
melts on your shoe or around your ankle, the water does not penetrate
the GTX layer. Yes, your socks will get wet anyhow, but there won't be
a huge FLOW of cold water through them. And inside I would probably
wear nylon liners, Darn Tough Vermont Full Boot socks and then another
layer of lighter wool socks over the top - in a large size.

If you are finding DTV socks tight, go up a size. They sure do have a
range of sizes available at Amazon. No, I have no vested interests in
DTV, but I do like their socks.

The big thing is warm trousers, so the blood going into your feet is
really warm.

> Also, people have suggested putting platypus containers or water bottles
> full of hot water in a shoe in the morning to try and defrost them.
Me, I stick the shoes in a good plastic bag, seal it up, and leave it
at the bottom of my quilt overnight.

> pouring near boiling or boiling water on the shoe just as good or better?
TERRIBLE idea!!!!
Then you have really wet shoes, rather than a slightly damp ones, and
when they freeze, you are in much bigger trouble.


Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Bogs, on 01/26/2013 07:36:23 MST Print View

Even though the size that I bought is supposed to be for a size 10.5-14 shoe, I don't like how they crunch my foot and toes over a size 12 shoe. It seems like this could affect circulation.

Good observation, Dale. Microspikes really do help with traction in icy conditions but when used with trail runners can restrict circulation to the point where your toes become numb. At least they did in my case. On one trip, it was bad enough that I had to take the Microspikes off and try to negotiate steep, icy terrain without them. Since then, I've switched to lightweight, oversized wp/b boots that are just stiff enough to withstand the pressure of Microspikes.

Edited by Dondo on 01/26/2013 07:40:55 MST.