72 votes
Accepted

Why do so many people hike with such light footwear?

Hmm - more of a tirade than a question, but let's assume you sincerely want to learn. There's a good deal of ground to cover, so please bear with me here... First, technical trail shoes are not "city ...
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  • 11.6k
23 votes

Why do so many people hike with such light footwear?

Why do so many people hike with such light footwear? I can give you a personal perspective: I have hiked in the 2000-3000m altitude (alps) for a long time, using quite tough semi-alpine boots (like ...
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  • 1,868
18 votes

Hiking: How to start?

Two ways to get started on a hike: with either your right foot, or your left foot :P First and foremost you need comfortable footwear. Doesn't matter what it is to get started, I've led people over ...
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  • 53.1k
16 votes
Accepted

Climbing barefoot/in toe-shoes?

I climb barefoot and in vibram five-fingers (KSO's), climbed in them for the first time in 2008 and loved them, where they excel is in roofs and overhanging problems because you can hook holds a lot ...
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  • 53.1k
15 votes

Hiking: How to start?

Start small and simple. The important thing is to get back into the habit of walking long distances and times again. You probably haven't walked a mile in a while. For starters, walk around your ...
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  • 431
15 votes

Why do so many people hike with such light footwear?

The hiking shoe/waterproof trainer style is comfortable for casual strolls on easy trails, in good weather. This "light outdoors" (or fair-weather hiking) market is huge in comparison to serious ...
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  • 23.5k
15 votes

What makes shoelaces so special?

Aglets, shoelaces being easy to find and in the right lengths, the smooth exterior and if you have the right kind, the ease of tying and staying in their knots. As a hobby knot tyer, (and member of ...
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  • 2,557
14 votes

Why do so many people hike with such light footwear?

For certain types of hiking, lightness is key. I can't talk for everyone doing that (some may just be unaware of the consequences of their kit choices) but I really like speed hiking / fell running, ...
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  • 24.4k
14 votes

How can I tell a “trail shoe” from a regular sport shoe?

The problem is, that these are a (comparatively) new type of shoes and a hybrid of other types. Therefore there is no clear definition, not even consistent naming. Trail running shoes These are the ...
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  • 21.6k
14 votes
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How to keep small rocks and stones out of hiking boots?

Like Russell said, gaiters are what you need, there are many varieties, most are meant to help keep your feet and pants dry while moving through the bush, but in your situation I'd probably recommend ...
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  • 53.1k
14 votes

Should one buy a higher shoe size while buying hiking shoes?

While it's a very personal thing, there are a few simple guidelines for trying on boots. Go late in the day, when you've been walking around, and your feet are already sweaty and swollen. Your feet ...
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  • 480
13 votes

De-stinking my water shoes

Care for your neoprene water shoes as you would for any neoprene wetsuit. http://scubadiverlife.com/2011/03/15/scuba-wetsuit-care-101-removing-odors-extending-suit-life/ You can use any search ...
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12 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

I guess the answer really is It depends As a general purpose solution I normally bring sturdy trekking/hiking sandals on my trips. Something like the models from Teva for example (many pictures on ...
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  • 12.2k
11 votes
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Technique for swimming with fins?

I am a 25+ year scuba divemaster. Alas, poor fin kicking technique is very common, even among experienced scuba divers. First of all, selection of a fin which is too flexible is better than one ...
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  • 1,319
11 votes

What are differences between higher and lower shoes other than ankle support?

Depending on the climate there are some significant differences. Boots are noticeably warmer than shoes. This is beneficial in the cold, though socks etc. provide warmth as well. In hot conditions ...
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  • 23.5k
10 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

I've owned pairs of both Keen and Ecco sandals, and have been quite happy with both. They each have solid leather construction with comfortable padding on the inside, and they tend to hold up well. ...
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  • 1,738
10 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

Any kayaking shop will have a selection of both shoes and boots designed for this. While you can get them with thin soles, I recommend thicker soles if you're mainly wearing them on rocky river beds ...
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  • 23.5k
9 votes

Climbing barefoot/in toe-shoes?

I'll chime in from a fairly unique position with anecdotal evidence only. I feel like most of the advice you'll get is from experts that talk down to you condescendingly if you even mention the b-...
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9 votes

FiveFingers or hiking boots?

Like the original poster I do everything in VFF's. Anything else causes me pain. Specifically nerve pain, or neuromas, in between the bones of my foot due to compression of my toes. I've easily ...
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  • 91
9 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

If you are only going to use them to cross rivers and you are wanting to save on weight / space, I would suggest some neoprene booties. Surf or diving booties will do just fine. Some are like a ...
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  • 276
9 votes
Accepted

Should one buy a higher shoe size while buying hiking shoes?

There are a number of factors you should be considering when sizing your hiking shoes. LONG DISTANCE HIKING For long thru-hikes, it is very common to go up a size, because after a few days of ...
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  • 11.6k
8 votes

Chacos: Toe strap or no toe strap?

I have a pair without the toe strap. I wear them daily and hike in them regularly. They did take quite a while to break in and initially gave me blisters (mostly the side strap). My girlfriend has ...
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  • 8,021
8 votes

Hiking: How to start?

The single most important piece of equipement you need is a good reference on the hiking trails around where you live. Read it through, pick a few that you want to do. Those books usually give you a ...
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  • 2,614
8 votes

Hiking: How to start?

The most important thing is a bottle of water, which you can carry in any kind of backpack (does not have to be a special one for a start). Further more, it depends very much on what terrain you like ...
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8 votes

Hiking: How to start?

Most of the answers seem to be telling you how to walk so I'll assume that's covered. I think part of this is motivation as well - one thing I have enjoyed is getting a hiking book with some ...
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