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 Post subject: Footwear while tripping
PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 8:37 am 
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Hello, I am hoping some experienced trippers here can share their tips/advice on footwear while tripping.

I am always very reluctant to bring my hiking boots on a trip because they will be soaked in no time and won't dry for the whole trip because you are....tripping. I like to hop in and out of the canoe when I get to a portage instead of trying to dance around trying to keep my feet dry.

Teva's are out, I bought a new pair on the way to the Steel River last year and they were a big mistake. Loose roots, rocks and sticks make their way all to easily between the bottom of my foot and the top of the sandal's sole and caused me to nearly trip several times with a full load. I consider slips and falls on a portage trail probably the biggest risk while tripping solo.

I am currently using Merrell closed-toe watershoes and they are good but not great. They cannot be firmly strapped to my feet therefore they get sucked off in muck regularly. They also cause blisters after a day or two of serious portaging, usually on the tops of the toes!

Anyhow, I am just wondering what other people like to do. Do you always bring hiking boots or trail shoes?

My next pair was going to be a trail/running shoe that is very light weight and would drain water quickly. If anyone can share any specific brands/models they like, that would be great. I just bought a pair of Salomon's from MEC (https://www.mec.ca/en/product/6006-196/ ... Watershoes) but will return them as the reviews I found after say they will not last very long at all under normal conditions let alone tripping!

Thank you for your help.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 8:50 am 
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I wasn't familiar with the Merrell you mentioned. What we wear and my suggestion looks very much like it. We haven't had trouble with them being sucked off our feet. Columbia Drainmakers. I just use it for trips and its lasted five years, not so bad. Dries fast. Curious to see what others might come up with too....cheers and happy feet.

https://www.columbiasportswear.ca/en/me ... ml#start=0


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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 9:22 am 
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Thanks Steve, these look great, I will definitely check them out. Trying to find someone in Toronto I can try them on. Cheers dude!

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 9:44 am 
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Location: North Bay, Ontario
Bean boots. They are waterproof to greater than the normal draft of a loaded canoe, so your feet stay dry during normal tripping, i.e. loading/unloading at put-ins and take-outs. They have a fairly soft sole that gives good grip while wading. They don't absorb much water so if they get wet you can just change your socks and your feet will be dry again. I like having dry feet, especially when it is cool. The tops are leather so they breathe well enough for me.

Not for everyone, however. Some find them too hot in the summer. I don't.

Kinguq


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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 10:53 am 
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I have Salomon water shoes that are pretty good. I had Salomons a few years back and they were more of a sandal, which i didn't like so much. I bought big enough to wear socks to reduce chafing. Back in the days when i did serious porting I would change over to hikers before starting the port.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 12:49 pm 
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Thanks Kinguq and wotrock, I will check out the bean boots, when I googled them LL Bean Boots come up, is that what you mean? I kinda assume...no...lol let me know! wotrock, but now you have wet socks! That sounds no bueno. But maybe that is that tradeoff, wet socks/feet or chaffed/blistered feet. I am going to return these Salomon ones at MEC now, hopefully they have some more sizes, I think I will try a lite shoe that will drain quickly that I can wear without socks. Cheers everyone, keep the ideas coming!
Tripping in late fall, I am more inclined to bring the boots and warm socks for camp, but still will rock water shoes for portaging. My last trip I stashed my heavy boots on the first portage because I knew they were going to be a huge pain to lug around for no reason. Going back for them at the end of the trip wasn't fun though.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 1:09 pm 
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I wear paddling shoes with neoprene socks in moderate weather and in cold weather wear the neoprene socks over my drysuit with the same shoes. I keep my hiking boots for camp -- nice and dry (or at least dryish if the weather is bad). I've done plenty of long portages with no problem to my feet. I generally use high cut, basketball-looking paddling shoes (at present 5-10's, but Keene's were good for a while). If you want a real boot, NRS makes one, but is overkill for my purposes.


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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 2:08 pm 
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These might be the NRS boot referred to above.

I've been using them for a long time and really like them

https://www.nrs.com/product/2338/nrs-workboot-wetshoes

I wear thin wool socks with them. Note that they fit "small" (very small), go up at least two sizes compared to regular footwear.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 3:09 pm 
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I trip mostly in summer. I wear a thin pair of quick dry socks so it's no big prob.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 3:25 pm 
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I like the NRS work boots a lot for cold water. I almost broke my ankle wearing Bean boots. The soles are too slippery and the narrow raised heal makes them dangerous on wet and steep rocks. For summers I really like Astral shoes. Closed canvas with drainage ports built into the soles. Lightweight and quick drying. Available in a higher cut so they don't come off in mud. They also have really grippy soles. The down side is they are not particularly durable. I'm using these ones right now. https://www.astraldesigns.com/shop/foot ... assler-2.0


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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 3:30 pm 
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Thanks Peter and recped, I have seen those NRS boots before but was worried about trenchfoot with a neoprene sock, I have the MEC neoprene gloves and they get soaked pretty quickly and my hands come out clamy!
I may revisit that idea in the future!
I just got back from MEC and I overspent but only because their selection/sizes right now are crazy low! I bought Merrell Trail Glove Eco 5's and I will follow Wotrocks advice and wear some thin, lite socks. Thanks all!

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 3:38 pm 
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MartinG, those Astrals look like my old iPath skate shoes, or Nike air force 1's!
Look very comfy, have to try em! thanks for the tip

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 6:27 pm 
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jbrave wrote:
Thanks Peter and recped, I have seen those NRS boots before but was worried about trenchfoot with a neoprene sock, I have the MEC neoprene gloves and they get soaked pretty quickly and my hands come out clamy!
I may revisit that idea in the future!
I just got back from MEC and I overspent but only because their selection/sizes right now are crazy low! I bought Merrell Trail Glove Eco 5's and I will follow Wotrocks advice and wear some thin, lite socks. Thanks all!


'
MEC needs to get their act together and they need to do it quick or they may not last much past Christmas.

I ordered some food on Sunbday which was all shown as "available online", one of the items I tried to order became sold out between the time I added to the Cart and went through checkout, the rest of the order went through ok (it seemed).

Next day I get a notice, everything except one item is "backordered", the one item is shopping on it's own (free shipping
because of total order value). Today I get a series of messages, first one tells me that two of my backorders are shipped, an hour later I get a message that 6 of my items have shipped, I expect I'll get a few more of these over the coming days.

In the end I expect I'll get my order in 4 or 5 or 6 shipments, if I'm lucky at the end I'll get all my items but MEC will have paid for 5 or 6 shipments with each one having a retail value of $25 - $50 and all items are low profit items.

Bottom line, MEC will probably lose money on my $300 order and their buyer (me) will not be very impressed with the service. That is no way to increase your sales volume.

Two other things I noticed, NONE of the items I ordered were available in either of the Toronto stores and while skimming through the gear I noticed an insane lack of basic items. I did see a couple of listings for the new MEC line of tents..........YIKES! the prices, wow, a 2-man tent for almost $600, a 3-person for almost $800, nothing really special about the tents just your basic replacement for the previous line of tents.

I'm afraid MEC is doomed, too bad because the alternative (Sail) are also teetering on the edge.

Getting back on topic, the NRS workboots do acquire a stink pretty fast as do the wool socks but I've never had any foot issues.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 6:33 pm 
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My brother and I were just lamenting the loss of the Sail in Vaughan, we were both very impressed with their store's layout and the product they were carrying. Their fishing section was huge but maybe they were losing out to Bass Pro just up the 400. We also discussed MEC and I think he may have figured it out, they are relying too much on selling clothes that you could get anywhere. They have no special brands, and the amount of retail space at the Shep/Leslie location dedicated to clothing is significant. If you want the right products you go to Canadian Outdoor Equipment, Altitude Sports or buy direct. I only shop at MEC if I need something right now, other than that, I always use another source. Too bad.

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PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 8:05 pm 
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Hmm that's interesting, my recent order from MEC was not as large, but was also sub-chopped into multiple shipments spanning a small number of weeks and no indication of this was given during checkout. I'd pretty much forgotten what i'd ordered and when the last item arrived it was a, oh yeah I remember that kind of moment. I'd thought we'd bottomed out already.... maybe not.
Back on topic: tor the shoes I have some units called Chlota's. They were a little over-priced and probably not very durable so I can't recommend them, but while they're still new-ish I'm finding them to be quite good.


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