Know How to Choose the Right Pair of Trekking Shoes

Finding the right pair of trekking shoes is very important as it can help you move down the trail effortlessly. If you did not find the right kind of shoes, then it becomes very hard for you to glide down the trail. You should consider few important things before choosing the perfect trekking shoes, don’t go with its looks, flashy features, or numerical sizes , etc. the important thing to consider is your comfort, stability, durability, and water resistance. Recently when visiting St George I was able to get some great hiking in, and if I didn’t have the right shoes I would have been hating life.


The upper:
It is the upper part of the shoe which is placed above the sole. The upper protects your feet from scratches, dirt and any kind of small injuries. The upper should give the comfort to your foot with where it should tie up to the sole snugly. The upper part of the trekking shoes is generally made up of leather or parts of leather are placed on synthetic material. And these trekking shoes are water resistance and it evaporates the moisture and keeps your feet warm and cozy.

You can also choose waterproof trekking shoes. The manufacturers use Gore Tex technology to make waterproof shoes. But during tropical trekking you cannot avoid your trekking shoes get wet though it’s a waterproofing. It is advisable not to use waterproofing shoes in tropical trekking; wet trek may fail you and there are more possibilities of facing problems with waterproofing. Of course trekking involves crossing streams or rivers, even that time waterproofing shoes does not really help you, and the problem with these shoes are they do not let the water in or out easily. The water stays in scree collar and makes it heavier and it becomes hard to move on trail. To have a pleasant tropical trekking, it is wisest thing to choose all-terrain footwear that allows water flow in and out freely.

The Perfect Fit:
When you are purchasing trekking shoes, you should buy the perfect fit to avoid blackened toenails, blisters, bone spurs, and sprained arches, etc. The right socks also matters for right fit. These hiking socks are available in different thickness that can actually alter boot fit.

Achille notch, Scree collar, and Counter:
When purchasing trekking shoes, you should also consider the inner counter and the Achilles notch. To avoid blister you should buy a shoe with low inner cut of the notch and counter and it should be sufficiently padded and it should be snag free. A pull strap on the notch must be included so that you can slide your foot easily.

Your speed and balance totally depends on the sole of your shoes which connects to the ground. You can either choose the flexible sole for more comfortable feel or you can also choose shoes contains prioritize grip and gives you stability. The lugs underneath the sole decide the complexity of the traction and motion between the ground and the shoe. The lugs should not be too long or too short, if it is long then the sole may break quickly and if it is too short it worn out quickly. The shoe manufactures makes different designs of lugs in order to give the best traction in various angles. Some lugs are triangular shape, some are round and some are radial, and amorphous. The soles that are made of rubber or mud-specific can help you walk on muddy slopes but they get slippery on wet concrete. Vibram is considered as a quality rubber soles. Many manufactures prefers to use Vibram for trekking shoes, but countries like Columbia, which actually outsource Vibram to the world are developing their own Tech-Lite rubber. It is considered as cheaper and lighter and tougher than Vibram
You should also consider the welt part of the sole; the welt should not be weak, because it is the bond between the upper and sole. If the welt is poor then the shoe opens up while trekking of muddy trail. Many people learn their lesion in hard way. The best shoe is all depends on the sole of the shoe, if the sole stay fixed to the upper even after you trek in mud trails, it should stick to it and should provide comfortable feeling.

Small parts:
Laces, though it is the small part of your shoe, it definitely plays an important role. Therefore it is necessary to check the lace of your shoe before trekking. The lace should be long to get a knot properly. The aglets, the hard plastic ends of the shoes lace must not become brittle as it may break soon. Also aglets help you unlace and replace. Like said before, though it is small part it does play important role to keep your shoes tight to your feet.

Trekking shoes also come with reflectors, they are extra parts. Reflectors are the most important part as well, and they are highly recommended part for running shoes. During night time reflectors can help a lot, other can see you easily when you are trekking, or running. They usually placed on the toe cap or behind the counter.

Weight, Size, and Fit:
Trekking shoes used to be heavy in order to be tough. But advancement in technology has made trekking shoes come close to the make of running shoes. They’re lighter and more flexible now. The lighter the trekking shoes the less effort you need to make a step.

Earlier, trekking shoes used to be very tough and heavy. But now the new technology made trekking shoes more comfortable and lighter. The lighter the shoes are the lesser the effort will be while trekking.

When you are buying a trekking shoes buy little bigger size than your original size, because your feet gets enlarged while walking. There should not be any pressure points on your foot while walking otherwise after walking for some time you will get tired soon. This may sound silly, but it’s true, the best time to buy your trekking shoes is in the afternoon. Try to walk 10 minutes before buying shoes so that you can buy perfect pit.

Getting the right shoes is very important for a pleasurable trekking. Get arch support for perfect fit. The important thing to consider while buying trekking shoes is you should feel comfortable and it should help you glide the trial easily and effortlessly. All of these things will make backpacking and hiking in a place like St George a truly incredible experience.

7 Tips on Drying Your Clothes

Backpacking in Sequoia National ParkPhoto Credit: Mat Honan

There are few things that will slow you down and make you more miserable than having wet clothes the entire time while backpacking. They slow you down, make you cold and generally make backpacking much less fun. So if you’re one who hates that, keep reading so you can have some tips on how to get your clothes dry faster.

This is something I learned when I did a Zion National Park tour last summer. If you are hiking, you cannot avoid your clothes from getting wet, whether its from sweating or the rain. If your clothes get wet, you should let them dry as early as possible. If you know that there is a chance that it will rain on the day of your hike, or if you are the type of person who sweats profusely, you should bring thin clothes because these dry up quickly. It is important that you dry your clothes because dry clothes are much easier to pack in your bag. Here are some tips on how to dry your clothes faster and more efficiently.

You may hang your wet clothes on your backpack while hiking in the daytime to allow them to dry. Just make sure that you and your bag don’t get wet.

You may put wet clothes in your sleeping bag if your sleeping bag is made of foam and not waterproof to let the sleeping bag absorb some of the water in the clothes. However, you must not do this if your clothes are too wet or if there are many wet clothes since it will be uncomfortable for you to sleep on a wet sleeping bag. The sleeping bag must not absorb too much water to still ensure comfort.

You may place your clothes near the fire to allow them to dry. Just be careful that they don’t stand too close to the fire especially those clothes that have sensitive and loose fibers. Watch out for any sparks, this might mean burning in your clothes.

Clothes must be squeezed tightly before hanging them to dry. This will save you much time. Who would want to hurriedly get their clothes in a clothesline because of the rain? Only set-up a clothesline if you are certain that it will no longer rain.

If it does not stop from raining, then you can make a clothesline inside your tent or under a tree. Place your wet clothes in a plastic bag to avoid the dry ones from getting wet.

These are just a handful of tips, but probably the easiest is just buying the right clothes for hiking, clothes that dry quickly and wick moisture instead of capturing it (cotton). If you can be smart about it you can keep yourself happy and healthy out on the trail.