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Shoes or Sandals?

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Merrell Moab Ventilators (non-waterproof) for everything. One shoe really does fit all.  

 

I think it's what Northern Tier recommends for the portages, water, etc. They dry quickly, have great soles and provide a lot of stability. 

 

You can also use them at Summer Camp, on the AT, Philmont, etc., although you may want to look at the waterproof model. I have a pair of each. 

 

I know you should wear boots when hiking on terrain, but these Moabs are cut so high that they give you great ankle support. I also bought the boot version, but never wear them. 

 

It is an unbelievably lightweight shoe with great stability and a nice vibram sole. 

 

And the best part is that there is really no breaking-in time because of the softness and the way they are constructed. They are good to go out of the box, but you may want to wear them a little bit before you hit the camp. 

 

It's also an amazing shoe for people with flat feet. Don't know why,  though. The boots used to be the first thing I would shed when I came off the trail and into camp. Not with these. My feet feel great after spending all day in them. 

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My 23 year old daughter just bought a pair of crocs.

 

I have a friend that hikes in those Keens all the time. We've done many trips in the Grand Canyon and the rocky desert. He loves them.

 

I quit using hiking boots and am using trail runners now (Altra Lone Peak). I've backpacked probably close to 600 miles with them in the past year and hiked probably 800 more. Love em. Boots suck comparatively speaking. I hike on very rocky terrain and have found that boots are a hindrance.

 

I have a couple friends that hike in Chacos. They hiked the PCT in sandals and the CDT and the Arizona Trail.

 

Of all the long-distance hikers I've met, none wear boots.

 

Philmont literature says hiking boots are required but they don't seem to have any issue with people using lighter foot-wear.

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YMMV

 

Hiking in loose rock with footwear lacking a rand to protect the outside toes has given me many hours of service rendering first aid to feet. Lovely technicolor.

 

Hiking on loose rock or surface tree roots with footwear without a stiff shank has led to injuries to the arch.  

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If you want to know if they are approved for camp use, I'd e-mal the camp director. Send him the link. And save his e-mail response :-).

 

Those look like they'd make a great pair of camp shoes for a Scout taking boating related merit badges at summer camp, assuming they dry quickly. But I never assume anything regarding camp policy. One thing I've learned is it is best to ask first on maters such as these.

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I used to work for an attorney who used to say, "Look, you can call a brown-spotted a dog a fire hydrant, but that doesn't make it a fire hydrant. It's still a dog." I consequently agree with Perdidochas and EagleDad...I look at whether the shoes are open-toe or closed-toe. So do the rest of our adult leaders in our troop, although (unlike CalicoPenn's troop), we do allow Crocs. We have found that scouts generally only do that once.

 

I didn't have any luck with your first link. The shoes at your second link work just fine as they are closed-toe. I find that the open sides are not practical because they let in rocks and gravel that are uncomfortable. But I think they meet policy. I notice that you say you ordered some with a light fabric on the side...was that what was in your first link?

 

 

I agree with CalicoPenn...call the camp or the council just to make sure. 

 

Tangentially related, at Philmont with a different troop, our Crew Chief's boots gave out and, while trying to repair the boots, spent three days hiking in something like this:

 

https://us.vibram.com/shop/fivefingers/

 

But his didn't have the strap over the top and were a bit less substantial in the heel. He never had a problem.

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I don't even remember what that 1st link was now.... just a random example.

 

The ones i was talking about with the fabric infills in place of holes are these

http://www.chacos.com/US/en/outcross-2/21862M.html?dwvar_21862M_color=J105365#cgid=men-footwear-shoes&start=1

I ended up finding them on sale and ordered a pair at a good price.  I like them well enough, but I'd say the foot bed seems a little hard, and I doubt they would hold up well on rugged terrain.  Very comfortable though, even without socks.

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Well, this might go against the conventional wisdom here - but I'll share what I think.  And what I think is that we, collectively, can be just a little bit too paranoid when it comes to footwear around here.

 

My troop has actually backed off on the blanket "no open toed shoes!" ultimatum.  The reason being, we see just as much injury from the kids spending too much time walking around in wet hiking boots and socks than we see from the odd stubbed toe or scraped foot.  Instead, we treat footwear just like any other kind of clothing - it needs to be appropriate for the weather, activity and terrain.  Now obviously many times this does mean closed toed, laced shoes - I'm definitely not arguing against that.  But I think other times its actually safer, and healthier, if the kids get those shoes and socks off and let their feet breath and dry out.  

 

I personally recommend sandals with straps over the foot and behind the heel, as they offer a little more stability than flip flops.  But for just sitting around camp and doing the usual in-camp activities?  Nothing wrong with sandals, IMHO.  And I'd actually prefer them over hiking boots and socks, especially in any kind of hot or wet weather.  The kids are more comfortable, and I don't need to spend my time enforcing silly rules.

 

So just something to consider.  My own kids wear flip flops and even go barefoot for much of the summer - even outside, in our neighborhood, playing at the park, whatever.  Do they ever hurt their feet?  Probably.  But they know where the neosporin and the bandaids are.

 

Sorry, I just feel the hole shoe argument is a little over-reactive, much of the time.

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Welcome to the forum @@jwest09!

 

On can do it any way they feel comfortable with.  I for one don't wish to deal with the liability of backing off on the issue of safety.... rules or not.

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