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Re: Waterproof Boots ???

Alice -

I'm not sure I'm the one to answer this question.  Remember, my mental
age is 11 and I have a rep for plowing into stream crossings just to see
the water splash.   Seems to me that I was like everyone else when I was
on the Trail - in the South I tried to keep my boots dry.  I still remember
the day I decided that it was useless and that my brand new, hi-tech
Goretex waterproof boots should be tested cause I was tired of trying
to keep my dainty (?) little (?) tootsies out of the stream that they called
a trail.   When I got to New York, I was sloshing through another
stream/trail - I walked 9 miles one afternoon in a thunderstorm that
dumped enough water that the Trail was a foot deep in water.  I don't
think it even slowed me down - and I certainly didn't try to go around it.
That was a 27 mile day - I was too tired to go around anything.
By the time we got to Maine, my only concern was keeping my socks dry.
There are too many stream crossings in Maine to worry about wet boots.
Of course, it doesn't do the boots a lot of good to be wet all the time, but
for thruhikers who make it to Maine, that's not a major factor - only
moose and miles count.

You're right - it's probably more environmentally correct to plow through
the puddles - and we do that  a lot of times.  But sometimes it's not safe -
I've seen some "puddles" you could drown in - standing up.   Where do you
draw the line between safety and saving the trail?

Personal opinion, though - if the main concern is keeping your boots from
getting wet and muddy  - you're in the wrong business and you ought to go
home and spend the weekends watching golf or fishing on TV (sick humor!!).

>From another point of view - if the trail is that bad, then the maintainers
aren't doing their job.  And that's not a hit on maintainers in general, only
on the ones who walk their section once a year whether it needs it or not -
on a clear, sunny weekend after 3 weeks of drought.  They're the exception
but there are a few of them out there.   And I can tell you where some of
their sections of trail are located.

Anyway, now that I've confused the issue - I'm outta here.  Work calls.

Walk softly in that mud,

>This brings to mind areas of the trail that are one big mudhole.  It seems
>hikers seem to want to make the trail wider and wider in these spots because
>they don't want to get their boots a little muddy or wet. Isn't it better
>environmentally to just plow on through the gook and keep the trail narrow?
> I realize ocassionally there is no other way but to go around, but I am
>speaking of the times where you do have a choice. It reminds me of the people
>I see running through the rain because they are afraid of the raindrops!!
> What is your opinion on this Jim Owens?  Others?