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Re: [pct-l] Shoes

On 03/23/98 12:04:45 you wrote:
>Any comments on what type of shoes to use (or avoid) in the south?
>What's the trail like there? Lot of sand / hard packed? I usually hike
>in cross trainers that are fairly breathable, is that a good/bad choice?

Last year we saw all different types of shoes and sandals worn used on the 
trail.  My husband used Merrill cross trainers last year.  I, on the other 
hand, used Reebock high top sneakers -- bad choice.  My choice for this 
year is a pair of Hi-Tech Light Sierras, the shoes I ended wearing up in 
Sierra City.  I hike in these from Lone Pine and must say I wished they had 
been my initial shoe.  These arey a size 8 and my normal shoe was 6- 6 1/2!  
By the time I had gotten to Lone Pine, my feet had undergone so many 
problems and changes, my shoe size has permanately changed.  Shoes are such 
a personal matter.  If the shoes you have been hiking in work for you, go 
for it, your foot has already gone through the initial breaking period, why 
do it again?

I would also like to make a couple of additional suggestions from our 
personal experience; 1) wear gators, sand and small pebbles will keep you 
emptying your shoes often, taking up unnecessary time  -- even high tops,  
2) having dry feet I wished I had worn leather shoes without any breathing 
areas because sand and dirt came through the holes -- even the mesh ones.  
Walt needed the breathing areas to relieve the heat that built up in his 
shoes, 3)  when taking a break, lay down with you feet higher than you 
heart and take off your shoes.  This will help reduce swelling and keep 
funguses from building up.  We also tried to but Gold Bond Powder on our 
feet as much as possible,  4) I can't say enough about Superfeet or 
orthotics, these will help aleviate some of the support problems you will 
encounter,  5)we wore our socks inside out also -- toe seams can cause 
blisters to form.

Sand was a factor on most of the trail and in many places it was very loose 
and deep, requiring a slower pace and some aching muscles.  In others 
alot of other places it was scree, small loose rocks, that would twist 
ankles and cause feet to go backwards more than forwards -- hiking poles 
would help in both instances. Of course you will also be hiking in hills 
and on boulders too! In otherwords, the terrain will be varied and change 

Good Luck Svein and hope to see you on the trail!

Pat -- Happy Trails Couple  

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