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What shoes to bring?

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Croydon, United...
Level Contributor
7 posts
104 reviews
What shoes to bring?

We are coming over from the UK in early October to visit the parks to do some hiking and are a bit concerned about weight restrictions in our luggage. Should we bring hiking boots or will good trainers be OK.


San Francisco...
Level Contributor
3,885 posts
141 reviews
1. Re: What shoes to bring?

It depends on what trails you will be going on and how long. And how much hiking you currently do and what you mean by "hiking boots". So much of it is based on your preference and experience. What I recommend is to focus on the hikes you think you want to do. Ask questions on forums like this about how long the hike is, how the trail is (rocky, soft, muddy, wet, etc) and determine how to pack based on the answers to that.

Do you have particular hikes in mind? The answer would depend on whether you wanted to go to the top of Mount Whitney in Kings Canyon or just go to Moro Rock in Sequoia.

I've done many of the hikes at Kings Canyon and in most cases, a good light shoe with a strong shank (so foot doesn't hurt when walking on rocky ground) works well for many of the popular hikes in the national park. So I would say leave your heavy hiking boots and bring your trail runner type shoes.

P.S. I'll take it to mean the difference between a trainer like rei.com/product/807599/salomon-xa-pro-3d-ult… and a full blown hiking boot with ankle support like rei.com/product/706762/asolo-fugitive-gtx-hi…

Edited: 11:10 am, August 19, 2012
Las Vegas, Nevada
Destination Expert
for Las Vegas
Level Contributor
6,692 posts
74 reviews
2. Re: What shoes to bring?

By trainer I take you to mean what we here call a tennis shoe or sneaker. Agree that it depends what type of hikes you will be doing. For walking around the park, looking at Sherman and Grant trees, and climbing Moro, sneakers will be fine. But if you plan on really hiking on any of the trails you should have a hiking shoe or boot. My husband wears a trail runner. I like ankle boots for me and my kids. We do many trails in Kings Canyon and I always like their feet protected from snakes as much as possible.

Destination Expert
for San Jose
Level Contributor
5,985 posts
114 reviews
3. Re: What shoes to bring?

I recommend that you bring something with good traction and some ankle support. Shoes for Trail running could work since they have ankle support.

Any shoes heavier than that will not be necessary unless you do mountaineering or carry a pack of 10-20kg or more.

Most other hiking boots have become really really light weight in recent years. They break-in really fast. They're also practically disposable (not worth repairing), but come up with good shanks.

You do know that shoes are cheaper here in the US than in the UK?

Moro Rock is very popular and there are hikes with topography similar to that. Therefore, ankle support is advisable. You can plan on the ground possibly getting wet too, with a _little_ bit of rain and/or snow. Technically, Mt Whitney is in the parks.

Edited: 12:32 pm, August 20, 2012
Croydon, United...
Level Contributor
7 posts
104 reviews
4. Re: What shoes to bring?

Thanks you all thats really helpful. Thanks for the advice about shoe prices in the US. I'll be doing some shopping when I get there and it will save some weight in the luggage.

Croydon, United...
Level Contributor
7 posts
104 reviews
5. Re: What shoes to bring?

Thats great, many thanks

6. Re: What shoes to bring?

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