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Spoons
11th October 2007, 10:51 PM
I will be doing both the AC and EBC in march and aprill. I would like to wear just waterproof trainers while hiking. I was wondering if this is a good idea? I do not want to hike in boots the whole way or carry them, but was concerned about the Thorung La pass. Any advice?

yakshaver
12th October 2007, 02:52 AM
I will be doing both the AC and EBC in march and aprill. I would like to wear just waterproof trainers while hiking. I was wondering if this is a good idea? I do not want to hike in boots the whole way or carry them, but was concerned about the Thorung La pass. Any advice?

You can do it of course. Some monks do high pases in thongs...

Thorung la should be without snow in March/April, but it is a high pass and there is no garantee...

The issue, snow or or no snow, is the relentless descent, sometimes steep over some scree, down to Muktinath. You lose about 1600m in few hours. It is killing. If your footwear is not protecting your soles and ankles properly, it can be dreadful. It is miserable enough as it is.

I know I am a totally over the top trekker/tramper/hiker/bushwalker/mountain walker/wanderluster.... On my last crossing of the pass in 2006, I did the trek in the normal boots, but the day of crossing Thorung La I took out the heavy artilery in the form of my pair of La Sportiva Makalu, which I brought just for the occasion. I had a ball dancing down the scree, mostly off the trail, shortcutting through some very steep stuff, digging my heels into the rubble. I believe I saved a lot of energy that way, and protected my legs (and bum... I did not fall once...) beautifully.

However, to each their own.

Escher
12th October 2007, 02:11 PM
Personally I trek in trainers. Weighing up the risk of turning an ankle or a day of two of cold and wet feet versus increased comfort and lightweight on the feet for the majority of the trek, then the latter wins for me on the standard trails in Nepal. If you are carrying your own stuff then keeping your pack weight to a minimum and having one pair of shoes is sensible but if you have the benefit of a porter as Mr Shaver has then extra footwear is a boon.

The Thorung La is just one day though it is possible to be walking in snow for a few days before the pass. Question is do you have strong ankles and are prepared to have cold feet for a few days (in the worst case)? If you are then many people do the AC in trainers.

Ps. I have had snow twice in the Annapurnas in March, I believe it gets twice as much precip. as Khumbu. I still trek in trainers however.

yakshaver
13th October 2007, 02:50 AM
Ps. I have had snow twice in the Annapurnas in March, I believe it gets twice as much precip. as Khumbu. I still trek in trainers however.

Yes Escher, but you are not an average trekker. You've done a few weird things in the Himalayas...

Suginami
13th October 2007, 08:28 AM
Surely lightweight hiking boots are the best. THey weigh very little, can be washed and they don`t make my feet smell. If your knowledge of hiking boots is the huge monsters that mountaineers use forget it. Go to a hiking shop and chat to the people there. But DO NOT skimp on the footwear, dear. You will regret it. A stubbed toe can cripple you and easy to get. Escher must be very nimble and good at wobbly rocks on near verticle stairways.

Merrels are good. Just nothing very heavy. And, you should take a spare pair of evening shoes.

Escher
13th October 2007, 02:56 PM
Yes Escher. You've done a few weird things in the Himalayas...

I am not sure how my weird behaviour is relevant to footwear? Only the LYW really knows.

Escher
13th October 2007, 03:20 PM
The attitude I take when people ask if it is ok to wear trainers, on the popular trails in Nepal during the main trekking seasons, is to think that they are happy in trainers in a mountain environment and are experienced trekkers. It seems to me that they wouldn't ask unless they were already happy to trek in trainers and are just looking for some insight as to what conditions are like in Nepal. The trails on the popular treks are on the whole very straightforward and in terms of typical mountain paths, not very rugged (as compared to a lot of other mountain areas I have walked in), well maintained and often have steps where it is steeper. Snow and mud can be encountered but there are ample opportunities to dry your shoes and feet.

Many people I know trek in trainers - most of them are experienced trekkers or climbers sure - but if I was advising any of them who were going to Nepal for the first time I would say the trails in Nepal (except maybe the high passes etc) aren't any different to the ones you regularly trek on at home in trainers, and in fact many of them are a lot easier. For trainer trekkers the advantages can be great (cooler, more comfortable, less tired feet) if you have strong ankles, are experienced in trainers and are prepared to maybe have wet feet for a day or two. A couple of days of this does not outweigh the benefits of trainers for the rest of the time for those who like trainers.

So to the original poster - if you are used to trekking in trainers then the trails in Nepal are no different to what you usually encounter. But if you aren't then boots would be best as the increased ankle support and protection is important.

Todd Delaney
13th October 2007, 04:22 PM
I concur with all the above...it is possible to wear trainers - absolutely!!! That is what most of the locals wear and you will see folks wearing thongs on many of the trails...

Given that is possible and many do wear trainers...it is simply a question as to whether you want to or not. If trainers are you footwear of choice and that is what you wear normally when hiking - go for it.

Personally I hate trekking in trainers, I wear big heavy leather boots - love and need the ankle security...I've always been a fan of leather since I started trekking.

As Suginami suggested - there good light weight hi tech hiking boots on the market now where you can maintain protection without adding too much weight.

If you are not used to trekking at all - then whatever you choose to use make sure you train in the same shoes you intend to hike. Remember the five P's.

My experience is that good hiking boots are easier on your feet - but that is probably because I weigh about 100kg - without a pack. But that's another story.

If you are a light framed person - then generally you'll have less trouble with trainers - if you are heavier - you have more force going through the ground - this is where boots can come into there own by giving your feet a more stable platform - it's just physics...


By the way, when I last did AC it was in April and there was snow from high camp to the top of Thorung La...but still many of the locals wore trainers, I seem to recall some of them putting plastic bags over there shoes.

Spaceman347
13th October 2007, 05:46 PM
I walked from Namche to Dingboche (over several days) in Keen sandals. I'm not suggesting that anyone else should, but it didn't do me any harm. The only drama was the tan lines, my feet had stripes for a couple of weeks :o

Suginami
13th October 2007, 08:04 PM
Hot feet are a drag. So lightweight sneakers do have their appeal. But stubbed toes!! Doesn`t anyone else have this problem? I have for ever ramming my foot into a protruding boulder so my boots have steel caps under the leather. I could kick a door down with these on.

For me, feet and knees must be loved and caressed. I oil them, use cream, powder, always clean socks. I have knee supports just in case.

I just picture Escher ramming his toe into a big rock and smashing up a toe nail and I want to scream.

yakshaver
14th October 2007, 03:47 AM
For me, feet and knees must be loved and caressed. I oil them, use cream, powder, always clean socks. I have knee supports just in case.

I just picture Escher ramming his toe into a big rock and smashing up a toe nail and I want to scream.

Is this some kind of foot-fetish coupled with sadism? Love your sophistication Suginami.

Secondly Todd brings up a good point. Your weight should have an influence on the type of footwear you take on the longer treks one does in Nepal. The heavier you are, the sturdier the footwear needs to be.

I agree that these days there are good composite boots, which are comparatively lighter that traditional leather ones, while still offering good protection (ankle and sole).
I am also a fan of leather. Though I may be willing to try composite stuff for the first time on my next trek, being the experiential type that I am. I would not go in trainers however. I guess I am too heavy, and need the stiffer sole.

Suginami
14th October 2007, 12:48 PM
its a kind of fetish. Frank Zappa mentions people who occaisionally wear a python boot and bromodrosis which is bad foot smell. I don`t care for stinky feet or blisters, I like my feet very comfortable and slightly pink.

although vegan friends will hate me for this I do prefer leather boots, mine are and they have a steel toe cap and they don:t lace up they are a wound around metal hooks that stick out. Is there are name for this feature? Must be. But it means they are reallly easy to take off in a hurry.

Spoons
18th October 2007, 09:59 PM
Well thanks everyone for the input. I am an experience hiker/climber here in the US and since I know what to expect from the trail conditions and weather it is never a question of what to wear on my feet. This is my first trip to Nepal and just needed some trail input. I have decided to bring my Teva sandals to hike in for a large majority of the trip then my light waterproof boots for the ankel support. Thanks again. Spoons

Suginami
21st October 2007, 03:05 PM
Bad news

I hiked today in the mountains near Tokyo and discovered that my lovely boot hurt my right big toe. I have had these boots for years and trekked several times in Nepal and elsewhere. Did my foot get bigger or the boot contract? I can`t take them to Nepal. And, shoe shops here are for little people. :eek:

Suginami
26th October 2007, 08:31 PM
Give it a try:rolleyes:

yakshaver
26th October 2007, 08:42 PM
This discussion has inspired me to go and get a new pair of boots. A light-weight, but study "four seasons". Amazing stuff, I am in love with them aleardy. I think I have found the ideal boot for me.

La Sportiva Trango Trek Micro Evo. A bit of a mouthful, but definitely no foot-in-mouth stuff. Just amazing. Light, a bit rigid in the sole, but sole-shape conducive to normal walking, and excellent heel support. The best in fact, from any boot I've had, even better than the Zamberlan Civetta.

Suginami
26th October 2007, 08:45 PM
www.lasportiva.com




Trango Trek Micro Evo
New version 2006, with improved design and technical details. Lightweight and comfortable hiking boot, ideal for four season use on all terrains. Particularly snug fitting last.

- New reinforced rand on the medial side.
- The practical lacing system is improved with a lace lock that allows double tension.
- Innovative multidirectional ankle hinge “3D Flex System”.
- Gore-Tex® lining.
- New microporous antishock midsole, with anti-pronation insert in the heel.
- Vibram® sole.

Available in Woman version.


Technical characteristics
- Upper: water repellent suede leather + Fly-Tec
- Color: brown - grey - sand (light blue/yellow, brown/beige, gray/red Woman)
- Lining: Gore-Tex®
- Insole: 7 mm nylon, with differentiated thickness against excessive torsion in the back
- Midsole: trekking
- Sole: Vibram®
- Sizes: 36 - 48, including half sizes
- Weight: 1.300 gr. per pair (1.150 gr. Woman)



I am in love

yakshaver
29th October 2007, 08:19 PM
They are absolutely classy, I tell you. And they fit my feet shape perfectly - excellent support for the heel, where I've had problems in the past. I wear them one liner and one pair of thicker socks. I now have a La Sportiva Trango Trek Micro Evo (what a mouthfull!?) fetish.

Weka
30th October 2007, 12:07 AM
I've got a bloody annoying heal spur injury sustained after a fall I had in the bush while helping out a chap in trouble. The chap turned out to be a right wing MP who, on later reflection, should have been left where he was for the good of the nation. Anyway ...
... as a result, I cant wear boots - only trainers, and only a certain type which my feet have become "used to". When trekking in them I cake them in "G wax", two coatings lasting about 2 weeks.

During the last three years I've done 3 treks in Nepal with these trainers which have involved snow. I just buy a pair of cheap gaiters and, strap 'em on using electrical insulation tape to tighten things up. No problems.
Deep mud like that found on Stewart Island in NZ would be a different issue altogether I think.

yakshaver
30th October 2007, 07:24 PM
I've got a bloody annoying heal spur injury sustained after a fall I had in the bush while helping out a chap in trouble. The chap turned out to be a right wing MP who, on later reflection, should have been left where he was for the good of the nation. Anyway ...
... as a result, I cant wear boots - only trainers, and only a certain type which my feet have become "used to". When trekking in them I cake them in "G wax", two coatings lasting about 2 weeks.

During the last three years I've done 3 treks in Nepal with these trainers which have involved snow. I just buy a pair of cheap gaiters and, strap 'em on using electrical insulation tape to tighten things up. No problems.
Deep mud like that found on Stewart Island in NZ would be a different issue altogether I think.

Now, this sounds exciting!!
Saving a right wing MP... well, well, well...

It sounds a bit frightening what you're going through, gaffa tape and all that.

Weka
30th October 2007, 11:12 PM
gaffa tape and all that.
Yip, Yak! With a tin of G-wax and a reel of tape, I'm ready for any eventuality.

Suginami
4th November 2007, 06:57 PM
what are you on? shoes do have this effect on some people, me included. I have tossed away the booted look for this winter and I am looking for a kind of Vivienne Westwood torn shoe with stuck on bits held together with industrial strength staples.

But my old boots sadly wont do so I have to rummage around among old comforable high sided sneakers. Too many laces but I can work something out. I may even give them away at the end to a Nepali with big feet.

Per
5th November 2007, 03:23 PM
I will be doing both the AC and EBC in march and aprill. I would like to wear just waterproof trainers while hiking. I was wondering if this is a good idea? I do not want to hike in boots the whole way or carry them, but was concerned about the Thorung La pass. Any advice?

You will be just fine as long as you stay on the trail. Expect some snow on Thorung La in March and April. You will have to cross some snow fields, but most probably there will be a well trodden path. It will mean nothng worse than a couple of hours with wet and cold feel, as long as conditions are good, i.e., you just head over and don´t have to spend the night up there it will not be a problem.

ChrisU
13th November 2007, 09:05 PM
I wore these Salomon shoes last week for the Annapurna Circuit:
http://www.wiggle.co.uk/ProductDetail.aspx?Cat=run&ProdID=5360027904

They did the job well, although any old pair of trainers would have been more or less just as good.

There were only very minor snow patches to cross at the Thorung La, and these were frozen rock hard.

yakshaver
14th November 2007, 01:22 PM
My problems with trainers along the Himalayan trails are as follows:
1. Sole protection is not good enough, they are too soft for me - the soles of my feet hurt pretty badly after a day on trail, even on good trails.
2. Ankle protection is not as good as boots.
3. You can encounter snow, or decide on a whim to cross Cho la or some such - trainers will not be adequate for this.

I suppose I am less of a risk taker when it comes to footwear. The risk of having my trek compromised because of footwear is just not worth taking for me.

In essence, if your trek is compromise because of footwear, to me is just as stupid as running out of petrol on the freeway.


So a lighter pair of boots, still with ankle support and semi-rigid soles is the way to walk in the Himal, at least as far as I am concerned.

Hence my La Sportiva Trango Trek, but there are many others of course...

PFC
14th November 2007, 07:39 PM
I don't see this as a stecific Nepal / AC discussion / dilema. To me any Trek in any terain in any part of the World requires specific equipment. to me (and maybe logic does not dictate!) the right equipment applies to footwear as any other piece of eqiupment. Trekking = sensible footwear, sensible footwear = walking boots / shoes. it's like asking if a Tesco's carrier bag is OK to carry my kit as "actually, it does the same job as my pack", I don't see the logic. if somebody chooses to wear Trainers on the AC, fine, but I'm sure in the back of thier mind they must know that this isn't the right choice.

these comments are purely my own views and feelings and I appologise if I offend anybody, that is not my intention.


PFC

Escher
15th November 2007, 12:30 AM
it's like asking if a Tesco's carrier bag is OK to carry my kit as "actually, it does the same job as my pack"


That's a great idea, I will be able to shave another kilo off my pack weight if I use Tesco's carrier bag! Cheers!

PFC
15th November 2007, 02:16 AM
Make sure you double bag, would'nt want any unfortunate spillages!


PFC

Suginami
15th November 2007, 07:42 AM
I made the mistake of wandering into a gorgeous store in Tokyo loaded with fab boots, hiking gear, rucksacks and lots of gadgets. Now I am sorely tempted. After Yakshaver harping on about his Tango boots I fancy something with a hot name like that.

I usually hate rucksacks but the ones I saw were mid sized and mould to the back and have no rubbing bits.

Now I am looking for some kind of strong waistcoat type jacket with big pockets. I gave away the last one aswell as almost all my clothes last time in KTM.

yakshaver
16th November 2007, 03:51 AM
I made the mistake of wandering into a gorgeous store in Tokyo loaded with fab boots, hiking gear, rucksacks and lots of gadgets. Now I am sorely tempted. After Yakshaver harping on about his Tango boots I fancy something with a hot name like that.

I usually hate rucksacks but the ones I saw were mid sized and mould to the back and have no rubbing bits.

Now I am looking for some kind of strong waistcoat type jacket with big pockets. I gave away the last one aswell as almost all my clothes last time in KTM.

The Trango Trek are good, but not cheap. Better make sure you walk in them at leastl 20-30 minutes inside the shop before purchasing.

Good on you to give your clothing away like that... Nice.

The only thing is that I imagine you progressively giving away pieces or clothing, and like in strip *****, by the time you reach Tribhuvan Airport you're stark naked stepping through customs... Maybe just wearing your mid size new rucksack and a pair of binoculars around your neck. Not a happy thought...

Rev.A.Shkay
16th November 2007, 04:19 AM
It is indeed a blessing to give one's clothes away at the end of the trek. He who ask you for your coat, give him your tunic too, our Lord says.

Good on you Suginami. I am sure Mr.Yakshaver speaks in jest. He seems to enjoy this kind of stuff.

By the way, I am learning the guitar now. I have given up on the apparently crazy idea of going to the Himalaya with a baby grand piano.

God bless everyone

Sharon
16th November 2007, 11:26 PM
I love my Trango's. They have been on several treks. I used some Salomon 7's for quite a few years prior. The soles are much stiffer and yopur feet less tired in the Trangos.
The only trek the trango's were overkill on 242was Mustang. I did wear them as I was in rehab from a broken fibula at the ankle joint. I wore them to the sancuary and then into Mustang. the last two days in Mustang I wore my keen water shoes as the boots were too hot.

yakshaver
17th November 2007, 12:19 PM
Sharon,
Thanks for sharing the your experience with the Trango Treks... I bought my a month or so ago and am still wearing them in. Though they don't really need any wearing in. I like them a lot. The only minor hiccup is that the shop did not have the grey ones, so I have the brown... A bit of a bummer really, as colour coordination is key to me. Style is as important as substace. Especially on trek...

Sharon
18th November 2007, 10:12 PM
Style always gets the most points. The ladies are a gorgeous ice blue. They do require very little break in. I wore mine on a couple of walks before taking them to Nepal. They have also worked very well on some coastal BC hikes like the San Juan trail etc.

Petrus
28th March 2008, 11:34 PM
I have trekked AC twice in trainers (with plastic bags in Thorong La snowstorm), once in trail runners. EBC fron Jiri up to Lho La 6000m and back in same old trainers as above. Machame route to Kimanjaro in trail runners. My vote goes to....: TRAIL RUNNERS!

Zero to two days of possible slight discomfort does not outweight 2 to 4 weeks of lightfootedness trail runners afford. Not for me at least.

---------

Trail runners look a bit like trainers, but with considerably stiffer soles and often with GoreTex lining. Just made for trekking.

Suginami
30th March 2008, 07:17 AM
If you can restrict your luggage to one set of footwear that really helps. I sometimes carry light plimsoles to change into. You can buy these in Nepal unless you have great big feet.:eek:

RRainey
8th April 2008, 10:20 PM
I have used light weight boots for hiking in Europe, We did the Tour Of Mt Blanc self supported and I had maybe 30 lbs on my back. I am also on the big side 6" 2" and about 210.

But this next trip is winter and we are going over 3 passes so I am going for the over kill -Asolo http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb243/RRaineydc/asoloboot.jpg

Lars
9th April 2008, 01:33 AM
I have done ten treks in Nepal. All of them in Nike sneakers.
I don't like how Nike treats its employees, but they do make good shoes.

http://web.telia.com/~u84408784/Trek/Trekkingskor.jpg

http://web.telia.com/~u84408784/Trek/Dusty_feet.jpg

And sandals for when the trail is easy.

yakshaver
9th April 2008, 03:34 PM
I have used light weight boots for hiking in Europe, We did the Tour Of Mt Blanc self supported and I had maybe 30 lbs on my back. I am also on the big side 6" 2" and about 210.

But this next trip is winter and we are going over 3 passes so I am going for the over kill -Asolo http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb243/RRaineydc/asoloboot.jpg

I love the support of a good sturdy boot, and Asolo is not an overkill in my opinion. I have two pairs of La Sportiva (a Trango Trek and a Makalu). I take whichever, depending on my mood. No rational decision there, purely emotional. For now I absolutely love the Trango Treks. I think Sharon has a very sexy blue pair, too. Boots I mean... At least.

Suginami
10th April 2008, 06:16 AM
What I notice about Lars footwear is that they are very flexible, a great asset and very varied terrain but I would worry about stubbing my toe. The Trangos look good but how flexible are they? Do you get a good foot feel? I am thinking of stone steps going up and down. My boots are pretty similar but lack flexibility. They also have the little metal wing things to pull of the laces quick.

I massage my feet every night with moisturiser.

yakshaver
10th April 2008, 01:10 PM
What I notice about Lars footwear is that they are very flexible, a great asset and very varied terrain but I would worry about stubbing my toe. The Trangos look good but how flexible are they? Do you get a good foot feel? I am thinking of stone steps going up and down. My boots are pretty similar but lack flexibility. They also have the little metal wing things to pull of the laces quick.

I massage my feet every night with moisturiser.

You metro you! The Trango's are exceptional. There will always be a compromise between flexibility and support necessary for rougher terrain. I believe the Trango Treks are an excellent compromise, very leightweigtht (less than 1300g) for an extremely sturdy boot (any other brand would have that sturdiness at around 1750-1850 grams). There is a certain amount of flex allowing for a very confortable walk. But the shank and sole design offer plenty of protection for any rough terrain.