Footwear for the PCT

We’ve tried out many combinations of boots, shoes, socks, and insoles for our upcoming trip.  The only way to get a true read on the performance and comfort of each is to do the real thing with them.  We’ve done shorter trips and day hikes to see how they work.  What we used on the Pacific Northwest Scenic Trail this summer is not what we’re planning on using for the PCT at this point.

Here is Elaine’s footwear choice as of now:

Elaine's Zamberlans

And here are Mike’s:

Mike's Salomons

We chose these shoes because they have a waterproof layer.  Not that water won’t get in the top, but they do a much better job of keeping dirt out.  Other “breatheable” shoes have let the dirt in to our socks AND feet.  We wear pants that cover the top of our shoes and we may wear some short gaiters.  We feel keeping dirt out will actually help the shoes last longer.  We’re not sure if we will end up wearing shoes out or not.  It’s quite common with long-distance hikers but I think it’s because typically they wear running shoes.  Also, these shoes both have good grip systems and a fairly firm sole.  We will probably end up attaching these YakTrax to our shoes when we hit steep hard snow.  We will know it ahead by keeping track of trail reports of rangers and people coming south.

Here are the YakTrax:  Video


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