Shoes are undoubtedly the most important element within the entirety of your walk clothing – especially for the participants of the longest routes. Our friends from the outdoor shop ‘LUKLA‘ are offering a 25% discount on these shoes from SCARPA – if you are interested in finding out more about the discounts, you get do that here.
We recommend choosing comfortable hiking shoes – it is better if they are ankle-high. If you are going to purchase new shoes, you should try them out beforehand in at least one test walk – you will be able to make sure that the shoes are not squeezing or rubbing your feet, as well as stretch them according to the shape of your feet. Your test walk should make up around half of your chosen coastline route – only then will you be able to truly gauge your feet’s reaction to the shoes. Test your new shoes out on a variety of terrains – sand, forest pathways, the kinds of paths that you will encounter during your coastline walk. Be careful when choosing everyday leisure shoes with a flat, even sole – they are not as comfortable in a long-distance walk as they might seem to be at first glance. After conquering the first twenty kilometers, you will definitely feel your soles hurting.
Shoe types – short, mid-length, ankle-length.
Our partners from the outdoor shop ‘LUKLA‘ recommend choosing mid-length Scarpa Moraine Mid shoes – they are a perfect fit for the Coastline Walk’17, as well as other hikes or trips. The only difference between Scarpa Moraine Mid GTX and Scarpa Moraine Plus GTX shoes is their outer fabric – the latter is made from suede, while the former is made from textile.
You can also choose short shoes, such as Scarpa Moraine GTX or Scarpa Moraine Plus GTX (you can find the shoes here) – they will serve you well during your other trips, but there are two disadvantages you should consider if you are to choose them for the upcoming coastline walk. First of all, they might fail to protect you from sand or unexpected sea waves because of their lack of length. Secondly, if it happens to rain during the walk, the water will most likely reach the inside of your shoes while running down your trousers – and you do not want your shoes to get wet. You will face the exact same problems if you choose to wear regular short sports shoes.
Ankle-length shoes, such as Scarpa Nangpa-la, are your best choice if you want to make the walk easy on your legs. They will protect you from sand, water or unexpected leg injuries. The Scarpa Nangpa-la shoes are perfect for chillier weather conditions, but your feet might get uncomfortably hot if the temperature reaches +30 C. Nevertheless, if you are going to embark on a mountain hike later on – be it the Alps, the Tatras, the Carpathians, the Andes, the Himalayas in Nepal or Kilimanjaro in Africa – these shoes are for you.
All of the recommended Scarpa shoes are made from Gore-Tex membrane fabric which repels liquid water, thus keeping it from reaching the inside of the shoe, yet allows water vapor to pass through. The membrane does reduce the breathability of the shoe a tiny bit – however, in the absence of a membrane and under rainy weather conditions feet are quick to get wet and swollen, and thus become prone to calluses, as well as cold. We recommend choosing shoes without a membrane – i.e., not waterproof, but quick-drying – only in exceptionally hot weather.
Your walking shoes should be a size or half a size larger than the shoes you usually choose – this will allow you to wear warmer socks if need be. Feet also tend to swell while walking long distances, so a larger size will do you good. Your foot should not slide inside the shoe even when walking downhill and your toes should not touch its front. When purchasing new shoes, we recommend putting them on properly and trying them out on a special rocky stand – it mimics an uneven terrain which your feet might encounter during the walk.