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Pros/cons of hiking sandals for touring (not a "do you" thread :)

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Pros/cons of hiking sandals for touring (not a "do you" thread :)

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Old 05-08-17, 02:29 PM
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gauvins
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Pros/cons of hiking sandals for touring (not a "do you" thread :)

Just about to leave for a 2-week tour and I have a late hesitation wrt footwear. I am used to touring shoes (Shimano trekking SPD) but am contemplating wearing my trusted Tevas, instead.

Not enough time to try on meaningful distances. Not keen on bringing both.

(theoretical):

pros are -- lightweight, compact, more comfortable than Shimano trekking shoes
cons are -- might be vulnerable to blisters, non SPD, and the big one : soft sole)

Wearing socks should reduce the risk of blisters. I am more concerned about the likelihood of a sandal that will slide on the pedal when it rains, and of my foot sliding/slipping under stress, like when climbing a hill.

Would you mind adding to my list so I can pretend I am making an informed decision?
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Old 05-08-17, 02:38 PM
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I don't see how, if they are already broken in and trusty, you'd be worried about blisters

If you are worried about foot slippage, get a nice wide pair of platform pedals with the screw-in pegs, they grip well. I ride exclusively platform pedals, I rarely have any foot slippage issues, the times I do is mostly when I try to pedal at a too-fast-for-me cadence, not on hills.
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Old 05-08-17, 02:45 PM
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To sandal or not

The biggest advantage I can see to having sandals (like Tevas) while bike touring is if you are going to be walking in water a lot. I like Tevas dry quickly and allow me to walk up streams or through tidal pools and still be comfy. I travel Large and love being able to have three different pairs of footwear. Hicking shoe, comfortable bike shoe (could be sandals of some kind), and a knee high Neos Adventurer Overshoe -

https://www.overshoesneos.com/Neos_A..._Overshoe.html

These serve two functions. One they allow me to wade in calf high water and muck and keep my feet/shoes clean and dry, and they allow me to ride all day in heavy rain and keep my feel dry and warm. Too much weight for the average bicycle touring wanderer. They pack away well, and fit nice and snug when sized correctly. Make sure that every item you carry can serve more than one function.

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Old 05-08-17, 03:10 PM
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Two years ago I switched to platform pedals and Keen sandals, and I will never go back to SPDs. My feet are cool and comfortable all day long. I don't even bother carrying around a pair of "camp shoes" anymore - no need. So one less item to pack, also.

Honestly, for touring (and commuting) I haven't experienced any "cons" with this setup, at least not yet.
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Old 05-08-17, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
If you are worried about foot slippage, get a nice wide pair of platform pedals with the screw-in pegs,
Worried, no. Annoyed, yes. I like(d) SPDs because they hold the feet (I've once lost my footing over a pothole at night, riding with sneakers on the flat side of the trekking pedal). I also noticed that on platform my feet are often poorly aligned, both fore/aft \ straight/angled.

This being said, I like the idea of spiked platforms. Is there a consensus as to which is worth its salt? Googled and read a bit. No obvious winner.
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Old 05-08-17, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by dh024 View Post
switched to platform pedals and shoes or boots, and I will never go back to SPDs. My feet are cool and comfortable all day long. I don't even bother carrying around a pair of "camp shoes" anymore - no need. So one less item to pack, also.

Honestly, for touring (and commuting) I haven't experienced any "cons" with this setup, at least not yet.
what he said, yes
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Old 05-08-17, 04:48 PM
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The only real cons are, sometimes your feet get cold, but wool socks fixes that. 😎 And the other possible con, some sandals don't grip the ground as well as you'd think. Meaning, just walking on sidewalks can cause slips, because of the material of the sole. Give them a good test, like running a short way, to be sure.
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Old 05-08-17, 05:00 PM
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I'll only ride SPDs on my race bikes now. Anything else is just not cricket.
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Old 05-08-17, 05:06 PM
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gauvins
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Thanks everyone. Settles it for me. Teva it is.

The question now becomes: what about pedals? What to look for? Is there an obvious dominant choice?

I'll keep my current pedals for now, but might switch in time for our summer tour.

Last edited by gauvins; 05-08-17 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 05-08-17, 05:55 PM
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I packed Birkenstock , for my walk about sight seeing shoes..

rode in something else..
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Old 05-08-17, 06:00 PM
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I have a pair of Shimano SPD sandals, don't use them. I wear Shimano SPD hiking boots because we do hiking a lot when we are on tour. Take off the cleat and put the centre filler back in for long walks. Sandals can't hack it on really rough terrain.
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Old 05-08-17, 06:02 PM
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Oh yeah, don't ever wear socks and sandals in Australia... it's considered to be the apparel of a child molester :LOL:
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Old 05-08-17, 06:02 PM
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its funny but this last winter when I decided to keep on riding in the winter to keep in shape, I started out with my winter boots and flat pedals. These were flat plastic type ones that had terrible grip, so I put some metal ones ones that were a lot better. I have to say though that after riding pretty much exclusively spd for the last 25 years, the feeling of not being attached in was very weird, and I didnt like it.
I didnt like it so much that I ended up ditching the boots, putting my spds back on and going all out with double wool socks and extra fleece material on top of my shoes before I put on my rain booties on my mtn spd shoes.

You've made your decision, but I have to say, I really dont like riding not clipped in anymore. I know it means usually having two pairs of shoes, but I guess part of it is just liking the really stiff soles of riding shoes.
Your tevas may be ok, and I guess it depends on how much you have to pedal hard, but my feet really dont like soft soled shoes anymore for riding, specifically my arches.

All that said, enjoy the short trip no matter what you wear. Where are you going if I may ask?
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Old 05-08-17, 06:23 PM
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For pedals, with sandals, I use the MKS brand touring pedal. They're a basic, good quality, long lasting pedal, and I have had no problems at all with slippage. I tour only with sandals, and have also toured in flip-flop type sandals with few problems (you definitely need a nice thick soled pair with strong straps for longevity). Nothing like letting your toes out, even if no-one else really needs to see them.
With regards to clip pedal systems, I'm the opposite to some here. Having used them in many situations, I no longer like the default position of the clip in most shoes, I like to push the pedal further down my foot, right at the toes basically, and now can't stick anything else. I also enjoy not having to clip in and out repeatedly in the urban parts of rides.
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Old 05-08-17, 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
You've made your decision, but I have to say, I really dont like riding not clipped in anymore.
A loooonnng time ago I was riding with clips, cleats and straps and would never ride without. Back into cycling after long hiatus, clips/cleats/straps are out of fashion, so I tried SPD. After falling half a dozen time or so because the cleat wouldn't disengage, or because I forgot that it is now sideways rather than up-and-back...

Not physically hurt, mind you, but lucky that we were in foreign countries because this is a 10 on the scale for humiliation

Originally Posted by djb View Post
All that said, enjoy the short trip no matter what you wear. Where are you going if I may ask?
Kyoto to Tokyo. I wish we could spend more time. Will eventually post a thing or two.
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Old 05-08-17, 07:12 PM
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well, you've got to just go with what you are comfortable with, do think about sole stiffness though, as it very much does affect foot comfort.

neat, now I recall you mentioning this at some point. Hope it will be warm enough.
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Old 05-08-17, 08:39 PM
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riding in sandals?

cons:

if no sox, sunburn the tops of your feetses, precious. ouchies!

not designed with same grip as runners or cycling shoes.
go with bigarse widemouth mtb clips and straps, not cinched tight.

flexy, comfy soles not really suited to long-distance cycling.
get the largest platform pedals you can find, with spikes.
make sure you get ones with removeable spikes, so's you
can adjust the amount of grip.

but be aware few are made to accept clipses/strapses nowdays.
something like these, with 3 cartridge bearings instead of loose bb's:



sandals and black dress socks? you'll look like a german on the beach in hawaii.


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Old 05-08-17, 08:54 PM
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I love my Tevas and I've done many miles of MTB on them. They're too wide, not stiff enough, and ankles get scratched by weeds when they're high. I prefer light hiking boots that are stiffer and fit closer.
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Old 05-08-17, 10:55 PM
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Have ridden fairly long distances comfortably with Tevas & even flip-flops but cleats are still a bit safer over bumps & a bit more efficient on hills. My Tevas are not that light, why not stick with the Shimano shoes?

Either way, I like the Crank Brothers' Double-Shot pedals. One can easily pedal thru an intersection after stop since even the cleated side is fairly flat unlike Shimano pedals.

If not for fit issues I'd actually tour with ultra-light racing shoes & take light sandals for walking.
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Old 05-09-17, 12:33 AM
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IMO, no grown men should be seen with open toe shoes outside of their home.

Cons, safety...

No need to discuss pros. after this.
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Old 05-09-17, 12:38 AM
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Ecco >> Teva
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Old 05-09-17, 06:30 AM
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I like the nashbar SPD sandals. I ride a trike on long tours and so SPD is very useful; yet, due to oddly shaped feet, shoes are rather uncomfortable. The sandals are reasonably comfortable and cool in the summers. The biggest detriment, as sandals, is that they are a bit heavy.
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Old 05-09-17, 07:46 AM
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Keen cycling sandals. Best of both worlds. SPD and comfortable for walking. The only downside is funky tan lines.
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Old 05-09-17, 08:15 AM
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Hiking is not going to do your "Spud" Cleat any good..
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Old 05-09-17, 08:39 AM
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I use Keen riding sandals and occasionally Keen walking sandals.
Pros: cool, toe protection,easy walking, fairly compact, stiff sticky sole (especially the riding sandals),riding sandals have SPD port.
Cons: heavier than some shoes, dirty feet, weird 'tiger tan' on your feet (actually I like this, so it could be a 'pro').
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