Getting your feet wet

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tekisui0
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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by tekisui0 » Tue Jul 09, 2019 7:32 pm

I really like my big heavy boots and since I discovered neoprene socks I never hesitate to wade right through with them if the going is rough. Never a blister and its all fairly dry by mid morning. If it's an easier crossing i'll use a pair of cheap, light "aqua sock" type things that double as camp slippers. I can't go barefoot with a pack on. Don't mind rock hopping if it makes sense. Hate log crossings unless they're really big...








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commonloon
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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by commonloon » Tue Jul 09, 2019 7:44 pm

I just walk thru w/ trail runners (that drain well). When I expect a lot of crossings, I use Metolius climbing balm (any good balm works) on my feet, to fend off the pruney feet. I may try to keep my feet dry late in the day if it's cool, but mostly the only time I use logs or rocks, etc. for crossings is safety (during high flows).

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kpeter
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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by kpeter » Tue Jul 09, 2019 7:57 pm

tekisui0 wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 7:32 pm
I really like my big heavy boots and since I discovered neoprene socks I never hesitate to wade right through with them if the going is rough. Never a blister and its all fairly dry by mid morning. If it's an easier crossing i'll use a pair of cheap, light "aqua sock" type things that double as camp slippers. I can't go barefoot with a pack on. Don't mind rock hopping if it makes sense. Hate log crossings unless they're really big...
Interesting! Do you wear neoprene socks inside your hiking boots? What kind? Do you have to wear a larger size of boots to fit neoprene socks in? Are they hot when hiking in dry weather?

I'm always interested in sock alternatives.....

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c9h13no3
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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by c9h13no3 » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:22 pm

kpeter wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 7:57 pm
Do you wear neoprene socks inside your hiking boots? What kind? Do you have to wear a larger size of boots to fit neoprene socks in? Are they hot when hiking in dry weather?

I'm always interested in sock alternatives.....
Count me in as interested as well. I've heard of people using these, but there's quite a few different kinds, and I suppose it's just like a wet suit for your feet?
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Teresa Gergen
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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by Teresa Gergen » Wed Jul 10, 2019 7:01 am

I hate seeing all the judgment of strangers when you don't know their situation. Older with inner ear issues -- no balance. 5'3" -- that makes a huge difference compared to even 4-5" taller. 130-135 lbs -- ditto, especially when carrying a heavy pack full of climbing gear. Small fraction of a quad muscle left after a climbing accident -- not just no strength, but unbalanced between the two sides of my body. Raynaud's Syndrome -- feet will freeze to pain in seconds even in relatively warm water and hot weather, and become frozen-useless mid-stream. I'm there to climb hard peaks, not just have a nice outing -- any form of sneaker isn't going to cut it; I'm in boots that don't dry. I'll be the one you see humping a log because I can't walk across it because I can't wade any degree of current because I can't balance on rocks because I can't spring from rock to rock with a frozen ankle because...I don't want to die. It can take me hours to find a place I'm willing to cross and then get it done.

But I'm not quitting. You could admire that instead of laughing to yourself.

Rant off. Possibly useful stuff:
I've had success with neoprene socks or booties in crocs for simple crossings. I don't wear them while hiking; I change into them and keep my hiking socks dry.
https://www.amazon.com/Eco-Fused-Womens ... ay&sr=8-45

For deeper ones (calf-high) with minimal current, I use trash compactor bags (don't tear like standard plastic trash bags), folded and taped in place to form something that looks like the legs of waders, over my hiking boots, tied with cord strung through tape-reinforced holes around the tops, with thin rain galoshes over them so the bags don't tear. Water comes in the galoshes but not the bags. Weighs less than waders. All the stability of the hiking boot. Boots and pants stay dry.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B075D ... UTF8&psc=1

When my boots do get wet and I can't get them dried out, due to creeks/wet vegetation/snow, I've had luck wearing these between the socks and boots the next morning, when I'm camped above 11000 ft and starting early for a peak, to keep my fresh socks dry and my feet from freezing:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B079B ... UTF8&psc=1

I routinely use microspikes on wet/icy logs that are easy to cross on foot.

FWIW, I have hiked all over the western continental US, except the most northern states, and only in CA do you routinely have creek crossing issues on established popular trails. Elsewhere the USFS, NPS, hunters, ATVers, horse packers who want their clients to be able to actually make the hike in, and hikers routinely have put down enough logs or rocks to cross, or constructed at least simple two-log crossings with the surfaces leveled/cross-hatched. It blows my mind that a place that supposedly has so much recreational use that they need a quota system hasn't put much effort into this.

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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by SSSdave » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:04 am

Some notes on the poorly reviewed Wiggy's Waders that are slip over individual leg boots and pants minimal waders. Price was raised from $60 to $80 a few years ago. That is pricy for such a mediocre product because surprisingly they have no competition. Mine are a dozen or more years old but just use them a few times each year. There are 5 sizes. Although I'm 5'6" with a male US size 8 shoe, I bought the Large size that is just large enough to slip over my heavy duty backpacking boots and reach my crotch. Thus for normal sized male adults would advise the largest sizes that also allows groups to use them as a XX-large can be used by even a small person with the penalty a bit of weight. My Large weighs 10.3 ounces total for both pairs. They are compressible so will fit into a large zip seal plastic bag.

The waders have a slightly more durable rubber boot bottom. The top of each wader has a cord lock draw string to cinch up where deep water might come in over the top. There is also a strap on the top of each wader that one can loop under a waist belt so they don't drop down while walking. At water crossing, one puts them on and just walks across streams. On the other side, take them off wet and hang them off the back of one's pack to air dry. Another benefit is they provide some insulation against cold water especially if one is wearing pants underneath. If another group member needs to use them, I'll put a rock in their bag and toss it across or if more a difficult wide crossing could use a 3mm cord to throw across and to then attach the bag to for pulling across.

Although there is a top cord lock cinch, that will not prevent water from pouring in if one gets in deeper than the top. Thus add 1/2 ounce 10" mini Bunji cords that placed just below the top provides a much better water seal. In any case they are not a tool for continuously wading in a stream like fishing waders but rather for occasional brief stream crossing that between trips one may need to re-test and re-seam seal. After modest use will readily seam seal and test them after usage. That can be done by simply filling them with water with the most important area the bottom at the rubber boot bottom to coated nylon seams. In fact seam sealing when new is even wiser.

They are not going to have value for those that have water shoes, wear shorts or quick drying synthetic pants, and don't mind crossing crotch deep cold water streams. But do for those that wear pants as I do and heavy duty backpacking boots that like this person greatly dislike getting water inside the boot that may never dry out depending on weather leaving one's foot unpleasantly chilly, damp, and and skin soft vulnerable. I've also used them while foggy day surf fishing while sweat pants and sneakers to help casting our further into breakers.

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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by Wandering Daisy » Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:14 am

Teresa- I totally can sympathize with you. Every person has different needs, issues and methods of safely crossing streams. I particularly have trouble with vertigo due to the current. I am nearly your height and carry a light pack, so with a total weight, me and the pack, at 135 pounds, a strong current above my knees could wash me away! I too have used crampons to cross logs. I have butt scooted across many. Whatever it takes. Trail runners do not work for me because I bash through so much off-trail and on sharp talus I need a sturdier shoe.

With waders of any kind that go up to your crotch or thigh, be careful. Every year someone fishing here in waders on the American River falls in and then the waders fill up and they drown. If I have clothes that do not quickly dry and I want to cross something waist deep I simply go across buck-naked in my water shoes. This has once proved to be quite interesting as exiting I ran into a troupe of boy scouts. :D

As for water crossings in other areas of the western US, my experience has been that although the Sierra crossings have large volume flows for a short period of time, in the Rockies, the peak flows may be lower but the higher flows last longer into the season. There are a LOT more bridges in the Sierra than in the Wind Rivers where typically you wade several times a day, especially on less used trails and off-trail.

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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by rlown » Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:35 am

What did the boy scouts learn? :)

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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by kpeter » Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:40 am

Years ago there were many more make-shift bridges in the areas I frequented, but when I went back (Idaho) they were mostly gone. I think that trail maintenance budgets used to be better in general. Almost half the trails that once existed have reverted, and replacing bridges on streams that are mostly wadeable has not been a priority of the trail crews. I am overjoyed if they just cut out the deadfall, let alone do anything fancier like replace bridges and signage. It is a shame. I wish we were doing more to protect and care for these trails and the country they lead to.

Anyone know if the bridge at the outlet of Ediza was replaced after it washed out a couple of years ago?

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Re: Getting your feet wet

Post by Wandering Daisy » Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:01 pm

rlown; I do not think they even looked at me since I had my 17-year old daughter with me at the time. She was only half buck-naked.

I recall they were quite polite and gentlemanly about the entire experience. We ducked behind bushes and dressed quickly.

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