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Approach Shoe for off trail scrambling and camp


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Viewing 11 posts - 1 through 11 (of 11 total)
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  • #3806560
    Adam Salinger
    BPL Member

    @asalinger

    Wondering if anyone has tried carrying a super lightweight approach shoe as both a camp shoe and to switch to while on rock off trail. I do a lot of off trail routes in the eastern sierras and am thinking that a solid approach shoe could serve me well while I take on some more challenging class 2 and 3 granite passes but also serve as a camp shoe and backup shoe in case my shoes fail while out on extended trips.
    any wisdom out there from anyone that’s dabbled in this in terms of brands or styles??

    #3806575
    Philip Tschersich
    BPL Member

    @philip-ak

    Locale: Kodiak Alaska

    Just out of curiosity, what is your main hiking shoe that you would be switching from for those applications? Lounging in camp and scrambling through granite talus seem like very different applications.

    #3806583
    Adam Salinger
    BPL Member

    @asalinger

    Very fair question. I don’t usually carry camp shoes. I wear a trail shoe. A Topo Ultraventure. I just don’t get the kind of grip and confidence with the Topo that I think I could get with an approach shoe while on talus or slick rock.

    Since I don’t carry camp shoes (mostly because by the end of the kind of big days I hike, I usually just go to bed) I figure they can be a dry camp shoe on an as needed basis.

    #3806588
    Philip Tschersich
    BPL Member

    @philip-ak

    Locale: Kodiak Alaska

    Most approach shoes use some sort of leather upper for durability. Is that what you want?

    #3806595
    Adam Salinger
    BPL Member

    @asalinger

    Don’t know much about approach shoes which is the aim of the post.
    Unsure of specific materials or types of approach shoes and trying to figure out if using them would aid when in the off trail scrambles I mentioned.

    #3806611
    Alex H
    BPL Member

    @abhitt

    Locale: southern appalachians or desert SW

    You might look at the La Sportiva TX3 as an all purpose shoe for when you have lots of scrambling.  I find it a great shoe for really rocky conditions.  Unfortunately it only comes in garish orange

    #3806628
    Alex Wallace
    BPL Member

    @feetfirst

    Locale: Sierra Nevada North

    In theory it works, but it just depends on the comfort of the shoe.

    I’ve used the La Sportiva TX Guide approach shoes for more technical routes on granite and they work really well. Much more grip and a precise feel on the rock. Stiff enough for edging. They’re pretty comfortable overall, but longer mile days get uncomfortable because they’re relatively narrow. So, at the end of a long day all I wanted to do was get them off my feet. Great for technical routes, not good for camp shoes.

    #3806638
    Philip Tschersich
    BPL Member

    @philip-ak

    Locale: Kodiak Alaska

    Approach shoes are meant to be a bridge between a hiking/trail shoe and a rock climbing shoe. Things like durable (often) leather uppers, a sole oriented towards friction on rock (fewer lugs and more smooth/sticky rubber surface area), and a snug/precise fit with lace-to-toe make them great for transitional applications like you are describing. But as Alex mentioned, not really designed for big mile comfort or lounging. Ask any rock climber how many steps they like to walk in their climbing shoes and they will tell you “as few as possible.” That said, there is a real spectrum in design of approach shoes from almost trail runners…

    …to more technical and application-specific design…

    It will probably require some experimentation to find the balance you want. The more running-shoe-like the more comfy they will be but will sacrifice rock performance, and vice versa. Also, note that the shallow lugs and soft rubber that helps with grip on rock can wear very quickly.

    #3806663
    Paul S
    BPL Member

    @commonloon

    I’ve used La Sportiva TX2s for Eastern Sierra scrambles. Mostly for stuff where I want something a little more “Sticky” than a trail runner, i.e. c3-4. They’re designed to be carried strapped (elastic cordage) together. Around 10oz so not super light but same as trail runners. I have them sized 1/2 size down, contrasted w/ my climbing shoes that are 2 sizes down. They go with me on walk offs during climbs because they are more comfortable than climbings shoes. So, reasonably comfortable. They great for slabby stuff…

    #3806705
    Luke Schmidt
    BPL Member

    @cameron

    Locale: Alaska

    I used some kind of Selwa approach shoes for a summer. I un did the bottom laces so there was more toe room. They were a compromise but comfortable enough for my feet. I’d probably consider them again if I hiked in the Sierras. The soles did wear faster but you typically blow out the top of a shoe before the sole is unusable.

    #3807952
    SIMULACRA
    BPL Member

    @simulacra

    Locale: Puget Sound

    I’ll 2nd the LaSportiva TX4’s. Very comfortable. Like a supportive moccasin. Wide toe box compared to most of their other shoes, which have a narrow box. Switch out the stock shoe insert liners for your favorite. Stock inserts will compress quickly. I use the Sole cork brand. Use frequently for 20+- mile days with no issue. Scrambling with these are great, very sticky rubber. Doesn’t wear as quickly as other sticky rubbers. No issue with wearing around camp. I switch out to camp socks anyways at the end of day, so doesn’t feel like standing in the days grime.

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