I was a little overzealous with my first purchase for the PCT hike at the Kathmandu store on Smith St, Melbourne this week – my shoes. I figured shoes are the first item you need, 1. To wear in, and 2. To begin training.
Despite the hours I’ve poured over Yogi’s handbook, countless blogs and emails from my friend Sarah who completed the trail in 2004, I still managed to buy the wrong shoes.
I got them home, unwrapped them from the tissue paper and was glowing with pride until I re-read the handbook and Yogi’s advice which clearly states on page 121 “you don’t WANT anything waterproof.” “The only thing waterproof shoes do differently from other shoes is that the waterproof shoes will never dry out.”
Let that be a lesson! The other thing I learned is that Kathmandu only refund you with store credits, so guess where I’ll now be buying the bulk of my gear. I had bought the Salomon X Ultra GTX trail shoe, which under normal hiking circumstances I’m sure is a brilliant shoe and fit like a glove. What I need though is a trail shoe that isn’t waterproof, ultra lightweight with quick dry instead of Gore-Tex like the Salomon X-Over.
The only problem with this shoe is that Kathmandu only sells them in black, and guess what, Yogi says “you need the lightest weight, lightest coloured, most breathable shoe possible.” This is mainly for the desert sections in Southern California where your shoes get so hot you’ll burn your hand touching the bottom of them.
Soooooo…. I can either go to a Saloman store to get the grey version of the shoe and spend the $180 of Kathmandu store credit on other bits and bobs, or get the black version, test it out and use it in Oregon and Washington.