One of my fellow traveler ask me this question: Can we wear sandals to climb Mount Kinabalu? Well, I would answer YES and NO. Yes, if you choose the correct sandals and use it during your day climb (first phase of the climb) and NO, if you choose the wrong one and using it during your night climb. Huh? Isn’t that obvious? The truth is, choosing sandals for trekking/hiking/backpacking up Mount Kinabalu is not as easy as it looks like. I will tell you the secret…
I did several trips up the mountain and I do not have a good experience of wearing trekking boots â€“ on my earlier attempt. Why? Because boots injured my toes, especially during the descend, as the weight of my body seems to fall on my ball of foot, and indirectly pressed the toes. The pain was there for several days after the climb. However, during my last trip up, I used a good sandals. The injuries were reduced.
Practically, not every sandals on the market is suitable for you to wear during your climb. Highly specialize sandals that is made for trekking/hiking/backpacking from most of the known brand is generally suitable for you. Oh, it is elegant for you too. Active Sandals have a lot of various choices on selection of sandals that you can choose and do your shopping online. I would suggest you look on Teva Sandals and Keen Sandals, as they are the specialize producer of these kind of sandals. Active Sandals are a top rated Yahoo! store (5 stars out of 5) for top customer service.
But, how do we choose the best that suits our need? These are some practical tips for you to consider while choosing your good sandals:
- Choose either nylon or leather straps, look for arch support, heel shock pad and cushioning midsole.
- Look for anti-pronation plugs in the midsole.
- Outsole should be sufficiently cleated to offer grip on rough terrain.
- Sandal construction integrity and longevity essential – look for straps that are continuous and cannot pull out – failure of the sandals in some remote part of the world could be serious.
- Arch support and padded straps and posts are also important for comfort.
- Ensure light weight – you don’t want to carry kilos of footwear around with you!
- Don’t use leather or synthetic leather footbeds – they cannot take continuous wear over weeks.
- Have a pair of leather sandals, or thongs, for casual use.
- Make sure you wear a pair of cotton socks with your sandals to minimize blisters.
Oh, the best time to use the sandals on your day climb is during dry season. Your feet can be be a bit cold if you use it during rainy season. You can also use the sandals during your sightseeing trip in Kota Kinabalu city or maybe rafting in Padas River!
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