cancel
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Announcements
Welcome REI Co-op Members!
We're glad you're here. If you can't access the Co-op Members section of the community,
click here for instructions on how to join the section that's just for you.

Best footwear for a multi-activity trip - GAP Trail

Hi everyone,

Looking for some suggestions and recommendations.  I am planning a multi-day cycling trip along the GAP Trail (Great Alleghany Passage) this Sprng, starting in Western Pennsylvania, and ending probably in the Cumberland, Maryland area.  The plan is to ride 30-ish miles per day, and visit noteworthy sites along the way, including hiking Ohiopyle State Park, and other parks and natural areas.  This is a rail-trail, not a road; my bike is a Specialized Crosstrail hybrid with standard pedals (no clip-in); we will have a support vehicle accompanying us, so no need to carry a lot on our bikes.

Even with the support vehicle, I want to minimize the amount that I have to pack, and am wondering what my best option is for footwear that will accommodate all these activities the best. Something I can wear pedaling,stopping for a hike on potentially muddy and rocky trails, pedaling some more, and then walking around a town or to a pub... 

I usually wear casual athletic/running shoes when biking locally, but they have no real traction for a trail; I wear Salomon X Ultra 3 or La Sportiva Nucleos (depending upon the season and weather conditions) when hiking.  And I have a pair of Black Diamond Mission LT approach shoes.  Right now I'm thinking the approach shoes, but am also considering getting some trail runners .  And, even though I usually go with water proof (resistant) boots for hiking, I'm thinking something more breathable and quicker drying for ths adventure.  I know there's a trade-off and compromise no matter which way I go.  And I know that I am probably overthinking this, but...

Any thoughts?

Thanks!

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
6 Replies

Hi @Rob6 how's it going! Happy New Year!  From what you're describing, off the top of my head, I don't see any problems with your casual athletic/running shoes.

But...If you're looking for an excuse, as per usual, I'm going to recommend trail runners, which seems like my answer to everything, lol.

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes
0 Likes

I like approach shoes for general overall versatility, but a close second would be some well lugged trail runners.  With  a support vehicle, you could try different footgear....

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
0 Likes

 Thanks @Philreedshikes !  All is going well.  Feeling great!  And Happy New Year to you as well.  Somehow I knew you would be recommending trail runners, most likely Hoka One-One's.  And, I think you hit the nail on the head.  I don't really need another pair of specialized shoes...just looking for an excuse to satisfy my "new gear itch", and, a reason to try something different.  Decisions, decisions...  

And thank you @hikermor .  Your experience and thoughtfulness is always welcomed.  I like the idea of the approach shoes.  It's good to know I wasn't totally off-base with that idea.

Any other thoughts and suggestions out there?  

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
0 Likes

There's a new wrinkle.  We've decided to do some whitewater rafting on the Yough River, so my shoes will definitely be getting wet.  Looks like I will need to take an extra pair (or 2), so, no "one shoe to rule them all" for me.

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
0 Likes

Now a real man would just go barefoot.  look at the money you would save.......

I am not a "real man" either.....

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
0 Likes

My only advice is I wouldn't worry about shoe choice for your cycling portions. Bike-specific shoes really fit into either you're clipping in (which you're not) or the soles are sticky rubber for really gripping into the metal pins if doing flats for mountain biking on rougher terrain (which you're not). Ideally, they'd give you plenty of ankle flex too, so low-top is better than high-top, but honestly I've done plenty of biking in high-topped hiking boots and it's fine. Those approach shoes sound like a good idea honestly. With the rafting, I think I'd opt for the breathable, quick drying whatever shoe you end up choosing. Just bring plenty of spare socks!!  😉

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.
0 Likes