I recently read a great article from the team at Rogue Expeditions with packing tips for your next adventure. It was a great article on packing minimally even if your taking off on a trip headed for adventure. Now let me first be clear, this is definitely not speaking to the “backpacker” audience of young travellers trying to live out of a bag. The trips put on by Rogue are almost the opposite of backpacking trips.
If you are the type of adult that plans their vacations around adventure, races or any other style of extreme physical, recreational work, then you’ve probably faced this dilemma of what to pack. Bring too much and you’ll get weighed down, but forget a single essential and it could ruin your trip or even worse put you in danger. Where this article really stood out to me, was that Allison from Rogue had a really good take on footwear. You’ll need tough versatile footwear than can handle the physical challenges you’re about to take on, but you’ll also want to have some things that are nice to put on back at the hotel/camp, or even something relatively nice looking to wear if you go out for dinner.
This is where it hit me, just how far Xero Shoes have developed their footwear line to fully serve the adventure traveller. Let me break it down. To prevent half of your suitcase from filling with shoes that you might wear once on your whole trip, you can aim to find three pairs of shoes.
1) A running/adventure shoe
This one is pretty obvious, and you can sub this out for hiking boot or whatever else you’d need it to be.
Xero Shoe Option = Prio Running Shoe
Their recently released Prio’s are an incredibly comfortable running shoe that is built to last. We’ve already taken them through multiple trail ultra’s, countless miles of mountain biking, and our day to day training runs, and they feel as good as new. (A bit dirtier of course!) If hiking is more your thing, Xero shoes still have you covered, as they have just released a new minimal hiking boot (the DayLite Hiker). The beautiful part of these is unless you get them covered in mud or soaked, these are still slick enough to wear out and about, unlike some other super loud trail running shoes.
2) A pair of comfortable sandals
Xero Shoe Options = Z-trek, Z-Trail, DYI, too many to list!
Just about any of their sandal line will fill this, so it relies a bit on your preference. I personally love the new Z-Trails, but some things to think about would be; where will you be? Think about the ground you’ll be walking around on. How much running/hiking are you doing? A super thin sole might not be great if your feet are killing after a day of running, the Z-Trails have just a tiny bit extra thickness for this case! And will you be using these for any of the running? This is one of the main reason I love the Z-trek and Z-Trail sandals, as they are probably the most robust sandal for Xero shoes, meaning we can wear them on more extreme terrain than the other models. Again the beauty is in the multi-use, as you can wear them for walking around the hotel in the evenings, but can use them for some of the running days as well, making them a great pick to pack for your next adventure.
3) A pair of non-running or non-adventure shoes
Xero Shoe Option = Hanna + Lena
These are their slick looking urban shoes that look more like a light loafer. They are super minimally built so lightweight and flexible to pack, and can serve as a great looking shoe if you head anywhere relatively nice on your trip. And although we haven’t, many people have done lots of running in these, so there you go, multi-purpose yet again.
Still not convinced that these are quite the ultimate travel shoes? Well if you take a mens size 11 version in the Prio, Z-Trail, and Hanna, you’d be looking at a grand total weight for all three pairs of shoes of 2.6 lbs (or 42 oz). Considering you’ll be wearing one of the shoes, you’re really only going to adding 1.66 lbs (26.6 oz) to your suitcase. If that isn’t a travel hack then I don’t know what is!