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The best shoes for hiking, according to a PCT . graduate

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You probably have a good pair of hiking shoes to take on the trails. But when you’re a hiker (who walks a long road from start to finish), your shoes basically becomes the fifth limb. The wrong pair will leave you with the blisters that Cheryl Strayed foretold in Wildwhile the best will carry you through thousands of wild miles.

That’s what Zoë Rogers, who hiked 2,653 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) this summer, knows right away. “I did it,” Rogers wrote in an Instagram post: “I walked every step of the 2,653-mile Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada.” “This is the biggest achievement of my life. 112 days darling! Say hello to the amazing trail community and everyone who has supported along the way. You guys are the best.”

Of course, the kind hikers who keep Rogers company aren’t her only support system. When Well + Good asked Rogers how she chose her shoes for the hike, she said she had a bit of a journey before finding the right shoes.

First, she tested out a pair of hiking boots that are well-liked in the hiking community. “Although they were very comfortable to start with, they ended up causing some bad pain for Achilles for about a week after my hike,” she says.

Realizing she needed a replacement, she decided to try something different. “Since I invested in ultra-light gear and my pack weighs 20 pounds maximum With food and water, I don’t think hiking boots are necessary. “Too heavy and cumbersome,” she said. So I opted for a trail runner instead.”

Next, Rogers tried the Topo Ultraventure Pros ($150)—and found the Cinderella a perfect fit. She said: “I ended up falling in love with these and bought two more pairs while hiking. “Added heel-to-toe drop — 5 millimeters versus 0 [in the first pair I tried]—Relieves the strain on my Achilles and allows me to walk painlessly. “She added that the shoes have a wider toe box to accommodate people with larger feet.

Buy the shoes that helped Rogers walk 2,653 Miles

Rogers has two great recommendations if you’re feeling inspired to hit the PCT, the Appalachian Trail (AT), or another hike in the near (or distant) future. First, do your best to reduce the load. “The less weight on your back, the more maneuverable your body is, the more likely you are to successfully complete the climb,” she says.

Second, don’t put off buying your walking shoes until the last moment. Give yourself time to research and experiment. “Overall, shoes are one of the most important gear choices. They can either cause pain with every step or allow you to walk on the trail without pain,” says Rogers. “I strongly recommend trying on a few shoes before hitting the trail and finding the right one for you before you set out on your hiking journey. There’s nothing worse than a disgruntled foot. “

Our editors select these products independently. Purchases through our links can earn Good + Good commissions.

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