The proper walking shoes for a long trip has a powerful non-slip sole, it feels like you float, withstand the rain, it becomes a sandal, it shelters you, it's cool, it has wheels, and it eliminates your enemies with lightning bolts. Unfortunately it is in the process of development and while you are inventing you have to choose between what there is.
The reality: There is no off-road shoe. Because what you use for the beach and the sand does not work for rain and snow. Because what you need to keep your feet warm in winter fry your feet in summer. That's why it's important to ask yourself the following questions.
On what land will I walk? Will it be hot or cold? Will I walk in the rain? Do I need my feet to be protected and warm or cool and free?
The "almost" off-road: Most go towards trekking and outdoor footwear, which is a good idea considering that a long trip does not allow for a great variety. This type of footwear also serves perfectly well in situations of long walks that require comfort and protection.
But for example, in the case of Latin America, it must be considered that most of the territory is tropical and hot. The large jungle and humid lands of Peru, Venezuela, Guatemala, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and Paraguay have intense heat and humidity. The immense Cordillera de los Andes, Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, on the other hand, are very cold soils at certain times of the year.
Here you will see some proposals for each type of terrain. And just as in other areas we can talk about the vulcanizing of the Converse or the resistant soles of Dr. Martens, we will discover a little of the specialized advantages of backpacking shoes and outdoor activities.
goretexGore-Tex™ is a textile technology used by many footwear because it is considered to be of high quality when it comes to impermeability. In addition to protecting from the effects of water, wind and cold, it also offers a good breathability which allows to avoid condensation inside. If you see the Gore-Tex logo on a shoe it usually means that it is waterproof.
Logo-Thinsulate-3M3M™ Thinsulate™ is a technology that several brands of footwear and clothing also use to offer special protection against cold. It consists in trapping the air molecules between the person and the environment to offer a greater value of isolation. You can see this material especially in winter footwear.
The inner part of your footwear should avoid materials too plastic and without ventilation because they accumulate too much heat. The exception is for shoes designed for winter of subzero temperatures that generally use more synthetic components than others.
VibramVibram™ is a technology focused on the development of soles specially designed to improve the strength of traction and anti-slip. They also offer high resistance to abrasion and wear.
The sole is the element that puts you in contact with the surface, and as far as possible it should be flexible and have a strong grip appearance and that does not slip easily. Some boots are hard soles and walking with them can be uncomfortable. Try not to believe in a salesperson who says "then give in, then change, or that's just at the beginning". Your shoes should be comfortable from the first use.
Hiking socks avoid blisters on the feet. Unlike the cheapest stockings for daily use, these usually have elastics in the middle part of the foot, toe and heel. This not only improves circulation but avoids the unnecessary rubbing that creates blisters.
When you use shoes that are not appropriate, the impact of each step, step or jump is received directly in the joints of the knee, heel, and even hips. If you have the bad luck of going down a hill or hill, your knees are the ones that suffer the most. On the contrary, the increases impact more on the heels. This feels more intense if you carry a backpack with weight.
Let's imagine that you are going to make a route through the beautiful beaches of the north of Peru, visit mountain in Ecuador, relax on the Mexican and Colombian tropical sands or you want to enjoy the sea breeze of the Canary Islands. It's hot, your fingers need to be free.
In this scenario you will visit the Peruvian, Brazilian or Colombian jungle and walk among some rivers and rocks. You will go through humid mountains in places where the temperature is usually high and the environment humid. You will make relatively long walks and you need extra comfort as well as a lot of freshness.
You will visit Machu Picchu, cross the Andes, go to Bolivia, immerse yourself in the beautiful Patagonia. The weather varies from cold to intermediate, but your feet need to be protected and ready for long walks. You also do not have much space to wear several shoes.
Either you will be in the Andes mountain range discovering landscapes or maybe you will be encouraged to take a walk in the rugged territory of Patagonia with temperatures close to zero degrees.