Ultralight backpacking footwear: trail-runners, sandals, vibram five fingers

Ultralight backpacking doesn’t just cover your pack and its contents! Here are some options and mini reviews for some ultralight footwear. I’ll discuss trail runnners, hiking sneaker/shoes, sandals, five fingers, and why you don’t want a traditional heavy hiking boot.


dippyfish says:


Great video as always. The toe shoes look really cool.
A type of shoe called Crocs seem to be big in the ultralight scene in the UK at the momemt. Don’t know if you get them in American as well, but they are really lightweight, comfy and gove good protection. Lot of good cheap copies on the market as well.

Richard Bucker says:

my merrell trail glove shoes were miserable hiking over pebbles. Any recommendations for a zero drop with a better sole.

Amy B says:

Um, i can’t find the specific toe shoes you have at the end of your video.

pro Toyz says:

i spend a lot of hours hiking flip flops and its not nearly as bad as u say. that being said we have brands here that specialize on making hiking flip flops and many people here in the philippines use them, including the guides and porters. i mainly use them as camp sandals but if we do a lot of river crossings i wear these with great pleasure. the fast dry technology is outstanding :)

Scotty Onespeed says:

Great advice. I currently use the New Balance Minimus 10V2 for all of my backpacking trips. I good pair of ultra lights can make a big difference at the end of the day.

Jeffrey Kuszmaul says:

I started walking barefoot a couple weeks ago. Thanks for this. I had questions about hiking. This video helped..

pichnoufblues says:

Well, sometimes the transition between stiff and soft “mocassins” shoes is quite painful. I do nordic walk (with poles) when backpacking and my feet just can’t stand soft shoes (since you walk faster, they get hot very quickly). My Salomon mountain trail shoes are just the perfect fit but I’m not giong for softer shoes just to save 100g on each feet.
When your feet are set for a certain type of shoes and you walk 24/7 with it, I advocate for finding the lighter ones in that category. 

Mel Bri says:

Good video. Very informative.

Vx777infonet says:

good vid have not tried the 3 shoe did not even know they came in leather

TheNobleipman says:

Thanks for the video man. Im looking for 5 fingers to buy for this years hikes.

Jones Family Travels says:

Very much a minimalist shoe person (Tim). I have found that this really eliminates foot pain from walking/hiking for me. That said, I wore Unshoes Pah Tempe for the Half Dome Day Hike (19 miles and about 9,000 feet of elevation change – up and down) and had zero issues with them. Lots of granite, off-camber steps and although I worried about twisting an ankle, only felt like it was even close to happening once on the hike. I did switch to Fivefingers once we were on the sub-dome section for better traction on the sheer granite, but they really started to hurt in between my toes, so I switched back to the Unshoes and that’s pretty much all I wear on hikes, now. Thanks for the video! You can see a video of that hike on our channel, if you’re interested.

Aaron Penney says:

I just use a pair of running shoes myself. Lightweight, comfortable just need to be careful not to roll an ankle.

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