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Backpacker Magazine – July/August 2013

Pamper Your Feet

Boost comfort with these three sock, shoe, and insert options.

by: Dan Larson

Footbalance Dynamic Blue Insoles (Courtesy Photo)
Footbalance Dynamic Blue Insoles (Courtesy Photo)
Patagonia Advocate Lace Plaid (Courtesy Photo)
Patagonia Advocate Lace Plaid (Courtesy Photo)
Darn Tough Vermont Light (Courtesy Photo)
Darn Tough Vermont Light (Courtesy Photo)

  Footbalance
Dynamic Blue
$80; 4 oz.; footbalance.com
Patagonia Advocate
Lace Plaid
$75; 11 oz.; patagonia.com
Darn Tough Vermont Light Cushion Hike/Trek $19; 2.4 oz.; darntough.com
PRO Heat-mold these low-volume insoles in the store for a custom fit; EVA pads support the heel and ball of foot while a flexible arch allows mid-foot articulation for a natural stride. These soft, squishy microfiber shoes are ideal for camp or travel; they pack flat (less than 2 inches thick) for easy stowing; 3-mm-thick EVA insoles provide comfort and cush. Superfine, lightweight yarn yields more loops per inch, which provides excellent, long-lasting cushioning.
CON Pricey; not sold online, like some DIY heat-moldable insoles No midsole, so they lack support on hard surfaces or for long walks. We wished for more padding around the anklebones.


[Tech Talk]
Midsoles—which layer various combinations of materials that are glued, injected, or heat-bonded between the sole and upper—are the heart of any boot. Foam-like EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) is springy for supreme cushion. PU (polyurethane) is a denser, more durable, and more supportive foam. TPU (thermoplastic urethane) adds even more stiffness and structure.

Boost wet weather performance
Treat your boots once a season with Nikwax Fabric & Leather Proof ($9; nikwax.com). 



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Star
BillC926
Oct 20, 2013

80 bucks for insoles??? Are you joking?? Why buy shoes?

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