After hiking seemingly hundreds of miles, sweating through my socks and bandaging feet to prevent blisters, the first thing I want to do when reaching camp is take off those darn boots! Luckily, I always carry a pair of camp shoes with me on every overnight hike.
One of the best camp shoes are Crocs. Which begs the question – “How much do Crocs weigh and what is the lightest model?”
A pair of Crocs weigh between 300 and 450 grams, depending on the size and model. While not the lightest option available for camp shoes, Crocs sure are comfortable and sturdy, making them worth the investment in both weight and dollars.
The newest and lightest addition to Crocs collection is the Literide technology. Being 25% lighter and 40% softer than the material previously used, it is sure to be a game changer in the backpacking world. Lightride Crocs are available in the traditional clogs, sandals or slides. So you can even pick your own style.
Pros and Cons of Crocs as Camp Shoes
The holes in the upper structure of Crocs design make them super breathable. Allowing a lot of air flow to help dry out your feet and keep them clean.
Even if you have never put on a pair of crocs in your life, you are sure to have heard that crocs are the most comfy shoe on the planet. Like walking on a cloud, you will not have to worry about the rocks and sticks around the place. Give your feet some luxury as they have just carried you all this way, your feet deserve it!
Because of Crocs, patented closed cell resin, crocs shoes are tough as nails and will last forever. With thick soles to protect you from sticks and rocks, and a shoe engineered to be structurally strong. You should not have a problem with a rough broken strap, half way through your trip, or being punctured through the bottom of your foot by that one rock that you didn’t bother moving.
As we all know, there is generally many things to stub your toe on in the middle of the night. Often underrated but highly important is having a closed toe. There are not many shoes that still offer you the breathability of crocs, but also combine this with protection for the toes.
Coming in between 300-450g, crocs are not the lightest option to use as camp shoes. A cheap pair of flip flops is going to be almost weightless to carry in your backpack. This is usually the determining factor for me, if I have a very heavy pack already, I never want to add too much more weight.
If I have a lighter pack or an easier trip, I am usually pretty happy to add a few hundred grams as I know I will appreciate it later.
Due to its design which focuses on strength and durability, Crocs do not compress down to fit in the nooks and crannies of your backpack. Unfortunately, their bulky design does take up a lot of precious space in your pack and thus, this needs to be taken into consideration when choosing camp shoes.
Some people do like to hook them onto the outside of their pack to save space and the loopy heal straps do make this remarkably easy. However, this is a personal preference as I personally don’t like to have things stored on the outside that may swing or snag on a rough tree branch.
You can find Crocs’ Literide model at REI.
Rest Your Feet and Allow Them To Breath
Camp shoes can be anything really. They are simply comfortable shoes that you can wear around the camp once you have arrived at your destination for the night. I have seen people use anything from an old pair of sneakers, to DIY duct tape sandals, even slippers!
Anything that will give your poor feet a rest and allow them to breath. The questions is, is it really worth it carrying that extra weight for a little extra comfort at the end of the day?
After a long day of hiking, much like a long day of work, you will generally want to relax and put your feet up. Comfort is a big reason for bringing along a nice pair of shoes to wear after your hike.
“Ideally, your camp shoes will be open or airy to let your feet breath. You undoubtedly will have sweaty feet after that huge hike so it is important to allow your feet to dry out.”
Having dry feet, rather than letting them fester in the moist micro climate inside your boots also means having cleaner feet. Especially if you are sharing a tent, no one likes stinky feet in the morning!
Camp Shoes Give Your Boots More Time to Dry
So too with your boots, particularly on wet days or in snowy conditions, there is nothing worse than waking up in the cold in the morning and having to force your nice warm feet into wet, soggy boots. By having a pair of camp shoes to walk around in, you can give your hiking boots the best chance to dry out by pulling out the liners and airing them out.
This will also prevent them getting too stinky, a problem that is quite hard to fix.
Lastly, it is always a good idea to have a backup of everything. Not that I would ever want to hike serious terrain in my camp shoes, it is always nice to know that if your hiking boots fail you for any reason, you do have a plan B. No one wants to get stranded on top of a mountain with no shoes!
Other Ultralight Camp Shoe Options
Light weight – save those extra grams of weight that you will have to lug along on your hike.
Easily accessible – with such a huge range of options available from hundreds of different places, you can easily find a pair to suit your needs and budget. A perfect last minute option if you forget to pack anything, you will find pairs in nearly any gas station or convenience store
Cheap – Being as affordable as $2 a pair, it doesn’t really matter if you lose or break them after a single trip!
Breathability – As there is not much too them, flip flops obviously allow a lot of air flow to your feet, helping them dry out and breathe!
Unstable – As they don’t offer much support, flip flops won’t be very stable on uneven terrain and couldn’t be used as a backup shoe.
Lack of protection – while their open design allows for a lot of ventilation, this also means that your foot is relatively unprotected from the unexpected rock, log or tent line. The bases are generally pretty thin also and could be pierced from underneath.
Can’t wear socks – As for-mentioned, you are totally allowed to wear socks with your camp shoes to keep your feet warm. Unfortunately, it’s pretty hard to do with the standard flip flop.
Easily breakable – As at the beach or in the city, flip flops do tend to break pretty easily, so aren’t great for long term use.
There are so many different types and brands of hiking sandals for you to choose from but some of my favorites are Keen and Chaco. Built for the outdoors, these shoes are generally tough, comfortable and so practical as you can also use them for light summer hiking themselves! They do usually add a bit of weight to your pack but if you’re walking in summer heat, I would highly recommend the sacrifice.
Although I don’t personally have experience with this, I have heard of a people using water shoes as camp shoes. Designed to be protective and durable, they should save your feet from sticks and stone whilst they are also lightweight and quick drying.
Plus, they will make creek and river crossings a breeze!
What Camp Shoes Are Best In The Cold?
The best option for cold weather is anything you can comfortably wear with warm socks! Even if camping in cold climates, it is still a good idea to let your feet breath and air out at the end of a long day. This doesn’t mean you can’t use any of the options presented above as camp shoes. I always travel with a fresh pair of warm socks, reserved solely for campsites.
After whipping off those heavy wet boots, there’s not much better than drying your feet and slipping them into your coziest of socks. Wear those socks with your sandals or Crocs around camp with pride! There is no such thing as fashion in the mountains, so don’t be afraid to break those city slicker rules for your own comfort and pleasure.
Kate is a professional ski instructor who has been adventuring her way around the world since 2015. Whilst immersing herself in cultures from over 50 countries across 6 continents, she seeks the mountains where ever she goes. Explore the outdoor world with her as she hikes, climbs and skis through life on instagram @bagsalwayspacked. Visit www.bags-always-packed.com for off the beaten path hiking guides and backpacker travel budget secrets!