If you live in an apartment in the midst of a big city there is always a chance you may have to walk out in an emergency. This is not something that I hope ever happens; trust me, walking out of a sprawling metropolis does not appear anywhere on my wish list. However, as we continue to watch the events in Japan, we know that the possibility exists that even in the most developed cities, transportation systems can be disrupted at any time.
Besides having a “go bag” (See my previous post “Bug Out Basics“) now is the time to identify what footwear you will grab on your way out the door.
Here are a few quick tips to keep in mind:
- If you have to walk through debris, flooded streets or whatever crisis awaits, you definitely want the most comfortable, most protective shoes possible. This means a closed toe pair of shoes with durable soles. The comfy sandals that may have served you well in the past won’t fit the bill.
- Hiking shoes come in low-cut, mid-cut or high-cut, with the high cut shoes giving the maximum ankle support. I do not have a preference-it just has to be comfortable for the wearer.
- As far as material, the shoes can be made of either be leather or synthetic material or a combination. Leather tends to be more durable, but requires more time to “break in” and are more expensive while synthetic materials are lighter, tend to cost a bit less, but may not last as long.
- Whatever material or price, make sure the shoes are already “broken in” Hiking out of the city in a pair of new shoes will cause blisters.
- Choose the shoes with the best fit: a good fit means you can wiggle your toes inside the shoe, but not too loose that your feet slide around inside. They should feel firm around your feet, but not too constricting.
I am not recommending running out and spending tons of cash on a pair of hiking shoes. Just identify which shoes you’d want to have on your feet if you had to trek out of your city in an emergency. During a crisis you won’t have time to be searching for just the right pair of shoes, so do it now while nothing is going on, and leave the shoes in an easy-to-reach spot by the door.