I've just returned from one of the most memorable vacation ever. Actually it was more of a Stay-cation but no less enjoyable. My wife and I took two mountain bikes, two wet suits and four pairs of Vibram five finger shoes on a camping adventure. Living in northern Minnesota you really don't have to drive far to have fun in the outdoors. We drove just a little over two hours from our home in Duluth to our selected campsite. By mid afternoon we were putting up the tent and planning our first fun adventure. We had put a great deal of emphasis on seeing how many things we could do in our different pairs of five finger shoes. Our first fun activity however was in bike shoes for 16 miles of mountain bike joy.
We both own a pair of KSO and a pair of Bikilas. I recenty bought a pair of KSO TREK but as you all know many styles are on backorder so I must wait patiently for them to arrive. That did not stop me however from putting the two pair I have to the test.
I went for a trail run in the Bikilas not far, maybe 3-4 miles? What I've noticed about any pair of Vibram shoes is your feet generally stay right where they land as move along regardless of the surface you are on. Just last week I started weight training in them and noticed when I do weighted barbell squats in my KSO's my feet feel like they are suction cupped to the floor. Same goes for running in the woods either in the KSO or the Bikilas my feet stayed where I put them, even on slanted surfaces. In trail running shoes you put your foot down in that situation and you might turn an ankle. Traditional shoes put so much rubber between you and the ground its like trying to run in platform shoes like the ones the rock band KIZZ used to wear!
All five fingers are so light weight your feet just lightly touch the ground and are off again before you know it. I always feel like I am floating when I run in five fingers.
Back to the camping trip.. On the worse possible weather day we said lets go swim in that lake. Our campground by the way was completely deserted. 24 sites and just my wife and I for 5 full days!!. We put on our wets suits in camp and biked over to the lake. We stood on the shore and watched the lake roll and toss in front of us against a brooding,cloudy sky. I said to my wife just do it! Armed with our KSO's we just walked in and started swimming out toward deeper water. The further from shore we swam the colder and deeper the water got. fighting the waves we kept going until we couldn't stand the cold any longer and turned back to shore. not sure what the water temps were but the air temps must have been in the upper 40's. without the KSO I think our feet would have turn into blue Popsicles!
So the grand total of things you can do on a camping trip with Five fingers is SWIM, TRAIL RUN, DANCE the boogaloo to some ipod tunes around camp, lay on your back and stretch because your lower back is killing you from sleeping on the cold, hard ground and lets see what else, oh yeah have a ice cold beer or glass of wine from the comfort of your camp chair and watch the fire burn as you listen to loons and wolves call through the night