Genuine Love for Dirt

BikePacking tips soggy muddy cycling shoes

| by mjr5house


BikePacking Tip # 3 Start the Day in Dry Shoes

Dry Shoes Feel Better than Wet

Don’t you wish you could control the weather when you go out bikepacking? On ride days would you make it dry, say 72F and crystal clear sky?  “Not me” I feel that it’s the many variables we encounter that keeps things exciting. Besides we participate in an endurance sport so just suck it up and endure right!

Well in reality I hate riding in wet shoes. But not as much as hate multiple days of wet feet. And with that said i’v tried every conceivable way to keep my shoes from getting soaked on multi day foul weather rides and lets not forget the stream crossings. Well this is what I finally  found to be true…


“Eventually Your shoes Are Going to Get Wet. And that is just one of the things you need to endure when your out there”.


However that doesn’t mean you should just let your shoes stay in a constant state of damp. Because there is more going on inside that shoe than just a multi day peddle fest. For example, what do you get when you mix stink producing bacteria with a blister or cut? The answer is “infection”. And the best environment for bacteria to grow is inside your soggy muddy cycling shoes.

Now I’m not trying to scare you like some TV reporter during sweeps week. You know like the stories where they take a UV light around a kitchen just to freak you out. Don’t let me catch you using me as an excuse saying things like “Yah I would have gone farther today but I had to stop and dry my shoes before something bad happens.” I simply want you to be mindful of backcountry hygiene.

Now for a little of what works for me. One thing is for sure if I can start the day with dry shoes it just seems to make for a better day. Even if one hour later they are soaked again. One of the best tips I ever received (Thank you Karlos AKA: The Naked Indian) in my quest to become a multi terrain cycle tourist (I just love that phrase). Was to pickup a free news paper at one of your route resupplies and pack it away till you make camp.

Once your all set for the night and you take off your shoes just stuff them with news paper and it will wick the moisture out. You may need to change it out before you go to bed if they are real wet. If you have time in the morning just pull the damp paper out and let them air out a bit wile you focus on coffee (you do focus on coffee don’t you?) and you will be good to go.

You can use the same method to dry other things as well like socks. I usually have two pair of socks with me so I swap back and forth with those and wrap the wet pair in paper.

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