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Thread: Slippery Soles?

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    Registered User FooFooCuddlyPoops's Avatar
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    Default Slippery Soles?

    Hey guys.

    I bought a pair of trail runners recently that I absolutely love from the previous pair that I bought and wore to death. R.I.P Trailys.

    However, I noticed that they are slippery as all hell on slick surfaces. This isn't new. I just thought that perhaps my other shoes were a rarety. Apparently not.

    Is there any way to make them less slick on wet surfaces?

    Some of you guys might remember but last year I had posted about a trip to White oak canyon in the shanedoahs that made me lame by the time I got back. I blamed the resulting thigh pain, and exhaustion to the fact that I had been very sick the week before up to the hike. However, upon going down memory lane, I remember having a issue with my shoes. The entire trail is slippery rock. I hiked it slowly, and tedious because one wrong step could land me on my ass. Now, I am sure being sick also caused some of my issues but I am sure the shoes being so slick on that hike (newish shoe at the time) that walking so tedious used the muscles that ended up being lame for a few days thereafter.

    A example of how slick they are....I was at work cutting pizzas at the make line. I could be standing completely still, but leaning on one foot more than the other, and watch it slowly slide to the pressure.

    The old pair is not nearly as slick as they were in the past so maybe wearing them down is the key?

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    Many years ago, I purchased a pair of medium wt hiking boots that were great until you walked on some wet stones. A couple of times I went "flying". I tried a couple of things ( one of those things included the use of a belt sander ) . Finally I had to give up and return them to REI . Thankfully, they took them back without any hassle. i can't remember the make or model, but I do remember that they were a mainstream brand.

    I found it puzzling that they allowed the boot on the market. YMMV.

  3. #3

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    Some of the trail runners I have tried have what feels like a plastic based tread, some have plastic lugs mixed with what feels like rubber. They work great on soft treadway but getting onto rocks that are wet can be treacherous. Best solution I have found is to look for trail runners with soft rubber treads/lugs which should have a better grip on various surfaces. They won't last as long as some other materials that offer less grip, but it beat losing confidence in your footgear and creeping downhill for fear of a slip.

  4. #4

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    This had to do with better traction in ice and snow, but I heard of a guy who took his wife's slippery, winter boots, brushed rubber cement on the bottom, and then dipped them in sand. Made a world of difference.

    Maybe something like that would work on slippery rocks?

    Side note- My husband has a pair of Vasque Breezes that slid on a rock and dumped him in the stream he was standing next to. (That was several years ago, so the current version may not have the same slippery soles.)

    -FA

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    Quote Originally Posted by Farr Away View Post
    This had to do with better traction in ice and snow, but I heard of a guy who took his wife's slippery, winter boots, brushed rubber cement on the bottom, and then dipped them in sand. Made a world of difference.

    Maybe something like that would work on slippery rocks?

    Side note- My husband has a pair of Vasque Breezes that slid on a rock and dumped him in the stream he was standing next to. (That was several years ago, so the current version may not have the same slippery soles.)

    -FA
    That was the brand I had problems with several years ago! I still can't remember what model it was. Hopefully they have made some adjustments. Vasque seems to have a good reputation for the most part.

  6. #6

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    Modern boots do not stick to wet rock. Something about the fancy lug patterns and the type of rubber or plastic they use for soles. Slipping was rarely a problem back in the day with heavy leather boots and classic Vibrum lug soles. I called first pair of Merril's my Teflon shoes since they would not stick to anything and I was constantly taking spills. I keep telling the help at EMS they need to put in a piece of wet granite so we can test the grip of the shoes we're buying. But I suppose, if they did that they wouldn't sell many shoes!
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  7. #7

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    My Merrell Moabs are great at non slip, or at least I'm very comfortable with knowing where the slipping point is. My Merrell casual slip ons behave like they have a built in auto-oiler.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Puddlefish View Post
    My Merrell Moabs are great at non slip, or at least I'm very comfortable with knowing where the slipping point is. My Merrell casual slip ons behave like they have a built in auto-oiler.
    Yeah, I've found Merrills better than most. But even then I've slipped on smooth granite with them.

  9. #9

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    I have a pair of LaSportiva Wildcats and the soles are quite grippy. The downside is that they wear out quickly on pavement.

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    As a general rule the same applies to shoes as to tires on your sports car.

    The softer they are the grippyer they are, and the harder they are the longer they last and they protect your feet much better as well. It is a trade off. If your shoes are like the Breeze's (some 12,000 miles in them) you have to adjust your walking and pay attention when on slippery stuff - but they outlast the trail running shoes by probably 3 times most of the time. A really high traction trail running shoe just will not last very long - but slipping when trail running is much worse than when walking.

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    Registered User BuckeyeBill's Avatar
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    Mentioning tires made me think if using a tire softening compound used in drag racing. You can scuff up the treads of the soles, then apply the softener. I wound not use much but try adding it until you get the traction you want. You can find a small can here or here. Both places are for the same product at the same price, just offering you a choice of where to buy.
    Blackheart

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    https://www.amazon.com/Anti-Slip-Coa...728XRCB81ZM16S

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...SIN=B00A39ZONG

    Umm, all trail runners are not for all situations. Should go without saying some trail runners are specifically meant for sloppier trails in mud, slush, ice, rain etc and some are best on dry maintained compacted dry treads. My approach has been to the best of my ability to match the trail runner to the conditions of the hike. That's a reason why I have different trail runner options in the hiking shoe arsenal.

    Lastly, as I said on your original thread, White Oak Canyon has some exceptionally high riser heights with slippery stone, bark on and some removed tree trunk, and dimensional lumber used in the tread construction which when wet or muddy can be hazardous and fatiguing. Compounding this variety of trail construction step materials difficulty is the riser heights vary from about 6 " to more than 16". Stepping on wet wood, hardened but wet dirt, or wet leaves particularly on slopes can be like stepping on slippery ice possibly as much or more so than slippery rock hopping across a stream. It's why I recommended to you in sloppy conditions to, as I prefer, hike up rather than down White Oak Canyon taking time to be mindful of solid foot placement. This is all compound by you on that occasion being sick or just getting over being sick and, if I'm recalling correctly, some apprehension about not being able to stay with teh rest of your party.

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    Registered User Reverse's Avatar
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    I have a pair of Asolos which slip on everything; wet rock; gravel, mud and especially wet roots. My New Balance Trail runners were great They wore out quick but I could trust them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    Modern boots do not stick to wet rock. Something about the fancy lug patterns and the type of rubber or plastic they use for soles. Slipping was rarely a problem back in the day with heavy leather boots and classic Vibrum lug soles. I called first pair of Merril's my Teflon shoes since they would not stick to anything and I was constantly taking spills. I keep telling the help at EMS they need to put in a piece of wet granite so we can test the grip of the shoes we're buying. But I suppose, if they did that they wouldn't sell many shoes!
    Mostly agree here. It's been fifteen years or more since I last hiked in heavy leather boots, but I seem to recall fewer issues with traction, particularly on slippery, wet rock. Or maybe it's just me, getting older.

    There are indeed modern boots with lugged Vibram soles, eg. Vasque Breeze.

  15. #15

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    Does anyone have experience with the Keen brand?

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    Registered User Kaptainkriz's Avatar
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    Some of the Merrils have Vibrams...My Moabs are pretty sticky.
    Plaid is fast! Ticks suck, literally...
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    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    I agree with everything said in this review.
    http://sectionhiker.com/la-sportiva-...g-term-review/
    Wayne


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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverse View Post
    I have a pair of Asolos which slip on everything; wet rock; gravel, mud and especially wet roots. My New Balance Trail runners were great They wore out quick but I could trust them.
    I had the same problem with a pair of Asolo boots. They're now just used around the house and town. To slippery for the trail. Same with Oboz.

    Dry

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    Im wondering why you didnt say what you're wearing?

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    I had a pair of Keens and thought they were the best boot ever ...................until I hit rocks and mud.

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