Paddling/canyoneering footwear

Depending upon season and conditions, my paddling footwear may range from neoprene booties to sandals to bare feet. Next month I will be doing a week of backpacking in the slickrock canyons of the Escalante (Utah), wading in the river much of the time. Footwear for such conditions is always problematic: must be supportive like a trail running shoe but fast draining and drying like a sandal, similar to requirements under some paddling conditions. I am looking at the Keen Hood River sandal and the Salomom Tech Amphib shoe: a shoe-like sandal and a sandal-like shoe. Anyone have experience paddling/hiking in either?


The Narrows
I hiked the narrows in Zion two summers back in a pair of Chaco Z-1’s with the walkabout sole. The were pretty good considering the 25 lbs on my back. I have pretty strong ankles though.

I have always liked the look of the NRS Workboot (here’s a link)

however, I’m not sure that I would want to hike long miles in them

I own a pair of shoes from Columbia that are true wet/dry hiking shoes, and they work pretty good. The closest thing I’ve seen available right now are these shoes from Salomon.

Good luck, and enjoy Utah.


those are the Salomons I am looking at and will likely go with. I will be carrying 40+ pounds on my 135 lb. body, so I need as much ankle support as possible…



I just realized that you mentioned those in your message. Teva make a lace-up water shoe called the Gamma, but they have absolutely no ankle support, so don’t bother. I’ve seen similars shoes in The Sportsman’s guide. You may want to check their website.

Take care,