Best Shoes To Kayak Camping: Should They Be Waterproof?

closeup of kayak shoes, paddles, and a guys hands adjusting things

It’s difficult to think of anything worse than cold, wet feet; it just makes any journey that’s been undertaken feels much less fun. Kayaking does involve a lot of water, of course, so you can expect to be a bit wet! You probably won’t go swimming, but definitely, water is involved! So then…

What are the best shoes to kayak camping?

The Aleader Men’s Xdrain Hydrogy Water Shoes are the best shoes for kayak camping in warm weather. The ideal footwear for kayaking includes everything from sandals to waterproof boots. Choose kayaking shoes based on the weather, the water, and how much walking you’ll be doing on your trip.

In this article, I will further explore different shoes to make your kayaking adventure more enjoyable, no matter the conditions. Let’s get right into it!

Best Overall: Aleader Xdrain Quick Drying Aqua Water Shoes 

These water shoes are lightweight and great to pack, as they are very lightweight. They are super quick to dry out and are perfect if you are planning a warm weather adventure. The shoes are thin and breathable, stopping the stinky feet odors that your traveling companions certainly don’t enjoy!

For the price, these shoes are of exceptionally high quality, allowing them to be used for more than just a kayaking journey. The versatile sole can allow for comfort across a wide variety of terrains while still allowing your feet to breathe. 

Pros 

  • Slip-on: A slip-on shoe makes these versatile for all ages. They can easily be slipped on and off between uses.
  • Breathable: Breathable shoes are perfect for the warm weather. Sticky and sweaty feet are no fun, and the breathability of these shoes is ideal for combating that unpleasant feeling. 
  • Traction: Being able to grip onto surfaces is essential for a shoe that gets wet; after all, no one wants to slip all over the place.  
  • Price: It is enticing to see such a high-quality product at such a user-friendly price!

Cons

  • Not great for hiking: If you are looking for a shoe that can be versatile between land and water, these aren’t the shoes for you. They lack the support your feet need to hike long distances.
  • Small holes: Small stones and debris can sneak into the shoe through the holes. This can be very annoying, especially if you are planning to spend a lot of time standing.

Best Sandals: Sketchers on the Go 600

Sandals are perfect if you are looking for a shoe that can survive getting wet while still giving you the support and freedom of other shoes. They are excellent for kayaking, and they allow your feet to breathe naturally!

Sketchers on the Go 600 have had a reputation for making wearers feel like they are walking on clouds. Who wouldn’t want that? The shoes will also last for a long time, as they are incredibly durable.

Pros

  • Comfortable: Comfy shoes make life much better, and the Sketchers On the Go 600 are undoubtedly comfortable. If you want to feel like you’re walking on clouds, these shoes are for you!
  • Durable: Spending money on something that doesn’t hold up is one of the worst feelings. Luckily, the durability of these shoes will not let you down. 
  • Breath well: It might seem obvious that sandals would breathe well. However, the soles of these shoes have been developed to ensure your feet are as comfortable as ever.
  • Machine washable: After a long kayak trip and a weekend camping, your shoes will certainly not be clean. Fortunately, these can be chucked into a washer until they look good as new!

Cons

  • Need breaking in: Unfortunately, these shoes do need breaking in. Their soles were designed universally, and the straps are made of a thicker material. As a result, you may see yourself with marks and blisters for the first week. 
  • Warm places only: These shoes are not meant to be for the cold. The open-toe design of these sandals is not suited for frigid temperatures. 

Most Comfortable: Crocs 

Crocs are excellent kayaking footwear. They contain holes that effectively drain water while keeping your feet well-ventilated. Crocs have a strap that can be slipped over your heel to keep the shoes on your feet. Additionally, Crocs are made of a floatable substance, which is helpful in case someone loses their footing and falls into the water.

Crocs won’t be the best for a colder climate, but they are perfect for those looking for a shoe that can be taken on and off easily while protecting them from sharp objects on the ground or hidden in the riverbed. Crocs come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, making them perfect for both young kids and the elderly.

Pros

  • Float on water: Crocs can float on water. This makes them pretty much the perfect shoe if you happen to be kayaking. There are few things worse than losing a shoe while on a journey in the wilderness. 
  • Super lightweight: They can easily slip in to a suitcase or carry-on because they weigh so little. This makes them perfect for a quick alternative to a more purpose build shoe. 
  • Drain quickly: They are covered in holes, so they will drain instantly.
  • Slide on and off: The lack of laces, ties, or velcro makes these shoes very easy to slip on and off, whether you’re leaving a tent or getting in a kayak. 

Cons

  • No ankle support: If you are looking for a shoe made for hiking and water sports, these are not for you—they provide no ankle support.
  • They can fall off: Due to the heel strap being able to flip on and off, the crocs can come off if they’re not the correct size. This could make them a liability. 

Best for the Cold: Astral Hiyak Water Shoes 

The Astral Hiyaks provide high-quality and high-performance water shoes. Since they are not constructed of neoprene, they are one of the few kayaking shoes that offer decent ankle protection. Astral’s uppers are made of a particular fabric that gives it stiffness.

Additionally, these shoes have actual laces that may be adjusted for tightness or looseness. These shoes have a velcro overwrap that covers your loose lacing so they won’t get tangled or undone in the water.

Pros

  • Ankle support: These shoes provide ankle support that is perfect for rugged terrain. They make it ideal for those expecting a slippery hike before a cold and wet kayak. 
  • Real laces: The real laces allow you to loosen and tighten the shoes to fit your feet perfectly. The adjustability will help you get the full foot support you need.
  • Grippy soles: These soles grip any surface, rough or smooth!
  • Sturdy: You can expect a sturdy shoe with the Astral Hiyak; they are built to last, and the price tag is representative of that.

Cons

  • Price: Seeing the price tag of this product can be a real turn-off, but you must expect a high price for a high-quality product. 

Conclusion

Appropriate footwear for kayaking ranges from sandals to waterproof boots. Based on the weather, the water, and how much walking you’ll be doing on your trip, this article will help you choose the right shoes. I think the most incredible warm weather and water shoe are the Aleader Men’s Xdrain Hydrogy Water Shoes!

Of course, picking a shoe that is right for you will come down to what you need them for. I hope this article has helped you come to a conclusion on what type of footwear is best for kayak camping.

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