Summer is here! That means school is out, the temperatures are rising, the days are longer and adventures abound! That also means your feet can take a beating with all the extra activities. Being equipped with the right shoe can mean the difference between hiking the extra mile to the hidden waterfall or having to turn back early because your toddler is repeating, “dad, my feet hurt!” We have broken down what to look for in a summer shoe based on activity so you can enjoy all your summer adventures.
Hiking and Camping
Gorgeous summer weather is perfect for longer hikes and weekend camping trips. In order to stand up to the higher temperatures, you’ll want a shoe that is breathable yet also durable and stable enough to stand up to variable terrain. While heavier hiking boots work well in cooler months, a lightweight hiking shoe such as the Chameleon 7 can make the longer hikes and nights chasing the kids around the campsite way more comfortable. For the kiddos, you’ll want a hiker that is made for little feet but built with adult-sized performance benefits to stand up to their energy levels. We recommend the kids version of the Chameleon 7, which has the added benefit of being waterproof (because kids are puddle magnets) with an alternative closure for easy on/off.
There’s no better way to cope with the sweltering heat of summer than exploring different water sources. Whether you’re hanging out at the beach, splashing in a river, or enjoying the splash pad, summer adventures are better with water. When looking for shoes perfect for water play, make sure they are breathable, made with quick-dry materials, and have superior stability on wet surfaces. Protection from debris and variable surfaces, such as hot beach sand or sharp river rock, is also important. Merrell’s line of Choprock Sandals fits this criteria while also being a capable, comfortable hiking shoe. The kids version, the Hydro Choprock Sandal, has an easy slip-on design, making the transition from car to water adventure quick and painless.
Everyday Summer Fun
Whether riding bikes around town, walking to the local park or playing all day at summer camp, a comfortable, breathable shoe is essential for summer fun. While enjoying the great outdoors, you can also help to sustain it by choosing a shoe that is made with recycled materials such as the Kids Bare Steps® H2O. This shoe combines function with sustainability while also promoting proper foot development for our littlest outdoor explorers. It also happens to be a water shoe with great traction and durability to stand up to whatever adventures they may get into this summer. For adults, the Gridway line from Merrell offers various styles of super lightweight, breathable shoes and sandals that are made mainly with recycled materials. The 100% recycled yarn knit uppers help ensure you’re treading lightly, and the styles are appropriate for everything from a walking trail to a night on the town.
Picture it: a young child tromping around in Mommy or Daddy’s shoes while trying to act like a “grown-up.” Sound familiar? What better way to entice your little “mini-me” to stay active this summer than with shoes that are just like their favorite adult’s, but built with a child’s foot in mind. A perfect example of this is the Moab line from Merrell, which includes styles for men, women and children. For shoes that can stand up to whatever outdoor family adventures summer has in store, check out the Kids Moab FST Low A/C Waterproof Sneaker and the Adult Moab 2 Waterproof Shoe. Both of these styles are waterproof and durable with superior traction so your can be on making memories rather than if you packed the right shoes.
What are your favorite shoes for summer? Let us know in the comments below!
Photos by Stephanie Jacobson.