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View Full Version : Owl's Head / Franconia Brook Trail footwear question



csprague
07-31-2012, 12:09 PM
I may do this on Saturday, but was wondering, given the length, if hiking boots are necessary for anything other than the slide? My feet might appreciate sneakers if I can get away with it.

Also, I would suspect that finding water is no issue along this trail, but are there any significant stretches where you're best off with full bottles? If so, where do they start/end? I want to make my daypack as light as possible while still being safe.

Thanks!

csprague

marnof
07-31-2012, 12:33 PM
Given it was mainly flat, I used trail runners yesterday, including up and down the slide. No problems, even considering I always wear boots hiking. I do trail run fairly often, and this seemed like a likely candidate for leaving the waffle stompers at home. The water was plentiful along the trail, but I wasn't paying close attention to intervals between streams since I was packing a 100oz. hydration bladder. You might want to top off before going up the slide if you intend to stay for a while.

MichaelJ
07-31-2012, 12:58 PM
There's often a spring flowing right out of the rock at the top of the slide; however, given the current drought conditions I would not count on that running. Otherwise there's plentiful water, you're following Lincoln Brook (and crossing several feeder streams) most of the way.

I think trail runners / approach shoes are fine as long as they have a sole with a good grip, and as long as your feet & ankles are comfortable doing 18 miles with the lesser support that such footwear provides. I would recommend low-rise gaiters, though, because the slide is very sandy and gravely, and you'll want something to keep all that out of your shoes while you ascend/descend.

Tom_Murphy
07-31-2012, 01:50 PM
I think trail runners / approach shoes are fine as long as they have a sole with a good grip, and as long as your feet & ankles are comfortable doing 18 miles with the lesser support that such footwear provides.

I had a lot of issues with rolling my ankles until I switched from hiking boots to hiking sneakers. Maybe my ankles are stronger now but I think the ability to feel the rocks and roots is what helped me most.

Last year I switched to water shoes for hikes and backpacking. Took me a while to find a model with a good tread and decent rubber.

http://www.rei.com/product/828718/salomon-techamphibian-3-water-shoes-mens

marnof
07-31-2012, 02:23 PM
There's often a spring flowing right out of the rock at the top of the slide; however, given the current drought conditions I would not count on that running.

That spring was still flowing yesterday. I imagine you could collect the water with tubing--my filter is a bottle type that wouldn't submerge in the tiny pool of water flowing on the trail. It looked good enough to drink straight, although it was right in the footpath, so I didn't.

csprague
07-31-2012, 03:37 PM
Thanks everybody. I'll probably bring sneakers and carry boots (neither are very heavy), and plan to refill water instead of carrying a full load, with the exception of the slide.

Though given the warm forecast for Saturday, I may postpone this and brew my Oktoberfest Lager instead :) Problem is, I already have hikes planned in August and September for Galehead, Garfield, and the Twins, and I really don't want to finish my 4ks on Owl's Head (I only have those 5 left).

Chris

marnof
07-31-2012, 04:42 PM
Hmmm, that is a tough choice. Looks like you have about a two week window to brew the Octoberfest, and lager it, depending on the gravity. :D And Garfield or the Twins sound much better to finish on than Owl's Head. I'm teed up to finish with the Bonds in mid-August if all goes well. Good luck with everything!