ZEMgear 360 Shoes

ZEMGearI’ve been looking forever for lightweight camp shoes that you could wear with socks, going so far as trying to make my own. I stumbled across an article about the new barefoot running craze and discovered the ZEMgear 360 shoes. They make both a Ninja split toe version and a round toe version, the one I bought because of my requirement that you can wear socks with them. Too many “camp shoes” assume you’re going to be in 70 degree weather.

I bought a pair of the ZEMgear O2 shoes, thinking I wouldn’t need whatever extra features are in the 360’s, but it turned out the weight on ZEMgear’s website is, uh, exaggerated. They claimed 5.2 oz/pair and they were over 7 oz and I only wear a size 8.5. So I sent the O2’s back and got a pair of the 360’s in time for a trip. They weighed in at 5.6 oz. Close enough.

Let’s cut to the chase — they’re wonderful. Comfy, rugged, sure-footed and work with one pair of socks, two pair of socks and no socks. One trip and I’m sold. If I lost this pair today I’ll buy another.

If you decide to get a pair and you’re a half size, go down a size, not up like ZEMgear claims on their website. I’m a 8.5 and I ordered size 9.0 in the O2’s and they were too big. I ordered an 8.0 in the 360’s and they work great, even with two pair of socks (I’m still old school when it comes to socks and hiking boots.) You want them a little snug anyway for secure footing when climbing up or down granite slabs.

Lastly, those reflective strips on the 360’s light up at night in a retina burning display, don’t look at them if you hope to retain your night vision!