Almost Everything You Need to Know About Survival Shoes
People vastly underestimate the importance of shoes for survival situations.
If you think about it, they’re probably one of the most important tools in your survival repertoire. Without a pair of solid shoes a SHTF situation could be much more difficult than it needs to be.
That’s why I wanted to take some time talking about survival shoes and what you should do if you’re ever in a situation where your dependable foot covering is gone.
Take a look:
What To Look For In Survival Shoes
First off let’s talk about selecting a pair of shoes to help you make it through a crisis situation.
My recommendation is to always pick a pair of shoes you’re going to be comfortable in. Honestly this could be hiking boots or it could be a pair of tennis shoes.
However I’m just going to say it like this. For both practical purposes and for survival purposes I would go for a solid pair of hiking boots over a pair of tennis shoes for many reasons. Generally hiking boots are waterproof, they’re going to help protect your feet and ankles a lot better than a pair of tennis shoes, they’re going to be durable, grip better in damp conditions, and will stand up to the rigors of emergency situations a lot better than tennis shoes.
So assume you’re going to select a pair of boots and when you do always make sure to select a pair that you’ve tried on and have determined fit correctly. This is best done at a store like Cabelas, R.E.I. or Bass Pro Shops where you work directly with a staff expert to help you pick the best pair of boots.
Once you’ve selected a pair make sure to break them in too.
The last thing you want to happen is to get thrown into a survival situation and your feet to blow up with blisters because you didn’t prepare ahead of time.
For that matter make sure you try your boots on with two pairs of socks.
I always suggest wearing two pairs of socks with hiking boots for a few reasons. One to help wick away moisture, two to prevent blisters, and three is for thermal regulation in bad weather.
That’s the quick and dirty on choosing survival shoes.
Now the next question I’m going to help you answer is what to do if you’re ever thrust into an emergency situation and you’re left without shoes.
What do you do then?
This kind of information is important to know now so in case something happens you’re going to be prepared.
How to Make Emergency Survival Shoes
In an emergency it might be the case the survival shoes you depended on are no longer there for you.
That means you need to know how to create survival shoes in an emergency situation. Knowing a few backup methods for shoe production will be quite helpful in the off chance you don’t have your regular shoes close by.
1 – Duct tape shoes:
My favorite option is going to be duct tape. I think duct tape is one of the best things to keep on hand, especially if you’re thinking you might run into a disaster situation.
Check out this video showing you how to make a pair of emergency shoes.
2 – Making plant shoes:
Another option you have is using plant based products to make shoes.
For hundreds and thousands of years Native American cultures used natural products like cattails and leaves to make shoes.
For instance cattails were once used to make legitimate pairs of shoes.
These can be made quickly and easily and will offer some reasonable protection.
Check out this light tutorial showing you how to construct a pair of cattail shoes from Paleo Planet.
Here’s how to make a pair of simple plain-weave whole-leaf sandals, with classic southwestern flavor and styling. It takes only two tools, both of which are simple to make as well.
I collected a bunch of cattail leaves, and trimmed out the best parts to use for warps. My tool for this and all leaf cutting tasks is a small Basketmaker II style wrist knife with a small chert blade set with hide glue into a sotol stalk handle.
Here’s a tool I designed, not sure if something similar has been used. It’s what I call a “Sandal loom”. Basicly a yucca stalk which is split in half like a “Y” shape. Then the leaf sections to be used for warps are lined up side by side in the split, and the end tied colsed to tightly hold them. The wefts are full length semi-green narrow cattail leaf blades, between 6 and 8 feet long. Trim the excess at the heel and tuck those warp elements under at least 2 passes of the weft to secure them. Make perforations through the warps where you intend to place your straps.
The way I made these, the toe is reminescent of the squared-off “Fringe toe” seen on some Basketmaker II, II and Pueblo III sandals. The strap arrangement is Mogollon. Straps are split cattail leaf-blades.
After final fitting and strap adjustment, the sandals are ready!
Now, if you make some of these don’t expect them to, you know, last a long time. These are basically expedient footwear. I just made them and havn’t really tested them out yet so I don’t even know how long they’ll last, and although I imagine it will be a fair number of miles, I imagine if these were my primary shoes I’d be making a new pair every week or so. They would certainly last longer if woven from stuffer leaves like yucca or strips of bark.
3 – Make animal hide shoes:
Of course if you want to be well protected there’s always the option of using the skins of animals to make survival shoes. While they might be a little bit harder to produce (mainly because of the hunting involved) these are going to be some of best long term survival options.
Those kinds of shoes are what trappers and other more primitive cultures used.
4 – Making tire shoes:
And one more “toe-covering” hack is making shoes from tires.
This is what people all across the third world are forced to do to for protection.
Here’s an interesting video showing you how to make tire shoes.
There are definitely other options for emergency shoes, but these should be enough to help in a tight spot.
Turn Your Survival Shoes Into Survival Tools
One of the best uses of survival shoes is as a bonus survival tool.
My team and I actually developed an incredible device you place inside your shoes to easily turn them into a survival tool.
They’re known as the FireLaces and they’re an incredible survival tool.
These shoe laces are made out of 550 lb. Paracord which has over 101 survival uses.
Then each shoe lace tip is a ferro-rod that can be struck against the striking plate in the front to create a roaring fire.
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