There are certain unpleasant things that can be ignored when on a long hike. The biting insects, the sweaty heat, or the heavy backpack weighing you down as you struggle up the hill are just a few things that can make a long hike feel even longer. The worst though is when you have wet feet. Not only is the big “F” words (Foot Fungus) an imminent threat, but the squishy, squeaky sound can reverberate throughout the wild like a belch in church. There are several perils to hiking with wet feet and any man or woman should be well prepared before making that decision to trek through the swampy marshes wearing nothing but ankle socks and running shoes.
Hiking is fun, isn’t it?
The look of death. Any woman who has a regular aesthetician doing their manicures and pedicures knows when they have been very bad. The look thrown in your direction by the woman who spent at least 45 minutes scraping and chipping the dry skin and corns from your foot last week will wilt a flower after she sees the condition of your feet after sloshing through two feet of water for a day. Hiking with your feet wet will undoubtedly make the foot situation much worse and put your pedicure lady into a foul and sadistic mood. It is unlikely you will only get the look, but you will probably experience harder than normal scrubbing of the pumas stone and extra digging into the cuticle with sharp instruments. The pain you experience is a good reminder of why you should immediately go out and buy galoshes and thick socks for your next nature adventure.
You don’t want this to be your next pedicure
A foot rub will be out of the question. If your nature hike is an actual date, you can be assured that if your foot comes anywhere near that special someone, things will turn sour fast. The smell emanating from your feet after being soaked for several hours in dirty water while also sweating at the same time might be irresistible to your Golden Retriever, but he also likes to sniff his own poop, so you should not take this as an encouraging sign. Your date, however, will head for the hills, and not in the good “let’s look at the sunset and get romantic” kind of way. If your date stops at a gas station on the way home to pick up a pine scented air freshener, and then proceeds to strap it to his face, you are not getting invited in for a night-cap and sensual foot massage.
Spending money on new shoes. The most obvious problem with hiking with your feet wet is ruining the shoes you bought specifically for this occasion. Those stylish hiking clogs in cherry red leather that you purchased from the salesperson who complimented the way they made your newly pedicured feet look are now nothing but cherry red vices as the material they are made with constricts with moisture and threatens to cut off the circulation in your toes. After your foot then turns the same shade as your shoe, you will be forced to remove them and walk barefoot. This will cause you pain and suffering on two levels. The first is obvious, and the second will be when you go in for your pedicure and receive the treatment described in the second paragraph of this article. You will find yourself limping along the hiking trail and wondering if there really is such a thing as a “hiking clog” and how you are going to pay off the £200 charge from your credit card after the anticipated reconstructive foot surgery.
What’s that smell?
Your foot will make obscene sounds when walking. This is of course another date faux pas as there is nothing less attractive to a potential romantic partner as the continuous whoopee cushion your foot has now become. It is almost certainly a conclusion to the date, as there is no chance of taking your squeaky feet into a public place. The mixture of the sounds and smells of your wet feet can also be misconstrued for something much more embarrassing and so it is best to avoid this situation altogether if you want to see this person again.
To be clear, I didn’t wet myself…
Your foot will become very itchy. If you manage to somehow avoid the smell and sounds of the wet foot, or simply don’t care because you are not on a date and just out hiking with your dog, then you will almost certainly be plagued by “wet foot itch.” This is the niggling itch that occurs in the farthest most reaches of the bottom of you foot where it is least accessible to scratch. It is also one of the most uncomfortable areas to scratch, especially if you are ticklish. The most common route is the “cast scratch” usually done with a blunt pencil, a stick or a ruler. Please make sure the pencil is blunt and not sharpened as this could lead to a whole other issue called lead poisoning or what is medically referred to as “stabbing yourself in the foot with a sharpened pencil.” “Wet foot itch” can also lead to the “look of death” as it most definitely will cause dry chapped skin and dirty toenails.
Itchy? That means you’ve got yourself a fungus!
Summer can be an enjoyable time to spend with family and friends, or a romantic partner you are trying to get to know better. The summer hike can be one of the nicest ways of spending a sunny day as long as safety precautions are taken and followed. Wild animals, bug bites, and frizzy hair are only a few of the dangers associated with this outdoor activity, but all are preventable. One of the most dangerous is the wet foot, bringing with it discomfort and embarrassment of varying degrees. To avoid the mishaps mentioned, always wear suitable footwear, thick socks, and soggy areas. Stay on the dry trails and don’t venture too far out into unknown and potentially wet areas. Stay dry, my friends, and your feet will thank you.