I could only remove them for the night, but the weather wouldn't always be dry, and even if it is - it would get moist inside the tent and damp during the night outside.

So how do I keep my shoes from smelling horribly and being wet (especially after a rainy day for example)? I would want to keep moving in the morning, so at most it would be 8 hours of shoe-free experience. And of course no electricity and a heavy bag on my shoulders. Having said that, I couldn't rotate shoes at all either (they are heavy and costly - I can barely afford the first pair of decent shoes!).

  • @Tetsujin If you have an answer, please post it below. I left the portion of your comment asking for clarification, but answering in comments is not allowed... and posting a link (essentially sending users elsewhere to find that information) does not help curate the information on this site. Aug 21, 2016 at 14:36
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3 Answers 3


The solution is a second set of footwear that is lightweight and inexpensive. Perhaps sandals, or canvas deck shoes. When you arrive at the campsite, change shoes and set your hiking shoes out in the sun to dry and to air out. Wear the lightweight shoes as you set up camp, cook your evening meal, and so on. If it's raining, hang them up under your tarp (rain protection) - believe it or not things do dry a little this way.

It should not be moist in the tent. Typically it is a little warmer in the tent than out, and you should have ventilation. Let both sets of shoes spend the night in the tent with you. Your hiking shoes should not get worse over night. In the morning, put on the lightweight ones and first thing you do, find some sun to get the hiking shoes some more drying time while you prepare breakfast, pack up the camp, and such. One of the last things you do as you leave is switch from your lightweight camp shoes to your hiking shoes for the day, putting the lightweight shoes in your bag.

Continue each day and your shoes should stay dry and well aired out. The alternative shoes don't need to be hiking shoes, so they don't need to be expensive or heavy at all. Also, your feet will be healthier switching into dry shoes (and even better, dry socks too) twice a day.


Some hikers keep their wet boots in their sleeping bags overnight. Not very comfortable, but it is claimed to dry them somewhat. Their concern is not the smelliness, but that wet feet can get blisters.


Put rice in a pair of socks, then put the socks in the boots when not in use. rice will absorb the moisture.

The reason feet and shoes smell is due to bacteria, if you reduce the moisture content of the boots then they will smell less. You could go down the route of antibacterial spray like they use in bowling allies but keeping them dryish should do.

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