Finding the best bug out shoes is a topic not often considered by preppers. There is a mountain of content out there on what to put in a bug out bag, but much less on what to actually put on your feet when bugging out. You will be doing yourself a disservice if you’re not giving footwear a serious look when making your bug out plans. (Read: Why I Will Bug Out WTSHTF.)
Reasons Bug Out Shoes are Important
If you’re planning for the need to bug out, odds are that those plans will include some level of travel by foot. Let’s face it, thinking about what to put on your feat isn’t as fun as thinking about what to put in your bag. Footwear is boring, but wondering what gun, GPS, or MRE to put in your pack – that’s much more fun. What you put on your feet, however, is probably the most important decision of all.
Have you tried covering a lot of ground with blisters on your feet? Do you know what it’s like to travel by foot when your feet are soaked and there’s no way to dry them out anytime soon? Are you aware of how quickly your feet will tire and get sore over hard, uneven ground? This is why choosing the best bug out shoe for your situation is important.
Before becoming a prepper I was a hiker. That experience, I believe, is why I often find myself criticizing others’ suggestions in what to put in a bag for that trek out of the city WTSHTF, or what should go into a pack for bushwhacking your way to that remote cabin when the roads are unsafe to travel. People that haven’t put hard miles under their feet with a pack on their back don’t seem to give much consideration to the weight of their pack, what it feels like to trudge for miles uphill, through dense forest, or around concrete rubble. That lack of real experience walking in such conditions is why I believe they pay less attention to what they put on their feet. I think most preppers just assume it’s a given that they will wear their military-style combat boots. If they’re good enough for the Army, they’re good enough for you – right? Not necessarily – but maybe.
Indeed, in some cases, a good pair of combat boots might make the most sense. But for others, it might be a pair of well-worn hiking boots. For others still, a good pair of sneakers will be the most practical. The reality is that each individual has different plans and needs, so their shoes should fit the plan.
Are Indestructible Shoes Best for Bugging Out?
One option for bug out footwear is Indestructible Shoes. That’s the name brand of a company that bills their shoes/sneakers as some of the toughest out there. There are videos out there of the shoes being run over, people walking on nails, attempting to cut them with various blades, etc. The company does a good job at marketing. I see their ads on Instagram all the time (like our Instagram page). They also sent me a pair for review.
While I chose a slip-on pair of shoes to review (pictured), with the intent of wearing them out to the garage where I tinker with various power tools and such, a more obvious choice for bugging out would be one of the sneakers they offer.
“Sneakers for bugging out?” you ask. Yes, if you’re in a city and speed is what you need. Under that scenario, you’re looking at a lighter bag to travel distance fast.
Indestructible Shoe Advantages
The draw to an “indestructible” shoe is obvious, particularly for urban environments. The marketing on these shoes identifies the following attributes:
- Steel cap toes – your toes are kept safe from anything that might otherwise crush them.
- Shock absorption – makes the shoes comfortable to wear.
- Fire resistant – walk through flames, maybe?
- Anti-puncture military-grade kevlar – it lines the bed of the shoe – walk on nails!
- Lightweight – again, comfort.
These are all great advantages for a post-collapse, urban bug out situation. You could walk through the war zone with your feel comfortable and safe, except…
Indestructible Shoes are No Good
I’ll open this by saying that I am sensitive to giving products a bad review, particularly when they’ve been sent to me for free. However, what’s more important to me than pleasing the retailer is pleasing the Prepper Press visitor, and I need a reputation where I can be trusted, so trust me when I say – these shoes are bad.
I received an email when my shoes shipped – and then I waited, and waited. When they finally arrived, I knew why they took so long to arrive – they shipped from China!
Mass Produced Junk
Then I did a bit more research, and these exact shoes are sold by other online retailers. They’re basically just bought wholesale and drop shipped from China. You can buy them for around $25 if you went through China directly.
Contrary to the marketing pitch, these shoes ARE NOT comfortable. I think they would be fine with a $50 insert to contour the bottom of the shoe to your foot (I love mine), but that’s a $50 insert.
However – online reviews of people who have had these shoes for a period of time consistently indicate that they fall apart after moderate use. Worse than having uncomfortable shoes for bugging out is have shoes that fall apart while bugging out!
When shopping for products, I live by the mantra – “buy quality once over junk twice.” If you’re buying Indestructible Shoes for bugging out, your money would be better spent on a quality pair of boots.
Best Bug Out Shoes Summary
Lacking anything better, it seems the standard quality combat boot is still best suited for bugging out. If you’re going through forests or mountains, a hiking boot might be better, but you get the point. Skip crap products!