The Inaugural Asheville Marathon at the Biltmore - in Luna Sandals (Venado/original)

The Inaugural Asheville Marathon at the Biltmore - in Luna Sandals (Venado/original)

You're out on a run. Your nose is getting stuffy, so you lean to the side for a quick farmer's blow. It's cold out, but you didn't realize how cold until you go to wipe your nose with the back of your glove to clear off any additional moisture -- only to find that it's already frozen around the edge of your nostril in mere seconds.

Welcome to the inaugural Asheville Marathon, held on the grounds of the beautiful Biltmore estate. "Well," I thought dramatically at around mile 20, "At least I'll die somewhere majestic."

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Barefoot Ted Bares all on the new Vibram Five Finger KSO Treks

Above, a photo shot of Barefoot Ted as he runs in the Vibram fivefinger Treks (Zoom added for a better view!)

If you've been eagerly hoping for more information on one of the new Vibram Five Finger models—one of which is the fivefinger Trek—you're in luck. Barefoot Ted has posted two great photos of the VFF Treks along with a review of the Treks over on his blog. Here's a teaser of Ted's review (You'll have to head over to his blog for the rest!):

When I first put these shoes on, I knew that I had finally felt the most comfortable VFF yet. The kangaroo skin's soft side is INSIDE the shoe...so your foot is encased in smoothness. Under 6 ounces. Rugged. Breathable. Thank you Gawd!

These are the shoes that I am going to use for this year's Leadville 100 mile trail race. As many of you know, I have done trail ultras in FiveFinger Classics, Sprints and KSOs, but this seems destined to be my favorite 100 mile trail shoe. Thank you Vibram!

Like I said, you'll have to go to BFT's blog for the rest (and one more photo!)!

You might recall that Barefoot Ted is a Vibram fivefingers tester and had previously commented on how he had been enjoying his Treks on longer trail runs:

Have you ever run 100 miles through the mountains in a pair of VFFs? I have. It gets tough...especially at night when you are tired on rocky ground.

The people at Vibram are thinking deeply about what they are doing...trying to preserve the flexibility and feel that is necessary for tapping into the incredible system of movement we have inherited from our ancestors while at the same time facilitating a more comfortable ride...just like all great indigenous hunter/gathering footwear does...less is more...but enough is good...and in certain terrains, this shoe will be a great solution.

In a nutshell, it seems the fivefinger Treks are basically a leather-clad, insulated, more aggressively-soled version of the fivefinger KSO.

Many of you would like to know how the leathered Treks react to sweaty feet (not to mention the loss of machine washability!) and I am trying to find out more and you can rest assured I'll post anything else I learn just as soon as possible.

Thank you Ted for publishing this info!

Be sure to check out: barefootted.com

The original photo of the Treks from voycontigo.de

Patrick heads to Parks and Libraries in Five Finger KSOs

Patrick heads to Parks and Libraries in Five Finger KSOs
Patrick heads to Parks and Libraries in Five Finger KSOs
Patrick heads to Parks and Libraries in Five Finger KSOs

Patrick (linuxracr on the forums) from Dallas posted the above photos taken at various places including the Napa Valley, Enchanted Rock State Natural Area (outside Fredricksburg, Texas), and at the Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Patrick has also used his VFFs for martial arts noting that, "I myself am a martial artist (Shito Ryu, Goju Ryu), and have used my Vibram FF KSO for this. They work great! Just make sure your surface will not give you TOO much grip."

Welcome to birthday shoes, Patrick!

Tripp Tests out his Classic Vibram Five Fingers on a Trail

Tripp Tests out his Classic Vibram Five Fingers on a Trail

Tripp, a new VFFer out in Austin, Texas, wrote in about his first week walking about on a trail in his Classic Vibram Five Fingers:

Hi,

I just got my VFF Classics on Monday after lots of research from sites like yours. (Thanks!) After a couple of dry runs in "civilization" (ie the streets of LA), I thought I should take them out for a real workout on Mt. Laguna in the Cleveland National Forest outside San Diego.

Rocky terrain mixed with loose, sandy soil on the trail were no problem. (The big red ants, though, had me re-thinking the decision to not to get the KSOs!) But the shoes (and my feet) felt great all day.

Next up, some short runs on the golf course back home, more POSE training, and eventually a 5K.

Stay tuned.

Tripp from Austin

Keep us posted, Tripp!

Cody Climbs at Clayton beach off Chuckanut drive (in Five Finger Sprints)

Cody Climbs at Clayton beach off Chuckanut drive (in Five Finger Sprints)
Cody Climbs at Clayton beach off Chuckanut drive (in Five Finger Sprints)

Got a couple photos in the mailbag from Cody. Cody was climbing at Clayton Beach, Washington. Sorry if I got a little carried away on the title of this post, but it's not often I get to employ that much alliteration, to say nothing of a street named Chuckanut Drive.

Anyway, here's Cody on his Vibram fivefinger Sprints:

so i recently purchased a pair of sprints at my local running store (turned out to be the only other retailer in washington state). my purchase was on a whim, but im glad i did it, they are amazing. in fact i am going hiking to a place called oyster dome shortly after posting this. ...

here are some pics of me climbing some rocks while hiking to a beach, these were taken at clayton beach off of chuckanut drive in washington.

One fun part of fivefingers is that they are great impromptu climbing shoes — trees, rock walls, a bit of bouldering — that kinda thing.

Thanks for sharing Cody and have fun on your hike!

Vibram FiveFingers Sighted in NYC

Vibram FiveFingers Sighted in NYC

Kevin (koffekev on the forums) was recently gallivanting around New York City with his niece when he happened upon a fellow VFFer named Richard (pictured above). Kevin wrote about the experience:

Hi Justin.

I met Richard on Mott St. as I was walking out of Gimme Coffee. I just said "hey, do you mind if I take a pic of your five fingers?" Before he realized I was wearing the same KSO's he asked if I liked his prosthetic feet? When he noticed I was wearing the same thing he mentioned that they were far less expensive here than in his native Australia. I invited him to check out B-day shoes so hopefully he will introduce himself. ...

In the Times Square area I noticed a group of tourists pointing and giggling. I asked if they liked them and a young woman said "yes, very much" in very broken english.

Waiting at a busy cross walk a man crouched down to try to read the Vibram stitched on my foot. I had a quick conversation with him. He seemed interested when I told him it felt as if I were barefoot but when I suggested he google five fingers he replied curtly and condescendingly that he would. I just laughed and waved him off.

Thanks, Kevin!

Inspired by Kevin's experience meeting people in the Big Apple, I'd like to offer up the following definition for Vibram fivefingers:

Vibram fivefingers [noun] — a rubber-toed foot in the door for sparking conversations with complete strangers (and making new friends).

Am I right?

If any of you have a "VFF sighting" or chance-meeting with another VFFer, tell us about it! We even have a forum topic about fivefingers sightings in the wild.

Hiking Eastern Newfoundland in Vibram Five Fingers Sprints

Hiking Eastern Newfoundland in Vibram Five Fingers Sprints

I received the above photo of Alain, which was taken on a hike in Easter Newfoundland, Canada. I asked Alain about his experiences with hiking and his Vibram fivefinger Sprints, wondering in particular how well the open-topped Sprint functioned in grittier environments. Here's what Alain had to say:

I’ve done quite a few hikes in my fivefingers and so far have not experienced many problems. This particular hike in Newfoundland was totally problem-free as I was hiking on giant rocks and large pebbles the whole time. I’ve done some portaging on canoe trips in my home province of Manitoba. As these were mostly on sandy trails, I got a bunch of little rocks inside my FF. In these situations, I’d have prefered the KSO’s I think.

I’ve been running in them for a few months now, on dirt trails, rocky trails, sidewalks and paved roads and have had no problems whatsoever.

Thanks for sharing, Alain!