Traveling Light to Greece with a Collection of Vibrams
Steve took along his Vibram Five Fingers Classics, Sprints and Bikilas on a recent trip to Greece. That's about 2 pounds. Not bad for three pairs of shoes. After the jump, read what Steve had to say about his travels, see some more great pics and learn to say "Five Fingers" in Greek!
The VFFs are great for traveling. They weigh nothing and take up very little space, a big benefit in these days when airlines charge for almost anything related to baggage. I took most of my collection to our recent trip to Greece. My Classics kept my feet cool, clean and comfortable during the 11 hour flight. They were easily refreshed by a washing in the beach shower. A quick note - After checking into the hotel I slipped into my Bikilas and ran through the streets of Athens to the old Olympic stadium. This allowed me to stay awake and quickly adjust to the new time zone. I can't say enough about these shoes. They have just the right amount of sole to handle rough terrain while maintaining the glove-like fit. I put about 30 miles on them during this trip in varied terrain (beach, streets and paths) and they handled everything.
I've been wearing VFFs regularly for about a year and a half now so my feet are used to them. Here in Colorado we have a few chilly days in the winter. When the temperature drops I wear my KSOs with Injinji socks. I'm really looking forward to the Komodos. They look like they will be a great trail and winter shoe. But back to the trip... I never had any foot pain on the trip. Wearing VFFs as much as possible has allowed me to recover the natural stride that I had lost by wearing shoes. The constant impact of clomping around in thick soled shoes without any awareness as to how our feet strike the ground does more damage and causes more fatigue than we realize. While we didn't do any extended hikes (3+ miles), there was a lot of touring of ancient sites. People often don't realize how mountainous and rugged Greece really is. As you can see from the Delphi picture there is a lot of vertical hiking on gravel/stone paths. Negotiating these sites was a breeze. I wore my Sprints and Classics on hikes and ran in my Bikilas every day. My wife, daughter and sister also wore VFFs several occasions on the trip and didn't have any problems.
As you can tell, I love VFFs. During the trip I was known as the ambassador of funny shoes. Every day someone would approach me and ask about them. It was a great ice-breaker. I had a great time being the VFF ambassador throughout our trip. A day didn't go by without someone coming up to me an asking about those "shoes" (followed by "where can I get them?"). They were all curious and friendly and interested in my, πέντε δάχτυλα (pente thaktela) - five fingers. Hopefully, you should see some new members from Europe based upon my references to your site as the place to go for info.
Keep up the great work!Steve
Steve, thanks for sending in these marvelous shots, sharing your story and teaching us a little Greek!