Last Updated on February 20, 2022
For the last two years, I have been lugging around both a pair of hiking shoes and multi-purpose tennis shoes for long city strolls and travel days. With just one backpack, size really matters, so I wanted to find one pair of shoes that could replace both, especially the heavy duty hiking shoes. But while not adventure travelers, we tend to do some big hikes, like the day we went volcano boarding, the day we became cave explorers and the day we became mountaineers.
Just before staring a massive shoe search, we were put in touch with Vasque, who offered to send me out a pair of their Vasque Mindbender trail running shoes to test. I had never heard of the Vasque brand before and was not sure about the offer, but when a few minutes of research online revealed some hard core brand fans, I was convinced to test out whether these were the replacement shoes for me.
From the minute I tried on the Mindbenders, I was in love. They felt comfortable on my feet from the start, which is a relief for me as I have wide feet and don’t always find shoes I can say are the perfect fit. The shoes are lightweight but durable, and the tread is perfect for the trail running I was doing in the Arizona desert. The shoes should be even better for our upcoming adventure on the Mexican Yucatan peninsula.
We have a habit of traveling to places in their hottest season and one major problem for me is how hot and sweaty my feet get. The Vasque Mindbender has a nylon mesh material that lets in just enough air to keep my feet dry, and so far I have yet to have sweaty feet in these shoes!
Though these shoes are intended for gripping mud or sprinting through sand, I tried them on solid concrete and was happy when even after hours of walking around my feet did not hurt. For the limited time I spend not wearing sandals on hot city streets, these will work perfectly. What’s even better is that I am now confident I have found the perfect shoes for our 4-day trek on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in Peru, which has been a lifelong dream.