As reported last week, our desert walk on 19 November was in ‘boots’. Having served me so well in Madeira, I had taken the now broken in Roclites. That was a mistake. The mesh on the Roclites looks solid enough, doesn’t it? I knew it wasn’t at all water resistant. I soon discovered it is not at all sand resistant, either. So the shoes quickly filled with sand and the tight spot on the right heel was immediately a problem. A precautionary plaster following the previous night’s short walk didn’t really help, and I finished up losing about 1 sq inch of skin from the heel.
I’m actually happy with the shoes and can use Sealskinz socks to keep the water out, but they are definitely not suitable for walking in the desert. I used trekking sandals for the rest of the trip, with no problem at all, despite the guide’s scepticism.
15 March 2011 - Postscript:
My initial optimism about these shoes was finally dashed when during 2008 the linings inside the heel split, leaving me with blisters every time I used them. They had done less than 300 km, mostly in Madeira and New Zealand, before they were abandoned in a far corner of our kitchen. Very disappointing, really, especially after all the effort taken to ensure that they were the right shoes for me. They weren't. Should anyone wish to take them on, I'll be happy to donate them - they are in reasonable condition apart from the heels - UK size 8½.