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Reviews > Footwear > Camp Shoes > Pakems Chamonix Mesh Camp Shoe > Test Report by joe schaffer

Pakems Chamonix Mesh Camp Shoe

Test Report by Joe Schaffer

INITIAL REPORT - April 7, 2019
FIELD REPORT - June 17, 2019
LONG TERM REPORT - August 18, 2019
NAME: Joe Schaffer
EMAIL: never2muchstuff(at)yahoo(dot)com
AGE: 71
HOME:  Bay Area, California USA

     I enjoy California's central Sierras, camping every month with a goal to match my age in nights out each year. For comfort I lug tent, mattress, chair and such. Typical summer trips run 5-8 days; 40 lb (18 kg), about half food and water related; about 5 miles (8 km) per hiking day in the bright and sunny granite in and around Yosemite. I winter base camp most often at 6,000 to 7,000 ft (1,800 to 2,000 m); 2 to 3 nights; 50 lb (23 kg); a mile or so (1.6 km) on snowshoes.

Product: shoesMen's Mesh Camp Shoe

Manufacturer:  Pakems
        Weight: (M's 9) 14 oz (397 g)
        Men's sizes: US 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13       
        Features: (from mfr. website)
EVA outsole
          • reflexive foam foot bed
• includes carry sack

MSRP: $64 US

Received: April, 2019

baggedMy Specs: 
        Weight M's 9 (pair): 14 3/4 oz (420 g);  L 7 3/8 oz (210 g); R 7 3/8 oz (210 g)
        Sack: 2 1/4 oz (64 g)
        Length: 11 1/2 in  (29 cm)
             Width: 4 1/8 in  (10.5 cm)
             Heel height: 3 7/8 in (9.9 cm)
                Sole thickness: 9/16 in  (14 mm)
             Rand height: 1 in (2.5 cm)
             Tread depth: 3/16 in (3 mm)
             Sack: about 13 x 6 in (33 x 15 cm)

My Description:
Camp is an aggressively treaded, lightweight, full-foot coverage breathable slip-on with a removable insole. A black elastic heel makes the shoe very easy to slip on and off, as well as allowing it to compress tidily for packing. Blue rand surrounds the shoe from about mid-heel, and a one-piece 'honey comb' mesh-covered silver-gray fabric covers the top of the foot and side, tapering to the heel. One-eighth inch (2 mm) stretch cord pulls through eight loops to tighten shoe fit as desired; with a cord lock to fasten the cord as stretched. Six strategically placed 'foam lumps' on the insole add spongy comfort. The lump under the heel sports a 'be kind' logo. The shoe has a discreet vendor logo on the rand at the outside of the foot.

    A unique feature on this shoe is the stretch cord loop fitted into a groove in the sole around the heel. The loop can be pulled out of the groove and slipped over the second shoe in order to hold the shoes together as a package. Wrapped up the shoes make a package about as long and two-thirds the thickness of a 2-Liter bottle.
     Having worn the shoe in the house for about 20 hours over several days I can say they are as comfortable as socks; perhaps more so as they provide support through the sole. The width is perfect for my duck feet, though length is about a half-inch (1.25 cm) too long.

    Light enough to tote as camp shoes, they are easy enough to slip on and off not to make a waking fellow come fully to his senses for a night time nature rendezvous. The stuff sack is so light it seems odd to heavy it up with flat webbing that could lift a car engine. I would never use the strap, so its disposition is not in doubt.

    The shoe being all synthetic and with a removable insole, I see it as a passable slack water crosser. It is not intended as a hiker, raising the question of need for such aggressive tread to work up the dirt in camp. I would not find low-cuts suitable for snow camping.

Field Conditions:
1. April 17-20, 2019: Tahoe National Forest, three nights backpacking 1 1/2 mi (2.5 km) on snow. 55 lb (25 kg) lv weight. 6,400 ft (1,950 m); 32-65 F (0-18 C). Mostly clear and warm.
2. May 1-4, 2019: Catfish Lake, Stanislaus National Forest, three nights backpacking 8 mi (13 km). Leave weight 45 lb (20 kg). 5,600-6,100 ft (1,700-1,900 m); 35-75 F (2-24 C). 1 mi (1.6 km) XC day hike. Clear and sunny.
    3. May 10-14, 2019: Kibbie Creek, Stanislaus National Forest, California. 4 nights backpacking, 15 mi (24 km); leave weight 45 lb (20 kg); 3 camps; 40-70 F (4-21 C), sunny, no wind; 5,100-6,400 ft (1,550-1,950 m).
4. May 29-Jun 2, 2019: Kibbie Ridge, Stanislaus National Forest, California. 4 nights, 2 mi (3 k) hiking and 11 mi (18 km) backpacking; leave weight 40 lb (18 kg); 3 camps; 45-75 F (7-24 C), half sunny, half cloudy with a few spits of rain and two heavy showers; 5,100-6,700 ft (1,550-2,000 m).
5. Jun 11-14, 2019: Chilnualna Falls, Yosemite National Park, California: 3 nights, 9 mi (14 km) backpacking; leave weight 35 lb (16 kg); 2 camps; 50-90 F (10-32 C), sunny; 4,200-6,500 ft (1,300-2,000 m).


    1. Tahoe:
This was a snow camping trip and I decided to take the shoes anyway. As it turned out, a large tree well presented the opportunity to pitch camp on pine straw. I wound up wearing the shoes much of the time. They kept my feet warm until the temp dropped below 45 F (7 C). On crusty snow they provided a reasonable degree of traction, where I only wore them briefly as I didn't want to get wet in slop. 26 hours wearing.

    They slip on and off very easily, making them great shoes for getting in and out of the tent. I'm not partial to standing on the collapsible heel pocket as I don't like how it feels; and the shoe doesn't stay on very well. The elastic heel stretches so easily to slip into that it seems I'm perfectly satisfied to stick my foot all the way in the shoe.

    2. Catfish: The previous outing I did like the shoe tread for the wee bit of snow scampering I did. On this outing the ground was dry and bare. The tread chewed up the dirt at my campfire site into a fine dust after two nights. Evening temps were 40's (6 C) and I did have campfire, but my feet remained warm with one pair of socks. 29 hours wearing.

    3. Kibbie: No additional observations. 23 hours wearing.

    4. Kibbie: No additional observations. 30 hours wearing.

    5. Yosemite: A rivulet confounded my destination ambitions and we chose a campsite a couple hundred yards (200 m) uphill. I made a half-dozen trips or so to get water and venture about, wearing the Chamonix shoes. Half the trip to water was steep granite and half rubble. The shoes were fine for such adventure.

    A feeder stream into Chilnualna Creek crossed the trail. It was about 15 feet (5 m) across and perhaps a foot (0.3 m) at the deepest with not imposing volume or velocity. It was icy cold, however, and I spent a couple days camping thinking about my level of motivation to plow through it. It was too cold and rocky to go barefoot and I didn't want to get my boots wet. At last it occurred to me to give the Pakems a shot. I pulled the bungee as tight as it would go. To my great amusement I discovered I could wrap the slack around my ankles and secure the loop with the fastener already in place! Losing a shoe in the current seemed unlikely enough that I felt prepared to get the Pakems wet.

    There's no ankle support, but my feet did not spin out of the shoes even when I slipped on rocks. I crossed three times each way for a total of six and found the Chamonix entirely satisfactory for tackling the rivulet. The way back down I removed the insoles, which took longer to dry than the shoes.
29 hours wearing; 1 mi (1.5 k) hiking.

    I'm now a great fan of these shoes. They are just as comfy in heat as flip-flops, but provide toe protection, don't come off and are warmer in the cold. Nothing has so far been able to penetrate the sole--I'm always picking pine cones out of softer-sole footwear. They are splendid footwear for cavorting about and around camp.

Total wearing to date: 137 hours

Field Conditions:
    6. Jun 18-21, 2019. Shasta-Trinity National Forest, California, USA. 3 nights backpacking, 35 lb (15 k) leave weight, 3 1/2 mi (6 km), 2 camps, 85-38 F (29-3 C), sunny, 5,400-5,900 ft (1600-1800 m).
    7. Jun 30-Jul 5: Emigrant-Yosemite Wilderness, California. 5 nights backpacking, 41 lb (19 kg) leave weight, 12 mi (19 km) trail + 3 mi (5 k) cross-country = 15 mi (24 k), 4 camps, 80-38 F (27-3 C), sunny, 7,200-8,400 ft (2,200-2,600 m).
   8. Jul 10-19: Yosemite Wilderness, California. 9 nights backpacking, 41 lb (19 kg) leave weight, 17 mi (27 km) trail + 13 mi (21 km) cross-country = 30 mi (48 k), 8 camps, 85-40 F (29-4 C), sunny, 4,900-8,100 ft (1,500-2,500 m).
   9. Jul 27-30: Waldo Lake, Oregon. 3 nights backpacking, 50 lb (23 kg) leave weight, 1 1/2 mi (2.5 km) cross country, 2 camps, 80-38 F (27-3 C), sunny, 5,400 ft (1,600 m).
  10. Aug 12-16: Yosemite Wilderness. 4 nights backpacking, 34 lb (15 kg) leave weight, 18 mi (30 km) trail, 3 camps, 85-40 F (29-4 C), sunny, 7,000-9,400 ft (2,100-2,900 m).

Again I had occasion to make an easy water crossing with the shoes--a creek about 30 ft (10 m) across and up to 8 in (20 cm) deep with slow current. I'd removed the insoles. The Noon day was hot, and stowed in outside netting pockets the shoes fully dried by the time I got to camp that afternoon. The shoes show no sign of wear. Several campsites were covered in pine cones--none penetrated. I like flip flops on hot days, but pine cones chew up the soles. I have been using the stuff sack the shoes came with as a perfect-size ditty bag. White wouldn't be the color I'd prefer for backpacking; and I'd rather the draw string not stretch.

Total hours wearing for test: 323

Terrific light-weight, puncture-resistant, very breathable camp shoes. They aren't so hot as granite walkers as the elastic heel lets the foot slip sideways or backwards too easily. Good for mild water crossings; and they dry quickly with the insole removed. As a camp shoe, they are wonderful.
Quick shots:
a) light
    b) comfortable
    c) easy to slip on and off
Thank you Pakems and for the opportunity to test this product. This report concludes the test.

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Reviews > Footwear > Camp Shoes > Pakems Chamonix Mesh Camp Shoe > Test Report by joe schaffer

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