Our family of four spent last weekend at Bass Lake near Yosemite National Park. That meant we spent the better part of three days in water, near water, soaked by water, or riding on top of water. As with many lakes, the shores of Bass Lake are very rocky – in fact, my 2-year-old’s favorite activity was standing among the palm-sized (to him) smooth, erosion-rounded stones and throwing them into the water to delight at the “plop!” sound they made.
Instead of stressing out about the boys losing their balance and falling among the slippery rocks, I made them wear the mesh water shoes that Lands’ End sent us to try. Basically, they’re like sneakers for wearing in water. The 2-year-old wore them all weekend without complaint, which is saying a lot because he, being 2, complains about everything. In fact, he even requested them using one of the few words he knows: he would hold them up and cry “Soos!” when he knew we were getting ready to head down to the water.
The rest of us appreciated the stability the shoes afforded us at the lake’s edge. I found my pretty coral shoes to fit a bit loosely on my feet, so I won’t be using them to run through creek beds at high speed. Not that I would do that anyway. My 4-year-old was not immune to the whines – he didn’t like the way the sand got caught inside the shoe after running around on the beach for a while. Plus, the shoes seem to run large for his size, too, and he started to get irritated. For this boy I would go with a sandal next time.
And speaking of sandals, my husband tried the Men’s River Trekkers, which would have been perfect except that this shoe runs on the narrow side, and my husband has Neanderthal feet. As such, his pinkie toe stuck out the side and this bothered him so much he didn’t care about walking barefoot on the rocks. Our travel companion, Patrick, inherited the shoes, and his more slender feet found a love connection with the Trekkers, so we all lived happily ever after.