The third must-have gear item Grayson suggested might surprise you: flip-flops. “I brought down booties, thinking it would be cold,” he says. “What I really should have brought was flip-flops. You end up wearing the same socks and shoes over and over, so allowing your feet to air out becomes critical. Also, when you wake up in the middle of the night to stumble around, flip-flops are best. Shower tent? Flip-flops. Peeling off your climbing boots? Flip flops. This should have been a no-brainer, but I was under the false impression that Base Camp is cold.”
So take these: A pair of Columbia Techsun Flip IIIs ($35). They’re made from a lightweight synthetic material for durability and fast-drying, have a cushioned footbed for comfort, and have a grippy rubber outsole to give you traction when it’s damp or slick.
The Alternate: I like Crocs for camp shoes. They’re super-light, air out well, dry quickly, and offer a little more foot and toe protection than flip-flops. The Crocs Classic ($35) is just the ticket. True, you have to reach down to grab a heel strap—strenuous—but they’re still very easy on/off.