Without your feet, you aren’t walking anywhere, especially on a trail. During my time in the Marine Corps, it was pounded into our heads to change our socks and trim our nails frequently. Our boots were well fitted, and next to our weapons, were considered the most important piece of equipment we had. “You have boots and a rifle…you can walk into battle”, our drill instructors would say.
With that wisdom, one can see that even an injury as minor as a blister can cause much larger problems when you’re 5 miles from the nearest road. While most of us are fortunate enough to not be walking in a combat zone, being late for dinner because your feet were hurting can be just as traumatic to some.
That said, I must admit that sometimes, my feet are an afterthought. I walk around my campsite barefoot or wear the same pair of socks for three days, sometimes just cotton tube socks. I have been blessed with callused feet that almost never get blisters, but I realize that the term “tenderfoot” is a valid descriptor for many people, especially those that haven’t ever hiked much.