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Best Shoes for Hiking in Hawaii

When planning a hiking trip in Hawaii, choosing the right shoes is essential for a comfortable and enjoyable experience. The unique terrain and weather conditions in Hawaii require careful consideration when selecting hiking shoes. Here are some factors to keep in mind when choosing the best shoes for hiking in Hawaii:

1. Terrain in Hawaii: Hawaii offers diverse landscapes, including mountains, volcanoes, rainforests, and coastal trails. Depending on the terrain you plan to explore, you’ll need to consider the level of traction and support your shoes provide.

2. Weather Conditions in Hawaii: Hawaii’s weather can vary, with humidity, rain, and heat being common factors. Look for shoes that offer breathability, moisture-wicking properties, and protection from the elements.

3. Comfort and Fit: Hiking shoes should provide ample cushioning, arch support, and a snug fit to prevent blisters or discomfort during long hikes. Consider trying on different pairs and walking around to ensure a proper fit.

4. Durability: Given the rugged terrain and potential for rough conditions, durability is crucial. Look for shoes made with high-quality materials and sturdy construction that can withstand the demands of hiking in Hawaii.

There are different types of hiking shoes suitable for Hawaii:

1. Hiking Sandals: Ideal for trails with water crossings and hot weather, hiking sandals offer breathability and water-friendly features.

2. Trail Running Shoes: Lightweight and nimble, trail running shoes are suitable for shorter hikes and well-maintained trails.

3. Hiking Boots: For challenging terrains or longer hikes, hiking boots provide enhanced ankle support, stability, and protection.

To make your selection easier, we’ve compiled a list of the top picks for hiking shoes in Hawaii, including the best hiking sandals, trail running shoes, and hiking boots.

While exploring Hawaii’s stunning trails, keep in mind these tips: stay hydrated by carrying enough water, protect yourself from the sun with sunscreen and a hat, pack proper gear including a backpack, snacks, and a map, and follow Leave No Trace principles to preserve the beauty of the Hawaiian outdoors.

By taking these factors into consideration and choosing the right hiking shoes, you’ll be well-equipped to enjoy the diverse and breathtaking landscapes that Hawaii has to offer.

Key takeaway:

  • Choose hiking shoes based on the terrain in Hawaii: Consider the rugged and diverse terrains in Hawaii, such as volcanic landscapes and muddy trails, to select appropriate shoes for optimal grip and stability.
  • Consider the weather conditions in Hawaii: Due to the tropical climate, choose hiking shoes that offer breathability and moisture-wicking properties to keep your feet comfortable and prevent blisters.
  • Focus on comfort, fit, and durability: Ensure your hiking shoes provide a snug fit, good arch support, cushioning, and durability to withstand the challenging hiking conditions in Hawaii.

Factors to Consider when Choosing Hiking Shoes for Hawaii

Hiking in Hawaii calls for the perfect pair of shoes,

and there are key factors to consider when making your choice.

From the diverse terrain to the ever-changing weather conditions, we’ll explore what to keep in mind for your hiking adventures.

In addition, we’ll take a look at the importance of comfort and fit,

as well as the durability of your shoes.

So, get ready to discover what makes for the best hiking shoes in the tropical paradise of Hawaii.

Terrain in Hawaii

Hawaii is renowned for its challenging terrain, so it’s crucial to carefully select the appropriate hiking shoes for your adventures on the islands. The terrain in Hawaii presents a variety of obstacles, including steep volcanic slopes, rocky coastal paths, verdant rainforests, and muddy trails. To successfully navigate these terrains, it is important to choose hiking shoes that are specifically suited for each type.

1. Volcanic Slopes: Hawaii’s volcanic slopes are characterized by rockiness, unevenness, and slipperiness. Opt for hiking shoes with sturdy soles and excellent traction, such as trail running shoes or hiking boots with aggressive treads.

2. Coastal Paths: Coastal paths in Hawaii often consist of sand or rocks. Hiking sandals with durable and non-slip soles are ideal for these terrains. These sandals offer both breathability and comfort while ensuring your feet remain cool and protected.

3. Rainforests: Hawaii’s lush rainforests feature muddy and uneven trails. It is advisable to wear hiking boots with waterproof features and ankle support in these conditions. Choose shoes that are constructed using durable materials and provide excellent grip to minimize the risk of slipping.

4. Mountainous Areas: If you intend to hike in Hawaii’s mountainous areas, sturdy hiking boots are a must. These boots should offer ankle support, strong traction, and exceptional stability to handle the steep and rugged terrain.

When selecting hiking shoes for Hawaii, consider the specific terrain you will encounter and opt for footwear that meets the demands of that particular environment. Prioritize comfort, fit, and durability to ensure a safe and enjoyable hiking experience amidst Hawaii’s breathtaking terrain.

Weather Conditions in Hawaii

Weather conditions are a crucial factor to consider when selecting the right hiking shoes for Hawaii. There are several key elements to take into account.

1. Rainfall: Given Hawaii’s tropical climate and consistent rainfall throughout the year, it is important to choose hiking shoes that have good water resistance and traction. This will provide a steady grip on wet surfaces.

2. Humidity: Hawaii experiences high levels of humidity, which can make hiking uncomfortable and cause excessive sweating. To combat this, look for hiking shoes that are made with breathable materials. This will help keep your feet cool and dry even in the humid conditions.

3. Heat: Hawaii is known for its warm weather, especially during the summer months. To prevent your feet from overheating, it is recommended to opt for lightweight hiking shoes that have proper ventilation. Breathable mesh uppers and moisture-wicking materials are ideal for this purpose.

4. Trail conditions: Hawaii boasts diverse terrain, including rocky paths, sandy beaches, and muddy trails. It is imperative to select hiking shoes with durable outsoles and sturdy construction. This will provide the necessary durability and stability for navigating uneven or slippery surfaces. Good footwear for hiking is essential for ensuring a secure footing.

5. Sun protection: The sunny weather in Hawaii can be intense, so it is vital to consider hiking shoes that offer ample protection against the sun’s harmful rays. Look for shoes with a UPF rating or additional ankle coverage to shield your feet from sunburn and potential damage.

By taking the weather conditions in Hawaii into account, you can choose comfortable and functional hiking shoes that are perfectly suited for the environment. This will enable you to fully enjoy your hiking experience in Hawaii.

Comfort and Fit

When selecting hiking shoes for Hawaii, it is crucial to prioritize comfort and fit. Ensuring that your shoes fit properly and are comfortable is essential for a safe and enjoyable hiking adventure. Please take into consideration the following factors:

Size: It is important to choose shoes that are the correct size for your feet to avoid discomfort, blisters, and instability.

Arch Support: Look for shoes that provide good arch support, especially if you have high or low arches. Proper arch support helps prevent foot discomfort and fatigue.

Cushioning: When making your selection, opt for shoes that offer sufficient cushioning to absorb impact and provide a comfortable walking experience. The cushioning should effectively protect your feet from rough terrains.

Toe Box Space: Make sure there is enough room for your toes to move comfortably. Shoes with a spacious toe box help prevent toe pain and blisters, particularly during long hikes.

Ankle Support: Depending on your preference and the type of terrain, consider shoes with ankle support. This will provide stability and help prevent ankle injuries when traversing uneven or rocky trails.

Fact: Wearing well-fitting and comfortable shoes enhances your hiking experience by reducing the risk of discomfort, pain, and foot-related injuries.


Durability is important when choosing hiking shoes for Hawaii. The rugged terrain and varying weather conditions can strain your footwear. Here are some points to keep in mind:

1. Construction: Look for hiking shoes made with durable materials like synthetic leather or waterproof textiles. These materials resist wear and tear, ensuring longevity.

2. Reinforced Toe and Heel: Opt for hiking shoes with extra protection in these areas, such as rubber or TPU overlays, to enhance durability.

3. Stitching: Reinforced or double stitching increases the strength and durability of the shoes. Look for clean and secure stitching.

4. Outsole: The outsole should be made of high-quality rubber with sufficient traction. A durable outsole provides excellent grip on various terrains and withstands abrasion over time.

5. Midsole Cushioning: Choose hiking shoes with a cushioned midsole for shock absorption. A good midsole enhances comfort and maintains its integrity over time.

6. Water Resistance: Look for hiking shoes with water-resistant features, like a waterproof membrane. This protects your shoes from moisture and extends their lifespan.

7. Proper Maintenance: Care for your hiking shoes by cleaning them regularly, removing dirt and debris, and storing them properly when not in use.

By considering these factors, you can ensure that your hiking shoes in Hawaii are durable enough to withstand challenging conditions. Prioritize the durability of your hiking shoes for a safe and enjoyable outdoor adventure.

Types of Hiking Shoes for Hawaii

Hiking in Hawaii offers breathtaking landscapes and unique challenges, making it crucial to choose the right footwear. Let’s dive into the various types of hiking shoes essential for conquering Hawaii’s trails. We’ll explore the benefits and features of hiking sandals, trail running shoes, and hiking boots – each catering to different terrains and personal preferences. So, whether you prefer the agility of sandals, the versatility of trail running shoes, or the support of hiking boots, we’ve got you covered. Let’s find the perfect fit for your Hawaiian adventure!

Hiking Sandals

Hiking sandals are incredibly popular among hikers in Hawaii due to their exceptional versatility and unmatched comfort. These sandals boast durable soles that guarantee excellent traction on various terrains, including rough and rocky trails as well as soft sandy beaches.

They are remarkably lightweight and feature breathable materials, which make them the perfect choice for hot and humid weather conditions. Another great advantage of hiking sandals is that they are typically designed with quick-drying materials, a feature that proves highly beneficial when crossing streams or enduring sudden rain showers.

With toe guards and secure straps, they offer optimal protection and security. Whether you are embarking on a short day hike or a longer, more demanding trek, hiking sandals are suitable for both, thanks to the different levels of support and cushioning they provide.

For ultimate comfort and to steer clear of blisters and discomfort, it is crucial to select a pair of hiking sandals that fit perfectly and ensure stability even on uneven terrain. In Hawaii, recommended brands for where to buy hiking sandals include Keen, Teva, and Chaco.

Make it a priority to find a pair of sandals with adjustable straps for a personalized fit, and choose models that offer excellent arch support for enhanced comfort. As you embark on your exciting hiking adventure in Hawaii, don’t forget to bring your trusty hiking sandals to elevate your outdoor experience and keep your feet protected.

Remember to take into account the specific terrain, prevailing weather conditions, your personal preferences, and comfort requirements when making your selection. Be sure to try on different brands and models to find the absolute best fit for your feet. Happy hiking!

Trail Running Shoes

When choosing Trail Running Shoes for hiking in Hawaii, it’s important to consider the following factors:

1. Comfort and Fit: Look for Trail Running Shoes that fit snugly and provide cushioning and support in the right areas to prevent blisters and ensure stability.

2. Traction: Select Trail Running Shoes with deep lugs and a durable outsole for better grip on uneven and slippery terrains.

3. Waterproofing: Opt for Trail Running Shoes that are water-resistant to keep your feet dry in unpredictable weather or when crossing streams.

4. Breathability: Find Trail Running Shoes with mesh panels or breathable materials to keep your feet cool and prevent excessive sweating in Hawaii’s hot and humid climate.

5. Lightweight: Choose trail running shoes that won’t weigh you down, allowing you to conserve energy and move freely on the trails.

By considering these factors, you can find the perfect Trail Running Shoes for your hiking adventures in Hawaii. Remember to try them on and test them before hitting the trails to ensure the best fit and comfort.

Hiking Boots

Hiking boots are a must-have for exploring Hawaii’s diverse terrains and climates. From volcanic landscapes to rainforests, Hawaii offers an array of hiking experiences. When selecting hiking boots, it is crucial to prioritize comfort and fit. Look for boots with cushioned insoles and good ankle support to prevent discomfort and reduce the risk of injuries during hikes.

In addition to comfort, durability is vital. Hiking boots should be constructed with high-quality materials that can withstand rugged terrains. Opt for boots with durable outsoles and waterproof features to ensure longevity and protection against the elements.

Traction is another essential factor to consider. It is important to have a firm grip on slippery or uneven surfaces. Look for boots with deep lugs on the outsoles for better stability while hiking.

Considering Hawaii’s tropical climate, breathability is crucial. Choose hiking boots made with breathable materials to prevent sweaty and uncomfortable feet.

For long hikes, lightweight hiking boots are preferable. They help reduce fatigue and aid in navigation through challenging terrains. Ensure that the boots still provide adequate protection and support.

By choosing the right pair of hiking boots with a comfortable fit, durability, traction, breathability, and lightweight design, you can enhance your hiking experience and ensure safety in Hawaii. Lace up your hiking boots and embark on an unforgettable journey through Hawaii’s stunning nature.

Top Picks for Hiking Shoes in Hawaii

Level up your hiking game in Hawaii with our top picks for the best shoes. Whether you’re looking for the perfect hiking sandals, trail running shoes, or hiking boots, we’ve got you covered. Get ready to explore the breathtaking landscapes of Hawaii while ensuring comfort and durability every step of the way. Say goodbye to sore feet and hello to unforgettable adventures. Lace up, slip on, or strap in for an unforgettable journey through Hawaii‘s trails and terrain.

Best Hiking Sandals for Hawaii

When hiking in Hawaii, choosing the right footwear is essential. Here are some of the best hiking sandals for Hawaii:

  • Keen Newport H2: Perfect for Hawaii‘s diverse terrain, these hiking sandals offer excellent traction and protection with a rubber outsole and closed-toe design. The quick-drying material is great for water crossings or coastal hikes.

  • Teva Hurricane XLT2: These sandals provide comfort and durability on the trails. Adjustable straps and a cushioned footbed offer a secure fit and support. The rugged outsole ensures stability on various terrains.

  • Chaco Z/Cloud: Known for arch support and comfort, Chaco sandals are popular for hikers. The Z/Cloud model features adjustable straps, a cushioned footbed, and a non-marking rubber outsole. Perfect for longer hikes or backpacking trips in Hawaii.

  • Merrell All Out Blaze Sieve: Combining comfort and protection, these hiking sandals have a closed-toe design and durable upper materials for added security on rocky trails. The Vibram outsole ensures traction and stability.

  • Xero Shoes Z-Trail: If you prefer minimalist footwear, these sandals are lightweight, flexible, and provide a barefoot-like feel. With a grippy outsole and rugged webbing system, the Z-Trail sandals offer a secure fit.

When choosing hiking sandals for Hawaii, consider the terrain, weather conditions, and your comfort preferences. Find a pair that offers good traction, support, and protection while also being breathable and quick-drying. Break in your sandals before hitting the trails to avoid blisters or discomfort. With the right pair of hiking sandals, you can fully enjoy your adventures in Hawaii.

Best Trail Running Shoes for Hawaii

When trail running in Hawaii, it’s crucial to have the best trail running shoes for Hawaii. Here are some top options:

  1. Salomon Speedcross 5: These shoes excel in both wet and dry terrain, providing exceptional traction. They are well-suited for the diverse trails found in Hawaii.

  2. Hoka One One Speedgoat 4: Offering comfort and stability on uneven surfaces, these shoes have a cushioned midsole and aggressive outsole.

  3. Brooks Cascadia 15: Known for their durability and versatility, these shoes feature a rock plate for protection against sharp rocks and multidirectional lugs for traction on various surfaces.

  4. Altra Lone Peak 4.5: With a zero-drop design and spacious toe box, these shoes allow for natural foot movement. They also have a grippy outsole for muddy or slippery trails.

  5. Mizuno Wave Daichi 4: These shoes combine lightweight cushioning with a sturdy design, providing stability, protection, and comfort.

These trail running shoes are specially crafted to handle the unique challenges of running in Hawaii. They offer traction, stability, and comfort for an enjoyable trail running experience.

Fun fact: Hawaii is known for iconic trails such as the Na Pali Coast trail on Kauai, the Kalalau Trail, and the Diamond Head Summit trail on Oahu.

Best Hiking Boots for Hawaii

When hiking in Hawaii, it’s important to choose the right footwear for comfort, safety, and durability. Here is a list of the best hiking boots for Hawaii:

1. Merrell Moab 2 Mid Waterproof: These boots provide excellent traction and stability on various terrains in Hawaii. They are also waterproof, essential for hiking in wet conditions.

2. Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX: Known for exceptional support and comfort, these boots offer great ankle support for navigating uneven trails in Hawaii. The waterproof Gore-Tex lining keeps feet dry even in rainy weather.

3. Keen Targhee III Mid WP: Lightweight yet durable, these boots are perfect for long hikes in Hawaii. The rubber outsole provides excellent traction, and the waterproof membrane keeps feet dry. They come in various colors.

4. Columbia Newton Ridge Plus II: A budget-friendly option that doesn’t compromise on quality, these boots offer good ankle support, traction, and waterproof construction. They are also lightweight for all-day hikes.

5. Lowa Renegade GTX Mid: Known for exceptional durability and long-lasting performance, these boots provide excellent ankle support and cushioning for comfort on rugged trails. The waterproof Gore-Tex lining keeps feet dry in any weather.

Choosing the right hiking boots is essential for a safe and enjoyable hiking experience in Hawaii. Make sure to try them on and walk around to ensure proper fit before purchasing.

Fact: The average temperature in Hawaii during the winter months is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, making it ideal for year-round hiking.

Tips for Hiking in Hawaii

Prepare for your hiking adventure in Hawaii with these essential tips. Stay hydrated to beat the tropical heat, protect yourself from the sun’s rays, pack the right gear for the terrain, and adhere to leave no trace principles. With the picturesque landscapes and challenging trails that Hawaii has to offer, these tips will ensure a safe and enjoyable hiking experience. So lace up your hiking shoes and get ready to explore the natural wonders of Hawaii!

Stay Hydrated

While hiking in Hawaii, stay hydrated for your well-being and enjoyment. Here are some tips to stay hydrated during your hike:

1. Bring enough water: Carry an adequate amount of water. Drink at least half a liter per hour of hiking to replenish fluids and stay hydrated.

2. Use a hydration pack or water bottle: Invest in a good-quality, easily accessible hydration pack or water bottle to stay hydrated without frequent stops.

3. Take regular sips: Drink water throughout your hike instead of waiting until you’re thirsty. This prevents dehydration in Hawaii’s hot and humid conditions.

4. Add electrolytes: Consider carrying an electrolyte drink or adding electrolyte tablets to your water. Electrolytes replenish essential minerals lost through sweating and prevent muscle cramps and fatigue.

5. Monitor urine color: Pay attention to urine color as a hydration indicator. Clear or pale yellow urine signifies proper hydration, while dark yellow or amber-colored urine may indicate dehydration.

By following these guidelines and proactively hydrating yourself, ensure a safe and enjoyable hiking experience in Hawaii. Remember, staying hydrated is crucial for well-being and endurance on the trails.

Protect Yourself from the Sun

Protect yourself from the sun when hiking in Hawaii to avoid sunburn, heatstroke, and other harmful effects of extensive sun exposure. Here are some essential tips to keep in mind:

1. Apply sunscreen: Use a high SPF rating broad-spectrum sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Apply generously to all exposed areas, including your face, neck, arms, and legs.

2. Wear a hat: Choose a wide-brimmed hat that shades your face, neck, and ears. This prevents sunburn and reduces the risk of heat-related illnesses.

3. Wear protective clothing: Choose lightweight, breathable, and loose-fitting clothing that covers as much skin as possible. Opt for long-sleeved shirts, pants, and UV-blocking sunglasses for added protection.

4. Seek shade: Take frequent breaks in shaded areas to cool down and rest from the sun’s intensity. Look for natural shade, such as under trees or rock formations.

5. Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water to regulate your body temperature. Carry enough water and drink regularly, even if you don’t feel thirsty.

6. Time your hikes wisely: Plan hikes during the early morning or late afternoon when the sun’s intensity is lower. Avoid hiking between 10 am and 4 pm.

Remember, taking sun precautions is essential for a safe and enjoyable hiking experience in Hawaii. Stay sun-safe to fully enjoy the natural beauty and adventures the island has to offer.

Pack Proper Gear

When preparing for a hiking expedition in Hawaii, pack proper gear for a safe and enjoyable experience. Consider the following steps when packing your gear:

1. Choose lightweight, breathable, and moisture-wicking clothing for comfort. Also, pack extra layers for changing weather.

2. Wear sturdy hiking shoes with excellent traction and ankle support to prevent injuries on Hawaii’s diverse terrains.

3. Select a well-fitted backpack that comfortably holds essentials like water, snacks, a map, a first aid kit, and extra clothing layers. Distribute weight evenly.

4. Stay hydrated in Hawaii’s hot and humid climate by carrying a hydration pack or water bottles for the entire hike.

5. Protect your skin from the Hawaiian sun with high SPF sunscreen. Don’t forget insect repellent for pesky bugs on the trails.

6. Have a navigational tool like a map, compass, or GPS device to stay on track and avoid getting lost.

7. Include emergency essentials such as a whistle, flashlight, multi-tool, and whistle. These items can be invaluable in emergencies.

By following these steps and packing the proper gear, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable hiking experience in Hawaii. Always be prepared, check weather conditions, and respect the natural environment for a fulfilling adventure.

Follow Leave No Trace Principles

When hiking in Hawaii, it is important to follow the Leave No Trace principles. These principles promote responsible outdoor practices and help minimize our impact on the environment. To adhere to these guidelines, it is essential to plan ahead and prepare for your hike. Take the time to research the trail, familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations, and check the weather conditions.

Another important aspect is sticking to designated trails. It is crucial to avoid venturing off the marked trail in order to preserve the natural vegetation and prevent erosion. By respecting these boundaries, we can ensure the trail remains intact and undisturbed.

Properly disposing of waste is also a key principle to follow. It is essential to pack out all trash, including food scraps and wrappers, as this helps avoid harming wildlife and disrupting the delicate ecosystem. By leaving no trace behind, we can maintain the natural beauty of the area and protect its inhabitants.

When it comes to campfires, it is crucial to minimize their impact. This can be done by using established fire rings or designated fire pits for fires, keeping them small, and fully extinguishing them before leaving. By doing so, we can prevent potential wildfires and conserve the natural resources in the area.

Respecting wildlife is another integral part of Leave No Trace principles. It is important to observe animals from a distance, refrain from feeding or approaching them, and keep pets on a leash. We should avoid disturbing nesting sites or habitats, allowing animals to thrive undisturbed.

It is vital to be considerate of other hikers. Yielding to others on the trail, maintaining a respectful distance, keeping noise levels down, and leaving the trail as you found it are all important actions to take. By showing respect towards fellow hikers, we can create a positive and enjoyable experience for everyone.

By following these Leave No Trace principles, we can do our part in preserving the natural beauty of Hawaii’s trails and ensuring that future generations can also enjoy them. Let’s all contribute to the responsible and sustainable enjoyment of these remarkable outdoor spaces.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of shoes should I wear for hiking in Hawaii?

For hiking in Hawaii, it is recommended to wear shoes that can get wet and muddy, with good treads and a firm sole for traction. Tevas, Chacos, or Keen-type water shoes or sandals are suitable, as long as they have straps over the toes and around the heels. Running or athletic shoes that can get wet and muddy are also acceptable.

Are flip flop-style sandals suitable for hiking in Hawaii?

No, flip flop-style sandals are not suitable for hiking in Hawaii. They do not provide the necessary traction and ankle support for walking on rocky areas or slippery rocks. It is best to choose shoes that can handle the muddy and uneven terrain.

Can I wear brand-new expensive shoes for hiking in Hawaii?

No, it is not recommended to wear brand-new expensive shoes for hiking in Hawaii. The trails can be muddy and slippery, and your shoes are likely to get dirty and scuffed. It is best to wear shoes that you don’t mind getting wet or dirty.

Should I bring walking sticks for hiking in Hawaii?

Yes, bringing walking sticks can be beneficial for hiking in Hawaii, especially on steep and muddy trails. Walking sticks provide added stability and can help prevent slips and falls. They can be particularly useful when navigating through rocky areas or when crossing streams.

What are the best shoes for hiking in stormy conditions?

The best shoes for hiking in stormy conditions in Hawaii are those with a grippy sole and reliable traction. Water hiking shoes with good treads are ideal for maintaining stability on slippery terrain. It is important to choose shoes that can handle wet and muddy areas, providing both comfort and safety.

Are there any affordable hiking shoe options available for Hawaii?

Yes, there are affordable hiking shoes available for hiking in Hawaii. It is not necessary to spend a fortune on footwear. Many reputable brands offer hiking shoes at various price points. Look for shoes that have the necessary features, such as waterproofing, breathability, and grip, while still fitting within your budget.

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