The Clarks Desert Trek Doesn’t Fix Anything

The Desert Boot enjoys widespread popularity, with a toe in the mainstream, while the Wallabee quite rightly has a season ticket at the top table of culturally relevant footwear, but for us the Desert Trek has always been a low key classic.

Now in its 51st year, the Clark Desert Trek is one of a small selection of footwear icons to transcend trends and remain relevant no matter what Father Fashion says it should do.

Having established and enjoyed unprecedented success with the original Clarks Desert Boot and later the Wallabee, Clarks released the Desert Trek in 1972.

While the likes of Steve McQueen, George Harrison and Bob Dylan were noted proponents of the Desert Boot and the Wallabee, it was in Jamaica where the youth really took the brand to their hearts. Legions of Rudeboys wore the Somerset brand as part of a uniform of the streets, and the brand enjoyed success through this, albeit with negative connotations too. When the Desert Trek found its way to Kingston, the heel motif featuring a hiker was likened to someone running away with a bag of money and the Desert Trek was nicknamed the Bank Robber. This only enhanced the brand’s unlikely outlaw status in Jamaica.

Musicians have always had an affinity to the brand, and you don’t need to look too far for celebrated artists wearing Clarks. The Desert Boot and the Wallabee are probably the big two when it comes to Clarks and their cultural impact, but in the Desert Trek exists a shoe that’s arguably nicer looking, a marginally less obvious choice yet with all the suede and crepe hallmarks one would expect from a Clarks shoe.

This season sees more of the same, because if it’s not broken, why try to fix it?

If you don’t own a pair, maybe it’s time you rectified that by getting some here.

Mark Smith

I had pizza for tea.

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