It's interesting to note that when you think of wet shoes, you think of creek or river crossings, not rain. That's a Californian for you!

While it is true that wet boots and socks will dry fairly rapidly on a warm day with low humidity, they will stay pretty darned wet on a rainy day.

I'm curious how much it rained on you in NZ? I know they have some mountainside rain forests there that equal the Olympic peninsula for rainfall.