For the most part the roads are graded. That doesn’t mean they are flat, smooth, paved or anything close to that. Most of the large rocks are removed, so you probably won’t twist your ankle while walking to work. That’s not to say, though that it doesn’t happen.
Since Raytheon has taken over there is a huge push toward safety. For us in the winter, the roads are slick and icy. We’ve had enough “slip” training to bore us, but the bottom line is you watch where you step.
The lava is very hard on shoes. Bill is right they will be worn down at the end of the season. I opt for softer rubber soles. They seem to grip better in the snow, but get worn down fast. I had a nice pair of gortex boots one year. They had a hard rubber sole and were treacherous. I only wore them twice down here and then saved them for when I got back to New Zealand.
Sharon is also right about recreational hikes. You will want a nice pair of hiking shoes to walk to Scott Base or to climb OB hill. That’s what I wear most of the time here. Even in the depth of winter as long as I’m just walking around and not staying out for any length of time.
To keep the baggage weight down, I wear the heaviest pair of shoes on the flight to New Zealand. On the flight to the ice you will be required to wear the issue boots.