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How to choose hiking socks

Posted on August 22 2017

how to choose hiking socks

Posted by Amy Lee on 

Socks are as important as clothing. Socks lower the amount of friction between the shoe and foot when walking, prevents the skin from peeling off, and alleviates stress in the sole. In addition, in hot summers, it absorbs sweat from the foot and prevents the skin from festering, and in cold winters, warms the feet and prevents it from getting frostbite.

Blood does not circulate well in the foot because it is located furthest from the heart. Since feet are always buried in the cold snow until the end of hiking, it is easier than other areas to get frostbite. Furthermore, when skin peels off, it is mostly because of the shoe, and according to the sock, this problem may either grow or be prevented. In order to choose a good sock, you must first know the characteristics of the sock’s material and choose the right one for the season.

For example, this would be to wear coolmax socks that absorb sweat in the summer when it is easy to sweat, or to choose hiking socks that have excellent thermal insulation and can maintain heat even after getting wet.

However, although cotton socks feel nice at first because they are smooth, because they not only get wet easily and take long to dry, but also become stiff when wet, it is easy for the feet to ache when wearing for a long time. It isn’t good to wear cotton socks, because when they get wet or wrinkled after becoming stiff, this causes the skin on the foot or heel to peel off. Apart from these, there are also hiking socks made from acrylic fiber and wool, socks mixed with nylonne polyester, or ones made of Cool Max, Dralon.

◈ Precautions when choosing socks

1. When choosing hiking socks, you must check the processing status of the backstitched part of the toes. In addition, blisters may form when overlapping because the sock is too big, so you must buy the right size for your foot.

2.The neck part of the sock is usually spandex processed in order to prevent the socks from falling off, however, if it is too tight, blood might not properly circulated in the foot. In the past, acrylic socks and wool socks were worn over cotton socks in order to keep the feet warm and absorb sweat. However, these days, there are socks that are made thicker near the sole in order to decrease impact on the foot, and there are also those that reinforce thermal insulation in the toes. Therefore, there is no need to wear two pairs of socks just because it is winter.

3.Furthermore, there are crew hiking socks and ankle and low hiking socks according to the length of the sock. The crew hiking socks often worn with short pants in order to cover the calf, and it is good to put on short socks when wearing long pants.

◈ Seasonal hiking socks

1. Summer socks

In the summer, it is good to wear just one pair of socks that absorb sweat. When it comes to hiking shoes, it is good to wear ones that have low ankles. When resting for a long time, It is recommended to take off the hiking shoes and moving your feet around so that the hiking socks can be dried by the wind and can also alleviate stress in the foot. 

2.Spring, Fall Socks

Although there is little problem with wearing thin socks if it is not early spring or late fall, one must always be prepared in times when the weather may suddenly change. It is safe to carry around at least one pair of socks that have high thermal effects, such as wool socks.

3.Winter Socks

Since a long time ago, I enjoyed wearing pure wool socks in the winter season. There was no material that had as good thermal effects as pure wool, and because when walking in the snow, both the shoes and socks become wet to the point of soaking, pure wool socks that did not lose their thermal effect even after getting wet were as important as shoes to hikers.

However, nowadays where there are new materials being developed by the day, synthetic fiber socks that are lighter and warmer than pure wool socks and have exceptional ability in absorbing and releasing sweat are becoming the most popular hiking socks. Hiking socks are often bought in the winter as thermal socks by regular people, not just by professional hikers for the purpose of long-hour hikes. The reason is that due to the sole on the cushion, it is not only convenient to wear indoors with wood floors, but also serves as a comfortable fit in outdoor working environments. In this case, although it does not have more wool than the merino wool hiking socks that are widely sold in the US and cost $25 per pair, such as smart wool or darn tough, hiking socks made of cotton are being widely sold as a replacement due to its low price and high quality.

Such cotton hiking socks are gaining positive reviews from purchasers that are looking for close-distance hikes or Spring, Summer light weight hiking socks. 

1 comment

  • chris: August 22, 2017

    thank you

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