Experienced hikers know that wildlife and bad weather aren’t the things you need to worry most about on the trail – blisters are. No matter how prepared you are for a trip into the mountains, blisters can quickly force you to change plans and even cancel your hike.Thankfully, with the right pair of hiking socks on your feet, it’s easy to prevent blisters from forming. Hiking socks keep your feet dry and comfortable, ensuring that you can walk comfortably for days on end the next time you hit the trail.
How Do Hiking Socks Stop Blisters?
There are two things that cause blisters on your feet while hiking: moisture and heat. Hiking socks counteract moisture by wicking sweat away from your feet. From there, it can evaporate through the upper of your boot. They help to reduce heat buildup around your feet by providing a soft, comfortable layer between your foot and the inside of your boot. That reduces friction, which would otherwise create heat. So, just having socks as a soft layer around your feet goes a long way towards cutting down on blisters.
How to Choose Hiking Socks
Hiking socks can be made with several different materials, but polyester and merino wool are the primary fabrics.Polyester is a synthetic fabric that does an excellent job of wicking away sweat and drying quickly. If you need thicker socks for autumn and winter hikes, polyester is also a good insulator that stays warm when wet.Merino wool is more expensive than polyester, but the investment is well worth it. Wool does an extremely good job of regulating temperature – in hot weather, it actually cools your feet down as you sweat into it. On top of that, merino wool is naturally odour resistant, so your feet won’t smell terrible after a long day on thetrail. Many socks use a blend of wool and polyester to add the quick-drying benefits of synthetic fibre.
The thickness of your hiking socks determines both how much cushioning they will provide and how warm they will be.
Ultralight socks don’t provide any cushioning or insulation, but still work to wick moisture away from your feet. They can be used for summer hiking or underneath a thicker pair of hiking socks.
Light and medium socks provide a comfortable amount of padding without being overly warm. These hiking socks are favoured by many trekkers for three-season activities.
Heavy socks are designed for cold-weather hikes. They are thickly padded to keep your feet warm and reduce rubbing in thick winter boots.
At a minimum, the height of your hiking socks should match the footwear you’re planning to hike in. If you wear hiking shoes, low cut socks that extend to your ankle will be long enough, whereas you will need mid-cut socks to cover all of foot inside a larger hiking boot. Many hikers prefer mid-cut or knee-high hiking socks in any case because they provide protection against brushy undergrowth.
Hiking Socks at addnature.co.uk
Finding your perfect pair of hiking socks is easy at addnature.co.uk. We carry more than 500 pairs of hiking socks for men, women, and children. Whatever fabric, thickness, or cut of sock you need for your next hike, you’ll find it here.