How to Choose the best Socks for Hiking?


The foregoing all works best with a sock that fits well around your foot. However, there is no blueprint for the ideal fit of the sock, you are largely dependent on your own feelings and preferences. It is true that a slightly too thick / warm sock is more irritating than a slightly too thin sock. Socks should also never be too loose as they can fold, which can lead to irritation and blistering. Too tight is also not nice: abrasions or pressure points can be the result. The strange thing is that you often do not get the opportunity to try on socks in a store, while the offer and price are sometimes high.

Yet you can already research a lot by hand: wide or narrow, thick or thin, does the fabric feel nice? Is the seam at the toes barely noticeable or is it annoyingly thickened? You should not have the latter because it creates pressure points. It also happens that there is ‘size 35 to 41’ and ‘size 41 to 46’ on packaging. You will only have size 35 or 41, what do you do? You could choose a brand that works with more specific size groups. If you nevertheless want to know whether a certain wool socks online are your size but you are not allowed to try it on, there is an old knitting trick: try folding the sock around your fist (thumb in). If the heel and toe touch without stretching the sock, you are in the right size. 

Special hiking socks

More and more brands are making anatomical walking socks: a knitted L and R tell you whether the sock should be on the left or right foot, because your feet and shoes are different in shape, so why not your socks? However, to dismiss socks without L / R as insufficient in fit is going too far: even before the anatomical sock hit the shelves, there were socks with a good fit for sale.

There are specific ladies’ and men’s socks. Sometimes only the color (pink!) Makes the difference, sometimes also the composition and fit. Compared to the men’s model, the women’s version is sometimes slightly warmer, narrower and provides a little more cushioning.

Those who walk with children should not underestimate the importance of good children’s socks. The size of children’s socks has of course been adjusted, the socks are narrower and the children’s walking shoe is sometimes a bit wider (‘on the growth’), so that the sock has to fill a little more space. An alternative to children’s socks is the smallest size of women’s socks.

The vast majority of hikers opt for the best wool socks for men over the ankle (‘mid’), but there are also long socks. The advantage of this is that they not only keep the legs warm under shorts, but also protect them against bushes, for example. And in winter you don’t have to reach for long underpants with a long sock.