How to Choose the Best Hiking Socks




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How to choose the best hiking socks. Ask yourself? What kind of hiking will I be doing? How long will I be hiking each day? Which are the recommended socks for my type of hike? How to prevent blisters? Will I be hiking in the Summer or the Winter? Do hiking socks need to be explained?

For one mile the average hikers take an average of 2,000 steps in all kinds of terrain, and in all kinds of weather. So do not cheap out on buying the right socks. It is better to have a few really amazing socks than a bunch you will never wear. You must keep your feet comfortable and blister-free throughout your hike.

How to Choose the Best Hiking Socks
Hiking Boot How to Choose the Best Hiking Socks

To choose the best hiking socks for your hiking trip you must consider many factors and here are some that I recommend:

  • Fabric: This is a must to consider. I only wear Merino wool as my primary fabric, so check your labels.
  • Fit: Make sure you purchase the right size for your foot as this will keep your feet blister-free.
  • Cushioning: So important for your overall comfort and of course warmth. You do not want your feet cold at any time.
  • Sock Height: This also stops blisters and abrasions when fitted with your hiker boots.

What Are Hiking Socks?

Well, good question and I did find this out by buying lots of socks that was such a waste of money, so, therefore, let me help. Do not cheap out on this. It is better to have less and great amazing quality than lots you will never wear. My husband and I only wear Darn Tough Brand or Smart Wool Brand. Short, sweet, and to the point…

Are Hiking Socks Necessary?

Yes, they are crucial… is my answer to that question? Hiking socks are necessary, but also great quality socks are a must. Preventing blisters is so important for your feet and the comfort of your hike.

Once you start wearing quality hiking socks it is impossible to go back and wear something inferior. Yet again I only wear Darn Tough Socks or Smart Wool Socks. My family knows to only purchase these brands and that I would rather receive a gift of one that I recommend than lots of others that I will never wear when receiving gifts for Christmas or Birthdays.

What Kind of Hiking Socks Are Best for Hiking?

This is such a broad question depending on the type of hike you are going on and also the season.

First I consider the fabric: Most hiking socks are a combination or blend of different fabrics made with many considerations such as the weather conditions, types of hiking, comfort, durability, and how fast they will dry.

Wool: This is my recommendation and after talking to many fellow hikers this is one of the most popular recommendations as well. What I find with my wool socks is that they keep my feet from getting sweaty and they also provide comfort. Also wool is naturally antimicrobial so they tend to smell less. Most wool socks are made from merino wool, itch-free, durable and faster drying.

Fit: This is so important, you must keep your feet comfortable and blister-free on hiking trips. Purchase the proper size, too big and they will cause blisters, too small will also create pressure points which are not good either. Know your correct foot size for socks, not your shoe size so you do not buy the wrong ones. Use the size charts on the labels. When choosing your socks make sure the heel cup lines up with your heel, buy a sock snug but not tight.

Cushioning: The type of sock you require will depend on the type of hiking you will be doing and the season. Such as Ultralight for hot weather, light cushioning great for warmer weather, and a little more protection. Medium cushioning offers more comfort for longer backpacking hikes and heavier cushioning is for those long hiking trips and colder weather recommended for mountaineering.

Sock Height: I seem to gravitate to a certain height of sock as I really am a creature of habit. Socks can vary from short to tall. Such as no-show, ankle, crew (this is the one I wear), and knee-high. It really comes down to what you prefer and require.

Where to Buy Hikers Socks?

Well, any amazing outdoor shop will carry a variety of brands. You can also purchase online so you do not have to go into the shops.

How to Purchase the Best Hiking Socks to Prevent Blisters?

Ask your fellow hiking friends what they wear. My choices to prevent blisters are Darn Tough Socks or Smart Wool Socks.

Why Do Hikers Buy Darn Tough Hiking Socks?

q? encoding=UTF8&MarketPlace=CA&ASIN=B000XG1HPI&ServiceVersion=20070822&ID=AsinImage&WS=1&Format= SL250 &tag=joannejens0d9 20
  • MICRO CREW HEIGHT: A shorter, more concise take on the traditional crew height. Peeks just above the top of a standard hiking boot. For a shorter sock, check out style 1905. For a taller sock, check out style 1403.
  • CUSHION: Mid-level cushion density underfoot. A warm and ultra-comfortable choice when conditions demand it. For a sock with less cushion, check out style 1913.
  • COMPOSITION: Crafted with 61% Merino Wool, 36% Nylon, 3% Lycra Spandex. 1441 stitches per square inch provide extra cushioning, durability, and a foot-hugging fit.
  • GUARANTEED FOR LIFE: Darn Tough’s famous guarantee – if these socks wear, tear, or develop holes, Darn Tough will replace them no questions asked. No strings. No conditions.
  • MADE IN THE USA: Every pair of socks is knit in Northfield, Vermont – the perfect testing ground for the finest premium all-weather performance socks.
Product Dimensions10.16 x 15.24 x 5.08 cm; 90.72 Grams
Item model number1466
Is Discontinued By ManufacturerNo
Age RangeAdult
SizeMedium (8-9.5)
StyleHiker Merino Wool Micro Crew Socks Cushion
Material Composition61% Merino Wool, 36% Nylon, 3% Lycra Spandex
Height1.2 inches
Length7.6 inches
Weight91 Grams
Width4 inches
Material61% Merino Wool / 36% Nylon / 3% Lycra® Spandex
Outer MaterialWool
SeasonWinter, Summer
SportCamping & Hiking
Batteries Included?No
BrandDarn Tough
Item Weight90.6 g
darn tough socks

Why Do Hikers Buy Smart Wool Hiking Socks?

q? encoding=UTF8&MarketPlace=CA&ASIN=B09577CJ9J&ServiceVersion=20070822&ID=AsinImage&WS=1&Format= SL250 &tag=joannejens0d9 20
  • 66% Merino Wool, 33% Nylon, 1% Elastane
  • Machine Wash
  • Sock Height: Crew
  • Knit in USA of Imported Yarn: 68% Merino Wool, 31% Nylon, 1% Elastane
  • Elasticized arch brace
  • The flat knit toe seam
  • Medium cushioning to absorb impact on the trail
Product Dimensions22.86 x 10.16 x 2.54 cm; 317.51 Grams
Item model numberBSW129043
Is Discontinued By ManufacturerNo
Height1.2 inches
Length10 inches
Weight113 Grams
Width4 inches
Number of Items1
Batteries Included?No
Item Weight318 g
Smart wool socks


I hope this has helped you, in your quest to find the perfect socks.



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About Joanne Jensen


Joanne Bettina Jensen

Joanne Jensen is a renowned gardener with over 45 years of experience in gardening. Her passion for gardening began when she was a child, assisting her Mom and Nana in tending to their backyard garden’s in England.

Now it has evolved into an amazing blog. Since then, she has developed a deep appreciation for plants and has devoted her life to learning more about them. To read more go to her about page

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