The Best Socks For Hiking

posted in: Men, Socks | 0

Ah, Hiking.

It takes me back, it really is 🙂 The scenery, the mountains, the views – it’s one of my favorite activities when abroad.

What I learnt during my time hiking though (and my hiking group agrees with me on this one) is that proper gear is king.

This time I have focused on the best socks for hiking which I could find out there – this list was created while asking

my hiking group together with some online forums for their advice.

I do believe I came up with the best list ever – and I’m thrilled to use my new socks on my next trip!

Here we go:


Most Awesome Hiking Socks In The Market

5Pack Men's Bio Climbing DryCool Cushion Hiking/Performance Crew Socks 5Pair Medium4.8$22.99
5Pack Men's Mid Cushion Low Cut Hiking/Camping/Performance Socks Medium 5Pair Mid Cushion Men4.7$18.99
5pack Women's Full Cushion Mid Quarter Length Hiking Socks,Small 5Pack Assortment Apricot2P/Lavender2P/Hot Pink1P4.8$22.99
Kirkland Signature Womens Trail Sock Pack of 4 One Size Charcoal Heather Shoe Size 4-104.6$17.26
Wigwam Men's Hiking Pro Socks, Grey Heather, Large4.4Too low to display
Gift BOX : Large 4 Pairs 71% Mens Merino Wool Hiking Crew Socks Hunting Camping Trekking Made in USA (4 Pairs Mixed)4.6$35.00
Thorlos Womens Lite Hiking Thin Padded Ankle - Low Cut Socks | LTHMXW4.8$11.99
Kirkland Signature Men's Outdoor Trail Sock Merino Wool Blend Assorted Pack Large4.3$9.01
Darn Tough Vermont Men's Merino Wool Micro Crew Cushion Hiking Socks, Oatmeal, Large(10-12)4.7$18.00
6 Pairs Pack Men's 75% Merino Wool Hiking Thermal Socks (10-13)4.5$29.99
Darn Tough Vermont Men's 1/4 Merino Wool Cushion Hiking Socks, Olive, Large4.8$12.71

5Pack Men’s Bio Climbing DryCool Cushion Hiking/Performance Crew Socks 5Pair Medium


To begin these socks are called “compression socks” for a reason. They do indeed fit very tight, hence I highly recommend getting a size or two larger than what you would normally wear. These socks are quite comfortable and appear to wick sweat as promised, I can’t say if they will continue to do so after numerous washing but as of now they are doing their job. They are cushioned to a degree and add some comfort over a pair of regular cotton socks. Overall I would recommend these socks.BTW the reason I purchased these socks was due to my big toe always tearing through all my regular socks after about a month of wear. I am really hoping these socks hold up. They appear to be reinforced and sturdy so hopefully they hold up.


5Pack Men’s Mid Cushion Low Cut Hiking/Camping/Performance Socks Medium 5Pair Mid Cushion Men


I did write that these fit somewhat large but I am delighted about that as I have a size 8 and a half to 9 foot and did not like the colors available in the men’s / larger women’s size. I ordered these women’s size small in their fun pretty colored pack and I love them!!! I cannot wear wool socks as wool makes my skin itch so I was thrilled to find these soft comfortable athletic socks made Without wool. I also like how they are comfortable and do not feel tight and binding at all which was my worry since my foot is a little larger than a size 8. Love them so much I bought another pack immediately. The colors are fun and vibrant. I just hope they stand up to a lot of washing as I hope to have them for a long time


5pack Women’s Full Cushion Mid Quarter Length Hiking Socks,Small 5Pack Assortment Apricot2P/Lavender2P/Hot Pink1P


I love these socks but when I went to order them, the size kept ‘skipping’ from medium size to small! If I managed to keep the medium size showing, the image changed to the men’s socks when I clicked “to cart,” – weird. So, finally, kinda frustrated, I had to buy the small size, as I wanted to see and feel the item for myself. Will have to give these to someone for a gift as they are a bit too snug on me. Will try again soon and order same in a medium…see if the website has corrected itself.


Kirkland Signature Womens Trail Sock Pack of 4 One Size Charcoal Heather Shoe Size 4-10


I have been told that wool is the best for taking care of your feet when active. So, I put them to the test. First, I spent a weekend hiking. 10 miles a day, and my feet love to sweat. At the end of the day, I can say my feet stayed comfortable and I never noticed the sweaty feet that I usually have. After 2 days of sweaty feet, I actually could still put these socks by my nose and not gag. They definitely managed moisture and odor. So, the next test was wearing them rafting in 40 degree weather. I had a wet suit, but water still gets in. I wore the socks under the feet covers. Of course I got soaked. Everyone else except my family had freezing toes. Even though the socks were soaked, my feet stayed relatively warm. Midway through the trip we stopped for lunch. I twisted as much water out of them as possible and sat them out to dry. About an hour later we headed out again and they were almost completely dry. LOVE THESE SOCKS. Several hiking trips later, still love them. Now I do take 2 pairs though. The first time was just a test to see how much they could take.


Wigwam Men’s Hiking Pro Socks, Grey Heather, Large


I bought three pairs of these socks for a week of hiking the mountains in Acadia National Park in Maine last summer. The weather was warmer than expected, but these socks wicked the moisture beautifully. My feet were cool and comfortable and never felt any rubbing or risk of blisters despite taking a pounding on the downhill runs.By itself, that wouldn’t be sufficient to warrant a review. But now I’m home, and the weather has turned cold (thanks to an early attack of the dreaded polar vortex). Normally I suffer from cold feet indoors during the winter, despite wearing slippers all the time. This month, I decided to try wearing these summer hiking socks indoors. For the first time in years, my feet are warm and comfortable indoors. The socks are nice and thick and they wick away foot moisture. They fit inside my LL Bean mocs and make life a lot more comfortable.Back in 1982, I discovered Wigwam socks, loved them, and bought six pairs. I still own them, and still wear them! I was delighted to find that these new Wigwam socks are just as well made as back in the day. Wigwam doesn’t sell fashion or fad — they do manufacture a high-quality, highly-functional product that lasts forever. These socks represent a great fusion of the latest materials and old-fashioned Wigwam quality. My feet say “thanks”.


Gift BOX : Large 4 Pairs 71% Mens Merino Wool Hiking Crew Socks Hunting Camping Trekking Made in USA (4 Pairs Mixed)


First a little background. My feet are in horrible shape. They crack. They bleed. They itch. They smell horrible. Two of my toenails have fungus. I’ve been fighting all of these things for over a year and not once have I thought that maybe wearing cheap hanes socks might have something to do with it. I use anti fungal and anti bacterial soap when showering. I’ve tried creams, powders, lotions, soaking my feet in a foot bath, but don’t have the time to maintain these treatments 2 times a day as directed unfortunately. Walking on carpet barefoot is unbearably painful because of the horrible shape my feet are in. I’m also very stubborn about going to doctors about this kind of thing so I wanted to try everything I could first before seeing a podiatrist.I’ve googled and googled foot care over and over and I thought to myself, “Well my socks are cotton. They shouldn’t have anything to do with it.” Finally, after trying a ton of other medicines, soaps, soaks, etc, I thought I’d give wool socks a try. Here’s what I have to say about People Socks:I have a size 12 foot on the wide side and these socks fit my feet perfectly. They are the most comfortable socks I’ve ever worn. I could tell the second I put them on that I would be happy with them. My feet do not sweat whatsoever in these socks and my feet have a tendency to sweat even when I’m sitting down doing nothing that involves a lot of walking or running when wearing cheap hanes socks. The tops of the shoes I wear daily are made of mesh, and when it rained here yesterday, I found myself walking through large puddles of water that would normally soak my feet and leave them cold. With these socks on my feet stayed completely dry, they felt a little cold as if water was trying to get in, but my feet stayed bone dry. I couldn’t believe it. Also the pain in my feet has gone away. The itching has stopped. The cracking has reduced and my feet and shoes do not smell like a horrible bowel movement.All of this has occurred in the TWO DAYS I have worn these socks. I cannot believe the change in my foot condition just from wearing wool socks. This being said, I cannot recommend these socks enough. whether it be for work, or heavy activity, or just every day lounging, these socks have blown me away.


Thorlos Womens Lite Hiking Thin Padded Ankle – Low Cut Socks | LTHMXW


These are great socks. I wear them all year round, without shoes around the house, on long walks, and while exercising. I particularly like the light hiking crew socks. I occasionally buy more, even though the first ones I bought, year ago, are still in excellent condition after having been washed and dried many times. They are cushioned enough to protect my feet when I’m on them for a long time and they protect them from extreme temperatures as well.I was discussing survival techniques with an Army officer who recommended Thorlo socks for warmth. I bought some for that purpose, for power outages, cold Winter weather, etc., and never have wanted any other kind since. They last for years and I wear them every day, Winter and Summer, usually without shoes since I work from home, sometimes with shoes on 3-mile walks. These are everything I want in a sock. I highly recommend them.As far as size goes, they are more flexible than most, so you probably won’t go wrong. Try a pair. I’ve never wanted any other socks after trying these.


Kirkland Signature Men’s Outdoor Trail Sock Merino Wool Blend Assorted Pack Large


I love these socks! Years ago I got a pair of Smartwool Merino wool socks as a gift. They were the softest, most comfortable socks I had ever owned! But they are far to expensive for me to consider buying 10 or 12 pairs of! I tried the LL Bean Merino wool socks, about 8 years ago. They were okay, but just not as soft as the Smartwool. Then I found the Kirkland socks at Cosco! Jackpot!!! I bought 3 four packs, and wear them pretty much all the time, with sneakers or hiking boots. But, 8 years later, they are all worn out, so I looked online for more. The ones I just purchased may not be quite as soft as the ones I bought originally, but they are still very good comfortable socks, and I will buy a couple more 4 packs! I also tried the People Socks, but the large size was too big for me (even though the large Kirkland ones fit perfect), so I gave them to my husband. They seem to be about the same quality and thickness.


Darn Tough Vermont Men’s Merino Wool Micro Crew Cushion Hiking Socks, Oatmeal, Large(10-12)


Darn Tough socks are the best socks I have owned.Darn Tough vs. Smart Wool: After a winter’s worth of wearing a pair of Smart Wool socks (with my Frye boots), the Smart Wool socks were worn thin on the heel and, to a lesser extent, the sole. I literally wore them out.Darn Tough vs. Kirkland: I bough a pair of wool boot socks (Kirkland, which is Costco’s store brand) and these held up very well over the course of a winter. They started to wear thin in the heel, but nothing drastic.My Darn Tough socks have been 1/2 through a winter and still seem to be the same as they were when I got them. What really seems to put Darn Tough over the top (vs the Kirkland) is the 100% guarantee they give you. In addition, I have a pair of Darn Tough running socks that I wear everyday (and run 3.5 miles in, everyday) and they are like-new after over a year’s use. I expect these Darn Tough socks to perform roughly the same.Overall, I’d give Smart Wool (on a 10 point scale) a 5, the Kirkland a 8.5 and the Darn Tough a 9.


6 Pairs Pack Men’s 75% Merino Wool Hiking Thermal Socks (10-13)


I wear socks hard. I’m a medic, on my feet fourteen hours at a time wearing heavy steel toe high lace boots, and on my days off I train hike for mountaineering. I save the expensive smartwool for the mountains and have stuck with heavy cotton for a long time, but have long been hesitant to try a cheaper wool for risk of quality. I’ve been using my first six pairs for three months now and am happy to report that they look and feel brand new still. Wool socks will pill if you don’t wash them inside out, so that’s how I’ve washed mine and they look great, no fading. Unbelievably soft, medium weight sock, acceptable in summer here in the Pacific northwest, they have demonstrated exceptional wicking and fast drying. Best of all is the stretch panel in the arch, giving these socks an absolutely fabulous fit, as good as any high end smartwool. Even if I only get a year out of the socks, I’ll be extremely happy for the cost, because these truly ate smartwool fit and finish at a quarter of the price.


Darn Tough Vermont Men’s 1/4 Merino Wool Cushion Hiking Socks, Olive, Large


These socks just… rock.Let me tell you why (and nobody is infuliencing my opinion here).1. They keep my sweaty feet warm/cool: I live in Orlando. I go to the gym. I walk around outside. My feet get hot and sweaty every day. BUT NOT WITH THESE SOCKS! With these socks they are “warm” but there are no “hot spots.”2. Wool, at least the wool in these socks, naturally repels odor and moisture. The end result that my sweaty socks can lay out and dry and are fresh and good to go for a 2nd day without washing. NEVER IN MY LIFE have I EVER worn a pair of socks the next day because they “still smelled fresh” after wearing them ALL DAY and THEN going to the gym too. I mean, SERIOUSLY?3. When I pull my feet out of the sock, they are never “sweaty” or “sticky.” Maybe a tad damp, but for the most part they are evenly dry across the board.4. These socks are soft as anything I’ve ever worn. Not itchy at all. I kinda like them better than slippers.5. They are guaranteed for life. Now, I’ve researched this. I read online that a guy hiked 700 miles with the same pair of socks before he had to get them replaced… and he had with no problem getting new ones. He sent back the old pair and got a new one… I doubt I’ll hike that much, but it’s good to read about an easy warranty like that. And that was one of many reviews that convinced me.If you read though the posts here about the people who’ve tried these socks, you’ll find that they are so well liked and received that people often replace all of their socks with these. I’m doing this now. I’ve already invested over 100 dollars in socks because all my old socks feel like utter paper bags on my feet. And besides, my feet are worth taking care of… I’m going to be using them all of my life! I now have several pairs for work and play and I’m happy to have found something that really makes my feet feel good.




My Verdict

There are a lot of neat hiking socks out there – and I honestly think this list will not disappoint you.

If you are planning your next hiking trip – take a pair of warm hiking socks, they’re cheap and they

are totally worth it.

Leave a comment below and let us know if you have more recommendations for us to add on this review!

We are more than thrilled in hearing your feedback – it helps us to improve and be better.

Have a great hiking trip!

TheShoesForMe Team.