Comfortable walking socks
Having comfortable walking boots with non-slip soles is a must if you want to feel comfortable whilst hill walking and trekking. Depending on the length of your hill walk and the terrain, you’ll either prefer lightweight walking boots, leather shoes with a high collar or durable trekking boots with a waterproof Gore-Tex membrane. This will also influence your choice between walking socks and trekking socks.
Sock manufacturers, such as Falke, Smartwool and Icebreaker have models ranging from lightweight, breathable functional socks with light padding to knee-high socks with reinforcements at the heels, toes and shins. Walking socks should always be slightly longer than the walking boots themselves, and they should extend at least a few centimetres beyond the collar of the boots or shoes.
Merino wool and synthetic walking socks
When it comes to choosing between merino socks and synthetic socks, there is no clear winner. Both materials have their own advantages and are equally popular. Merino walking socks offer a great balance between moisture management and warmth. They can keep your feet toasty even when damp, and they also boast odour-inhibiting properties. Even on multi-day hill walks, you’ll be able to wear the same pair of merino socks because they’ll remain pleasantly fresh.
Socks made of synthetic materials are extremely low-maintenance and quick-drying. In addition to their great fit and excellent durability, the breathable socks can quickly wick moisture away from your body. Many manufacturers use both synthetic fibres and merino wool when designing their walking socks in order to efficiently combine the advantages of both materials. Such socks offer great moisture management, toasty warmth and an excellent fit.
Functional walking socks are essential
When hill walking, the walking boots can only live up to their fullest potential when worn in combination with functional and high-quality walking socks. Cheap, uncomfortable, slippery socks can easily wrinkle and cause pressure points, chafing and blisters. To avoid unpleasant pain whilst hill walking, you should have socks and walking boots that work well together. As a result, you should test out your socks together with your walking boots before going on your adventure. That way you’ll be able to determine whether the socks fit perfectly at the toes, heel and collar.
Walking socks for children, women and men
Socks are a hill walking essential. Just as you can find walking clothes that are perfectly tailored to children, women or men, you'll also find socks that are tailored to the different groups. Your preference for a certain pair of socks will depend on the shape, the length and the width of your foot. Even if the socks are meant for a certain size range, it’s still worth comparing different manufacturers and models to guarantee an excellent and comfortable fit whilst hill walking.