Please sign in to post.

Sock recommendations

I need some sock recommendations. On my next trip, I am doing a lot of walking & hiking in Ecuador. I think want thin, quick dry, short/no show style socks. I saw a lot of recommendations for the Merino wool ones. I have some from Costco and they are great, but I wonder if they will be too warm. And the ones I have don’t seem to be quick dry. I’m also thinking that I might want thin socks so I can double up to reduce blisters.

Suggestions? Thanks.

Posted by
8 posts

I'd recommend Balega, especially if you want thin and no-show. These are by far the best I've tried. The Blister Resist offer more cushion, too, but are a little warmer. or you can also find them on Amazon.

Posted by
6583 posts

I love Balega socks - they are very comfortable and I would wholeheartedly recommend them. My daughter wears them for running and told me about them. I also like Feetures sock, which are also very comfortable. Many of their socks must be matched to the left and right foot, which makes sense and adds to their comfort. Those are my two favorite brands of socks.

I do not care for Darn Tough socks, which are recommended here sometimes - I think because my foot is right in between a 9 and 10, and so they never feel like they fit right. They're also a tight fit, which I prefer something a bit more comfortable.

I used to wear Smart Wool socks but they wear out so quickly that they aren't worth it, in my opinion.

Posted by
2945 posts

Anyone have advice for travel undergarments and shoes? I'm looking for apparel designed specifically for travel, from head to foot I guess you might say!

Posted by
2788 posts

I'm a huge fan of Wright Socks CoolMesh II anti blister socks. I've been wearing that brand since I did the Breast Cancer 3-Day Walk (60 miles) in 2007. Wright Socks makes other styles, but the CoolMesh works best in the AZ heat.

Posted by
4574 posts

I like merino socks too, but I just came back from Costa Rica wherenI spent a lot time birdwatching in hiking shoes too old and a little tight on heat swollen feet. As well as many bandaid, the life saver were my Wrightsock anti rub socks. They are double layered, but still dry overnight. Not no-show but can be bought quite low. I would actually recommend socks with some cuff in Ecuador. At times it is prudent to tuck pant hems into socks.....chiggers or other biters are just one reason.
I always wring out all clothing in a towel...or if a weak wrist, wrap in towel and stomp on them to remove as much water as possible. Thus, my Darn Tough thinner merino socks dry overnight. The only time they didn't was in Ecuador 'Amazonia'. If you are going there, then buy 2 dry bags. Put dirty clothing in one...and be prepared to hit the laundromat as soon as you can after leaving the jungle. Even in dry season, things didn't dry and got a little rank. The other dry bag is for the clothing you won't be wearing in the jungle. Pack those before entering the jungle humidity. Or at the very least, one clean and dry set of clothing to where while the rest is in the laundromat.

Posted by
104 posts

@BigMikeWest - If you scroll through this best walking shoe thread, you can find lots of shoe recommendations. Frequently in the packing thread, you can find discussions about clothes. Also, when posting your question, you might want to give some context. Where are you traveling? What time of year? What I am wearing to Ecuador in May is different than what I wear to Italy in December.

@MariaF That is a good point. I probably will want to cover my ankles. And thanks for the other suggestions. We are going to the coast, mountains and the jungle area, but only for a couple of days.

Posted by
4009 posts

For walking on pavement, I rely on Adidas cushioned socks with arch compression. They are the most supportive & comfortable I’ve ever had & I walk 5-10 miles 4-5 times per week.

Posted by
8723 posts

Smart Wool socks bought at REI.

Love them. Worth the cost.

Their Phd light micro might be what you need.

Nary a blister. Best part, they don’t smell!

Posted by
2267 posts

I'm a huge advocate for merino all year long! Smartwool and Darn Tough are my go-to brands—Icebreaker and Farm To Feet are good, too. (But I'm flexible... because I'm cheap, but good socks aren't!)

@BigMikeWestByGodVirginia - You've mentioned your quest a couple of times as a tangential comment in other threads. I certainly have thoughts on the topic—if you start your own thread I'd be glad to share them.

Posted by
23343 posts

I am with Scudder. I wear a medium weight merino wool sock year around. The wool sock is actually cooler than a cotton sock and the cushioning of the thicker sock is far better than a thin sock. However, you shoe should be fitted with the thick wool sock.

Posted by
707 posts

Another fan of merino socks year round. Even in 95° heat, I still wear merino socks. REI, Smartwool and DarnedTough are my go-to brands.

Posted by
911 posts

Darn Tough merino wool ultra-lightweight cushioned running sock. Drys overnight.

Posted by
1798 posts

I like darn tough socks, have three pairs. My only knock on them is they seem to be a little less stretchy overall than my other socks, so you have to kind of wrestle them on a little bit more. But they've performed well and they feel good once they're on.

Posted by
286 posts

X3 on Wrightsock for long days walking and hiking. They are a double sock by design but are a bit higher as a low cut ankle crew. Once you wear them you will not care.

I have hiked and backpacked for 30 years and used to use a liner sock system. Honestly, I would always have socks bunching up somewhere so I ditched these and focused on perfecting boot/shoe fit and I would advise doing the same.

The Costco merino sock (I have been buying them for years as daily wear around the house or casual boot socks) are just cheap all-purpose socks and definitely too warm for Ecuador. They last half as long as a similar Smartwool.

Darntough are indestructible, but not very comfy for my tastes. The yarns just feel rough and they seem a little lower on my calf than I prefer.

I wear Smartwool for daily wear and shorter hiking and biking days. I agree that their PHD line may be you are stylistically looking for. Plus, they dry very fast.

But on long days (especially when my feet may get wet) I reach for the Wrightsocks every time. I just bought three new pair for hiking last week. They will be going with me when we hike the TMB in July.

Posted by
508 posts

The no show Everyday Smartwool no show socks are my favorite. Have used them exclusively on trips with a lot of walking and hiking in the heat as well as during milder weather. They are the only socks I found that don't get sweaty and that hand wash/dry quickly. I really like that the more recent versions have a flat seam over the toe so no rubbing. They also have a grip heel.

Posted by
6583 posts

I like darn tough socks, have three pairs. My only knock on them is they seem to be a little less stretchy overall than my other socks, so you have to kind of wrestle them on a little bit more.

That's the same issue I have with them, Hank. And that's why I usually go with Balega or Feetures. But I do have a couple of pair - they're just not my go-to socks.

@Mariam, you might want to consider buying a couple of different brands and see which ones you like the best. If there is a Dick's Sporting Goods near you, they carry a wide variety of socks; as does REI. And of course, good local shoe stores should also have some good quality socks.

Posted by
101 posts

My SIL wore Under Armour socks on our recent trip (mainly city walking, not hikes). She said they were very comfortable, gripped around the arch and were soft. I believe they were the Performance Tech line. I brought some that I actually got second hand from my husband from a brand called "DRG" - no idea other than that, they were very comfortable and I'm pretty sure he bought them at Marshall's (I inherited them because they were too small for his feet).

Edit - they were DSG socks, not DRG! And apparently the DSG stands for Dick's Sporting Goods, so I guess my husband got them there and not at Marshall's, LOL.

Posted by
14 posts

I will third Balega runners socks because the heel tab provides great cushion and protection against the heel rub . Smart wool no shows are nice and thin and keep feet dry , I also have Bombas no shows with cushion but those take third place after the smart wool and Balegas .