Thorlo Light Hiking Sock - Moderate Cushion with Wool/Silk
Materials: THOR-LON and Coolmax
Use: I used for XC skiing and snowshoeing but will use them for hiking once the snow melts
Break-in Period: None
Price Paid: Promo from Thorlo
Your sock is the sole barrier between your foot and shoe and it’s the quality of the sock that largely determines if your day on the trail is going to suck or be great.
There is one area in our bodies where fat cells diminish without us putting in any effort. It’s the fat on the bottom of our feet. By the time we reach our 40s, the fat pad on the bottom of our feet is half gone. More so if we’ve lead active lives. The end result is that our feet absorb less shock and become sore and painful as the day progresses.
The remedy is Thorlos.
Thorlo socks are designed with Engineered Variable Density Pads which act as a surrogate fat pad to protect against impact. Thorlos’ padding transfers the shearing forces that occur in the ball and heel areas to the thousands of terry loops that are densely knitted into the ball of the sock.
I’ve been wearing a pair of moderate-cushion Light Hikers made with THOR•LON® and Coolmax®. Due to the glory of winter’s snow-covered trails, I haven’t been wearing these “hiking” socks per say, but rather as all-purpose socks for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, activities where I’m on my feet for an extended period of time in a boot that doesn’t have the best ventilation.
For outdoor activities in the winter, the last thing you want is cold, wet feet. The THOR•LON® and Coolmax® construction, coupled with a ventilation panel, will keep your tootsies dry and comfortable despite the season.
Everyone’s heard of Coolmax so no introduction is needed, but THOR-LON is Thorlos’ own trademark acrylic yarn. It’s spun (in North Carolina!) to maintain both softness and resilience. This, I’m wagering, is the secret to the sock’s superior fit on any foot and the ticket to a blister-free day. When you pull on Thorlos, the first thing you’ll notice is how well the sock’s heel instantly molds to the heel of your foot. There is no extra bulk to bunch up at your toes, arch and heel to cause irritation in your boot later.
Another nice feature of the Light Hiker is a gentle compression in the calf. Compression promotes blood flow and improves circulation and is important in the overall foot health department.
Are Thorlos sturdy? Do they hold up? Are they worth the $18.99?
Let me tell you a story. I have a pair of Thorlo socks of indeterminate age. I bought them when I lived in California for a hiking trip on the Pacific Crest Trail. A rough estimate would put them at around 15 years old. I still have them today. They’re my lucky hiking socks because in all the miles I’ve hiked in them, I remained blister-free.
This, I learned, is the result of Thorlos Engineered Variable Density Pads and a properly-fitted boot working as a system which they term the “Integrated Comfort Solution” (engineered padded socks + the right boots + proper fitting = maximum quality hike).