FITS Sock Medium Hiker Crew
A really comfortable merino wool hiking sock. Very smooth, soft socks with a good amount of stretch. Relatively low volume for a medium weight sock. They fit well, whether or not their interesting heel design has anything to do with that or not. Bottom line—a really nice (but rather expensive) and supremely comfortable hiking sock.
- They feel awesome
- They fit really well
- Moisture handling
- They are on the expensive side
Revisiting this review after nine years. FITS have become the only thicker crew sock I wear for hiking; I actually managed to wear out the first three pair. They didn't get holes, but the wool had thinned and hardened in the heel area. They are the most comfortable and best-fitting merino wool socks I have worn.
The medium hiker crew now retails for $24 per pair. The material is still 70% merino wool, plus 22% nylon, 6% polyester, 2% lycra.
I just purchased a six-pack of FITS Light Hiker Crew socks to replace the old lighter-weight socks I wear, which don't have enough room for medium-weight socks. The light hikers have less merino and more nylon than the mediums.
My takeaways are that the heel "pocket" and quality of the fabric are the big advantages of these socks.
It's hard to place a value on having comfortable, dry, happy feet on a hike or a backpacking trip. Wool has consistently proved over a very long time to be one of the better materials for hiking socks because it doesn't absorb lots of moisture, retains its springy feel and insulating properties to a great degree even when damp, and is surprisingly cool in the summer as well as warm in the winter.
I grew up hiking in ragg wool socks, which have the positive qualities I just outlined but were a fairly scratchy, rough experience. As a result, I often wore them with liner socks. Merino wool is a very different experience — it's so much softer than ragg wool that liners have, for me, mostly gone by the boards.
Because socks are such an important piece of the puzzle for comfortable feet, I'm always willing to try different kinds to see what works. Also, I have become disenchanted with what used to be my favorite hiking sock — long story, but the company that makes my formerly favorite sock must have changed the blend or something, because their newer socks don't feel as good or retain nearly as much stretch and comfort as older versions of the same sock. a real shame.
Anyway, a wise person suggested I check these out; I'm glad I did. FITS makes many kinds and types of socks. I chose the medium hiker crew to wear in my all-leather hiking boots and, on occasion, to wear with a roomy pair of Goretex trail runners I use in crummy weather.
WHAT'S IN IT: For socks, I think this is important. The FITS medium hiker crew is 70% merino wool, with the rest being nylon, polyester, and a little spandex. So, the socks have the great qualities of merino wool but are also built to be durable and stretchy.
Here are some photos of the sock, one inside out. Note the curly loops on the inside—nice cushioning.
WHERE THEY ARE MADE: I don't tend to obsess about this, but FITS are made in Tennessee.
HOW THEY FIT: Like a glove. It may not show up well in photos, but the heel of these socks is a little different than most — it's a bulge that the manufacturer describes as some kind of heel pocket. I don't know whether that makes a difference or not, but the socks feel great. They are snug — it takes a little time to pull them on — but they don't slide around or feel loose on my feet, even after a long day and a lot of hard uphills and downhills.
HOW THEY PERFORM: So far, extremely well after several day-long hikes in leather boots, and a couple of day hikes in a pair of trail runners. Compared to some medium weight merino hiking socks, these are relatively low volume — I have to lace my boots a hair tighter with these than I do with some other brands' medium-weight hiking socks.
They wick moisture away from my feet extremely well, similar to most merino wool blend socks I have worn. after a few months and several hikes, meaning several runs through the washing machine, they look great and don't show signs of wear. (I line dry all merino wool socks, hats, base layers. They last much longer as a result, in my experience. Manufacturers will tell you it's OK to put them in a clothes dryer; I wouldn't do it).
Really nice stitching at the toe—you can't feel the seam at all.
PRICE: Alas, these are expensive. 21 bucks full retail. But the other socks I really like are also in that price range.
These socks do everything you would want with a hiking sock. I don't yet have years of experience with them, and I don't yet know how warm they will keep my feet on hikes in cold weather. But I'm sold. These are a contender. For what it's worth, I'm also familiar with similar socks from Bridgedale, Darn Tough, and Smartwool.
Nine years and literally thousands of miles hiked and walked in FITS.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $21
Try a pair of Fits socks and never look back.
- A little pricey
Andrew F has a great review of these socks.
The owner of the outdoor sports store I frequent says, "Paula, I've got the sock for you." They are the sock for any hiker in my opinion. They are a bit pricey to buy but worth the cost. I've since been back to buy another pair.
The design of the sock is the key to the comfort. You look at them and think I'm not so sure about the deep hill pocket on the sock. But it works, keeps the sock in place. They don't seem to stretch out and slide around after hours of wearing them. Quickly pulls moisture away from your foot. I've had no problems with hot spots while wearing these socks.
The back history on the company makes these socks quite interesting. In the past they had been asked by other sock companies including Smartwool to design and make socks for them. They took the flaws from costumer reviews and redesigned the wool sock to make it their own. It's pretty cool they are made an hour from me in Tennessee.
I will be on the lookout for them as seconds at some flea markets.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $21.95
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Current Retail: $17.98-$22.95
Historic Range: $8.38-$22.95
Reviewers Paid: $21.00-$21.95
Merino Wool 70%, Nylon 22%, Polyester 6%, Lycra 2%