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Warmest winter socks?

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Warmest winter socks?

Old 01-28-17, 02:38 PM
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Warmest winter socks?

In your experience, which socks offer the absolute most heat and possibly aid in circulation?

Im looking for socks that are not overly thick yet offer great insulation.

I suffer from a lack of circulation during rides. Even in perfect weather, my feet sometimes get cold. I have even worn thicker non cycling wool socks during the summer, and never seem to suffer from moisture problems, and my feet stay comfortable. For me, its like winter socks are perfect for summer, and not good enough for winter...

My current shoes are slightly on the tight side and seem to fit perfect for cycling. Any bigger and my feet would probably slip around in the shoe.

I had one other pair of shoes which were more loose and I had the exact same problem. I think the lack of circulation is not caused by the shoes, but rather just the general nature of my feet when cycling.

Admittedly, all of my shoes are summer specific with lots of vents. Im thinking about buying some shoe covers. I tried some before, but the zipper chafed the back of my achilles tendon. It was not a good experience.

I wear highly vented shoes for running and my feet never get cold when running, even in temperatures under 30F.

Since my feet usually seem cold, Ive thought about wearing winter socks year round. Is this a good or bad idea?

Anybody else have colder than usual feet when cycling?
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Old 01-28-17, 02:52 PM
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My experience using my summer shoes and trying to get warm feet has been poor. I buy the same shoes ~ a size larger for cooler weather. I can stretch their range by double bagging my feet in produce bags; one against my skin and one over my warm sacks with a very thin old man's dress sock to hold it in place. This keeps outside air off the socks and the socks 100% dry so using their full insulating value. Still only what, an 1/8" of insulation. Not much. Warm leggings help me a lot.

Real warm feet in cold weather never happened until I got boots. My 45 North Fasterkatt boots work well to the mid 20s are are far warmer than any cycling shoe system I ever came up with. (A lot faster to put on too.)
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Old 01-28-17, 02:57 PM
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alpaca socks .... 3 times warmer than merino. the alpaca gloves are also very good
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Old 01-28-17, 04:10 PM
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Consider GripGrab Arctic shoe covers...
There are also windblock socks...
-Tim-

Last edited by TimothyH; 01-28-17 at 04:38 PM.
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Old 01-28-17, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by dim
alpaca socks .... 3 times warmer than merino. the alpaca gloves are also very good
I picked up a pair of alpaca socks at a store just before xmas. They quickly became my favorite socks. I just bought two more pairs. I probably have 100 pairs of merino socks, no cotton.

But I'd expect qiviut ones to be even warmer, and even softer. And way more expensive.
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Old 01-28-17, 05:14 PM
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I have the same issue, feet get cold even when it's 60 degrees out. Its tolerable then but in the 30's like it is now, it's pretty uncomfortable. I use a pair of Pearl Izumi wool socks, and then wear a pair Adidas insulated socks over those. It works ok for a while but my daily rides are usually 2-4 hours, so I often come back with extremely frozen feet. LIke this morning in fact.

Think Im gonna try the Alpaca socks next..
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Old 01-29-17, 12:45 PM
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thin and good insulating, lol. How about the wireless transmission of energy and cold fusion while we're solving the world's engineering holy grails?

Wool socks are what you seek.
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Old 01-29-17, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by dim
alpaca socks .... 3 times warmer than merino. the alpaca gloves are also very good
How does one quantify "3x warmer" ?
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Old 01-29-17, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by dim
alpaca socks .... 3 times warmer than merino. the alpaca gloves are also very good
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest
I picked up a pair of alpaca socks at a store just before xmas. They quickly became my favorite socks. I just bought two more pairs. I probably have 100 pairs of merino socks, no cotton.
I'll give 'em a whirl sometime - any recommendations on athletic and/or cycling-specific brands or vendors? I'm mostly seeing casual or hiking.
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Old 01-29-17, 02:06 PM
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Ditto on wool-- wick better and even provide some warmth when wet but you'd probably have to get oversized shoes so as to fully take advantage of some added thickness--e.g., maybe try Googling, "Amazon rag wool cycling socks" for a starters or, something made in Norway could be a score.
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Old 01-29-17, 02:12 PM
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Just did 30 miles in 35 degrees, summer shoes, thin wool socks with the toes covered in Saran Wrap. Cheap solution that really works!
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Old 01-29-17, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi
I'll give 'em a whirl sometime - any recommendations on athletic and/or cycling-specific brands or vendors? I'm mostly seeing casual or hiking.
I had to go to a mall to pick up something my honey had ordered and shipped to the store. They had alpaca dress socks. Which were thin. Hiking socks tend to be thicker for more cushion, and that doesn't really work well for me in road shoes. The dress ones fit great.

But they're too warm for me to ride hard in. But it doesn't get very cold here very often.
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Old 01-29-17, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi
I'll give 'em a whirl sometime - any recommendations on athletic and/or cycling-specific brands or vendors? I'm mostly seeing casual or hiking.
Darn tough- https://darntough.com/collections/mens-bike
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Old 01-29-17, 08:14 PM
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ah, the eternal quest for the perfect sock. I like REI socks. the one near me has a huge sock dept. go to one & just take your time. I prefer a thick roomy sock w a sock liner underneath. sock liner shouldn't be tight either. I have to stay away from fabrics that shrink due to my clown feet. when you find something you like go back & buy another pair. good luck!
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Old 01-29-17, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest
I had to go to a mall to pick up something my honey had ordered and shipped to the store. They had alpaca dress socks. Which were thin. Hiking socks tend to be thicker for more cushion, and that doesn't really work well for me in road shoes. The dress ones fit great.

But they're too warm for me to ride hard in. But it doesn't get very cold here very often.
Hmmmm - ego doesn't allow me to don dress socks on the bike. I see some running socks, but I want something with a little bit taller of a cuff. Will keep looking.

Originally Posted by FBOATSB
I was asking for a rec on alpaca socks - merino athletic socks are easy enough to find (I prefer Swiftwick).
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Old 01-29-17, 08:32 PM
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I don't buy the idea that wool insulates even when wet.

Water is a very poor insulator. The wool might insulate but the water saturating the wool certainly wont, especially when it freezes.

I think it is a wives tale.


-Tim-
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Old 01-29-17, 08:54 PM
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Originally Posted by TimothyH
I don't buy the idea that wool insulates even when wet...



-
Google it--e.g.:

So even when wool is sopping wet-- so wet you can wring it out-- there are still insulating air pockets inside the fibre doing their best to help keep you warm. The water cannot get into the interior of the fibre. Wet wool is not full of water -- that is the major and important difference. Wool is like a wetsuit.
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Old 01-29-17, 09:11 PM
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I use SmartWool socks. Washable and durable. Of course shoe covers, also called booties. Neoprene are warmest, for example: Search results for BBB HeavyDuty Shoe Covers

And then there are chemical toe warmers, which work quite well if socks and shoe covers aren't enough: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0007ZF4PE/
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Old 01-29-17, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene
How does one quantify "3x warmer" ?
I don't know if it's been done for alpaca and wool, but you can heat it to body temperature from the inside and then measure how much heat escapes in a cold place.
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Old 01-29-17, 09:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Eyedrop

I had one other pair of shoes which were more loose and I had the exact same problem. I think the lack of circulation is not caused by the shoes, but rather just the general nature of my feet when cycling.
Two things come to mind here, the first being cleat placement. Have you looked at-/played with- that? Relatedly, do you think you might need a different footbed, particularly one with more arch support? These things can work together to cause pressure hotspots which may be contributing to, if not causing, the cold feet.

I'd also suggest taking a look at cold weather cycling boots. These are insulated, and make a big difference in my experience. Additionally, some are very smartly styled and look like their warm weather companion racing shoes, e.g. Northwave's Fahrenheit Arctic 2 GTX road boots. I use the wearable SPD variant, called the Celsius, and found them suitable for shoulder-season wear too, like when 50º and rainy seems freezing!

But if it is just socks, i can recommend DeFeet wool blends, especially Woolie Boolies and The Blaze for the cold, and the lighter Wooleators for warmer weather: Men - Temp - Cold - Page 1 - Defeet International
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Old 01-29-17, 09:49 PM
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My Rapha Deep Winter socks are my warmest and most dense. My Mongolian Wear socks are as warm but a bit fluffier. I have tons of wool cycling and hiking socks. Darn Tough makes good socks too but not as warm as the other two.
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Old 01-29-17, 10:17 PM
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I just ordered a set of NOS military 'extreme cold' socks from eBay this evening. Fingers crossed! lol.
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Old 01-30-17, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi
Hmmmm - ego doesn't allow me to don dress socks on the bike. I see some running socks, but I want something with a little bit taller of a cuff. Will keep looking.
I'm such a Fred. If you find anything, let me know.
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Old 01-30-17, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Chandne
My Rapha Deep Winter socks are my warmest and most dense. My Mongolian Wear socks are as warm but a bit fluffier. I have tons of wool cycling and hiking socks. Darn Tough makes good socks too but not as warm as the other two.
I just bought some rapha winter socks (which I believe are the same as the deep winter socks but just sit lower on the calf), after having suffered through a 26 degree ride where my feet never warmed up.
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Old 01-30-17, 04:09 PM
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I have those too, but the over-the-calf Deep Winters seems to be much more dense and heavy.
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