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Recommendation for ski socks.

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

My son has very poor circulation, his hands and feet get very cold (my mom is the same way). Double layer mittens w/hand warmers work for his hands, but his toes nearly freeze, literally. I didn't know it was that bad till he told me at the end of last season. He loves skiing so much he just lives with it. I am very concerned about him loosing toes do to frostbite. He has tried foot warmers, but they don't do much. 

 

We use Wigwam ski socks we get from Big 5 for ~$12-$15/pair. They work fairly good, for me anyway.

 

Are there ski socks that do a much better job of keeping you foot/toes warm? I am also looking for heated ski socks, but haven't found much on line yet. 

 

Thanks,

Brad

 

post #2 of 28
Thread Starter 

I somehow double posted this question, please reply to this thread, I asked for the Mod to delete the other one.

 

Thanks,

Brad

post #3 of 28

Not sure that socks will make all that much of a difference. I also have cold feet and after trying many different types of socks I have found toe warmers to work. If he hasn't had any luck with these, it may be best to invest in boot heaters (eg Hotronics, Therm-ic). While they are a big upfront investment in dollar terms, he can transfer them between boots as his foot grows.

post #4 of 28

Brad,

 

This is a little bit of a hi jack but I think it will help you more than socks.

 

Instead of socks, I would look at boot gloves.  They're incredible and about the price of two pairs of socks.  It's a layer of thick neoprene that acts as a koozi for you boots.  And just like a thermos, put in cold, it stays cold.  Put in warm, it stays warm.

 

My keep feet warm trick is to put hand warmers in my boots when I leave the house for the mountain.  I shove a pair of sock in the cuff to keep the heat in.  When I get to the mountain and put my boots on, hand warmers go in the gloves, feet in the boots and boot gloves over the boots.  Nothing wrong with kids starting out with very warm boots.

 

I also keep the boots in the car and not the trunk or cargo box.  They are transported inside in a bag and not thrown over my shoulder.

 

I struggled for a season to keep my daughter's feet warm and the boot gloves did the trick.  She thought they were too dorky looking until I made her try them anyway.  Now she makes sure they're in her bag.

 

My only issue with them is the strap underneath will eventually rip if you walk on hard surfaces.  I saw that mine were starting to fray so out came the duct tape and problem solved.  You also need to make sure they aren't interfering with the toe bindings.

 

Don't forget about the hand dryer in the bathroom as a booster shot for the boots and feet.

 

When you start getting cold feet, go inside and put on warm socks and start over.  You're son might need to take more breaks than the rest of you.

 

Hope this helps.  Cold feet can suck the fun out of skiing pretty quick.

 

Ken

post #5 of 28

I would say don't listen to all the mickey mouse suggestions.

 

Intuition is known for their exceptional warmth.

post #6 of 28
post #7 of 28

Smartwool socks plus an electronic heater ought to keep the coldest feet toasty.

post #8 of 28

I suffer from cold feet and have the frostbites to prove it. Smartwool and X action socks in combination with Therm-ic heated soles/footbeds does the trick for me. If you're investing in heated soles, go for the  batteries with the highest capacity, they'll last longer. I'm very happy with my Therm-ic IC 1200.  

 

 

post #9 of 28

The real deal is having a boot that fits well so you don't need to crank it down and cut off blood flow.  Intuition liners may be part of this aspect of the solution.  Beyond that a clean, dry, thin ski specific sock like Smart-Wool helps.  Next up is the Boot Glove.  Some may think it looks dorky.  Others don't like that it blocks easy access to the boots buckles, My answer to this is if you have to constantly be messing with your buckles...  Your boots don't fit right, see suggestion 1.  The Boot Glove works and is pretty cheap.  Lastly I would suggest getting a Hotronic or Thermic boot heater system.  These also work well and can be used in several boots by buying the relatively inexpensive additional resistance elements for secondary boots and using the same set of expensive batteries in all boots.

 

I use all of these solutions, Intuition liner, well fitted boot, clean sock, Boot Glove, and Hotronic system.  Sometimes all at the same time when conditions get into the -20 range.  I'm generally in my ski boots everyday and all day.  My feet haven't been cold for about 3 seasons now.

post #10 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecimmortal View Post

I would say don't listen to all the mickey mouse suggestions.

 

Intuition is known for their exceptional warmth.

 

Did you even read the OP?  He's looking for his son and judging by the OP's picture, I'm thinking is on the young side and growing.  He's asking about socks and your answer is to spend almost $200 on a liner that will last little more than a season?!?!  Mine will be about $30 and will last years.  In other threads, he's stated he would prefer to not spend a lot of money unless he absolutely had too.

 

You might think of my post to him as mickey mouse but I would offer it is the most effective, least expensive way out of this issues.

 

For the record, I ski in Intuition liners and love them.  My only issue with them is they are so warm, my feet sweat and will then get cold on the -20 days.  That's when I wear the boot gloves.

 

If I'm Mickey, you're Daffy!  snowfight.gif

 

beercheer.gif

 

 


 

post #11 of 28

My daughter has always had cold feet. Now that she has her own boots, she has Hotronics, but before that we used the chemical toe warmers (like the hand warmers, but flat with adhesive so they stick to your sock) which worked fairly well. 

 

As mentioned previously, start out with warm boots - I used to carry a small (travel) blow dryer for this purpose. 

 

Also make sure he's actually dressed warm enough. The body has a priority system for keeping warm with hands and feet being the lowest. A lot of people focus on the upper body and forget about the legs - we used to put 2 pairs of long johns on my daughter.

 

 

post #12 of 28

Boot gloves, hottronic, etc. are all good suggestions.  Have you checked to see if your son's boots are cutting off his circulation and making the problem worse?  I use thin socks (silk sock liners from Teramar or Land's End) and try to avoid layers that extend below the cuff of the boot.  I have found that "less is more" when it comes to keeping your feet warm while skiing. 

 

When he returns to the lodge and opens the buckles/loosens his boots, can he feel the circulation returning?  If so, you should do some investigating to figure out what is cutting off his circulation.

 

STE

post #13 of 28

A really cheap thing to do and it could even be the answer, is to put some duct tape on the toe of the boot just below the last buckle to cover what is, in some boots, a place where cold air can enter the boot.  Also, the chemical toe warmers are more effective if you put them on the top of the toes and they also tend to stay in place better than on the bottoms when putting on the boots.  If you try everything else and decide he needs heaters, send me a PM.  I have some 4 year old Hotronic M3 Plus that I don't need anymore because I have boots with Intuition liners.  But before anything else, make sure his boots fit properly.  Go to the "Ask the Boot Guys" forum and read the wiki about fitting.  You can test the shell fit yourself at home.  And when he needs new boots, consider Full Tilt or some of the Dalbello boots that use Intuition liners.

post #14 of 28

Just trying to help here, so if you are already doing this which you probably are, then great. First thing is to make sure the boots are dry & warm in the morning before starting out. If your boots are already cold on a cold day, its almost impossible to get them warm by wearing them. Do you use a boot dryer at night to dry out the boot from the previous day skiing? The boot heaters available these days have all day run-times, so this would be a good investment. Good luck smile.gif

post #15 of 28

Not sure if this helps or not,, I try to ski come rain or shine as they say,, so on really cold days, -20c or colder I plan for 15 min 1/2 hour in the lodge after the second run,, enough time for something warm to drink,, boots off until my feet warm up, I've found that after they warm up from being absolutely freezing they will stay that way the rest of the day. as far as socks go I find that thinner is often better, more circulation, I wear ultra light smart wool socks they work well for me, tend to keep my feet nice and dry. might not be the answer for you but maybe it will help.

post #16 of 28

Didn't want to post twice but the ultra light socks work well for me I think mostly because of what has been mentioned above, not so much socks but boots that fit properly and don't cut of circulation.

post #17 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by L&AirC View Post

 

He's looking for his son and judging by the OP's picture, I'm thinking is on the young side and growing.


Thanks you made my morning :)  I should have included this in the original post. My son is 18 yrs, and I think his feet are full grown (I am 44, 43 in the pic). I have been busy out of town on business and not able to keep checking this forum. He is giving the toe warmers 1 more try. We actually skied yesterday in 15 to 25 deg weather, and his toes never got worse than just "cold". He has been in weight training in high school and really built his legs up. that might have helped with circulation. 

 

Thanks all for the replies, that gives us great ideas what to use as needed. 

 

Brad

post #18 of 28

 

SmartWool Phd (thin) and intuition Liners work for me.

post #19 of 28

I typically will buy about 10 pairs of the cheapest merino socks i can find every season.   That way i wind up wearing them all winter.   if i get stuck with cotten on my feet inevitably they find their way into my Alpine Touring setup.

 

eE just released a sweet search tool to find the cheapest quality merino socks you can get.

 

http://www.cleansnipe.com/Searchresults.aspx?q=ski%20socks&s=percent-2

 

Cheers,

Jed

post #20 of 28

I think Tetonpwdrjunkie has it right about proper boot-fit being the first thing to get right! I frequently ski with a lot of different people and when any complain about cold feet I ask them to try loosening the buckle over their arch (2nd buckle from toe end). In most cases they say their feet stop being cold - and in some cases they complain about their boot being too loose and their heels not staying down. This is simply a boot that's too loose or one that's packed out and needs some off-slope fitment tricks. You shouldn't ever have to crank down the 2nd buckle to stay in the boot, as all that does is squeeze shut the veins in the top/front of your foot cutting off your circulation and making your feet cold. WRT wool socks, my wife swears by Smartwool and I swear by Gates. 

post #21 of 28

Old Thread .. but

 

the list of ideas and your son's growth stop should be plenty to find an answer but as I like lists .. and maybe the wrong order (and late):

 

my wife and one child had cold feet, always used toe warmers ... given that and the above notes it seems the ideal thing is to:

 

  1. insure boots fit well, roomy box.  If he's outgrown, snugs down the toe buckles, etc, the circulation may be limited and a good fitting may be in order. 
  2. Liners, better liners may offer more warmth, but I'd lean towards boots first. Liners may be a nice option but perhaps more a consideration boots are worth the added cost and perhaps more for comfort
  3. If keeping current boots, either costs, newness and not wishing to invest much or an interim till you with to commit to a longer term above or mix:
  • looser toe buckle ... half turn for more circulation
  • thinner socks or not doubled up ...
  • Boot Glove, $30-$40 maybe - snagged some really cheap at TJ Max:  My wife used this, her newer boots were still cool and she always used toe warmers but swear by the boot glove.  The do limit easy access to buckles but she dropped the toe warmers she "always" used and even on powder days, says her toes are toasty.  Noted above is the elastic strap under a boot.  Her "gloves" if pulled tight and back allows the elastic to sit behind the toe and heal (arch area) without touching the ground while walking.  One item I'd point out, is the ones I picked up for her had adhesive vented foil (just like furnace duct foil tape but with holes) tape that one would cut out and form around the Toe Box and add under the insole.  This in theory reflects heat back to the foot, the vents in theory let out moisture .. but given boots are solid.  Duct tape on the outer near toe may not hurt either ...
  • Hotronic type insoles ... but I would think trying toe or even footbed (full foot length) chemical warmers can give you an idea of if the cost is worth it.

 

I'd really try some simple cheap stuff first if not looking for a new pair of boots, even foil furnace tape under the foot bed and on toe box may be sufficient ..

post #22 of 28

Thanks for the info.  Years ago used to look for such products but what was available did not impress.   As soon as I investigated, bought a set of BootGloves at Amazon for just $27 including shipping.  Anyone else interested, be sure to first check out the DryGuy website for the correct sizing and read the Amazon reviews as one needs to be aware of the strap beneath the boot that can be damaged by walking around.

 

http://www.amazon.com/DryGuy-BA_-BootGlove-Boot-Covers/dp/B000MTRX9U

 

As a thin wiry guy, my extremeties readily get cold, especially the toes of my feet on cold stormy fresh snow days.  So maybe 20 years ago began custom fitting toes of whatever boots I bought with neoprene held on by duct tape.  Bought Lange RS110 's last spring but have not yet customized them.  So this BootGlove product is a better design than anything I might do that will take care of that.  Even with this product, the wise skier on cold days will find ways to keep a pair of boots warm before putting them on.  Putting on a pair of boots that have been laying around say in a cold section of some ski cabin overnight during freezing temps is likely to stay cold regardless of what one does.

 

David

post #23 of 28

I think this was great advice.  I added it to a ski advice worksheet I update from time to time..  If any of you want a copy of it,  email me  at walker@chandelrandchandlerlaw.com.      Keep on carving!

post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duckfeet View Post
 

Not sure that socks will make all that much of a difference. I also have cold feet and after trying many different types of socks I have found toe warmers to work. If he hasn't had any luck with these, it may be best to invest in boot heaters (eg Hotronics, Therm-ic). While they are a big upfront investment in dollar terms, he can transfer them between boots as his foot grows.

Plus one for the Hotronics.  

 

Another option is neoprene boot gloves, that go over the boots.  

post #25 of 28

I get cold feet as well, and one thing that helps a lot is to start out the day with warm, dry boots. I will pull my liners out every day after skiing, and stick these in (http://www.rei.com/product/825713/dryguy-turbodry-boot-dryer). Then I dry the inside of the shell with a paper towel.

 

Another thing that can help is to unbuckle the first 2 buckles over your feet while you are in line for and riding up the chairlift. I find that this helps blood circulate and warm your feet.

post #26 of 28
Tape the front overlap and the longitudinal overlap. It helps.
2nd any dryer too. Start with them dry and warm. If long trips to the mt consider a 12volt Hot Gear Bag.
post #27 of 28

Tog-- I used to tape the front overlap on my langes (to keep water out)-- but somebody suggested it was actually to let moisture out- not in--ti keep feet from getting wet and cold-- meaning the ice on the T overlap down by the toe was moisture from inside the boot, not outside.  So I stopped taping-- but I guess if you tape you would keep heat in as well as moisture- not sure of the net result of that?  Interested in this question though

 

Anyway on cold days I use bootgloves- as funny as they look.  I am in plugs and damn they fit well but man are they cold.  I am told some of the newer plugs are prefit for hottronics-- etc-- I've been okay with boot gloves until below zero-- at which time I just suffer and take a break here and there.

post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jshea93 View Post

Tog-- I used to tape the front overlap on my langes (to keep water out)-- but somebody suggested it was actually to let moisture out- not in--ti keep feet from getting wet and cold-- meaning the ice on the T overlap down by the toe was moisture from inside the boot, not outside.  So I stopped taping-- but I guess if you tape you would keep heat in as well as moisture- not sure of the net result of that?  Interested in this question though

Anyway on cold days I use bootgloves- as funny as they look.  I am in plugs and damn they fit well but man are they cold.  I am told some of the newer plugs are prefit for hottronics-- etc-- I've been okay with boot gloves until below zero-- at which time I just suffer and take a break here and there.
The gap in the overlap no doubt lets hot moist air out. The front transverse gap where the rubber dam is is supposed to keep snow out. If it was a vent they wouldn't try to seal it

. I started taping in the rain and then cold one day when a buckle broke off. Talking both gaps so tape makes a long 'T' . Seemed to work in cold so i've kept it up. I suppose one could find a roll of goretex laminate tape and try that. :-). If your feet sweat a lot leaving that little gap or taping it over prob won't make much difference. Better to just keep the heat in? - but often those people have hot feet. Changing socks at lunch would be a better option probably.

Boot gloves seem to be a good option but I've actually never used mine. Why not tape and boot glove? - ah the boot glove is the pseudo goretex letting the moisture out?
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