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Cold Feet

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
I've always had em. Now, I'm looking forward to long days on the hill, and I'm wondering what the current wisdom is on socks.

Back in the day, I used to wear a thin, wicking sock with a thicker insulating pair over the top. This still seems to make a lot of sense to me, but I know there are those things I don't know ...

Like, does wearing thicker socks, or multiple pairs, significantly affect control? If so, is the trade off worth warm feet whilst patrolling? Or, is there some new technology or concept which has escaped me?

My patrol director suggested we change when we get to the hill - dry our feet, spray on an anti-perspirant, and put on a fresh pair of wicking socks. I'm looking at merino wool socks such as SmartWool as they seem comfortable, wick well and resist odor. But, I'm wondering if I should try a thin pair and wear something heavier over them. Or, try the thickest pair I can find alone. Or, what?

Jeeesh! A thread on socks?!

Bill
post #2 of 25
Thin socks plus Boot Gloves


Ken
post #3 of 25
BillG, listen to PD.

Change socks when you get to area. Dry feet with baby powder, ski socks on afterwards, I perfer the Smartwool brand but there are a lot of choices.

At lunch change again.

Works great.
post #4 of 25
Hey BillG, cold feet wear a nice warm helmet and warm gloves. Layer up with some nice capilene base layers.
post #5 of 25
Boot fit is the most important factor. If your boots impinge on circulation at all, your feet are going to get cold and/or frozen and you should go see a good bootfitter to make things fit correctly. Beyond that, I usually ski in a smaller boot without a lot of room, so a wicking liner is my only option; if the boot liners pack out a bit more, I may switch to something like a Smartwool sock.
post #6 of 25
Good suggestions from above. I was a sceptic at first but I'm very happy with my Hotronic heaters.
Turn them on before your feet get cold.
post #7 of 25
I'm surprised more patrollers don't use AT boots. You can walk in them, with great traction, and they are warm. I have never been cold in the Garmont Adrenalines. Not quite a performance alpine boot, but not bad when you spend as much time off your skis as the average patrol.

For Michigan, I'd go with the Hotronic suggestion. No way could I fit two pairs of socks under my alpine boots.
post #8 of 25
I carry a spare pair of socks in my pocket. Whenever my feet feel cold, I change socks (and I find that the socks on my cold feet are inevitably damp). The dry socks always make my feet feel warm for the rest of the day.
post #9 of 25
Why are your feet damp? The one time I found my socks wet, there was a slight leak from the front of the boot. A piece of gaffer's tape solved that. I can't imagine skiing with wet feet.
post #10 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dgudaitis View Post
Why are your feet damp? The one time I found my socks wet, there was a slight leak from the front of the boot. A piece of gaffer's tape solved that. I can't imagine skiing with wet feet.
Some of us find that our feet generate enough moisture on their own that sealing the outside of the boot doesn't help.

And re: Adrenalines: the rockered sole isn't exactly compatible with standard alpine bindings. You can either put the DIN soles on (which are neither rockered, nor Vibram) and get DIN-release characteristics, or you can ski with the rockered sole and use an AT binding if you want proper release characteristics. AT soles in a normal DIN-spec binding will not release at the expected torque per the standards.
post #11 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirquerider View Post
I'm surprised more patrollers don't use AT boots. You can walk in them, with great traction, and they are warm. I have never been cold in the Garmont Adrenalines. Not quite a performance alpine boot, but not bad when you spend as much time off your skis as the average patrol.

For Michigan, I'd go with the Hotronic suggestion. No way could I fit two pairs of socks under my alpine boots.
I have both. I wear AT boots with AT binding skis when I expect to do a lot of off ski work, and alpine boots when I expect some hardcore skiing. The AT boots are a pleasure to walk around in.
post #12 of 25
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the suggestions. Puttin em all togther, they support each other well. Here's my recap:

Make sure yer boots fit well, and don't don't cut off circulation to yer feet by over-tightning or by wearing too thick of a sock. When ya hit the hill, dry yer feet, use an anti-perspirant or baby powder, and change into thin, wicking socks. Change into a fresh pair at lunch. Make sure the rest of your body is well insulated with layers of capelene/polypro/merino wool - No cotton. Look into boot gloves and in-boot heaters such as the Hotronic unit.

Bought a pair of thin, merino wool ski socks today. If I likes em, I'll get a couple more.

It's snowing here in Western Michigan!
post #13 of 25
I have cold feet as well, I found that the smart wool over the calf ski sock and boot heater work FANTASTIC for me. Boot heater has 3 setting, they clip on to the back of the boot. I started out last winter with them and wow my toes were happy. If they got to hot I just turned the heaters off. Med heat kept my toe nice and warm all winter. Then I just recharged heaters at night.
Sue
post #14 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillG View Post
Thanks for all the suggestions. Puttin em all togther, they support each other well. Here's my recap:

Make sure yer boots fit well, and don't don't cut off circulation to yer feet by over-tightning or by wearing too thick of a sock. When ya hit the hill, dry yer feet, use an anti-perspirant or baby powder, and change into thin, wicking socks. Change into a fresh pair at lunch. Make sure the rest of your body is well insulated with layers of capelene/polypro/merino wool - No cotton. Look into boot gloves and in-boot heaters such as the Hotronic unit.

Bought a pair of thin, merino wool ski socks today. If I likes em, I'll get a couple more.

It's snowing here in Western Michigan!
Your forgot the most important part for keeping your feet warm. The old saying goes, if your feet are cold put a hat on. If your head is cold the body will automatically pull circulation away from the hands and feet to keep your head warm. Wear something warm on your head and neck like a nice warm helmet with Balaclava. Here is a Balaclava you wear under your helmet.

I am guessing your one of those people that don't like to wear hats and are wondering why their feet are cold all the time.
post #15 of 25
I second the notion of the Boot Glove. I always had issues with cold feet until I got those. They are especially effective when skiing pow, which really cools the shell of your boot down. Money well spent.
post #16 of 25
Looks like you have it figure out now Bill. Just wondering though...what kind of boots do you have?
post #17 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattL View Post
Looks like you have it figure out now Bill. Just wondering though...what kind of boots do you have?
Technica Diablo Flames I got a few years ago. They fit my medium-to-wide foot well, and I had them fitted with custom footbeds. In the last few seasons, my feet haven't got terribly cold. But then, I took plenty o breaks in the cafeteria and slopside pub <g>

Bill
post #18 of 25
I do not take many breaks at all, and I have Tecnica Vento 10's for my EE width feet....Smartwool is the best sock I have ever found for wicking the sweat away from my feet, and also for warmth....

I used to be a bootfitter for 5 years at a front Range Christy Sports in Denver, CO...the biggest thing I ever saw was people wearing socks too thick, or more than one pair....NEVER do that. Use the boot's built-in materials to enhance the warmth of your foot, not deter it....

and, if it is EXTREMELY cold (ie 36 hours of Keystone at 3AM -- -15), you can honestly rub a light layer of the good ol Ben Gay on your toes...lol...it actually works, if you can handle the slight burn and mint smell on your gloves...lol
post #19 of 25
AT boots and Hotronics. I picked up some Scarpa tornados with the thermo liner and the din compatable rubber sole. They let you release the forward lean, which great when standing vulture at a race course.
post #20 of 25
as has been said before-make sure feet and socks are dry-I wear Technica XT17's-when its in the vicinity of zero or below, I wear boot gloves-put the boot gloves on when your feet and boots are still warm, in my experience, they'll keep the warm in, but they don't do much to warm up cold feet
post #21 of 25
I used to have cold feet until I did the following:
  1. Purchased 2 square feet of silver aviation or home heating insulation that is typically seen wrapped around pipes as a thermal layer. It's the sooooooooper thin stuff. Cut them to match the inside of the Super Feet, put them on the inside bottom of the boot, then inserted the lining, then inserted the Super Feet (silvery shiny side up) and my feet are always toasty warm without hotronics, or any of those other devices.
  2. Fancy schmancy ski socks. I just recently purchased a bunch of wool and synthetic socks (used to ski in athletic cotton) and boy, what a difference.
  3. Baby powder inside the boot and inside the socks before every day and at lunch keeps me super dry and therefore, warm.
  4. Backed off the top two buckles, one basket each, and restored better circulation.
  5. Always warm up, stretch and do the 'foot swing thing' before every day and if I've been 'off hill' or 'on-chairlift' for a bit.
Hope these all help.
post #22 of 25
Anyone use or hear about HeatShields? I am trying to get a little more warmth out of a race fit boot. I was also wondering if the Hotronics interfere with a tight fitting boot?
post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillG View Post
Technica Diablo Flames I got a few years ago. They fit my medium-to-wide foot well, and I had them fitted with custom footbeds. In the last few seasons, my feet haven't got terribly cold. But then, I took plenty o breaks in the cafeteria and slopside pub <g>

Bill
I guess those newer ones don't need duct tape across the front?

I don't think anyone mentioned this...make sure your boots are completely dry from skiing the day or two before. Everyone mentioned socks and feet being dry but the boots need to be completely dry and not damp at all. If you are skiing back to back days a boot dryer is essential.
post #24 of 25
Many agreements here.
Comfy boots, not too much sock, DRY THE BOOTS EVERY NIGHT. Change socks as soon as the feet get cold.

The big thing for me is that I run warm. My feet overheat before I get up the first lift. Perspiration is evil!.

Gold bond powder in every boot every time I put them on!

Still the dogs get cold and clammy. Fresh socks again!

Once they warm a second time, They are good for the day.

Realy, The AT Scarpa's have been the best for warm toes. I think it's due to the natural walking flex that promotes circulation.
A loose boot cuff might be the ticket as well.


CalG
post #25 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PowTron View Post
....Smartwool is the best sock I have ever found for wicking the sweat away from my feet, and also for warmth....

Recreational Equipment's outlet site is selling them for 30-47% off. Recently, they added a 20% off sale on top of that. Seems like a good deal. Their regular site has more SmartWool stuff, as well as other merino wool blend socks, at reasonable prices.

Ob disclaimer - not a paid shill for REI, no financial intrest, yada, yada, yada. Just a happy customer.
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