WHICH SOCK IS BEST FOR HUNTING? – Nothing can ruin a hunt like poor foot care.  When your feet start to break down, and get blisters and sores, your ability to hunt gets affected.  In fact, one of the biggest reasons that hunters go home early is because their feet start to break down.  There are many things that can improve foot care in the backcountry.  Things like good boots, cleaning regularly, and foot powder can be very important in keeping your feet healthy.  However, having the right sock makes the biggest impact.  In this article, we’re going to share some of our top sock options to help keep your feet healthy, and keep you on the mountain longer.

Merino Wool vs Synthetic

Before we get into the different sock options, let’s talk about the materials that most socks are made out of.  Synthetic materials have become extremely popular over the past couple of decades.  Synthetic provides a comfortable fit at a low cost.  Most people choose synthetic materials because they can get more pairs of socks for less money.  There are a lot of complaints though when it comes to synthetic materials.  Most complaints include sweating, odor, and durability.  So although you get more socks for less cost, they may not last that long.

Merino wool is an amazing material.  We recommend using merino wool for all of your base layers that touch your skin.  Especially when it comes to your socks.  The biggest con to merino wool is its cost.  For a good pair of socks, you’ll be paying over $20.  With that being said though, there are several advantages of merino.  Merino is an interesting material.  It keeps you warm when it’s cold, and it keeps you cool when it’s warm.  It’s also amazing when it comes to odor control.  It’s naturally antibacterial, so it kills odors.  Lastly, it is durable.  One pair of socks will last you a very long time.

Sock liners

Another important point we should touch on before getting into the specifics are sock liners.  Many people don’t use sock liners, but if you’re going to be doing a lot of hiking, sock liners will save you!  When Terron was on his backpacking llama elk hunt, they walked 10-14 miles a day.  Sock liners not only helped with moisture, but they also reduced hot points that cause blisters.  Smart Wool makes some amazing sock liners that help wick moisture away from your foot, and they help reduce friction inside your boot.

Best Socks for Hunting

We will list several of the socks we have used and recommend for hunting and hiking.  These socks have proven their worth for us in the backcountry.  Let us know in the comments below if you’ve used some of these socks before.  Also, let us know which socks you recommend.

Merrill Cushioned Hiking Sock

Most hunters and hikers are familiar with the Merrill brand.  They have been making quality shoes and socks for a long time.  One of our favorite synthetic sock is the Merrill Cushioned sock.  In terms of comfortability, it’s hard to top this sock.  It provides good breathability, warmth, and the cushion is welcoming when you’re putting on a lot of miles.  The sock also provided the durability that we were hoping.  It didn’t last as long as some of the other socks, but for a synthetic sock, it did pretty well.  Also, as we mentioned above, these are a cheaper option where they’re synthetic.  You can get a 3 pack of socks for just $15.

Danish Endurance Merino Wool

Merino wool, as mentioned above, is fantastic.  The Danish Endurance sock makes the list, not only because it’s merino wool, but it really is a great deal.  Yes, you can get a 3 pack of the Merrill socks for $15, and these are $32 for a 3 pack, but that’s a good deal for merino socks.  However, as with most things, you get what you pay for, including socks.  These socks did great at odor control, moisture wicking, and comfort.  Their downfall was in the durability.  We found these socks to be mediocre when it comes to quality; however, at the price point, you can buy more socks as they wear out.  As hunters though, we prefer to buy something that will be with us for the long haul.  That’s why we recommend the next sock on the list.

 Darn Tough Merino Wool

We saved the best for last.  If cost isn’t an issue, which we understand it is, the Darn Tough Merino Wool sock is the best choice.  Outside of cost, this sock has all the benefits of the other socks listed above.  The merino wool in this sock does a fantastic job of wicking moisture away from your foot.  Better than any other sock we’ve used.  It also provides that antibacterial benefit to reduce odor.  Actually, to be honest, this sock removed all odor for us.  And then the biggest highlight of this sock is the durability.  Darn Tough isn’t just a name, but a feature of this sock.  It is extremely tough and will last a long time.

When it comes to choosing a sock, we’d prefer buying nice rather than buying twice.  If you can buy one sock, that is a little more expensive but lasts longer, that is the smarter move.  Not only that, but you also get a superior sock with the Darn Tough.


Socks can make or break your hunt.  During a hunt, the last thing you should be thinking about are your feet.  You should be focused on the tactics required to harvest the animal you’re pursuing.  To accomplish that, you have to prepare.  Part of preparing is ensuring you have the correct gear to make your hunt successful.  Socks are a huge part of that preparation.

There are benefits to both synthetic and merino wools socks, but to us, it’s a no brainer.  The Darn Tough merino wool sock is the best of the best for us.  It provides you with the things you need in a sock, without the downfalls of other socks.  It does require a little more out of your wallet, but is a few extra dollars worth keeping you on the mountain long enough to harvest the animal of your dreams?  To us, you can’t put a price on that.

Do you use any of these socks?  Which sock would you recommend?


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