If You Hike In The Summer, You Need These Socks In Your Life

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Hiking in the sunshine is a magical part of summertime, but you need to make sure you have the right provisions. On top of having things like a reliable backpack, proper hiking clothes, and some tasty trail snacks, you also need a solid pair of the best hiking socks for summer made from a temperature-regulating material like Merino wool or a polyester blend that won’t make your feet feel like a fiery inferno.

Warm-weather excursions come with a unique set of factors to consider, and the best socks for the summer are typically different than the ones you'd wear throughout cooler months. The most obvious thing is you want them to be lighter and less insulated: This means lightweight, moisture-wicking fabrics that feel airy and won’t trap sweat or cause blistering. Your feet are going to sweat — there’s no getting around that — so having material like Merino wool or a similar synthetic fabric will prevent that uncomfortable, sticky feeling.

Materials aside, you also want to thinking about things like comfort and support as you hunt for an ideal pair. They should 1) have a secure cushioned fit that won't ride down, 2) have extra padding in your key blister zones to prevent rubbing and chafing. Is it obvious to say you should like the style, too? Because you should. You won't want to wear them if you don't like how they look.

Here, find a list of the best hiking socks you'll actually want to pack in your backpack for your next summer hike. They'll give you a head start on your next adventure.


The Overall Best Hiking Socks For Summer — And All Year Around

Summer nights can be chilly, and if you're enduring a nighttime trek, you'll want a slightly thicker pair capable of keeping you warm. Enter: Darn Tough's Vermont-made all-weather hiking socks. Their durable, insulated design offers cushioning and support without being thick and bulky, making them a great warm-to-cold crossover pair. Crafted with a synthetic blend and fine Merino wool that's quick-drying and antimicrobial, these no-bunch socks will keep you comfortable in a variety of hiking conditions. Given their nearly-five-star rating on Amazon and included lifetime guarantee, you won't regret buying these.

Helpful Review: "I bought these socks for hiking trip to the Grand Canyon [...] I just took them out on a preliminary hike. [...] These socks did not disappoint. My feet stayed warm. They never sweat, got too hot, or too cold. When I got home, I didn't even take them off... Usually I am whipping my socks off as fast as I can so my feet will stop sweating. The socks ( and my feet) didn't even stink (another reason I usually whip my socks off as soon as possible). I just might be buying a few more to wear as my everyday socks."

  • Available sizes: Small-Large


The Best Affordable Hiking Socks (That Are Still High-Quality)

Made in Europe with a breathable blend of Merino wool and stretchy synthetic fabrics, these summer hiking socks are lightweight and feature antibacterial properties that prevent odor from building up. The high-performance fabric is woven with blister-preventing Lin Toe seams and targeted mesh zones, giving them constant ventilation. Even better, these socks come with a shock-absorbent padding that protects the entire foot from soreness on bumpy terrain. You can snag a three-pack for the cost of a single pair of its pricier counterparts!

Helpful Review: "On the first day after hiking throughout Zion and 10 miles later my socks were not soaked and my feet were not blistered or burning up. I wore the other two pairs in the pack for our other day hikes throughout Utah and each pair held up the same as the first pair. I am 100% impressed with the quality and price of these socks and they have gained a forever costumer."

  • Available sizes: Women 5-13, Men 3.5-12.5, Kids: 13-3


A Pair Of Summer Hiking Socks With Extra Arch Support

Though they're not a "compression sock" per se, these U.S.-made lightweight hiking socks do feature compression through the arch, offering soft support and maximum comfort. They have intentionally mapped, full-density lining in the parts of the foot that need extra padding, while the rest — like the flat toe area — remains lighter so you don't overheat or chafe. The material is a 19.5-micron Merino wool knit that regulates temperature (i.e. cools you down when it's hot) with sweat-wicking and odor-resisting qualities.

Helpful Review: "I love the weight of these socks for backpacking on the Appalachian trail in warmer months while wearing trail runners."

  • Available sizes: Small-Extra Large


The Best No-Show Ankle Socks For Hiking

Whether you hike in sneakers or just prefer low-profile footwear, these no-show hiking socks from Merrell are a fantastic option. They're crafted with a temperature-regulating mix of polyester, nylon, and Lycra spandex, which makes them both exceptionally airy and odor-resistant in all weather conditions — even if they get wet. Besides boasting ample insulation, these socks also feature a cushioned sole to rev up blister protection, as well as arch support and a reinforced heel and toe. Translation: They're super comfortable.

Helpful Review: "I wore these socks for a 54 mile hike with merrell high top hiking boots. We finished the hike after 25 hours [...] and my feet didn't have so much as a single blister. I went through all 3 pairs, switching socks each 15-20 miles, and couldn't have been more satisfied!"

  • Available sizes: 4-10


The Best Waterproof Hiking Socks That Are Still Breathable In The Heat

It's actually hard to find good waterproof socks for the summer, because "waterproof" usually means "not breathable," aka "hot." These 100 percent waterproof hiking socks, however, are made specifically for warmer temps, thanks to a ventilating, three-layer blend of lycra, elastane, and waterproof nylon. With a stretchy hand feel, seamless construction, and comfortable fit, they're the perfect choice for rainy day hikes. Oh, and they're odor-resistant, so you don't have to worry about any damp stenches.

Helpful Review: "Unbelievably awesome I just came back from hell survivors in Michigan paintball tournament for those who are curious to see the terrain . My boots were covered to my ankle in mud yet when I removed my socks my feet were bone dry couldn't believe it."

  • Available sizes: X-Small-Large

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