If your kids are anything like my kids, socks don’t have a chance at long term survival. In the hiking/backpacking world, though, having the right type of socks can make or break a trip. Thorlos socks seemed to have found the right formula between comfort, functionality and surviving the sock life in a kids boot.
Over the past six months, my two oldest kids put 506 miles each on three sets of Kox Kids Outdoor Thorlos socks (so an average of 168ish miles per pair). Perhaps that is too much math but basically we have spent the past six months backpacking in hot Southwestern deserts, seasonally wet canyons, over glaciers, though caves and numerous rain soaked trails in Washington State while wearing these socks.
Though they didn’t wear them in Death Valley (yet) or Denali (yet), I feel they have tested them as much as any backpacking kid could have. Here are some of my conclusions:
Desert: Even though it was hot (90 degree plus) and the kids were consuming a lot of water to stay hydrated, they didn’t complain about their feet being too hot or uncomfortable. The socks were able to wick away any sweat and keep their feet dry and happy.
Canyons: We averaged about a hundred miles of backpacking in the canyons in Southern Utah and Northern Arizona. The terrain varied between sandstone, sand hills, slickrock and river walking. These socks cushioned their little feet between each of the different terrain variations. Even when the river was the trail and water entered the boot, the kids didn’t develop hot spots or blisters.
Glaciers: I was a little nervous about how these socks would perform on glacier climbs. I mean, Thorlos has a specific beefier sock for snow sports. However, my son had no issues with his feet getting cold. The sock thickness and weave with a waterproof boot combination was just the right amount of heating and cooling to climb 40 miles of glaciers throughout the spring and summer. When enough water or snow made it into the boot, we were able to swap out socks when necessary and continue the adventure.
Caves: Washington has caves we explore dozens of lava tubes and a few vertical caves. This requires a very cushioned sock in the boot while caver has to climb over varying ceiling breakdowns, unstable pumice rock, tight squeezes, and crawl only tubes. Similar to hiking through canyons, the socks held up to different foot landing spots and varying uneven terrain.
Washington/Oregon: We understand the challenge of hiking in the Pacific Northwest encompasses granite rock, moss, slide alder, rainforest and lots of rain. Most of our backpacking resume takes place with these features out on the trails. My kids have had no concerns with their feet as they jump from rock to rock, self arrest in slide alder, or grind out long miles through rainforests in the Olympic National Park. Their feet stayed protected through varied terrain and weather conditions with these soft comforting socks.
Final thoughts: Thorlos Kox Kids Outdoor socks wick, keep feet cool when necessary, keep feet warm when necessary, prevent blisters and hotspots and are extremely durable. Short of the dryer attempting to lose sock mates, these socks are still going strong after 500 miles with an eight and ten year old. Socks can quickly end an outdoor adventure, make sure your little ones feet are covered in a reliable pair of socks that can withstand the challenge of your adventure.