winter socks

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
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Sweep
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Re: winter socks

Postby Sweep » 10 Jan 2021, 8:39am

Vorpal wrote:
I wear winter boots one size too big, so I can get an extra pair of socks in without making them too tight. If they are both thick, knitted wool socks, I can cycle in temperatures down to -10 C. (whether I want to is another thing :wink: ).


extra question about your two thick socks suggestion vorpal as the furthest I have ever gone down this route is some nice thickish thermal socks with a very thin liner sock.
If you wear two thick socks do you have any issues? Rubbing or friction issues etc?
Does the length of the ride matter?
I ask as I am thinking of getting a bigger size of shoe I like and rate as an alternative to an expensive specifically winter shoe.
Sweep

colin54
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Re: winter socks

Postby colin54 » 10 Jan 2021, 9:31am

bongo wrote:Cheers for all the helpful replies.

I have ordinary MTB flat pedals and use waterproof or regular lightweight walking shoes to cycle in, both have a bit of room. Tried many shoe options but these are best for me for comfort and weather protection and grip, and sensible price. I'm a hillwalker too so my kit is often dual purpose. I like to keep things simple if I can. Think the overshoe option is not for me somehow.


Bongo,
Have you tried your walking boots rather than shoes if you have any? I use an old pair of Hi-Tec walking boots cheapish, light, comfortable and warm, they are the kind of suede and fabric type, they do various sorts (Go Outdoors) about 50 quid. I pair them up with long wool blend Ski socks from Aldi when they have them, Craghopper windproof trouser tucked into them and pulled over the calf. That might make a difference ?
I have a pair of the Shimano Boots linked upthread, be aware that in my experience Shimano shoes need to be a size larger than normal to begin with, and with thick socks possibly another size, I bought mine second hand off a forum member who I think sold them for that reason . They're nice boots but I've found that when walking with them in the snow in previous winters, the snow tends to ball up into a lump on the rubber cleat cover (still uncut) and make walking slightly uncomfortable, nice boots though, but for the money and as you're using flat pedals, no better and slightly less grippy when pedalling than the ordinary boots, the pedal can skate on the cleat cover slightly I find.
A flat thin woolen scarf overlapped across the chest works for me for keeping my torso warm, it avoids putting on an extra bulky layer and also fills in the gap you can get just below a buff.
Good luck.

nez
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Re: winter socks

Postby nez » 10 Jan 2021, 10:21am

mjr wrote:Toe covers work well enough for me until it is so cold that I am riding a studded tyre bike in army-pattern boots.

What temp do you go for the studded tyres? It’s always seemed an issue for me - there aren’t many contiguous days of ice

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Re: winter socks

Postby mjr » 10 Jan 2021, 7:24pm

nez wrote:
mjr wrote:Toe covers work well enough for me until it is so cold that I am riding a studded tyre bike in army-pattern boots.

What temp do you go for the studded tyres? It’s always seemed an issue for me - there aren’t many contiguous days of ice

Generally, I use them if the gritters have been out (which is announced online and visible on my road) and I need to set off before it is 4°c. It is just a bit slow if I am riding them on tarmac but worth it if there are ice patches which could easily mean a fall.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Re: winter socks

Postby Vorpal » 11 Jan 2021, 8:42am

Sweep wrote:
Vorpal wrote:
I wear winter boots one size too big, so I can get an extra pair of socks in without making them too tight. If they are both thick, knitted wool socks, I can cycle in temperatures down to -10 C. (whether I want to is another thing :wink: ).


extra question about your two thick socks suggestion vorpal as the furthest I have ever gone down this route is some nice thickish thermal socks with a very thin liner sock.
If you wear two thick socks do you have any issues? Rubbing or friction issues etc?
Does the length of the ride matter?
I ask as I am thinking of getting a bigger size of shoe I like and rate as an alternative to an expensive specifically winter shoe.

I tried my boots on with the extra socks. I also bought a brand that I know fits me well. I have not had any problems with this combination. I don't usually cycle long distances in that cold weather, but I have done my 10 mile commute. On Saturday, I went for a 4 mile walk with Mr. V. It was -8 here, so I wore my winter boots & two pairs of socks, and it worked well. TBH, it wasn't ideal for walking that far, and if I had realised we were going farther than strolling along the river, I probably would have worn walking boots, and chanced the cold toes. But I didn't have any chafing or discomfort.

One of my pairs of socks is a little closer fitting than the other, and I tend to layer them with long underwear & trousers, which I think helps hold them in place.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

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Sweep
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Re: winter socks

Postby Sweep » 11 Jan 2021, 9:51am

thanks for the reply vorpal.
Sweep

bongo
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Re: winter socks

Postby bongo » 11 Jan 2021, 1:12pm

colin54 wrote:
bongo wrote:Cheers for all the helpful replies.

I have ordinary MTB flat pedals and use waterproof or regular lightweight walking shoes to cycle in, both have a bit of room. Tried many shoe options but these are best for me for comfort and weather protection and grip, and sensible price. I'm a hillwalker too so my kit is often dual purpose. I like to keep things simple if I can. Think the overshoe option is not for me somehow.


Bongo,
Have you tried your walking boots rather than shoes if you have any? I use an old pair of Hi-Tec walking boots cheapish, light, comfortable and warm, they are the kind of suede and fabric type, they do various sorts (Go Outdoors) about 50 quid. ...
A flat thin woolen scarf overlapped across the chest works for me for keeping my torso warm, it avoids putting on an extra bulky layer and also fills in the gap you can get just below a buff.
Good luck.


Colin,
We sound like we use the same type of gear. I've a pair of Karrimor low walking boots but find them a bit clunky on the bike. I'm just waiting for better merino wool socks to arrive to add a bit of extra warmth to my current footwear, hopefully that will do the trick. I only feel the cold at 2c and below so occasional.

Good idea about the woolen scarf, will try that - I like the simple effective solutions. And cheap, as I have a couple.

Cheers
bongo

colin54
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Re: winter socks

Postby colin54 » 11 Jan 2021, 6:56pm

Vorpal's post reminded me, I nearly always wear long johns under my trousers through the winter ( I assume this must make some contribution to warmer feet).

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Re: winter socks

Postby RiBenA75 » 11 Jan 2021, 6:59pm

DeFeet woolie boolie socks are by far the best socks for winter that I've tried, very toasty. I wear a pair of those, my regular cycling shoes plus some Lusso windtex overshoes for grotty conditions, or DhB toe covers for shorter rides. If it's milder then Prendas cordura overshoes work well. As others have posted make sure shoes are not too tight. Not keen on waterproof socks as get very sweaty, and water does get in eventually and then you can't air dry. Conversely overshoes do get shredded easily, but I can live with that.

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Re: winter socks

Postby gxaustin » 11 Jan 2021, 7:17pm

I have found chemical footwarmers to be good.
Having had a few pairs of overshoes I find the Aldi ones to be as good as anything I've tried. They have the zips at the back. I had some Seal Skins ones with zips on the sides and found they were far too much of a faff.
Sizing always seems to be a problem - they always seem to come up small. I buy 2 or 3 sizes bigger than alleged.
The plastic bags we buy bread in can also be put over socks to help keep the wet out.

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Re: winter socks

Postby Vorpal » 12 Jan 2021, 8:31am

colin54 wrote:Vorpal's post reminded me, I nearly always wear long johns under my trousers through the winter ( I assume this must make some contribution to warmer feet).

I'm quite sure that keeping my legs warm helps to keep my feet warm.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

colin54
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Re: winter socks

Postby colin54 » 12 Jan 2021, 9:45am

Vorpal wrote:I'm quite sure that keeping my legs warm helps to keep my feet warm.

They're all connected for sure :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVoPG9HtYF8

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Re: winter socks

Postby PH » 12 Jan 2021, 10:06am

I have waterproof socks, originally Sealskinz and now Showers Pass, the SP are loads better than the ten year old Sealskinz, though their current versions have probably improved. They both do what they're designed to, but if I don't need waterproof, they wouldn't be my first choice. They're not the most comfortable, particularly if I'm wearing them all day. The waterproofing (Membrane?) makes them less flexible than ideal. I have a pair of walking socks, but my favourites are Sportswool ski socks, which come in different thicknesses (I do some Deliveroo and can be out all day, with a fair bit of that time standing around) As others have pointed out, plenty of room in the shoes for the socks is important. My winter non SPD footwear of choice is trainer style safety shoes, the toe cap (Composite not steel) gives plenty of room to wiggle the toes, they're reasonably water resistant, grip well on and off the bike and don't look a million miles different to SPD MTB shoes. I'm wearing mine (Dickies) in preference to shoes costing three time as much.
Tip I got years ago and works for me - If you get really cold feet on a ride, get off and walk for a bit.

EDIT - As for your body being connected, yes it all is. But also, your body will prioritise what to keep warm and it might be less bothered about your feet than you are. Wearing a hat may well help keep you feet warm.

nez
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Re: winter socks

Postby nez » 12 Jan 2021, 11:52am

They’re all connected. If I dress warm enough for my feet to be warm when standing still they get too hot if i walk far. So I have to dress for cold feet. If I cycle with cold feet they stay cold or even get colder. The body, like the tides, is ‘just a mystery’

GrahamJ
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Re: winter socks

Postby GrahamJ » 12 Jan 2021, 12:44pm

Wiggle your toes!