Gear Is The Most Exciting Thing On This Planet

T-minus 243 days

Gear has recently been the number 1 thing on my mind. Thankfully, after working for thousands of hours this summer, I have been able to pick up a lot of the larger items needed for my thru-hike. Most recently, I have picked up:

Blue Flame Socks

I tend to get cold easily when I sleep, so finding a warm sock to wear at camp was a priority. I stumbled upon the company Blue Flame Footwear and figured that since their slogan was “world’s warmest thermal socks” it would be worth trying them out. The socks are lined with an extremely soft liner, so they are honestly perfect for sleeping in or to wear while hanging out at camp after a long marathon day.

They are thick, but definitely not overbearing, which is just how I generally like my thermal socks. Ideally, I will probably be using them as ski and snow hiking socks this coming winter, and camp socks in the summer. The only complaint I have about them is that there is no elastic at the top like with other socks, so when wearing the socks by themselves they tend to start slipping down. However, I tried them on with both my hiking boots and Tevas and it immediately stopped the slipping problem.

GIVEAWAY ALERT!!

Do you want to try your very own pair of Blue Flame Socks? Simply comment below telling me the next adventure you are going on that you need these ultra warm socks for! Three winners will receive a free pair of socks!

They make my feet look swollen, but Teva's + Blue Flame Socks is a perfect combination

Tevas + Blue Flame Socks. A perfect combination

Teva Hiking Sandals

I was basically just looking for a shoe to hangout in around camp, and that I had the option of wearing through water. I also wanted to be able to keep my hiking socks on while wearing them. So, originally I was going to go with a Chaco because I wanted a toe strap. I usually wear a six, but when I tried it I could barley get my foot through the straps even after loosing them. I even tried the seven, but they were huge on me. So, I opted for the Teva.

They are officially my new favorite shoe in the entire world. They are so comfy, and I love being able to keep my socks on while wearing them. My mom thinks they look weird, but I don’t care because I am absolutely in love with these sandals!! I am lucky enough to have super small feet, so I picked up a kids 5 (which translates into an Women’s 6.5) and they ended up being more comfortable and supportive for my feet than the Women’s version. I also saved $20 by buying a kid’s shoe so that’s always a plus.

I put them to the test by swimming, kayaking, and camping at Cape Hatteras National Seashore and they were the perfect water adventure/ hanging out around camp shoes

Therm-a-Rest Ridgerest SoLite Sleeping Pad

I’m clumsy. That’s all there is to it. Put me out in the middle of the woods with an inflatable sleeping pad, and I guarantee that I will pop it on a night that I am 10 miles from the nearest shelter and have to set up camp on a pile of rocks. I opted for a closed cell sleeping pad for this very reason.

It folds up slightly bulkier than the Therm-a-Rest accordion fold model, but this model was so much more comfier that I decided to just go for it. I also like the insulating feature that reflects my own body heat back at me for colder nights. The sleeping pad paired with my sleeping bag and tent actually get me super excited to sleep on the ground for six months! I actually just love most of my gear so much that sometimes I sleep in the backyard just so I have an excuse to use it all. (My friends might make fun of me for this but whatever).

The perfect campsite in the middle of the dunes

The perfect campsite in the middle of the dunes

Happy Hiking!

 

Disclaimer: some of the above items were generously donated for purposes of review.

Affiliate Disclosure

This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek's ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!

To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.

Comments 20

  • Squaw : Sep 12th

    My husband and I plan to hike the Long Trail in late spring 2016 as a “shakedown” for our through hike on the AT in 2017. We our old farts and old farts get cold easier, at least I do, my husband is like a bear and never gets cold but he’s a show off anyway 🙂 Love to give the Blue Flame Socks a try this winter and if they can keep my feet warm they should be placed in a museum. 🙂

    Reply
    • Colleen Goldhorn : Sep 22nd

      Congrats, you’ve won! The Long Trail has always been a dream of mine. Let’s see if Blue Flame is enough to keep you old farts warm. Please email [email protected] to claim your prize!

      Reply
  • Dan : Sep 12th

    Okay, first of all, I love your blog! You have such enthusiasm that it brightens my day when reading it! Second, I would really love to win a pair of these socks! They seem like something that I soon won’t be able to live without (especially this winter)! My winter adventures include field trips with my school as the weather gets cold, going on amazing hikes with my friends, and even going out on my own when it snows to experience the true beauty of nature along with that total peaceful silence that comes with it! I am excited to (hopefully) hear back and keep up with the great blogging! Thank you for tlhe opportunity!

    Reply
  • Lindsay : Sep 12th

    I love skiing with my roommates and my family during the winter and I think these socks would be a great addition to my collection. I’ve been looking for a super warm pair of socks for awhile now and I’ve been striking out. Maybe my luck will change if I win these socks.

    Reply
  • James : Sep 12th

    I love the idea of these socks as a camp sock! Ive wanted to do some cold weather camping at Cherry Springs State Park for some winter weather star gazing( maybe see the northern lights if I’m lucky) and I feel like these socks would be the perfect camp sock for this!

    Reply
  • Melissa Goldhorn : Sep 12th

    I absolutely LOVE hiking trails in the winter. I drive up to upper Pennsylvania and spent hours on the snow mountains. It’s so amazing and a once in a life time experience but I always end up getting very cold:( these socks would help me stay warm while in my little winter wonderland !!

    Reply
  • Eric Goldhorn : Sep 12th

    Life is an adventure

    Reply
  • Kristina Goldhorn : Sep 12th

    Hiking is such a huge part of my life! My family and I go hiking on the AT in Pennsylvania. Imagine hiking up to the pinnacle in ten below. It wouldn’t be a pleasant experience, right? That’s why I think these socks would come in handy in my hiking life. With so many miles ahead of me, I think these socks would get their fair share of use.

    Reply
  • Brenna : Sep 12th

    Love your blog! I don’t know too much about hiking and reading your posts has taught me a lot! I go to school in the mountains and the winters are cold! But these socks sound like the perfect thing to keep my feet warm during some fun winter outdoor activities!

    Reply
  • Kate Fitzgerald : Sep 12th

    I would totally wear those socks on my next ski trip! Regular old thermal socks just dIdnt do the trick last time

    -Kate fitzgerald

    Reply
  • Shannon Filippelli : Sep 12th

    I would LOVE to wear these socks when I go snow hiking this coming winter with a couple of buddies! My feet are always chilly and causes me to cut my activities short some way or another!

    Ps. Your blog is inspiring, I love it!

    Reply
  • David : Sep 12th

    My feet are always cold – would love the socks! Two of us overweight desk-pushing old men are finally starting our bucket list and plan to do the Georgia section of the AT next spring while our wives rough it in the nearest hotel. Those socks would definitely come in handy…

    Reply
    • Colleen Goldhorn : Sep 22nd

      Congrats, you’ve won! I hear Georgia in the spring isn’t as warm as one would imagine… Please email [email protected] to claim your prize!

      Reply
  • Meg : Sep 12th

    Starting MY 2016 NOBO hike as soon as I get my diploma as well!! Would LOVE to try these out as camp socks. My feet are always freezing too! Either way good luck with your hike, maybe we’ll run into each other!

    Reply
    • Colleen Goldhorn : Sep 29th

      Congrats, you’ve won! Trying to finish a degree and plan a thru-hike at the same time is hard… hopefully these socks will help! Please email [email protected] to claim your prize!

      Reply
  • Ryan Johnson : Sep 12th

    Oh dang…cold feet are my worst enemy. I looked at the blue flame website and they are already all sold out! Would love to try out a pair! I’ll be embarking on my AT thru hike March 1st (ish) 2016, so I will definitely need some clothing body armor against the cold!

    Reply
    • Colleen Goldhorn : Sep 22nd

      Congrats, you’ve won! A March start sounds chilly, so hopefully these help out a bit. See you out there! Please email [email protected] to claim your prize!

      Reply
  • Sara Ecay : Sep 13th

    I’ve been trying out different options for camp socks for my 2016 AT thru hike and so far I don’t have my mind set on anything. I hike in Darn Tough socks but because of poor circulation, I constantly have cold hands and feet, and need something heavier for camp. I have tried a pair of thick Smartwool socks, and Acorn fleece socks. Neither was quite what I was looking for. I have never heard of Blue Flame Socks, but “extremely soft liner” peaked my interest. If I could get my hands, or should I say feet, on a pair I would put it to the test on my next shake down hike in the GSMNP this fall.

    Reply
  • Ilse Dunbar : Sep 14th

    Headed to finish the 100 mile wilderness this fall. I am a cold sleeper and would love toasty warm socks.

    Reply
  • crdavis : Sep 14th

    Me and my hiker are headed to Antarctica for six months!!! You definitely need the best thermal socks when you’re in polar temps.

    Reply

Leave a Reply to Ilse Dunbar Cancel reply