Hiwassee Socks: Quick Review – by Guitar Ted
The world of cycling concerns itself with many important, and some not so important, things. The so-called “touch points” are one of those many things that, in light of what can make or break a ride, should be at the top of our list of concerns. That said, I am willing to bet that many of us rarely think too much about our socks. If you are one of these folks, you don’t know what you are missing. A great pair of socks can make your ride so much better. I had the opportunity to check out some socks from Hiwassee recently to see if they would elevate my sock game.
What It Is: Hiwassee may not be a company you have heard about. In their history, which can be found on their website, you can learn that this company is actually called “The Hiwassee Trading Company” and it is a part of the Crescent Sock Company, founded in 1902 by a man by the name of James L. Burn. The family owned company is operating under the guidance of its fourth generation owners and they make a wide range of socks in their Niota, Tennessee factory.
I received a selection of socks, all of a Merino wool mix, from their Performance and Wool sock lines. They ranged from medium length to “ankle cut” and featured a nice “loft” to the fabric which felt great next to the skin. Some of the other features of these socks are as follows:
Cushioned Heel and Toe, Ventilation Panels, Arch Compression, Lightweight for High Exertion Activities, “Seamless” Knit Toe for Ultimate in-shoe Comfort.
The Hiwassee Trading Company socks I received varied in their specific mix of Merino wool, Nylon, and Lycra, but all were predominantly wool. The socks all were of similar “weight”. These socks came last Fall and I have ridden and generally lived with these socks all Winter and Spring. The socks all range in price between $15.00 and $20.00. Hiwassee Trading Company socks all can be ordered direct from their website.
Ride Performance: With these socks feeling a bit thicker than say, a Sock Guy wool sock, and about the same weight and thickness as some Swiftwick socks I have, my feelings going in were that these socks would be perfect for Winter riding. I wasn’t wrong about that! They felt quite warm and comfortable even in frigid weather. They seemed to wick perspiration well and my feet stayed drier than they would have with many other socks. The luxurious feel made these socks favorites for lounging around the house when the weather was just too cold and nasty. Very nice!
One of my concerns with these socks was how they would launder and if the “loft” of them would survive multiple washings and wearings without collapsing or wearing thin. I can report that these socks look and feel like they did months ago when they arrived. Multiple washings, (the only thing special we did was to hang dry them rather than use a dryer), did not seem to faze these socks one bit. They still feel great and work as they did at the beginning.
At The Finish: I happen to be a sock fanatic. I have a couple drawers chock full of socks from all the top cycling brands and other sock purveyors as well. So, how did the Hiwassee Trading Company socks fare? Well, I save them for my longer rides and when I want the ultimate in comfortable socks, so that should tell you something.
My “go-to” sock previously had been some of the products from Swiftwick, but the Hiwassee socks have supplanted them as “top dog” in the pile. Yes…..now that Summer is here I have other socks I wear. The Hiwassee socks that I received aren’t quite what I would call “four season” socks unless your Summer is wet, cool, and never gets too humid. (Hiwassee has a “warm weather wool” collection though) But that said, as soon as the cool crisp air of Fall arrives in the Mid-West, I’ll be reaching for these socks again.
Learn more about these and other socks at Hiwassee Trading Company’s site.
Note: The Hiwassee Trading Company sent these socks over to Riding Gravel at no charge for test and review. We were not paid,nor bribed for this review and we always strive to give our honest thoughts and views throughout.