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Posts Tagged ‘wigwam socks’

Why Wigwam Socks Rock

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Socks may not be as exciting as the latest skis, the newest backpacks or the latest waterproof breathable shells, but they’re at the core of your comfort and enjoyment on any outdoor activity, from hiking and biking to skiing and snowboarding.

We recently sat down with Margaret Chesebro, director of sales at Wigwam Mills, to talk socks. Turns out, Margaret is in the 4th generation of the family that founded Wigwam, so Wigwam socks don’t just have great tech, they’ve got serious history.

A little history

“My great grandfather Herbert Chesebro founded wigwam, coming from another hosiery business,” Margaret said. “He started out making socks for lumberjacks.”

Her grandfather then took over and had the claim to fame of bringing nylon into performance socks, earning him a place in the Sporting Goods hall of fame, she said.

Margaret’s dad, Bob Jr., is the current CEO and developer of Wigwam’s Ultimax and INGenius designs. Her brother works in Operations.

“Family permeates throughout the company,” she said. “We’ve been making socks for over 100 years, we know what goes into making a good sock.”

Sock performance

But enough about history, let’s talk socks, and what Wigwam is doing to keep your feet happy.

Working directly with yarn manufacturers, Wigwam is able to select the best materials, and avoid flash-in-the-pan trendy materials.

“2-3 years ago the buzz was bamboo because it was supposed to be green, but we chose not to use it because it was such a toxic process to turn the wood into fiber,” Margaret said.

Instead Wigwam has designed a combination of fibers in specific patterns that move moisture from the bottom of the foot (inside the shoe where it won’t evaporate) to the top of the sock (where it can dry quickly). They do that with a combination of hydrophilic and hydrophobic yarns for a push-pull system, she said.

While a lot of people think Merino wool means its from New Zealand, Margaret said Merino is actually a grade and Wigwam sources “Super Merino” mostly from U.S. Ranchers (about 90%).

Super Merino wool has a diameter of 18-18.5 microns, while typical Merino is around 22, she said. Wigwam also twists nylon around Merino fibers in high wear areas for reinforcement and durability.

In the “push-pull” system for moving moisture, Wigwam takes advantage of wool’s absorbing properties to pull, while synthetics wick.

“Merino will hold 30 percent of its weight in moisture before it feels damp,” Margaret said.

All that adds up to socks that keep your feet dryer, more comfortable, and blister free whether you’re running, hiking, biking, skiing – or whatever your adventure.

Check out our full selection of Wigwam Socks at Tahoe Mountain Sports and keep your feet happy!

The Perfect Mountain Biking Outfit – What to wear when it is raining down low and snowing up high!

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

Well, as I was mountain biking the perfectly wet and tacky trails yesterday and it was raining at my house at 6,000 ft but snowing up at 7,000 ft where I was going, I decided what a better blog post than to tell you what I had on, as I debated it for a good 30 minutes before my ride. So, in an effort to save you those 30 minutes, here is a rundown of what I was wearing. I will leave out all the regular bike stuff, because I just used my normal helmet, shoes and shorts that I always wear. The tricky part was wearing enough to stay warm and dry, but not too hot so I would have to shed layers and cool down from the rain. So, here it is:

Icebreaker BF150 Atlas Zip – If you haven’t tried any Icebreaker stuff, you are simply missing out. This stuff is so soft to the skin, doesn’t smell even after days of use, and keeps you warm and dry better than any other shirt I own. Also, when you start to sweat in this shirt, it breathes so well, you don’t get that clammy, wet feeling against your core.

Mammut Clime Jacket – The reviews on this product pretty much sum it up. Highly breathable, waterproof enough to hold off a steady light rain or light snow, slim fitting so it doesn’t bunch up anywear, and pit zips for added breathability. The stretchiness of this jacket is also one of its high points.

Smith Trace Sunglasses – Smith has taken their slider/multi-lens concept to the next level with the new interchangeable series. These new shades from Smith come with 3 distinct lenses and I was using the rose colored lens for low light days. The lenses change in and out efforlessly, the optical precision is amazing and the fit is snug and perfect. I don’t even need a pair of croakies or anything when I put these on.

Wigwam Snow Whisper Pro Socks – Socks are really the key to happines. If you want to be warm, comfortable, and dry, you better start with a good pair of socks. Thinner is also almost always better. The thinner the sock, the less material there is for the moisture to travel through and wick away from your foot. In most cases, it is the moisture that makes your foot cold. So, I always choose a thin sock that breathes quickly and will keep my feet dry. The Snow Whisper Pro is the ticket on this one.

Since I did not have the VIO POV1 with me on this trip, I don’t have any good action footage, but hold tight, there will be lots more trip reports and product reviews popping up soon.

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