WHAT ABOUT SOCKS?
Yes, much time and consideration have gone into my decision regarding the best sock for my overland trike journeys! For day rides, it does not matter too much, but for extended days and weeks on the road, where one’s only rest comes each night in a tent, the sock factor is worth mentioning!
As you realize, from my writings and perhaps your own experience on a trike, maximum blood flow to the feet is absolutely critical – of this there is no doubt, regardless of what type of riding you do! High bottom brackets work against blood flow due to gravity, so we must keep our venous surge powerful. The major factor with socks is the tightness of the elastic band around the leg, which holds the sock up. Almost every sock on the market has tight elastic, which is the NEMESIS of recumbent trike pilots!
If you take your socks off after a day in the cockpit, and you notice a pronounced indented banding of the skin in your legs where your socks were, you may well wish to reconsider your choice of socks. This indicates that blood flow is being hampered, both to and from the feet, in addition to what gravity is doing. Please do not overlook this seemingly meaningless sign if you wish to avoid hot spots or other foot related issues. If you can still see that band long after the sock is off, get new socks!
After trying many different designs, styles, and companies over the past few years, I have settled on one that really stands out from the crowd. It is made by Wigwam, is padded on the soles, toes, and heel, and, because it is made for people with diabetic issues, has minimal elastic bondage, especially at the top where it is critical. You should be able to look at your leg and NOT see an indented line around the sock top (as in the photo below – skin should not be constricted)!
This sock is made in America by Wigwam, and is called the Diabetic Sport Crew. I have no diabetic issues whatsoever, yet the sock seems custom designed for an overland triker. These socks do tend to slowly work their way down during several hours of non-stop pedaling, however it’s a worthwhile trade-off, and is remedied if you wish by simply a quick tug back up (I just leave them where they are myself). Having tried many others, this is the one that works for me. It is just one more element of keeping my feet VERY happy on long haul treks!
The Wigwam Diabetic Sport Crew – the perfect overland triker’s dream sock (especially in SIDI shoes).