How do you dry wet socks when camping/backpacking if it's raining and the socks cannot be hung to dry outside?
I've been compiling a list of recommendations on this subject for a little while. Please add to the list if you can. I hope you find this useful.
- Stuff them inside your thermal underwear (while wearing them), each sock on top of a thigh, and wear to sleep
- Wrap the socks in a hand towel, wring towel tightly, and hold the wrap as moisture equalizes between the items
- Place a wet sock on each of your hands and warm the socks carefully beside a low-setting camp stove
- Stuff pack towels within sock and allow towels to wick moisture away
- Stuff socks into the base of your sleeping bag
- Insert an activated hand warmer into each sock
- Boil rocks (caution: rocks can explode) and insert the hot rocks into the socks
Sleeping with the socks on your torso is the most effective method I have found, and it does not require anything you wouldn't already have. For this, you just:
- Take socks off
- Put them inside your shirt, under all layers of clothing. They must be touching your skin.
- Wake up in the morning with dry socks.
This works with a lot of things: socks, gloves, hats, anything that could get wet. You don't need a fire, extra fuel, towels, hand warmer, etc... Putting the socks on your legs also works but your core is a much warmer furnace. You can dry socks during the day using the same method.
I generally carry two pairs of socks: one to wear and one to dry. I alternate every night and morning, so that I am constantly wearing dry socks. I have found this to be critically important to be comfortable while being cold or wet.
NOTE: I am assuming synthetic or wool socks. Wearing cotton socks in the outdoors is generally a bad idea. After a few days of this method, your sleeping bag will start to accumulate some moisture, so it's a good idea to air it out when the weather clears.Tweet