Many game animals can be found in abundance during the late fall and winter months. Foul weather can provide a hunter with several distinct advantages, but it is also certain to present several challenges.
The cold is one of the clearest obstacles, and it’s not always so simple to keep your feet warm while hunting in the dead of winter.
It can be even worse if you are standing in a hide or using one of the latest ladder stand seats that is made from steel. From either a lack of movement or sweat from your feet going cold quickly, it can be tough and uncomfortable in these moments.
It is the body’s extremes that go cold first as blood moves to protect your internal organs, so in the middle of deer season, these extremes are what you need to focus on.
In our guide, you can learn the best ways how to keep your feet warm while hunting. We will cover good waterproofing, wearing multiple layers, and the right boots. (Find the Best Heated Jackets)
By the end, you’ll see how to use the techniques to warm the whole body and how to use your head as a built-in thermostat of how much heat you lose.
How Do I Keep My Feet From Getting Cold While Hunting?
Keeping your feet dry is the most important step in reducing heat loss. One option is to wear two pairs of socks: a thinner layer of moisture-wicking socks and an outer layer of thick, insulating wool socks.
However, there are other ways how to keep your feet warm while hunting, or at least help in combination to have warm feet rather than two blocks of ice.
Plan Your Hunting Trip
It isn’t just the weather and ground that lead to cold feet. Plan what you need to ensure you have all you need:
- Pack extra socks, clothes, and boots. An extra pair of socks can make all the difference if your others are damp. Dry socks do more to keep feet warm hunting rather than damp sweat-soaked socks.
- Take plenty of water and healthy snacks. Keep the body warm from the inside.
Food You Should Eat Before and During Your Hunt
Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts to provide long-lasting energy. However, there are specific foods to be aware of that can cause issues when out on a hunt.
- Avoid spicy foods: Spicy foods stimulate sweat glands. Thus, you can end up with sweat-soaked feet from eating spicy foods.
- Avoid eating foods that lead to blood sugar spikes: Spikes in blood sugar can make the body colder.
- Eat Protein: Unprocessed meats and protein-rich beans like black beans or others give the body long-lasting energy.
- Don’t Eat Empty Calories: Cookies, chips or anything else of this nature can be tasty, yet they are not the thing that keeps feet warm in winter.
- Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water.
Eating the right food makes much difference and can often be likened to hikers. Snacks such as trail mix that contain nuts and berries are the perfect accompaniment to a wintry day’s hunting. They offer the feel-good factor besides delivering what the body needs. (Find the Best Budget Red Dot Sight)
Rub deodorant onto your feet before hunting. Do this the night before as it can take around six hours for a deodorant to at its most effective on the sweat glands of your feet. Use odorless powder so your game can’t smell you.
As well as deodorant, you can even use odorless foot powder for absorbing moisture. It works for the army, so it should work on a hunting trip. If you don’t have any, in a pinch, you can use a good dose of baking soda to achieve the same results.
Take Your Time
If you take your time, you can reduce sweating by not needing all your layers of clothes. It is better to begin early and walk slowly rather than rushing and having to cut your trip short, as the cold is too much to bear.
Change Socks and Boots
As you reach your destination, be it the hide or your ladder stand for bow hunting, you can change your socks and boots if needed, or for ones that are more appropriate for standing or sitting for long hours.
Not just for warmth, but to avoid rubbing, you can follow other hunters and add cotton balls between your toes for added foot insulation. if you sweat, or your feet get wet, then they will be ineffective and need changing.
How Do You Stay Warm In The Woods Hunting?
Anyone who hunts in cold weather knows that just any old sock will not suffice. It is important to know how to layer clothing correctly for the best results.
On freezing outings, wear at the very least two or three layers of socks such as:
- Layer 1: Thin socks that will wick moisture away from the skin.
- Layer 2: Thicker woolen socks are worth spending extra on. Wool socks trap air for insulation and retain heat, even when damp.
- Layer 3: It can be common practice with some pro hunters to use three layers. Wear a thin wicking sock followed by a pair of thin merino wool socks then topped by a thick pair of regular wool socks.
Layering your socks is probably the best way to keep your feet warm while hunting.
Another key tip is to take warm water rather than cold when you head off on your hunt. By taking warm water, you can remain hydrated, yet by placing this in a mid-section pocket of your hunting vest or hoodie you wear beneath your waterproof jacket.
Once you aren’t using the water as a source of heat, you can drink the warm water in the cold weather.
Hot Chocolate and Butter
Keeping the entire body nourished aids in keeping the body warm. Hunting, as we all know, takes a lot of energy. If you’re feeling lethargic, consider mixing butter into your hot chocolate.
Avoid Metal Conductors
Unfortunately, ladder stands are metal stands and will conduct cold to your feet. Any cold metal object can make you feel colder, and this can rise through your hunting boots as you sit waiting.
Some boots come with steel toes for protection, and these are placed in the right position to direct the cold temperature to your toes.
Staying warm in a tree stand or on a frozen floor can be helped by adding extra insulation besides your hunting socks. An insulated mat or cardboard can be enough to stop cold traveling from freezing metal.
Keeping your feet moving can help keep the blood flowing and improve blood circulation. You don’t want to move around too much in a small space, or the deer will see you. Yet doing silent exercises such as rotating your feet and wiggling your toes can make all the difference.
Does Wearing 2 Pairs Of Socks Keep Your Feet Warmer?
Even with all the additions you see here and packing in newspaper or cardboard to fill extra spaces in your hunting boots for cold weather, you need to pick the right boots, to begin with.
Isn’t it true that if one pair keeps your feet toasty, two pairs should keep them even warmer? Your boots, not two pairs of socks, were made to hold your feet and one pair of socks.
The second pair compresses your foot, reducing circulation and making your feet sweat and ultimately feel colder than wearing one pair. (Learn Where To Shoot A Deer)
There is much more to keeping feet dry than cramming more inside your hunting boots.
The first step in keeping your feet warm when hunting is to wear the appropriate socks. Cotton socks should be avoided since they cause your feet to sweat more and become colder faster. Socks made of Merino wool and other synthetic materials can accomplish the job.
Here are the last ways you can get the ultimate foot warmth when you are heading off hunting. While you can think it applies to all boots, you need to ensure you have waterproof boots made from suitable materials or all your plants for warm feet will go out of the window.
Electric socks are the modern versions of hand warmers to keep your feet warm in winter. These socks with batteries are a superb choice to keep the blood flow going. If you don’t want batteries in your socks, a sock liner is a suitable choice.
Internal insulated boot pads can help to create a warm place if you have the right boots and socks. They can reduce chances of conduction where your feet lose warmth because of a cold sole. Boot pads will be made from leather or fleece, although just be sure you have enough room in your boots to add these for more insulation.
Boot covers can be used in place of an insulated mat and are easier to move.
Heat packs are typical to keep hands warm but can keep your feet warm for hours.
Depending on the type of boots you have, using duct tape across the boot seams can stop the icy wind from entering your boots, thus a great addition to help keep feet warm. Like tight boots, don’t do it too tight or you can limit blood circulation.
Your feet could sweat from extra warmth when using rubber boots and easily get cold later. Besides this, even wearing insulated boots, you need to be sure your hunting boots have a thick sole. Too tight with all your socks and you can restrict blood flow.
Keep Your Head Covered
If the head is not covered perfectly, then you can lose 40-45% of your body heat, which is exactly what we said in the beginning. Keeping your head warm does much more than keep the wind from your ears and will affect how you feel throughout your body. (Find the Best Budget Spotting Scope)
No matter how insulated your boots are, you’ll still feel cold. Wear a cap that keeps your head covered and your ears as the chilly wind around the ears make your head colder. The best cold-weather hat should keep the entire head warm and the whole body rather than just the top.