Smartwool Unveils New PhD Sock Line for Hunters

February 16, 2017

First-of-its-kind performance design incorporates two decades of sock engineering experience and unprecedented technical features

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (Feb. 16, 2017) — Smartwool, the leader in outdoor apparel and baselayers, launched its all-new performance PhD® Hunt sock line earlier this month at the SHOT Show’s Range Day. With more than 20 years of sock expertise in the outdoor, ski, run, hike and bike industries, Smartwool now brings its technical know-how to the untapped hunt sock market.

“Hunters know just how important quality footwear and especially high quality socks are to success in the field. Cold, wet and uncomfortable feet can ruin a day in the woods faster than almost any other issue,” said John Ramsey, Smartwool director of sock development. “We’re diehard hunters and we wanted to bring our decades of performance socks expertise, Merino excellence and love of hunting together in the best hunting sock to ever hit the market.”

On a hunting trip more than two years ago, Ramsey and lead Smartwool® sock developers began creating the best-in-class sock by identifying three comfort issues: a raw, pinching feeling at the back of the heel; chafing around the ankle bone; and discomfort along the top of the foot. Realizing all three major discomforts were caused by a one-size-fits-all cushioning approach, the team created a first-of-its-kind sculpted cushioning system to solve these problems. The result? Maximum Achilles cushioning, zero cushioning in the ankle’s flex zone, and a special ribbed cushioning on top of the foot.

“We set out to create the best hunt sock the market has ever seen. After more than 30 prototypes and more than 150 combined days of in-the-field testing by myself, my team of developers, our athletes and ambassadors, I am proud to say we did it,” said Ramsey. “I am excited for consumers to finally have a technical, performance hunt sock that delivers both maximum comfort and maximum durability.”

Led by Ramsey and Smartwool’s Greg Neyman, product development manager, the Smartwool team dedicated hundreds of hours to creating the ultimate hunt sock, with input from Smartwool athletes and Fan Field Testers. After producing each prototype, the duo tested the new socks in the field. See their journey here: https://youtu.be/jjUPXyQId_o.

With an extraordinarily soft foundation of premium Merino wool, the PhD® Hunt socks feature exceptional moisture management, breathability, warmth when wet, and no-stink properties—found to be most beneficial after several days at camp. Regardless of long hikes through brush, hours spent in tree stands, or inclement conditions, this collection helps keep feet warm and dry through any pursuit.

Additional details, each specified to hunters’ needs, include:

  • Virtually Seamless™ Toe to prevent blisters and chafing
  • 4 Degree™ Elite Fit system for a stay-put fit
  • Strategically placed, gender-specific ventilation zones
  • Luxurious terry loop knit for breathability and moisture management
  • 21-micron fiber knit for ultimate next-to-skin comfort
  • Light, medium and heavy cushioning for a range of conditions
  • Taller crews and silhouettes for each hunt activity
  • Patented Indestructawool™technology for durability

All Smartwool performance socks are manufactured in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and High Point, North Carolina. The Smartwool PhD Hunt collection includes light, medium and heavy cushion options, and crew and over-the-calf heights. This collection will be available at retail in premium outdoor and hunt retailers, as well as Smartwool.com, in June 2017. Prices range from MSRP $23.95 to $29.95.

About Smartwool

Based in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, Smartwool is a 22-year-old apparel brand whose products are inspired by living and playing in the mountains. All Smartwool products come with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee and are created to get the most out of the inherent benefits of Merino wool. For information on the full range of Smartwool products or to find a dealer near you, please log onto www.Smartwool.com. Smartwool, a division of VF Outdoor, LLC, is a brand of VF Corporation. For event and company updates, visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/smartwool and Twitter www.twitter.com/Smartwool.