Dr Sophie Wallace of Perth, Western Australia, is currently Everest Doctor, stationed at Base Camp supporting Adventure Consultants Everest 2017 Expedition. Sophie chose to take some ArmaSkin along to help her form a view as to their suitability for hiking and climbing in cold conditions.
As reported by Dr Wallace,
"I was really happy with the socks actually, surprisingly so. It was a bit odd putting them on for the first time but no rubbing at all and my feet were clean and dry at the end of each day which I wasn't expecting so the moisture transfer really worked. I also used them on hikes above Basecamp too so for high and cold environments they were great. I haven't taken them to extreme cold but for long hikes in different temperatures from warm lower down valley to cold snow at Basecamp they were great. I only used them under normal hiking socks and I'm not sure what the best combination would be for high up in mountaineering boots but wouldn't personally combine with Vapour Barrier Liners as well. I think for very high altitude the compression element may be more of a concern with blood flow and cold injuries possibly especially in combination with VBL. I'll be using them far more for my trekking into the mountains though.
Of late ArmaSkin has received a number of success stories from folks doing sustained hikes in sub zero temperatures as well as from the Women Empowerment mountain climb led by Samina Baig in Pakistan.
While ArmaSkin are delighted to be gaining acceptance for sub zero hiking conditions, like Dr Wallace, we are far from convinced about their suitability at high altitudes where the combination of extremely low temperatures and low pressure may not be well served by the slightly compressive ArmaSkin. We would welcome any feedback from ArmaSkin wearers on this topic.
If you would like to follow Dr Wallace's stay at Base Camp she provides regular and spectacular posts such as the ones above on her Instagram account