By John Cuzzort
Here are a few ideas for turning your old, wool hunting socks into something useful. You'll want to save them for a multitude of purposes you can use in the field; even that pair with holes in the toes.
One of the best uses of an old wool sock is as a padded arm guard for bowhunting. First, cut the sock in half at about the bend of the ankle. Then simply pull the tube-end onto the arm you hold you bow with, allowing it to cover your sleeve from wrist to elbow. The sock's elasticity compresses bunched-up sleeve material, including heavy jackets, and eliminates problems with your bowstring catching on it.
Use the toe-end as a padded bag to place stray objects in, such as compasses, flashlights, mobile phones and deer calls. This section will keep objects quiet and also helps pad them a bit in case you drop your backpack.
I also like to place my thermos in a thick old sock on mornings that are especially cold. The added insulation helps keep soup or coffee hot for a longer period of time.
An old sock or two also eliminates clanging noises from things moving around in my backpack as I walk to my treestand.
Should you get to your stand and find the seat wet, socks also make an impromptu rag.
As noted in an earlier Tip of the Week, old socks also make great sandbags you can fill with sand or dirt upon arrival to your hunting destination.
You can never have too much insulation on a child's hands. Slipping a spare pair of wool socks over their gloves might help them stay comfortable enough to prevent an early trip home.