2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Also on

Enter Zip Code

Backpacker Magazine – Fall/Winter Gear Guide 2011

Ski Strong: Beat Blisters

Outsmart stiff boots and constant heel lifting with these anti-friction tips.

by: Evelyn Spence

Dynafit TLT5 Mountain (Courtesy Photo)
Dynafit TLT5 Mountain (Courtesy Photo)

>> Keep feet dry.
Moisture means hot spot-producing slippage and friction. Always start your day with dry liners. On multiday trips, dry them every night: Take them out of your boots and air drying in a warm (not hot) place, or in your sleeping bag footbox.

>> Swap socks.
There’s no need to wear two pairs—with today’s fit and boot-liner technology, you’ll get just as much warmth with one. But bring extras, says bootfitter Larry Houchen. He changes socks every four hours to combat moisture and preempt repetitive-motion hot spots.

>> Pre-tape.
Have problem areas? If you don’t already have a blister, apply a few layers of duct or athletic tape to the skin. If a blister has already formed, apply moleskin or a blister cushion such as Nexcare’s active waterproof bandages ($5). Reinforce it with duct or athletic tape.

>> Use absorbent powder.
Sprinkle talcum, Gold Bond, or even cornstarch into your socks to help sop up moisture. Apply to your bare feet and dust off excess before pulling on socks.

>> Buckle up.
If you feel hot spots, “tighten your boot’s second-highest buckle,” says Houchen. You’ll walk and climb slightly slower, but securing your foot in your boot helps prevent friction.

Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Address 1:
Address 2:
Email (req):
Reader Rating: -


Your rating:
Your Name:


My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

What Should I Do About A Table And Chairs?
Posted On: Aug 30, 2014
Submitted By: hikerjer
Trailhead Register
Who's Working this weekend...?
Posted On: Aug 30, 2014
Submitted By: hikerjer

View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site

Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions