How exciting can a pair of socks be? Trust us, read on.
In the head-to-foot range of outdoor gear, a pair of socks is probably the least considered, when in fact they should be pretty close to the top of the list. That pair of boots you’ve just spent £200 on may fit perfectly, but if you’re wearing a pair of socks bought nine years ago that have the texture of sandpaper, it’s going to be a miserable walk.
Bridgedale are sock masters (if that’s a thing) – they are one of the brands we’ve come to rely on over the years. Their socks tend to be supremely comfortable, and where there are seams, they’re minimal and in the places that aren’t going to rub.
So when they announced waterproof socks our interest was piqued, in fact, we got a little excited. You’re never going to return from morning runs in dewy or wet conditions with dry feet, even if your shoes are waterproof (there’s a big hole in the top after all). Similarly, feet after mountain biking rarely return not white and wrinkly. That’s where waterproof socks come into their own.
“The inner lining of their Storm Sock is made with up to 60% Merino…”
There have been drawbacks though, quite big ones.
Waterproof socks have been around for a while, notably from Sealskinz. The first issue is that generally, they are warm, really warm. No matter how breathable they purport to be, it’s one step removed from putting your feet into a plastic bag, and then into another one. Waterproof socks also need to be taped on the seams, adding another possible hot spot. How were Bridgedale going to get around these problems?
First of all, the inner lining of their Storm Sock is made with up to 60% Merino, chosen for its smooth comfort and anti-bacterial and anti-odour properties (did we mention they get warm?), and the rest is made from anti-wicking synthetic fibres that draw moisture away from the skin. A stretchy ‘HydroTech’ waterproof membrane is then laminated to the inner layer and also the Nylon outer layer that protects the membrane. A dose of Lycra keeps the sock tight all around.