At A Glance
Sealskinz are synonymous with waterproof clothing, making a range of socks, gloves and hats designed to keep you dry. These socks are their mid-weight and mid-length offerings and feature a merino lining to keep things warm and toasty. Essentially they are a fully waterproof sock, lined with merino and covered in nylon face fabric featuring a natty golf course inspired design (which they call Sea Eagle). They claim to be fully waterproof, whilst remaining breathable and comfortable thanks to the combination of materials which together keep water out, and heat in. Having had one of the wettest winters on record, it's been ideal weather for testing these socks to the limit.Buy Base Layers on
On The trail
With the terrible weather over winter, it's been crucial to keep as warm and dry as possible to maintain motivation to ride throughout the dark months. Straight on they fit well, and feel like a normal thick sock, the waterproofing isn't obvious as it's sandwiched between the inner Merino and Nylon outer. Previous incarnations of waterproof socks have felt like a couple of plastic bags, and thankfully this is no longer the case. The socks are certainly warm and cosy, they do that very well, as they cut the wind out totally and, although slightly thicker than my standard socks, they still fit in my shoes no problem meaning toes aren't squashed. The lining feels comfortable and does a good job of absorbing moisture meaning feet don't feel too suffocated by the waterproofing.
As far as waterproofing goes, I can't argue with their claim of 100%, they are definitely waterproof - as tested scientifically by splashing about in various puddles and bodies of water of varying depths. The main downside of the socks is the big hole in the top where your feet go in. When rain is streaming down your legs, water inevitably gets into the socks, and being waterproof, it has nowhere to go so stays there giving your feet a chilly foot spa. Wearing full leg lyrca helped to reduce the flow into the socks, and if you wear full trousers then that obviously solves the problem. Even with wet feet inside, the merino lining did an admirable job of keeping things just about warm and comfortable. I found the socks really came into their own when riding wet trails between the showers, where they kept feet warm and dry all day through river crossings and waterlogged ground. I also found them to be great on really cold days as the waterproofing keeps the wind out and kept my feet lovely and warm.
Waterproof socks have come a long way since I experimented with carrier bags on my feet, and these socks are a fantastic combination of fabrics which work really well. They are very warm and comfortable and keep water out from below excellently, but they cant work miracles and rain can still find a way in at the top. Best for damp trail days, or used with full length leg coverings to get the most out of them, but they'll definitely keep your feet warm!
By Ewen TurnerEwen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.