Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Gear Review: Darn Tough Socks


Product: Darn Tough Socks
Types Worn:
Back - Road Series Coolmax® 1/4 Sock Mesh • 1492

Open mesh knitting on the top of foot. Reinforced heel and toe. Elastic support around the arch.
Contents: NAVY: 50% Coolmax® Polyester, 28% Nylon, 14% Acrylic, 4% Polyester, 4% Spandex® Lycra. WHITE: 34% Coolmax® Polyester, 34% Acrylic, 28% Nylon, 4% Spandex® Lycra. LIGHT BLUE: 51% Coolmax® Polyester, 28% Nylon, 17% Acrylic, 4% Lycra® Spandex.


Coolmax® 1/4 Sock Cushion • 1490
High density cushioning on foot bottom. Ribbing below the ankle ensures a proper fit. Reinforced heel and toe. Elastic support around the arch. Ring toe construction for a comfortable, invisible inseam.
Contents: GRAY: 50% Coolmax® Polyester, 28% Nylon, 14% Acrylic, 4% Polyester, 4% Lycra® Spandex. WHITE: 34% Coolmax® Polyester, 34% Acrylic, 28% Nylon, 4% Lycra® Spandex. LIGHT BLUE: 44% Coolmax® Polyester, 27% Nylon, 27% Acrylic, 2% Lycra® Spandex.

About Darn Tough Socks:
Darn Tough Socks are The Premium All Weather Performance Sock. Made in Northfield, VT; Darn Tough socks offer high density knitting and a performance fit. For more information please visit: www.darntough.com

The Review:
I used to wear Smartwool socks when running and hiking. BUt there was something about them that didn't make the grade with me. They wore out easily, often times splitting and coming a part at the seams. They never lasted long and I knew that given my higher than normal level of activity, I needed to find something more durable. Then I found out about Darn Tough socks.

I wear two different kinds of Darn Tough socks and I'd like to tell you about both.

Coolmax® 1/4 Sock Cushion • 1490
These socks have have dense terry loops on the bottom of the foot producing cushioning and warmth without bulk. Now wool socks tend to be a bit too warm for me as I learned through previous pairs of "Smart" wool. But Darn Tough uses Coolmax in the construction of their socks. "A Coolmax® blend create's a sock with exceptional softness, durability and superior moisture management." When I pull the socks on they fit my foot like a glove but still allow for plenty of wiggle room. They actually fit PERFECTLY. I loved them the first time I put them on. And then, I put them to the test.

I wore the socks at this years McNaughton Park Trail Races in Pekin, IL. My feet endured 20 creek crossings and ankle deep mud the consistency of Peanut butter. I went through about 3 pairs of these socks at the race. After each pair was used, it was completely covered in mud and wrapped into a plastic bag for the long plane ride home. They then sat in the bag for over a week before I got around to doing laundry. When I carefully took the socks out (wretched mind you) I had no faith in using them again. But to my surprise, one time through the wash and the socks were as if they were never worn. They were still soft and cushiony, looking like new and still fit like a glove. I was immediately sold.

Back - Road Series Coolmax® 1/4 Sock Mesh • 1492
For those days where I plan to get my feet wet and I need some drain-ability, or if its just too dang hot for the cushion socks, I revert to these Mesh puppies. As soon as I put them on my feet I can feel them working to cool me down. My feet sweat less with them on and maintain the same level of comfort as the 1490's.

The best part about these socks is that they do not rib, tear, wear or fray. These things are virtually indestructible.. or as they say.. Darn Tough. If you are looking for a comfortable and affordable alternative to the usual suspects; I highly recommend Vermonts Darn Tough Socks. Try em.. I promise you'll like them.

Scoring:
Durability: 5/5
Comfort: 5/5
Usability: 5/5
Cost: 4/5
Craftsmanship: 5/5
Total: 24/25