Dry feet are happy feet. Happy feet make for smiles in the snow. And no, this review has nothing to do with penguins. It has to do with the sheer impossibility (I have long thought) of keeping my feet dry inside thick, deep, poorly ventilated snowboard boots. And not because the boots I wear are not waterproof, it’s just that they are not the most breathable product group in the world. And that is the same for ski boots. An added challenge in the case of ski boots is a comfortable fit in hard and stiff plastic foot coffins (or so it can feel at times).

Rocking the Merino

Just days before I left for a weeks’ snowboarding with my family, I decided I needed a good pair of new snowboard socks. Seeing as I all but exclusively wear merino socks all day in daily life, as well as during hikes, bike rides, climbs etcetera, I decided it was time for a merino snowboard sock as well. I came across the Ski+ Med sock at a local retailer, and reading the packaging: 66% Merino Wool, 32% Nylon, 2% LYCRA I smiled. 66% is enough Merino for me.

Merino is just a superior product when it comes to retaining warmth while also offering breathability. The added Nylon and Lycra make for a comfortable snug fit and added durability to the Merino weave.

Conditions

During our week we had a huge difference in temperatures, from -27 degrees Celsius to up to +6 degrees.

The Review

I’ll be quick with this review, the socks were fantastic. There’s a horrible pun waiting to be made about having my socks knocked off by how great they are, I won’t go there, but I will say: these socks rock!

I wore them for all of six days, all day long. Only at the very end of the last, warmest day did I feel my feet get a bit moist. In the past, wearing socks of primarily polyester, my feet and socks could really get wet and soaked from the perspiration of my feet. The Icebreaker socks were not only continuously dry, but also nary a whiff of stinky foot odor could I smell after these six intensive days. So with that I was just really, really happy. I can’t begin to tell you how utterly uncomfortable I can feel with wet feet at the end of the day. I have cut short many an apres-ski initiative just because my feet and socks were wet. So five star plus on that!

As for comfort, I have worn socks that fit a bit snugger than the Icebreakers, but the fit is still quite good. The socks have various functional zones, to provide a good fit around your ankle, instep and Achilles. They fit really well around my foot, ankles, and leg and remain that way; I have not felt the sock move or in anyway. The seamless toe section is great and the socks don’t bunch up in anyway. The “Mid” or medium in the name of the sock is about the level of cushioning in the front foot and the heel. It’s difficult to feel the exact impact of that cushioning. Because where the cushioning of the socks begins, and where the cushioning of the sock liner of the boot or its midsole take over, is difficult to pinpoint.

Conclusion

All in all just great socks. And although not the most exciting product group, socks are just essential for your happiness in the mountain. If you want warm, dry and a good fit, the Icebreaker Ski+ Mid Sok is a more than excellent choice. The best sock I have worn to date. At just under €30, really well priced!

Icebreaker Skier+ Mid Sok

Retail price € 29,95

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Fit
Comfort
Warmth / Insulation
Breathability
Bang for your Buck
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Mark Stokmans
Since I can remember I have been very active in many different sports: started with baseball, tennis and riding later hockey, football, running and aikido. In addition, since twelve years old I've been into actionports: at first windsurfing, later climbing, inline skating, snowboarding, mountain biking. With the first action cams coming onto the market I've been making action sports videos. Furthermore, I've worked in the sports industry since 1990, sports marketing, media and live TV and until the end of 2016 at the Dutch Olympic Committee. Besides being partner in GearLimits I work as a digital freelancer. Based in the Netherlands, Married with Children (11 and 13 years old)

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