BackpackGearTest
  Home Guest - Not logged in 

Reviews > Clothing > Socks > Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker Socks > Test Report by Kevin Hollingsworth

Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker Socks
TEST SERIES BY KEVIN HOLLINGSWORTH
 September 18, 2007

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FIELD REPORT (June 22, 2007) 

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE LONG TERM REPORT (September 18, 2007) 

Tester Information 

Name: Kevin Hollingsworth
Age: 42
Gender: Male
Height: 6’ 1” (1.9 m)
Weight: 195 lb (88 kg)
Email address: kholling55@yahoo.com
City, State, Country: Williamsburg, Virginia. USA

I started backpacking and camping when I was in the Scouts. I spent 20 years in the military, which curtailed my personal outdoors adventures. While day-hiking, I normally carry a light load, a waist pack with mostly food and water, with a few other things. On three to four day trips, I will carry a pack weighing about 45 to 50 lb (21 to 23 kg). I prefer to hike in the mountains. I have been hiking in Colorado, Korea, Egypt, and most recently the Eastern part of the United States.


INITIAL REPORT 
May 14, 2007

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Manufacturer:  Bridgedale
Year of Manufacture:   2007
URL: http://www.bridgedale.com

Note: All measurements are mine (unless otherwise specified)
Weight: 2.6 oz (73.5 g)
Size: Large
Colour: Oatmeal/choc (also comes in Silver/navy and Storm/blue slate)
MSRP: Not available

Ventum Socks

Product Description (paraphrased from manufacture’s website)

The Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker socks are designed to be worn with lighter more breathable footwear. They are designed for light hiking and for fast moving activities in warmer climates. They are lightweight, have fine-knit impact cushioning and over-foot ventilation to improve breathability. They incorporate asymmetric left and right foot design to reduce weight. They feature Aircell and WoolFusion® technology. Aircell is impregnated polyester blended with silver and 11 other minerals. It is designed to give anti-microbial, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal protection that last for more than 3 years. The WoolFusion® technology combines the highest quality natural yarns; Merino wool or Tough wool, and fuses them with high performance microfibres; Coolmax® or Endurofil™. This is designed to provide supreme, lasting comfort. They are warm when they need to be and wick when there is excess moisture.

Description3 

The socks are double cuffed, have extra-dense heels/ankle protection, and asymmetric impact protection with ventilation. The socks have the following fibre content:

41% Merino Wool
33% Be-Fresh/polyester
23% Nylon/polyamide
3% Lycra®/elastane

The socks come with the following washing instructions: Wash inside out and with dark colours separately. Do not use fabric softeners or bleach.  Wash on wool cycle at 104 F (40 C). Do not dry clean or iron and dry only on low heat.

The socks come with a the following warranty:  “ If you are not completely satisfied with the quality and performance of your Bridgedale socks at any time within 3 years of purchase, return them to the place of purchase together with your proof of purchase for exchange.”

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

I received two pairs of Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker socks. The socks were in the retail packaging, which is made from light cardboard and has a large quantity of information printed on it. Printed on the package were the key features of the sock, washing instructions, and a list of material used in the manufacturing of the socks. The key features were listed in English, German, Japanese, French, Spanish, and Swiss. On the sides of the package, there were three sizing charts (United States, United Kingdom, and European Union).  

 little feet

My initial impressions of the socks were that they are soft to the touch. The socks have a slight “wooly” smell to them. The ankle area is thin and stretchy. There are three elastic areas on the socks, at the top and bottom of the cuff, and one in the middle of the foot. The bottom and in the heel area of the socks is soft and cushy. The only visible seam is at the toe area. On the top of the socks, the Bridgedale name and a foot is embroidered into the socks. On the right sock, there is a right foot, and a left foot on the left sock. Also on the inside of each sock’s cuff, there are the words right/left. On the side and top of foot portion of each sock, there is a ventilated area were my feet are prone to sweating. 

 my feet

According to the sizing chart, with a boot size of size of 10 to 12.5 US (44 to 47 EU); I would use a size Large.  When I tried on the socks, they felt snug on my feet but not constricting.  My heel fitted comfortably into the heel of the sock, and my toes were loose to wiggle. The top of the socks fitted comfortably around my calf, but the elastic band did not squeeze my calf. I could feel the air in the ventilated areas. The socks were very comfortable to wear.

SUMMARY

The Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker socks are well made and fit me well, snug but not constricting. The Ventum socks are very comfortable to wear. I am looking forward to testing these socks out.

I would like to thank both, BackpackGearTest and Bridgedale, for the opportunity to test the Ventum Light Hiker Socks. This concludes my Initial Report. The Field Report will be amended to this report in approximately two months from the date of this report. Please check back then for further information.


FIELD REPORT 
June 22, 2007

 

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

I took a multi-day trip to Shenandoah National Park. The terrain was mountainous with the elevation around 3000 to 4000 ft (900 to 1200 m). The weather was initially cloudy with some scattered showers. The weather cleared at midday on the second day and the rest of the trip was sunny. The average daytime temperature was 60 to 75 F (15 to 24 C), dropping to approximately 55 F (13 C) after sunset.

I also took a multi-day trip to the Smokey Mountains National Park. The terrain was mountainous with the elevation around 2000 to 3000 ft (609 to 900 m). The weather was cloudy with scattered showers, mostly in the late afternoon or evening. The normal daytime temperature was 75 to 85 F (24 to 29 C), with a drop to approximately 65 F (18 C) after sunset.

I completed four day hikes. The weather was normally clear or with a slight cloud cover. The temperatures were around 70 to 85 F (21 to 29 C). The elevation was at sea level and the terrain was wooded.

I also wore the socks at home, around town and to work. My main footwear when wearing the sock was waterproof, leather hiking boots. But I also wore them with light weight casual shoes.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

The first thing that I notice while wearing the Ventum Light Hiker was how comfortable they were. They were soft and fitted smoothly around my foot, with just a little bit of wiggle room around my toes. My heels fit nicely into the sock’s heel area and never slide around. The socks never bunched up while I was wearing them. It was almost like not having any socks on, except for the cushioning. The sock's cushioning did very well, keeping my feet from tiring out during the day. It gave my feet that extra layer of bounce.

At first I thought it a bit strange to have socks specifically designed for the left or right foot, but after wearing them I understood why they were designed like that.  My feet normally sweat a lot during the day, especially around the toes and the sides of my feet. This leaves my socks wet in these specific areas at the end of the day. The Ventum sock incorporates mesh ventilation in these areas, which seemed to take care of the problem. After a day of hiking, I would take off my boots and these areas would be dry or maybe only slightly damp. I also noticed that the smell that is normally associated with sweating feet never seemed to form. I never notice any bad or unpleasant odors coming from the socks.

I basically followed the washing instructions that came with the sock. I did not bother turning the socks inside out, and I dried them on the regular cycle of the dryer. The socks did not experience any shrink that I can see. They fit and look just like they did brand new. During my overnight, I would rinse out the socks and hang dry in the tent. The next morning the socks would be soft and dry. They never seemed to get the hardness that is associated with line drying.

SUMMARY

Overall I am quite pleased with the performance of the Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker socks. The socks fit well and are very comfortable to wear.  They wick away moisture from my feet, especially in my sweat prone areas. The socks do not seem to retain odors, dry quickly,  and haven’t shown any sign of wear.

This concludes my Field Report.  The Long-Term Report should be completed by September 25, 2007.  Please check back then for further information.


LONG TERM REPORT 
September 18, 2007

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

I took a multi-day trip to Shenandoah National Park. The terrain was mountainous with the elevation around 3000 to 4000 ft (900 to 1200 m). The weather on the first day was cloudy with rain. The rain switched between a light drizzle and heavy showers. The weather cleared at midday on the second day and the rest of the trip was sunny. The average daytime temperature was 75 to 85 F (24 to 29 C), dropping to approximately 75 F (24 C) after sunset.

I took a multi-day trip to Jefferson National Park. The terrain was mountainous with the elevation around 4500 to 5000 ft (1372 to 1524 m). The weather was clear, with some occasional patches of clouds. The average daytime temperature was 75 F (24 C), dropping to approximately 60 F (16 C) after sunset.

I completed three day hikes. The weather was normally clear or with a slight cloud cover. The temperatures were around 70 to 85 F (21 to 29 C). The elevation was at sea level and the terrain was wooded.

 I continued to wear the socks at home, around town and to work. My main footwear was waterproof, leather hiking boots or light hiking shoes. But I also wore them with a variety of other shoes.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

The Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker socks have impressed me over the course of the test.  Over the course of the test, the socks have been washed at least 30 times. They were machine dried approximately 25 times. The colors have remained intact and have not faded. The socks are still soft to the touch. There has been no fraying around the cuff, no pilling or visible holes. All the stitching have remained tight. There has been no visible wear either in the heel area or the toe area.

 There was no visible shrinkage from the washing and drying process. The socks continued to fit extremely well. They are snug around my feet, without being to constricting.  The cuff was high enough to go above my boots. They fitted better than most of my other wool/blended socks.

 As the days got hotter, the socks seemed to retain more moisture than before, but the moisture did not seem to stay near my skin. The Ventum continued to do a great job at wicking away moisture from my foot.

SUMMARY

Overall, I am very satisfied with the performance of the Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker socks. They wick away moisture from my feet, especially in my sweat prone areas. The socks do not seem to retain odors, and haven’t shown any sign of wear or fading. I plan to continue to use the Bridgedale Ventum Light Hikers.

 I would like to thank both, BackpackGearTest and Bridgedale, for the opportunity to test the Ventum Light Hikers.

 

 



Read more reviews of Bridgedale gear
Read more gear reviews by Kevin Hollingsworth

Reviews > Clothing > Socks > Bridgedale Ventum Light Hiker Socks > Test Report by Kevin Hollingsworth



Product tested and reviewed in each Formal Test Report has been provided free of charge by the manufacturer to BackpackGearTest.org. Upon completion of the Test Series the writer is permitted to keep the product. Owner Reviews are based on product owned by the reviewer personally unless otherwise noted.

If you are an avid backpacker, we are always looking for enthusiastic, quality reviewers. Apply here to be a gear tester.


All material on this site is the exclusive property of BackpackGearTest.org.
BackpackGearTest software copyright David Anderson