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Reviews > Clothing > Socks > FITS Light Runner Low-cut Socks > Test Report by Ryan Lane Christensen

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Light Runner
Low-Cut Socks

Test Series by
Ryan Christensen

Last Update - October 4, 2011

ACCESS MAIN REPORT SECTIONS VIA THESE LINKS:

INITIAL REPORT
May 27, 2011
FIELD REPORT
August 9, 2011
LONG-TERM REPORT
October 4, 2011

INITIAL REPORT
May 27, 2011

Reviewer Information Backpacking Background
Name:  Ryan L. Christensen
Age:  46
Gender:  Male
Height:  6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:  235 lb (107 kg)
Email:  bigdawgryan(at)yahoo(dot)com
City, State, Country:   Idaho Falls, Idaho, USA

I began backpacking at twelve, continuing until 25. After an extended hiatus, due in part to a bad back, I resumed cycling, hiking, and backpacking several years ago. I also began snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. I share my love for backpacking and these sports with my children. I am a midweight backpacker, but carry a full array of necessary gear.
 

Product Information:

The information below came from the FITS website and product packaging.

Light Runner Low-Cut Socks
Manufacturer: FITS Sock Co. [Crescent Sock Co.]
Manufacturer website: http://www.fitssock.com
Place of Manufacture: Niota, Tennessee USA
Year Manufactured: assume 2011
Materials: 73% Wool, 21% Nylon, 4% Polyester, 2% Lycra Spandex
Sizes Available: US men's 7 - 12 in half sizes; 13 and 14
100% Fit Guarantee:

"FITS socks are guaranteed to fit like no other! If you are not Satisfied with your socks, please contact FITS Sock Co. within 30 days and we will replace your pair with the correct size or refund your money."

MSRP: $15.99 US

Product Specifications
Manufacturer's Specifications  
Weight: N/A
Tester's Actual Measurements  
Weight: [Large] 1.5 oz (43 g)

Product Description:

The FITS LIGHT RUNNER LOW-CUT socks (hereafter called "socks") are a low-cut and are closer to no-show than quarter socks. The socks have a 0.875 in (2.2 cm) elasticized cuff. There is a formed heel pocket in the socks. In addition, the sock has extra padding in the toe box, ball, and heel areas. The arch area of the foot is slightly elasticized for additional support. FITS utilized a two-color scheme for these socks: the toe box and heel pocket are black, the balance is gray with a green stripe and lettering. Inside the ankle cuff, there is a green "L" indicating the size.

The primary material in these socks is merino wools. Therefore, they are soft to the touch. The nylon and polyester should extend the life of these socks. The Lycra Spandex gives the socks their stretch. Another comfort feature is the absence of a bulky seam across the toes.

FITS_Top FITS_Bottom

Initial Impression:

I believe this is the first pair of socks that I have, which came one stuffed inside the other. I like quarter, low-cut, and no-show socks so these fit right in with my personal preference. Being 73% merino wool, these socks are soft against one's skin. One can therefore surmise that I like both the look and feel of these socks.

Initial Testing:

After removing them from the packaging and pulling one out of the other, I inspected the socks. I found no loose threads, errors in the weave, or faulty seams anywhere on the outside. Turning the socks inside-out, I quickly noticed the longer threads around the padded areas of the ball and heel pocket. I do not consider these flaws, but will nevertheless watch to see whether any issues arise in these areas during testing.

After thoroughly inspecting the socks, I pulled them on. With the socks now on my feet, I was impressed by how they fit my feet. FITS guarantees their socks to "fit like no other!" and I must admit they fit very well; no slop anywhere. And they were not overly constrictive either. I also liked their soft, silky feel against my skin.

Initial Pros:

Initial Potential Cons:

  • fit
  • soft feel
  • stylish look
  • additional padding in ball and heel areas
  • none at this time

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FIELD REPORT
August 9, 2011

Summary:

During this phase of the test series, I wore the socks 15 days. Thus far, they have performed well.

Likes Thus Far Dislikes Thus Far
  • fit
  • soft feel
  • stylish look
  • additional padding in ball and heel areas
  • don't work well for me by themselves in hiking boots

Field Locations and Test Conditions:

I wore the socks on six different days to work and walking around my neighborhood and local foot hills.

In addition, I wore them nine consecutive days at Island Park Scout Camp which is at approximately 6,500 ft (1,981 m) above sea level. During these nine days, the high temperature was 57 F (14 C) and the low was 32 F (0 C). It rained three consecutive days, and on Monday June 13, we received nearly 0.5 in (1.3 cm) of rain in a very short, but heavy downpour.

I was on my feet much of the 18+ hour days while at camp. Each day I wore cotton Boy Scouts of America (BSA) socks when I was required to be in full uniform and the FITS Light Runner merino wool low-cut socks the balance of the time.

Observations:

As the result of having back surgery in December, I have been quite restricted; no backpacking for a year, and have not been allowed to hike any significant incline. Consequently, the socks have not been up any steep slopes or endured any grueling backpacks. Nevertheless, I believe they were well tested during this phase of the test.

I wore the socks on walks around my neighborhood. With just the Light Runners on, I found that my boots fit somewhat loosely. Although I did not experience blisters, I did develop a hot spot on two separate occasions. However, when I wore the socks in my cross-trainers they provided sufficient cushion by themselves without any blisters or hot spots.

In Island Park, the socks got a great workout. Although the camp does not have any killer inclines, the ground is uneven with plenty of ups and downs for testing footwear. During the nine days I was there, I wore the socks every day. I was on my feet 18+ hours each day. Much of that time was spent walking the 103 acre (0.42 km2) camp; several times over as I visited the various groups to observe their various learning activities. It therefore did not take me long to determine that the socks did not ride high enough up my ankles or have enough thickness by themselves for my feet to be truly comfortable in my mid-cut hiking boots. Pairing them with another light sock or liner protected the ankle bones from rubbing and provided sufficient cushion and protection from blisters and hot spots.

From this, I determined that for me personally, based on their cut and weight, these socks are best worn in cross-trainers or trail runners rather than mid-cut hiking boots.

Even after being worn nine consecutive days, the socks were not extremely odorously offensive. But, they did smell. In addition, the socks developed some pilling, primarily on the heel. The socks laundered wonderfully and the offending odors were washed away with no noticeable lingering scent. Aside from the pilling, there are no discernable flaws, defects, or other issues thus far.

The socks have plenty of life in them and I look forward to testing them further.

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LONG TERM REPORT
October 4, 2011

Summary:

During this phase of the test series, I wore the socks an additional 15 days. They have performed well. I intend to purchase more FITS socks based on my experience with the Light Runners.

Like Dislike
  • fit
  • soft feel
  • stylish look
  • additional padding in ball and heel areas
  • for me, they don't work well by themselves in hiking boots

Field Locations and Test Conditions:

Because I was not cleared by the surgeon to resume backpacking, I was left to completing this test series via day hiking. I went on three separate day hikes of 5-8 miles (8-13 km) each in Kelly Canyon, which is located 26 miles (42 km) northeast of Idaho Falls, in the Targhee National Forest. The area known as the Kelly Canyon Nordic Area starts at an elevation of approximately 5,900 ft (1,798 m) and reaches elevations of 6,700 ft (2,042 m). Skies were partly cloudy and temps in the mid 80's F (28+ C).

I also got in a day hike in Harriman State Park, which is near Island Park. Harriman is 77 miles (124 km) north of Idaho Falls at an elevation of 6,120 ft (1,865 m) above sea level. There was not a cloud in the sky and the temps were in the upper 80's low 90's F (31 - 33 C).

Although not really cleared by my surgeon to do so, while hiking in Kelly Canyon, I did get in some inclines.

I also continued to wear them with my cross-trainers on walks through my neighborhood.

Observations:

On my day hikes in Kelly Canyon and Harriman State Park, I wore the Light Runners with a liner sock in my hiking boots. This pairing continued to protect my ankle bones from rubbing. With or without liners, these socks fit my feet nicely and stay in place. By that I mean they do not bunch up in the toes, slide down the heel, etc.

The wool material continues to feel smooth and soft against my skin. Next to the feel of the socks against my skin, the thing I like most is how well these socks fit. For me, they truly fit like no other sock I've worn. The extra padding in the toes and heel continues to provide great comfort. Additionally, the elasticized arch support adds to the overall comfort of the socks.

FITS_Pilling

Having endured numerous launderings, the socks have not shrunk and have maintained their shape very well. There are no loose or fraying threads. However, the socks have some pilling primarily in the toe area. But, but there is also a little on the back of the heel. I must admit, I have forgotten to turn them wrong-side out before laundering which may have contributed some to the pilling. Nevertheless, pilling is not uncommon for me with wool socks. The socks have not retained any funky odors which is nice as well.

These are well-made, comfortable socks. I really like how they feel on my feet and how they perform. An added bonus for me is the fact that they are made in the U.S.A. I have been so pleased with these socks that in addition to wearing them out, I intend to purchase additional pairs; most likely the Light Hiker Quarter, or Performance Trail. Both of which extend a little higher up the ankle to protect against rubbing in my hiking boots.

The FITS Light Runner Low-Cut socks are great socks in my opinion. They are comfortable and perform well. I will continue to wear them and based on my experience with the Light Runner, I intend to purchase additional FITS socks. I recommend these to anyone interested in a comfortable, great-fitting wool-blend sock.

This concludes my FITS Light Runner Low-Cut sock Test Series.
Thanks to FITS and BackpackGearTest for allowing me to test these great socks.

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