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Reviews > Clothing > Socks > Lorpen Stalker Socks > Test Report by Michael Bloch

LORPEN STALKER SOCKS
TEST SERIES BY MIKE B.
LONG-TERM REPORT
August 13, 2011

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FIELD REPORT
CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE LONG-TERM REPORT

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Mike B.
EMAIL: avidbackpacker AT yahoo DOT com
AGE: 26
LOCATION: North Carolina, USA
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 6' 3" (1.91 m)
WEIGHT: 210 lb (95.30 kg)

I consider myself an avid outdoor enthusiast and began hiking and backpacking when I was 15. I have lived in several Midwest States, and on the East and West Coasts. I have experience in everything from ultra heavyweight to ultra lightweight backpacking and camping, as well as experience in all weather. I prefer lightweight 2-3 day backpacking trips and like to be in the mountains or hilly terrain in all seasons. When lightweight backpacking I use a tarp and possibly a rainfly and a tent for everything else.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Manufacturer: Lorpen
Year of Manufacture: 2011
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.lorpen.com/
MSRP: N/A
Measured weight: .3 lbs (133 g) with packaging
Measured weight: .25 lbs (114 g) without packaging
Fiber Content: 40% Lyocell (Deo-Cell), 40% Merino, 10% Nylon, 10% Lycra
Other details: The socks come in three sizes, M, L, XL, and only one color, Deep Forest, which is a blend of greens, grays, and black colors and has a sense of use for the forest. The socks come packaged in a cardboard box that opens up in a split design. One of the main features of these socks is the STOP odor eliminator technology designed to prevent odors from being retained in the fibers of the socks.

IMAGE 1
Lorpen Stalker
IMAGE 2
Back of Package

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

The first thing I noticed about these socks is the very neat and professional appearance and feel of the packaging. The socks are tightly retained in a cardboard packaging that opens in a split design holding one sock on each side. There are instructions and information in English, French, and Spanish on the packaging describing the fiber content, the STOP odor eliminator technology, and the care instructions. I have size large which on the package it specifies that will fit sizes US Men 10-12.5, US Wmn 11.5, and EU 43-46. Upon taking the socks out of the packaging I noticed that there is sufficient padding and reinforcement in all the right places without making the socks extremely bulky. When I turned the socks inside out and looked at the inside, the stitching and fibers seemed to have been manufactured well and there were no pulled threads, loose stitching, or noticeable defects. The socks have more of a nylon and lycra feel than I would expect with 40% Merino. I believe that this may be due to the deocell fibers from the STOP odor eliminator. I am curious to see how they will fit and feel on my feet.

IMAGE 3
Open Package
IMAGE 4
Socks (normal and inside out)

READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

The wash and care instructions are as follows:

*Wash in warm water
*Tumble dry low
*Do not dry clean
*Do not iron
*Do not bleach

TRYING IT OUT

I went ahead and put these on and took a stroll around the neighborhood. I probably walked about a mile and a half on pavement and then continued to wear the socks for a little while longer for a total of about 2 hours. One thing that I have noticed already is that the socks have a synthetic feel to them and made my feet feel damp but not sweaty. The socks fit just a little loose and since I'm a size US Men 12 that is strange because they should fit from US Men 10-12.5. I'm hoping that after a washing cycle they will fit a little more snug. While walking the socks worked great, even with my dog pulling on the leash my feet didn't slide around inside the boot or have any friction points.

IMAGE 5
Sock with boot (mid calf height)

SUMMARY

Upon washing the socks after the first wear I noticed that they did shrink a little bit and fit much better after that. The following day I wore them all day with a set of boots and had no complaints. As well I didn't notice any unpleasant odors. So far so good with these socks. I look forward to taking them on the trail and using them for prolonged periods. Finally I want to thank Lorpen for sending these socks out for testing. I'm really excited to put these socks to the test, and look forward to seeing how they hold up.


FIELD REPORT

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

During this field testing period I have used the socks in several different locations and climates. Until mid-March I was wearing the socks on day hikes around the local area in which the temperature remained fairly moderate from about 60 F (16 C) to 75 F (24 C.) In mid-March I went on a 3 day trip to Hanging Rock State Park, in North Carolina. Temperatures there were more mild ranging from 50 F (11 C) to 65 F (18 C.) During the first 3 weeks of April I went on day hikes in the local area again but with the temperature beginning to warm it ranged from 65 F (18 C) to 80 F (27 C.) From the last week of April to the last week of May I went on several day hikes in a wide array of terrain. Ranging from simple walks in urban areas to very technical hiking and scrambling all with very moderate temperatures of 60 F (16 C) to 75 F (24 C.) During that month I did about 5 day hikes and 2 overnight trips.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

Overall these socks performed well in the field and I am happy with their performance. I never got any blisters but did notice during hotter days that I developed a couple hot spots due to the amount of sweat that was perspiring from my feet. The socks performed best in more moderate temperatures and decently in hotter temperatures granted the distance and time worn was not too extensive. One thing that I did notice when wearing the socks for the first dozen times or so was that there was an abnormal amount of lint or fuzz transferred from the socks to my feet when I took them off at the end of the day, even if my feet stayed completely dry. This started to go away after several washes but on the hotter days I would notice there was still a little. The socks held up well and I did not notice or find any loose threads or extensive pilling of the socks due to wear or washing. During the months of April and May I was not able to wash the socks but two times and even then it was out of a sink. This was a true test to the odor blocker and I am very pleased with the performance of socks in that regard. It is probably impossible to prevent all odors but these socks did an amazing job of keeping the odor to an absolute minimum even when worn multiple days in a row during intense hiking without being washed.

SUMMARY

These socks are perfect spring and fall season socks for all types of hiking and outdoor activities. While still able to be used during the summer months they did make my feet sweat more than other wool synthetic blend socks that I have used. When it comes to the STOP odor eliminator technology these socks outperformed all other similar styles.

TESTING STRATEGY

For the long term testing I plan to continue doing day hikes and several day outings to test the socks. I plan on pushing the socks to their limit in the hotter weather to see if they have the ability to continue wicking moisture to prevent blisters when perspiration becomes abundant. As well I am curious to see if they will continue to block the odor when being used in hotter weather while my feet are sweating more.


LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

In addition to the testing as reported in the Field Report I have worn these socks on several day hikes, two overnight trips and two 2 day trips. All of these outings were during the months of June and July. The two overnight trips as well as the 2 day trips were in Western North Carolina with temperatures ranging from 80 F (27 C) to 90 F (32 C.) The 8 day hikes were done in Eastern North Carolina with temperatures in ranging from 85 F (29 C) to 101 F (38 C.) With the exception of 2 days, all of the time spent wearing the socks was in hot and humid conditions with little to no rain. During the two other days it was very rainy and humid but with temperatures on the lowest ranges as reported.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

Overall these socks performed well. I never had any blisters even when wearing them in the hottest conditions while hiking. The STOP odor technology has lived up to its claims and has worked amazingly, especially on multiple day outings where the socks were put to the ultimate odor test after being worn day after day in hot and humid conditions. I did notice that after more extensive use the socks stopped leaving the lint and residue on my feet even after wearing them on really hot days when I sweating nonstop. As well the socks have held out well over the entire testing period. They have lost some of their original padding and bulk but that is to be expected. They are still very comfortable and have retained their integrity.

SUMMARY

I will stick with the summary that I gave in the Field Report that these socks are perfect spring and fall season socks for all types of hiking and outdoor activities. I was still able to use them during the summer months however they did make my feet sweat more than other wool synthetic blend socks that I have used. The socks still performed well and I did not get any blisters. As well when it comes to the STOP odor eliminator technology these socks outperformed all other similar styles.

During the testing phase with these socks I have decided that they will make an excellent multiple day sock for the moderate weather trips in the future. I like that I won't have to worry about the odor and can bring the two pairs and have no worries.

Thanks to Lorpen and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to participate in this test.

IMAGE 1
Socks after 5 months of wear



This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2011. All rights reserved.

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