TCK SLOG SERIES TOPO ROLL SOCKS
BY KATHLEEN WATERS
June 28, 2009
White Lake, Michigan USA
5' 4" (1.63 m)
125 lb (56.70 kg)
I started hiking in 1998 after an eye-opening climb up Hahn's Peak in Colorado. Hooked, I return to Colorado often. I've hiked/snowshoed glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in domestic and exotic locations, including Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley.
At home, I plan for 2-3 hikes of 6-8 mi (10-13 km) weekly and one weekend hike monthly. Weekday hikes take place in Pontiac Lake Recreation Area, a mixture of heavily-wooded moderate hills and flat terrain. Weekend hike locations vary.
My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight. Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) including food and water
|Manufacturer: Twin City Knitting Company, Inc.|
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.slogseries.com
MSRP: US $7.95 (Roll Style)
Listed Weight: N/A
Measured Weight: 2 oz (57 g)
Available Colors: Hemlock and Sandstone
Color Tested: Sandstone
Styles Available: Crew, Quarter, and Roll
Style Tested: Roll
Sizes Available: S, M, L and XL
Size Tested: Medium
Materials Contents: 77% Polypropylene, 17% Nylon, 3% LycraŽ Spandex, 3% Elastic
"American-made by an American-owned company at an American manufacturing center "
|TCK Slog Series Topo Socks in Retail Packaging|
The TCK Slog Series Guarantee: "We stand by what we make, and we want to know if our product does not meet your satisfaction at the time you receive it or after you have put it to the test. Simply return it to TCK for a repair or replacement. Normal wear and tear is not covered by this guarantee."
My Topo Socks are a creamy white color for the main body with maroon accents on the sole of the Socks at the ball of my foot and just above and below the heel. A black toe cap and heel cradle completes the color scheme nicely. Small letters spell out "TCK" in red just above the toe and mid-arch in maroon is the TCK "toe" logo.
|Inside Heel of TCK Slog Series Topo Socks||Various types of stitching and thicknesses give function to the form of the Topo Socks. A stockinette stitch (flat stitch typical in most knitted materials) runs from the cuff along the underside of the Socks to the toe. Here the material is the thickest for cushioning the feet's soles. Protecting the instep is a compression-type stitch to give support. Above and below this compression band is a waffle-weave mesh-like stitch for stretch and good fit. The toe seam is flat.|
|Inside Instep of TCK Slog Series Topo Socks|| |
|Inside Toe of TCK Slog Series Topo Socks|
All stitching is excellent with no loose or longish threads. The quality of the TCK Topo Socks is very evident in its construction.
FIELD CONDITIONS AND USE
Over the past six months, the Topo Socks have been on my feet in all sorts of terrain and climates. Florida, New Jersey, Michigan, and Colorado, are some of the states where I've worn the Socks. Seashores, deserts, prairies, and mountains were some of the terrains. Temperatures ranged from below freezing to over 100 F (38 C) with humidity from single digits to 100%.
Most of my wearing time of the Topo Socks was either casually with sneakers, on a treadmill at the gym doing my 3 x a week 5 mi (8 km) workouts or day hikes on established trails where I was able to wear low-height trail shoes. Maximum weight load was a lumbar pack carrying 10 to 15 lb (4.5 to 7 kg). I never used the Topo Socks on overnight hiking except as a camp sock while relaxing after hours. That is not because I don't think the Topo Socks would perform well, but due to my hesitation to wear low-height boots on anything but groomed trails.
|How the TCK Slog Series Topo Sock Fits||In this review I will address the performance of the Topo Socks as to fit, feel, wicking and wear.|
First, the Topo Socks are cut on the boxy side. Medium might not have been the best choice for my boot size 8 feet. While the Socks don't bunch up at the heel or instep, in fact the heel is perfect for me; the width of the toes is more than generous. In fact, a bit too generous as there is excess fabric on both sides of my feet at the toes. Fortunately, there is not so much extra fabric as to cause any problem. I just have to be a bit careful about jamming my feet into my shoes. Sliding my feet in gently insures a smoothing out of the Socks.
I have lots of different socks, some of which I love, others not so much. The Topo Socks are right up there at the top of my list for comfort. Just the right touch of stretch gives the Topo Socks the ability to wrap around my feet with no tightness to mar the good feeling. The heel stays in place with no inching downward while walking or twisting in the toes, either. Without undue heft, the Topo Socks provide cushioning enough for me to walk over rough surfaces without shoes. I'm not talking about shards of glass here but smooth stone, cleared campsites, etc. The Topo Socks also keep my feet toasty warm when I'm not. Yet I have not had a problem with sweating.
Wicking sweat from my feet is very important to me because I sweat. I can't always blame it on the high mercury reading, either. I sweat when biking, hiking, treadmilling and even sometimes, sleeping - danged hot flashes! Sweating is annoying but when it comes to my feet, annoying is only a minor part of the problem. I'm much more concerned with hot spots and blistering occurring due to wet feet rubbing against wet footwear. Despite countless hours of sweating feet, I never had an issue with sore feet due to the Topo Socks. Even when the Socks felt wet to the touch when I removed them, my feet remained dry. TCK'S proDRI system must work! And the Socks don't have any stinky feet smell, either. Well, except for when I wear one particular pair of sneakers which causes every sock I own to reek. Neat!
|Lastly, the Topo Socks have held up well with no wear spots, pilling or fading. I've worn them a couple dozen times or more for a couple days at a time in several cases. There are no snags, pulls or holes as of yet and I haven't been particularly gentle with them. I've washed them at least a dozen times in a commercial washer in cold water with no bleach and white clothing. I do turn them inside out before washing as I do with all my hiking-type socks. Most often I let the Topo Socks line dry, but at least twice, I've missed pulling them out of the clothes before stuffing the wash into the nasty hot commercial dryers. The Socks emerged unscathed. No stretching out of the cuff, no shrinking of the Socks. Again, neat!|| |
|Neat construction of TCK Slog Series Topo Socks|
1.) Extremely cushiony and comfortable
2.) Wicks away sweat well
3.) Shows little signs of wear after months of use
1.) Cut of sock is a bit boxy so there is excess material at my toes
I now pack the Topo Socks for almost all overnight travel, both on the trail and casual. They take up very little space, much less than even my thinnest slippers or camp shoes and are a very comfortable substitute for them during "down times". I even wear them to sleep in on nights when just my tootsies are cold.
This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.5
Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Thanks TCK for introducing me to these neat Socks.
Kathleen (Kathy) Waters
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