Having written one techy review after another lately, it came as something of a relief to my tired old brain when a pair of North Face’s latest sports socks dropped through the postbox at Jelly Baby Towers this week.
Surely, here at last was a low tech piece of kit that wouldn’t strain my somewhat overstretched powers of technical understanding.
No GPS. No batteries. No worries…
But then, it hit me: without a huge shopping list of high-tech wonderfulness to run through, what on earth was I going to find to say about a pair of socks?
The Fairly Impressive Technical Spec
Well, the secret of the North Face Multisports’ success, according to the blurb on the wrapper, is that they’re made from a 50/50 Merino wool and Polypropylene blend that ‘performs in a whole range of activities. It performs well, dries quickly and can take a beating.’
Well. Stone me. That means they can pretty much do everything that I can’t do personally…
And so, teaming the North Face Multisports with the recently reviewed North Face Hedgehogs, making my lower regions a symphony in tasteful black and charcoal, I parked up at the beach and headed for the (sand) hills.
First impressions, I have to say, were extremely favourable, as the clever construction of these things gives a really nice, tailored fit, especially across the top of the foot where a lot of socks tend to get wrinkled on a long, wet, muddy run.
The fact that they’re ‘quarter cut’ rather than the ultra short Thorlos crews I usually favour also gives a measure of protection to the lower ankle area that I quite liked.
The most positive effect however, was noted by the old mate I ran into down at the beach, who actually noticed that I had shunned my usual white, Thorlos mini crews in favour of the charcoal coloured and slightly longer North Face alternatives.
To offer a direct quote from him, they actually left me looking: “not quite such a Gaylord as usual.”
Kind, and indeed apposite words: which left me feeling quite braced and manly as I set off for the six miles of sand, spume and sludge offered by my favourite beach run.
The Summing Up That Admits I’ve Been Dipped in Cissy Sauce
Look, there’s only so much you can say about a pair of socks, so I won’t attempt to describe the effect that these things had on my run.
Suffice it to say that the combination of Merino wool and polypropylene creates the kind of comfort usually associated with mink-lined slippers: and while I like to think of myself as the rugged, manly, outdoorsy type, I for one could get used to such cissified levels of comfort from my running socks.
And so, I have to say that they fully deserve their 5 Jelly Baby Rating: and frankly, if you’re looking for a stocking filler for the runner in your life, at around £10.95, you could do a lot worse than the North Face Multisports.