Gecko Ankle Length Waterproof Cycling Socks Classic
99g (large) £26.95
The Gecko Wear Ankle Length Waterproof Cycling Socks Classic are a snug fitting, waterproof and breathable sock aimed at cycling and running audiences. They’ve delivered exactly what I would expect from a technical sock, and though well insulated, they are thin enough for snug fitting road and trail shoes.
Pros: Comfortable, breathable and waterproof, compatible with snug fitting cycling shoes.
Cons: Take a while to dry, following machine washing.
I wasn’t surprised to discover similarities with the brand’s calf length Classic All Action Waterproof socks. The outer is 90% Nylon, 8% Spandex and 2% Elastic. The waterproof, breathable membrane employs their “Airskin” technology, designed to insulate and wick moisture from the wearer’s skin. Materials-wise the inner is 70% Bamboo Rayon and 30% Nylon. Seamless, for comfort, the waterproof membrane has a performance rating of 8,000mm, which should satisfy most people and in the real world, means torrential rain/submersion.
Ours were the classic, which refers to contrasting green detailing and rear logo, while the stealth, are plain black. You pays your £26.95, you takes your choice. Ankle length is a little loftier than a traditional cycling sock but in keeping with the (in my view, positive) trend for greater height, and therefore protection from thistles, small stones and similar scratchy, stingy stuff thrown up by the tyres. Green detailing and logos (around the rear) aren’t quite day glow but designed to enhance visibility in low, murky light.
Sizing & Fit 4.5/5
I am 43/44 in street and cycling footwear respectively, so went for the large, which spans 43-46 (9.5-12 in US and 9-11 for UK audiences). This paid off, fitting me perfectly length, width and height-wise. As I said in my opening paragraph, they’re a good fit across the board, but crucially with sportier road, Audax and mountain bike shoes.P aired with my Quoc Pham Tourer, there’s been sufficient room around the toe box and heel section, yet ample support to these, and the balls of my feet. No issues with the FLR Defender MTB Thermal Dry S-Tex Boot and FLR Rexton Active Touring/Trail Shoe and I’d defaulted to these, given the season and changeable conditions.
I’ve alternated between these and their Calf Length Classic stablemates in temperatures between zero and 14 degrees. Temperature regulation has been excellent at both ends of the spectrum, at the lower end, paired with the Defender, they’ve kept plenty of warmth, without turning clammy, even after several hours at a steady 85rpm.
Waterlogged roads and boggy bridle path infiltrated the Defender’s outers, leading to the strange sensation of pressure against the sock’s waterproof membrane. Something I’ve found synonymous with waterproof socks per se, and crucially, nothing snuck inside.
Over to the Rexton, which has a glossy upper and lashings of mesh and much the same story. Immersed beyond the ankles, my feet remained dry and temperate, even with the mercury sliding to 2 degrees, or so.
Green lane and bridlepath blasting saw ours submerged to the cuff line, no ingress issues and though tactile, the elastics have kept them pinned in situ. Warm and dry inside (where it arguably counts) once the outer becomes saturated, it does take three hours, or so to dry, even at room temperature and its much the same story following a machine wash.
Support to the heel, toe box and balls of the feet have also been reassuringly good, no hint of “hot spots” or similar painful irritation on longer rides, or indeed, when shouldering the bike and dashing through the gloop, suggesting they’d be a good bet for cyclo-cross. Their height gives ankles a sporting chance through prickly foliage and against those small, sometimes painful projectiles thrown up along gritty sections.
Back on the tarmac and wearing ¾ length tights, motion meant the green logos were more extrovert than I was expecting. At least in misty/low light conditions. Mind you, not a patch on the Dexshell Pro Visibility Waterproof Cycling Socks.
The ability to toss them in the machine wash at 30 (and indeed, 40) degrees is a definite plus. 400 miles and constant wearing and washing hasn’t revealed any obvious weak spots. Not so much as a loose thread. Not that I’d expect such but reassuring just the same.
Even at 30 degrees, with minimal detergent, thick mud and similar organic spatter has just melted away-they've emerged looking and smelling fresh. Provided you’ve not done anything silly, like toss them in the drier, or subject them to fabric softeners, there’s no reason they shouldn’t live long and productive lives. However, bargain on 3 hours, or so at room temperature before they’re dry, in the wearable sense.
£26.99 is arguably the going rate for this grade of sock. The Deshell Pro Visibility Cycling Socks come in at £25.99. Seal Skinz All-Weather Ankle-Length Socks are another waterproof, breathable design. A little dearer at £30.00, they boast an enviable waterproof rating of 20,000mm and a merino layer next to the skin.
Ultimately, the Gecko Wear Ankle Length Cycling Running Waterproof Socks Classic have performed competently across the board and while less versatile than some, seem an excellent choice for general riding. There’s scope for cyclo cross and gravel too, although calf length models have a small but tangible edge off road, especially through long grass, or snowy conditions.
Verdict: 3.75/5 Capable waterproof socks and compatible with sportier shoes is a definite plus.
PUBLISHED FEBRUARY 2022