The Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks are a 3-layer waterproof sock made of nylon, Lycra spandex, and polyester with a knit exterior, a waterproof membrane, and a moisture-wicking anti-bacterial lining. But I know what you're saying, “What the hell are you talking about waterproof socks?”
I know, socks are probably the least-likely article of clothing you would expect to find in a waterproof variety but it turns out they exist; they even have practical applications for backpackers (although I think they're mostly targeted for cyclists and trail runners).
Walking in wet, muddy, or even snowy conditions will (in all probability) lead to wet shoes and then (in the absence of waterproof shoes) will ultimately lead to wet socks (one of the worst things in the world, following closely behind throwing up on an airplane). What can save you from this fate? Waterproof socks (I'm telling you, they're a real thing). Specifically, Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks.
- Weight: 3.7 oz / 105 g (for M/L)
- Height: Crew
- Fabric: 89% nylon / 10% Lycra spandex / 1% polyester
- Cushioning: Light
- Gender: Unisex
- Colors: Black, Blue, Green, Grey, Yellow, Pink
- Sizes: S/M, M/L, L/XL, XXL
- MSRP: $37
- L3-layer construction with wear-resistant knit exterior, waterproof/breathable Artex membrane, and CoolMax FX moisture-wicking, antibacterial lining
- Reinforced toes and heels
- Compression fit
- 20% lighter than original Crosspoint Waterproof Socks
- Machine washable
THE COMFORT | Despite feeling a bit like a wetsuit for your foot the first time you put them on, the Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks are comfortable. The moisture-wicking lining feels just like a regular sock (or at least pretty close), and there's plenty of cushion evenly distributed along the bottom of the sock. They can be a bit difficult to get on and off sometimes, but I think this had more to do with me being on the upper end of the sizing spectrum than anything else (I tend to size down).
THE COLOR | What's more important than function on the trail? Obviously, fashion. The first thing that drew me to these socks was their color (and, I guess, their waterproofness). The Crosspoints are available in both bright yellow and bright pink (although I wish the pink ones were all pink and not part grey) – both solid options. That said, if you want some boring colors, they are also available in blue, green, black, and grey. Find those here.
THE WARRANTY | Skeptical about the durability of the Crosspoints? That's fine because Showers Pass states they “unconditionally guarantee our outerwear for two years from the date of purchase”. This means that is your socks start letting in water (as a pair of mine has – see below for more on this), they will be (should be) replaced. In addition to the warranty, they have a Satisfaction Guarantee which “grants you the right to a one-time exchange.”
THE HEIGHT | The Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks will keep your feet dry, but only if the top of the sock remains above the water. These socks are crew-length and come up a bit higher than your ankle (they come about 40% of the way up to my knee from my ankle) which means that if you're doing any stream/creek/river crossings, you'll probably want to remove the socks beforehand. If you're only crossing shallow streams this won't be an issue, but if you let water in the top of the sock, then you're going to have a bad time. I really wish they had a knee-high version.
THE SHRINKING | I got a new pair of these socks (needed a pink pair too) after I had been using my first pair for a while. Interestingly, I noticed that the new pair was noticeably larger than the pair I had been using. I usually hang dry all of my things (especially waterproof things), but apparently these made it into the dryer at one point. According to Showers Pass, you can “[T]umble dry on low heat or hang dry. To avoid any shrinkage hang dry.” I guess I stopped reading after “tumble dry on low heat.”
THE BULK | I've gotten into the (bad) habit of carrying one pair of socks for each day of hiking (between laundry stops). However, these socks are pretty bulky and I don't know that I would want to carry a second (and especially not a third) pair. I wouldn't want to wear these for more than two or three days for fear of getting trench foot (as has happened with me wearing waterproof socks for too long in the past – not fun). On a long trip I guess two pairs would be doable, but you need some serious sun to dry them (and you need to reverse them to dry them fully – waterproof, etc.).
THE WEAR | I've experimented with both a brand new pair of Crosspoints and the pair I've been wearing extensively. Completely submerging my (dry) foot in water while wearing the old sock (but without allowing the water to go over the top of the sock) and then removing my foot results in my foot becoming slightly wet. In other words, my used pair is no longer waterproof – just water-resistant. That said, the socks have a two-year warranty that should cover this.
THE DRYING | This is more of an annoyance than anything else, but if you for any reason need to dry your Crosspoints in the backcountry (because you got water in the tops of them or you have the sweatiest feet ever), you might have some trouble doing so. You're going to need some very sunny days and you're going to have to both rotate and turn inside-out your socks in order to get them dry. But actually, now that I'm writing this, I guess you only really need to dry the inside since the outside is designed to get wet. Holy balls; mind blown.
Who are they for?
If you're going to be backpacking (or, I suppose, bicycle riding or just outdoor activity doing) anywhere that you can expect to encounter a fair amount of water (whether this water is frozen, running, or stagnant and mosquito-filled), a pair of Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks may be a wise investment.
It's a great feeling being able to charge through puddles, streams, and shallow bodies of trail-covering water (or even through dew-soaked brush) without having to worry about getting your socks wet.
When hiking through the snow for days at a time in the Sierra on the Pacific Crest Trail, I was always excited for the mornings when I decided to equip my Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks. Knowing that my feet are going to be dry and not freezing is a great feeling in the backcountry (almost as great a feeling of the ground being that perfect consistency for easy cathole digging). It's also great being able to rub your evolved and waterproof socks in the faces of your fellow hikers (because hiking is primarily a competition of fashion).
If you're waterproof sock-curious, I would definitely recommend you check out the Showers Pass Crosspoint Waterproof Socks here. And know that they are backed by an “unconditional two-year warranty” – just in case the idea of a waterproof sock still makes you skeptical.
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