Sealskinz Waterproof Beanie Hat and Country Socks
Reviewed by Andrew Kennedy
Iíve been lucky enough to receive a couple of products from outdoor gear manufacturer Sealskinz, to try out for fishing. I have owned their products before, which use a unique waterproof membrane to offer the wearer excellent resilience to the elements. My Sealskinz gloves have been used for everything from raft racing to caving and Iíve always been highly impressed by their function. The new products I was trying out for fishing were a winter Beanie Hat and a pair of Country Socks, both incorporating Sealskinzí patented waterproof, breathable membrane.
On first inspection, the country socks seemed a little on the thin side, but once I put them on I realised the benefits of their knee-height merino wool construction. They are surprisingly warm! They also feature an over-sized woolly cuff and are seamless all the way up to reduce blister-causing pressure points. At the end of a Winter session my feet are usually a damp mess, either from sweat or from water seeping in through my boots, but with these socks I can honestly say that my feet remained warm, dry and comfortable all day. Knowing that my legs were waterproof all the way up to the knee gave me confidence of trampling through long, wet grass, too. Perfect socks for fishing whether wearing wellies or boots.
The beanie hat is not only windproof but waterproof too. It has a micro-fleece lining, making it very warm on the head. Having longish hair, beanie hats tend to ride up my head as I wear them, but the Sealskinz hat really seemed to hug my head and stay put. There was no rain to speak of on the day I tested the gear out, so I canít vouch first hand for the hat being waterproof, but Iím convinced it will be, having experienced how waterproof other Sealskinz gear is. I think all fishing headwear should be made waterproof because you never know when you might be stuck outside when a storm breaks out, so this really is an ingenious feature. I would highly recommend these hats for winter fishing; they should keep you comfortable no matter what nature throws at you, whether on the bank of a drain or a boat on a reservoir. The hat I tested was red but theyíre also available in black and olive.  Iím sure youíll be seeing this red hat feature in many of my future catch photographs (including the one below!).
Here is my first fish caught wearing the Sealskinz products (though you can't see the socks in the picture!), a superb upper-double figure Pike:
For further information on the Sealskinz waterproof outdoors range, you can visit their website at www.sealskinz.com/ and you can find your nearest UK Stockist here www.sealskinz.com/uk-stockists. You can also find Sealskinz Gear on Facebook here http://www.facebook.com/sealskinz.gear.
Reviewed by Andrew Kennedy.