Everybody knows that I am an old school, mountaineering philosophy layers guy. Three layers to be more prcise. Base, insulation and shell. That’s it. All play their role in a proper outdoor clothing system but an argument can certainly be made that the base is the most important.
When I expect the temp to drop Merino Wool and polypropylene are my base layer materials of choice. Smartwool, REI, Sitka Gear and Patagonia are my preferred manufacturers. If I had to choose just one it would be REI because I have been wearing their stuff the longest, they offer the best variety of styles and colors and they seem to last forever. In fact, one of my REI polypro Zip T-Neck tops is 20 plus years old and while the Emergency Medical Technician insignia has long since worn off in the wash the garment itself keeps rolling long. The zipper still works!
I am also a Polartec fan so I was very happy to learn that REI was going to be using Polartec Polar Dry in their Light, Medium and Heavy weight underwear. That is tremendous news that will push already very good base layers into the realm of great gear. If your favorite outdoor activity causes you to sweat then you already know that managing moisture properly makes a big difference in your comfort and performance. In extreme cases it can mean life or death so you want the absolute best stuff next to your skin and that, in my opinion, is Power Dry. Don’t believe me? Get some and try it.
You can buy Crew and Zip T-Neck styles right now in black, blue and grey hues but will have to wait until later for some stealthy coyote or sage green colors.
Sorting through the fads and fashion of the outdoor equipment industry to identify and promote the very best wilderness gear for high end recreational users, backcountry professionals and government agencies.
We can be educated and persuaded but not bought, bullied or bs’d.
Hardcore Outdoor is dedicated to those who won’t or can’t turn back.