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Advice on choosing a hiking shirt?
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Matthew Bradley
(patojo) - F

Locale: Berkshire County
Advice on choosing a hiking shirt? on 05/20/2011 12:43:07 MDT Print View

Long time lurker, first time poster. I am looking to invest in a nice long-sleeved shirt for hot weather hiking. I am looking for something that will help me manage my copious perspiration, keep the sun and bugs off, and stand up to briers and brambles reasonably well. Anyone have their own druthers regarding a polyester t-shirt (I was looking at Mountain Hardware’s Justo Trek) vs. a nylon sun shirt (I was considering a RailRiders Equator-HT Top)?

Much appreciated!

Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
Re: Advice on choosing a hiking shirt? on 05/20/2011 13:16:36 MDT Print View

I've been using a cheap polyester t-shirt, short sleeves.

I haven't tried it yet, but I just got a button-up fishing shirt ($30, Field & Stream brand at Dick's Sporting Goods) which is long-sleeved, collar, stretchy polyester, and has a vented mesh panel in the back. Columbia makes a similar one, but this was slightly more comfortable in the store and cheaper. I also treated it with permethrin.

A nylon shirt won't wick and dry as well as polyester, but nylon is more durable.

David A
(DavidAdair) - M

Locale: West Dakota
Hiking shirt favorites? on 05/20/2011 19:02:21 MDT Print View

Was hoping to see some feedback on favorite summer hiking shirts too. I seem to buy a new synthetic shirt every year only to go back to cotton. They always feel too hot and humid. The fast drying nylon seems to work great in pants -just not in the shirts.

I tend to use thin, close woven, cotton LS dress shirts. Feels cool when hot but they're still thin enough to dry overnight. Costco's Hathaway brand are inexpensive and no iron. Dark colors are too hot, light ones show dirt, blues are said to attract mosquitoes, tie-dyes draw hippies...

nerdy but comfortable

Randy Martin
(randalmartin) - F

Locale: Colorado
Capilene 2 or Nylon on 05/20/2011 20:01:52 MDT Print View

Cap 2 breathes very very well but may snag if bushwhacking, Nylon is very durable but doesn't breath as well. So depends on what/where your doing.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Hiking shirt favorites? on 05/20/2011 20:36:10 MDT Print View

I'm still wearing my old Columbia PFG long sleeve, button op front shirt. Designed for fishermen. Dries fast. The button front does give some venting options. Does not give sign of wearing out. Nylon ripstop. Something like SPF 30 also. Vented back. I think I paid $20 at Sports Authority.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Advice on choosing a hiking shirt? on 05/20/2011 21:18:49 MDT Print View

Ex Officio Air Strip Lite is my favorite. The original Air Strip is probably better for bushwacking. The REI Sahara is another to look at.

If you really perspire heavily, a silk weight wicking polyester tee may be cooler. I have a GoLite C-Thru long sleeve (discontinued) that is super light and wicks well. I don't like them skin tight. I would have to refer you to others here for advice on current polyester wicking shirts. If they are good, you can feel it drawing the moisture off your skin when you put it on. Of course, you want white or other very light colors. Running stores are good sources if you don't find what you want in the hiking world. The wicking tees work for base layers and sleep, and they wash and dry well on the trail.

Kimberly Wersal
(kwersal) - MLife

Locale: Western Colorado
Re: Re: Advice on choosing a hiking shirt? on 05/20/2011 22:05:23 MDT Print View

+1 on the Airstrip lite. Very cool, good sun protection, and quite a bit more durable than I had expected--I've been thru quite a bit of brush in mine without any snags

k web
(kbweb) - F

Locale: Tacoma, WA
Advice on choosing a hiking shirt on 05/20/2011 22:58:09 MDT Print View

My RR Eco-Mesh shirt is my go to shirt for hot weather hiking. It can go from soaked to fully dry in a few minutes. The mesh panels, back vent and neck collar allow it to vent well. And its durable.

David A
(DavidAdair) - M

Locale: West Dakota
The polls say: Ex Officio Air Strip Lite on 05/21/2011 08:44:40 MDT Print View

This is the leader so far. Appreciative for the input and glad folks have found something that works for them. Any other votes before before I bust out the card?

Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Re: The polls say: Ex Officio Air Strip Lite on 05/21/2011 09:30:16 MDT Print View

Check out the Railriders Bone Flats shirt as well. I haven't tried it yet, but I am looking at one for a trip on the JMT late this summer.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: The polls say: Ex Officio Air Strip Lite on 05/21/2011 09:52:55 MDT Print View

My darker colored air strip lite shirts faded badly in just a few

Rob Lee
(roblee) - MLife

Locale: Southern High Plains
Railriders Bone Flats on 05/21/2011 14:06:16 MDT Print View

I really like this shirt. It is 1.5 oz/yd nylon as opposed to the 2.5 oz/yd for all the other summer weight RR shirts and the Ex Officio shirts. It has a great hand and is way cooler than the others. Certainly not as tough, that's the trade-off for cooler and lighter.

Nice stand-up collar for neck shade. Remove the velcro dots that hold the collar down as they engage while active with the collar up, thus exposing your neck.

For all RR shirts: don't wash or dry them with bras or other clothing that have hooks. The hooks snag the mesh.

The BIG negative is the cost of the Bone Flats; like $79! I think this is WAY too high and maybe they will see a correction if they don't sell. This is still less than the Ex Officio. There is also a QC issue with the sewing on the chest pockets. Nothing serious, they are aware of it, and will make any problem right regarding a defect.

I have 3 and wear them almost every day when it's over 80F.

Edited by roblee on 05/21/2011 14:17:05 MDT.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Railriders Bone Flats on 05/21/2011 17:47:27 MDT Print View

The exofficios are on sale alot at sierra trading post. Never pay full price for them.

L. T.
(Guinness1759) - F
craghoppers? on 05/25/2011 11:25:02 MDT Print View

I received a Craghoppers catalog a few weeks ago. It looks like some of their line is treated with a bug protection called Nosilife. Anyone use their stuff?

Tommy Franzen
(Tomlike) - F

Locale: Pacific Wonderland
REI Long sleeve Sahara on 05/25/2011 11:54:07 MDT Print View

Is a great shirt in my opinion. For warm weather, roll up the sleeves and un-button the front. It has a vent in the back and vents under the arm pits. The collar can pop up and protect your neck from the sun. Quick drying too. If the weather changes and is cooler, roll down the sleeves and button up the front. Kind of like a convertible! Any shirt you wear under a backpack in warm weather will get sweaty, I've found that when stopping for a break it will dry in the sun in about 10 minutes.

Ryan C
(radio_guy) - MLife

Locale: Alaska
REI Sahara vs. Columbia Silver Ridge on 05/25/2011 16:47:54 MDT Print View

What is the difference between the REI Sahara and Columbia Silver Ridge shirts? Both are nylon, button front, convertible arms, and a venting back.

I have a few of the Columbia shirts and they are nice for travel but the fabric feels a little rough and gets uncomfortable for extended hiking. How does the Sahara compare?

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Not sure on 05/25/2011 21:05:19 MDT Print View

I've got the Sahara. Great shirt. Seems pretty similar to the Columbia shirt. Anyway, the Sahara breaths nice and blocks the sun and skeeters. And its a bit cheaper than some of the others.

Matthew Bradley
(patojo) - F

Locale: Berkshire County
I ordered a Craghoppers Ferro a couple of days ago. on 06/17/2011 13:41:48 MDT Print View

Will report after it arrives and I get a couple of days use out of it!

Dave Jenkins
(Jinx667) - M

Locale: SoCal
Agree with above on 06/17/2011 14:03:26 MDT Print View

I am also a big fan of the Air Strip Lite and the REI Sahara. I just picked up a Air Strip Lite for 30% off at A16 here in San Diego.

Tommy Franzen
(Tomlike) - F

Locale: Pacific Wonderland
Sahara/UPF rating? on 06/17/2011 14:21:50 MDT Print View

After a couple uses I found the Sahara to be a bit clammy when it gets real sweaty, probably because it's 100% nylon, no polyester. I'm trying an REI Polartech Power Dry half zip now, much more breathable and I love the zip for venting. Can anyone comment on how effective and/or important a UPF rating is on a shirt? The power dry has a really open thread to it, you can hold it up and practically see through it. Like many of us, I'll be spending lots of time this summer on the trail in the sun, and to be honest I never really thought about UV rays penetrating clothing before, but I have sensitive skin and might be leaning towards a RailRiders or something similar with a UPF rating of at least 15.