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Best backpacking hat?
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christopher smead
(hamsterfish) - MLife

Locale: hamsterfish
Best backpacking hat? on 08/02/2011 15:16:28 MDT Print View

I've been looking for a replacement for my REI Taku baseball cap since it shrunk in the wash. I was sad to learn they don't exist anymore.
Waterproof, breathable, fit my head right, and was not black. (black hats make my head overheat in the sun).

I liked the waterproof breathable part mostly because it didn't absorb odors. You could dip it in the river for a quick rinse and it would be clean again.

What does everyone else use and why?

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Best backpacking hat? on 08/02/2011 15:46:45 MDT Print View

If you like baseball-style hats, the Outdoor Research Sun Runner is a classic. The neck cape unsnaps.

The Nike Dri-FIT Featherlite cap is a good baseball style cap that works for hiking-- excellent wivking and comes in white.,pdp,ctr-inline/cid-1/pid-87184/pgid-107068. I think I paid ~$12 for one.

If you want a neck cape, tie a cord to the corners of a white bandana and you'll have a poor man's Sun Runner. The cord stops on the bill of the cap. Adjust to suit.

But *real* hikers wear Tilleys. There is no other hat :)

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Best backpacking hat? on 08/02/2011 15:52:31 MDT Print View

But *real* hikers wear Tilleys. There is no other hat :)

Ugh. Don't count me into that group. I'm a *real* hiker and wouldn't be caught dead in one. good if you want to look like a grandfather, or look like you are wearing his hat. Brim is too small for that SoCal sun.

Don't forget to look at the Sunday Afternoons hats either. Another fashion statement that has its cult of followers.

I do see a fair number of those OR Sun Runners too.

I have a super long billed baseball styled cap with a removable shade cape. Got it at a bait/gift shop in Florida.

Edited by kthompson on 08/02/2011 16:11:41 MDT.

Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re: Re: Best backpacking hat? on 08/02/2011 15:55:21 MDT Print View

+1 on the Tilley!
Hey, you gotta have SOME style, lol.

Dennis Lloyd
(dennx) - MLife
ExOfficio Bugsaway Cape Hat on 08/02/2011 16:11:53 MDT Print View

I like my ExOfficio Bugsaway Cape Hat. It comes in light colors.

ExOfficio Bugsaway Hat

Edited by dennx on 08/02/2011 16:15:42 MDT.

Jeffrey McConnell
another sunrunner user on 08/02/2011 17:23:13 MDT Print View

I like the OR Sunrunner. Mine has a permanent reddish hue though thanks to the red rock in Utah. It started out white.

Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
Best Backpacking Hat on 08/02/2011 18:17:13 MDT Print View

+1 for Sunday Afternoon Hat

Large Wide Brim
Dark Color Underneath the Hat
Back of Neck Protected from Sun and Bugs
2 oz!

Edited by Creachen on 08/02/2011 18:17:48 MDT.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Tilley on 08/02/2011 20:00:53 MDT Print View

>> good if you want to look like a grandfather, or look like you are wearing his hat.

It's true; I look terrible in a Tilley. But I like mine so much I don't care. After all, I don't have to look at myself on the trail. :P

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
Boonie Hat on 08/02/2011 20:16:28 MDT Print View

I've been wearing my trusty boonie hat for years now. $10 at the surplus store. Keep the rain and sun off.

I admit it looks dorky. But I've embraced the dorkiness and call it my Dorky Sun Hat. :)

Jake Willits
(TrailSavvy) - MLife

Locale: Arkansas Ozarks
Best backpacking hat. on 08/03/2011 09:14:13 MDT Print View

Thanks for the good ideas in this thread. I have always used different hats for different trips. I have made a gradual transition. The last cotton item to leave my gear list was a cotton ball cap. They just always felt comfortable. For summer trips I now use an OR Swift cap. 2.5 oz. Nylon, with mesh underneath the nylon upper shell. Nice and cool. After having to use my bandanna for nexk protection from UV and mosquitos, I'd consider an OR hat with a "cape".
For winter, I have been using a Marmot Precip, combined with a Terramar merino beanie. That way I can remove beanie as it warms up, or the "top hat".

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
hats on 08/03/2011 09:38:37 MDT Print View

If your pack is small you can't beat a white straw Stetson.

John Coyle

Locale: NorCal
Best Backpacking Hat on 08/03/2011 12:03:41 MDT Print View

This is an interesting question because there are many good hiking hats out there. I have to be careful to get adequate coverage from a hat because my grandparents were Irish and I inherited a very light skin. Let's face it, I glow in the dark. Another priority is being able to fold or roll it up for storage when I am not using it. The Tilley hat has great coverage, but I have two problems with it. It is too expensive and it can't be rolled up. In the summer I carry two hats; a Headsweats Racehat, which is a ball cap, and a cotton bucket style hat. The coverage of a ball cap in the sun is not adequate for me, so I only use it to wear under a hood when it rains. A person could go Foreign Legion and tie up a handkerchief and put the ball cap over it to shield the neck and face. The gardeners and field workers around here do that all the time, and they should know, because they're out in the hot California sun all day. I bought the bucket hat at the Santa Cruz Surf Museum, and appropriately it says "Santa Cruz Surf Museum" on it. Kind of cool even though I am not a surfer. It was cheap, is 100% cotton, has good coverage, and can be rolled up. There are many similar hats in Walmart and Target stores, and even REI. I like a light colored cotton hat in the summer. When I reach a stream, I dunk it in the water for the "swamp cooler" effect. Keep in mind this in my summer headgear. No way would I wear a cotton hat in the winter. Slainte! (Irish for cheers)

Thomas Burns
(nerdboy52) - MLife

Locale: "Alas, poor Yogi.I knew him well."
Hats on 08/03/2011 12:18:57 MDT Print View

In summer or any warm weather, I wear the Tyvek painter's cap from Home Depot: $.97 and they hold up surprisingly well. They have a large plastic brim to keep the sun off.

Most other seasons, especially in winter, I wear a Buff with a brim, Evo 1, because it can be configured as a cap, a balaclava, an ear warmer, a headband, etc. Also, they are not made of cotton, so they wick extremely well. A standard Buff will do the same things, of course, but I like the brim.


Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Best backpacking hat? on 08/03/2011 12:35:38 MDT Print View

I use a full brimmed hat - Outdoor Research Helios. It provides enough coverage that I don't have to apply sunscreen to my face / ears nor to I need sunglasses. It dries really fast and is great for soaking up creek water and then wearing it to cool down. 2.3oz. YMMV.

Bryan Crook
(bcrook007) - F

Locale: Nebraska
+1 on the OR Helios Sun Hat on 08/03/2011 13:38:44 MDT Print View

I'm a big fan of Outdoor Research hats. They have a lot of different types of hats to choose from and many different styles (ball caps, full brim, etc.)

Helios Sun Hat is a winner for me too. Seems to be my go-to hat for sunny day, three season hiking.

Wayne Wagner
(wagnerw) - F

Locale: NorCal
OR Coastal Sombrero on 08/03/2011 21:39:48 MDT Print View

The OR Coastal Sombrero is great. I think it was designed to mimic the OR Seattle Sombrero, but it is not as warm. So, it will work much better in warmer, hotter times and still function as a great rain hat in other times. The hat does not have the ability to fold the flaps up, but I will likely add some velcro to make that possible. Notably, it does seem to breathe well enough as well; it has a vent near the back of your head.

I also own the OR Sun Runner and like it just fine. The only drawback is that I don't like having fabric on my neck when it is hot. I'd much prefer the large brim of the Coastal Sombrero.


Ryan Krause

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Another vote for OR Sunrunner on 08/03/2011 22:59:53 MDT Print View

Another vote for the OR Sunrunner - it's a ball cap when you want it to be and when you need the extra sun protection the sun skirt snaps on. Also it packs up very small and can go in your pack with no worries about damaging it. I've had mine for 5-6 years now and still in great shape with tons of use.

Erik Dietz

Locale: Los Angeles
best hat on 08/03/2011 23:07:19 MDT Print View

I just use a regular ball cap with a bandana tucked under to provide cover for my neck and ears. And it didn't cost me $30 like the OR hat I saw at REI.

billy goat
(billygoat) - F

Locale: West.
I like to call them "Birth Control Hats" on 08/03/2011 23:26:39 MDT Print View

I wear a Sun Runner. The rest I use for birth control. Try it - it works.

Edited by billygoat on 08/03/2011 23:28:46 MDT.

Backpack Jack
(jumpbackjack) - F

Locale: Armpit of California
RE Best hat on 08/03/2011 23:38:37 MDT Print View

I love my Kavu Chilba hat.


Jesse H.
(tacedeous) - MLife

Locale: East Bay, CA
:) on 08/04/2011 00:52:14 MDT Print View


how ya been jack?

I wear this one, love it! and it's eVent which is nice when you come by a stream in the heat :

not the new version that has weird gussets in the front:

Rodney OndaRock
(RodneyOndaRock) - F

Locale: Southern California
Re: Best backpacking hat? Columbia Omni-Shade Bora Bora Booney Hat on 08/04/2011 01:06:56 MDT Print View

REI has the Hat for 25 bones, you can wait for their sale to get 30% off. Campmor and Big5 also carry it
Columbia Omni-Shade Bora Bora Booney

it comes in grey, beige, and white colors, while the bright white reflects the most light, it doesn't blend in with the outdoors colors, I have been happy with the beige for many years.

wide brim covers the back of the neck, and enough front shade to cover my adam's apple. it is a one-size fits all, with an adjustable bungee. it feels weird at first, but when you find the right tension for you, its good. (too tight is too much)

the forehead part is breathable mesh. I wash it in the shower with soap.

I did modify a little bit by adding a long plastic stiff line on the outter brim, so it doesn't turn into an old ladies floppy hat, and now its more taut like a park ranger's hat.

been happy with the same hat for 5 years

Edited by RodneyOndaRock on 08/04/2011 01:14:32 MDT.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Best backpacking hat? on 08/04/2011 01:07:57 MDT Print View

And for a really nerdy look, the faux pith helmet, worn by letter carriers. Not only does it protect from the sun, it has excellent ventilation and makes an excellent rain hat. Is that you, Livingstone?

Letter Carrier's sun helmet

John Donewar
(Newton) - MLife

Locale: Southeastern Louisiana
Re: Re: Best backpacking hat? Columbia Omni-Shade Bora Bora Booney Hat on 08/04/2011 04:47:58 MDT Print View

Bandannas or polyester and merino wool buffs for me.

My favorite hiking "hat"

My bandannas are the extra large 27" x 27" variety and come from .

I am currently using a white polyester buff during my summer day hikes and I have a "Kaky" colored (read OD green) merino wool buff that I use during the cooler months.

I've tried caps and hats and none of them do the trick for me. I find all of them uncomfortable and hot when it is warm. I can sweat through a bandanna or buff and enjoy the cooling effect of a breeze while I am hiking.

BTW my oversize bandannas sell for $2.50 each and serve all of the multiuse duties that have been discussed on BPL in past threads.

Party On,


T kawa
(kitsune) - F
bora on 08/04/2011 14:50:51 MDT Print View

now I have a columbia bora hat, it works well, the ventilation is nice compared to my old helios hat (lost at pinnacles, hope someone found it and used it=)... but now I think i'll get a kavu chilba and get in touch with my roots.... teehee.

Thomas Burns
(nerdboy52) - MLife

Locale: "Alas, poor Yogi.I knew him well."
More on buffs on 08/04/2011 15:24:54 MDT Print View

You are so right, John. I like my bandannas of the "do rag" variety for headwear. Forgot to mention in my previous post that buffs can also be worn as sun hats to protect the back of the neck. Just tuck the back extra cloth under to form a neck protector or it in "pirate mode" to protect the neck and tuck your ears under the buff in harsh sunlight. Seriously, IMO, buffs are by far the most versatile of headwear in all conditions.

Stargazer (a Buff buff)

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
bandannas on 08/04/2011 22:14:35 MDT Print View

Bandannas are great. They keep the sweat out of my eyes and are so multi-functional.

BUT, I'd hate to wear just a bandanna in the harsh UV radiation of Colorado.

I tan very well (thanks to my southern Italian ancestors and various invaders of southern Italy over the years ), but anyone fries up at 12k or so feet on a high alpine pass.

So, I wear the dorky sun hat to keep the sun off my face and the melanoma at bay! :D

I hate sunscreen (see above about sweat in the eyes..even worse with sun screen!) and would rather wear clothing to protect me from the UV radiation than glop; esp on a multi-day trip.

Edited by PaulMags on 08/04/2011 22:17:24 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"Best backpacking hat?" on 08/04/2011 22:19:53 MDT Print View

Works wonders down here.

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
Ah! on 08/04/2011 22:22:43 MDT Print View

That ain't a dorky hat.

That has panache and is sure to make any man hiking the trail have women desire them and have men desire to be like him.

Now excuse me while I reminisce about my trip to the the Pecos wilderness and ponder more green chile' beer from Eskes Brew Pub in Taos.


Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
Best backpacking hat? on 08/05/2011 08:23:11 MDT Print View

In the forest in summer: a headband.
I only need something to keep the sweat out of my eyes and glasses.

In the open in summer: military desert hat, beating others in cost and maybe durability

Other times, excluding very cold winter: polyester running hat with a bill

Aaron Reichow

Locale: Northern Minnesota
hat on 08/05/2011 10:14:00 MDT Print View

I've been wearing the Sombriolet Sun Hat and a $10 very light nylon "golf hat" from Target. Similar to other sun hats by MH, OR, etc, just a baseball-style cap in nylon/polyester with two strips of mesh to keep your head cool.

Looks a bit like this one from MH:

Randy Martin
(randalmartin) - F

Locale: Colorado
Depends on what function you are looking for on 08/05/2011 10:34:15 MDT Print View

I wear a hat so i don't have to use Sunscreen anywhere on my head and neck. That requires a full brim. Baseball style caps are useless for that purpose because it leaves the side and neck exposed.

My hat currently is a Tilley LTM6. I have to admit that it doesn't breath as well as I would like but that's compared to not wearing anything at all so hard to compete with nothing.

I do have to say that Buff's are really nice as well. I really like being able to dip them in a cold stream and put on. You can get the full sun protection if you wear it Balaclava style.

Edited by randalmartin on 08/05/2011 10:39:25 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
bping hat on 08/05/2011 10:56:42 MDT Print View

Merino wool buff- regulates a wide temp range, multipurpose, comfortable

Cheap wide brimmed straw hat- tons of sun coverage, breathable, light, cheap!

John Abela
(JohnAbela) - MLife

Re: Best backpacking hat? on 08/06/2011 14:54:31 MDT Print View

Outdoor Research Sun Runner & a tube bandana.

I seem to be one of the few who prefer a tube bandana... never understood why more people do not like them.

John Donewar
(Newton) - MLife

Locale: Southeastern Louisiana
Re: Tubular Bandana on 08/06/2011 19:19:48 MDT Print View

I googled "tube bandana" and found out that a buff is a tubular bandana. So that puts Stargazer and Newton on board as people who like tubular bandanas a.k.a. buffs.

Eugene may qualify but only when he isn't wearing his straw hat or sombrero.;-)

Party On,


Hart -
(backpackerchick) - MLife

Locale: Planet Earth
-- on 08/06/2011 22:57:07 MDT Print View


Edited by backpackerchick on 08/06/2011 22:59:47 MDT.

(packdaddy) - F
froggtoggs bucket hat on 10/08/2012 15:15:43 MDT Print View

Found a Froggtoggs Aussie hat. 3 oz. waterpoof, breathable good sun protection with full wide brim, packable, not too dorky, $12.00 at my local sporting goods store.

Edited by packdaddy on 10/08/2012 20:03:24 MDT.

Mal Hooper

Locale: Valley of the Sun
Various on 10/08/2012 16:22:02 MDT Print View

I have a big noggin...okay...a huge I am very limited on the hats I can wear. When I find a hat that works I protect it with my life and/or buy extras for backup. So far my faves are...

Arcteryx toque for warmth and a Tilley T3 for sun protection.

I **love** my merino buff, but I bought it for a day trip into Denali when I forgot my Arc toque. The only color they had was Cru which is basically caucasian skin color so, yes, it looks like I'm wearing pantyhose on my head. Needless to say, I don't wear it much, but I do love the functionality of it.

All that said, I have long hair and my favorite thing to wear while actually hiking is a bandana headband like a good ol' hippy.

Peter Albinger

Locale: Toronto Ontario Canada
Tilley hats are cool on 10/08/2012 16:29:58 MDT Print View

I recently got my fourth Tilley hat over the past twenty five years. I now have two T3's- one in brown and one in what was once olive. I also have a hemp version (the TH5). . However, the one I bought recently I wear all the time- walking the dog, paddling my canoe, hiking the trails north of the city. It is the Tilley Outback (TWC7), kinda like a Filson hat I used to own and liked. You can see it here-

Ya, they're a bit pricy but they're worth it and they look great and they last forever- or, in my case, at least 25 years!

Edited by true_north on 10/09/2012 16:25:31 MDT.

Raquel Rascal

Locale: Rocky Mtn. West
I have the perfect hat for you! on 10/08/2012 18:38:39 MDT Print View

I bought this baseball style hat from Sierra Trading Post two months ago and got to use it in very bright alpine conditions for two trips. It's by Discovery Expeditions. I'm not kidding when I say that the hat has excellent mesh ventillation, an extra long brim to block the sun (I didn't wear sunglasses while hiking, such a relief), perfect for wearing a mosquito net and keeping it off of your face, a string to attach it to your clothing, and a really nice liner to soak the sweat from your forehead...

I got this hat for $6.95 with a discount code! I couldn't believe the quality of this product.

Oh crap, I should go out and buy more before they stop producing it.

*edit* I just bought two more with an additional 35% for $6.45 a piece. These would make an excellent gift for your favorite hiker. They are one size fits all and not too dorky on my head.

Edited by flutingaround on 10/08/2012 19:04:08 MDT.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Best backpacking hat? on 10/08/2012 18:52:11 MDT Print View

I've found this to be a practical cap for backpacking, and I bought it at a local mom&pop outdoor store. It appears to be a standard navy blue baseball cap, except that it is Goretex. That makes it slightly warm in the summer and somewhat drier in the winter wet weather.


Rob Daly
(rdaly) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
OR on 10/08/2012 19:01:19 MDT Print View

LOVE my OR Swift cap.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Seasonal/Climatic Choices on 10/08/2012 19:15:13 MDT Print View

I'd say my "backpacking hats" ae either seasonal (LL Bean fleece baseball hat W/ ear flaps & TNF synthetic ball cap).

Or climatic (REI mesh vented polyester wide brim hat for sun shade).

(TILLEY hats? well, good quality, 'spensive but ALL COTTON. Don't want one on my head when it's raining!)

Mal Hooper

Locale: Valley of the Sun
Re: Seasonal/Climatic Choices on 10/08/2012 19:20:25 MDT Print View


Yes, Tilley hats are ALL COTTON...unless, of course, you buy one made of wool, nylon, hemp, or raffia. ;)

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
OOOOO! on 10/08/2012 19:27:18 MDT Print View

You mean they now make a Tilley of NYLON??? Sacreledge!

Well, in that case Tilley makes the best synthetic hat on the market. (mea culpa)

Scott Bentz
(scottbentz) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Best backpacking hat? on 10/08/2012 19:40:36 MDT Print View

Uh, I guess it's the grandpa hat i like.

(packdaddy) - F
$82.00 for a Tilley?? on 10/08/2012 20:14:46 MDT Print View

$82.00 for a Tilley?? That's insane! What can that hat do that my $12 froggtogg can't? I looked up their 3 oz nylon and it doesn't even claim to be waterproof. "weather and stain repellant finish" Please enlighten me.

Tony Fleming
(TonyFleming) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
best hat on 10/08/2012 20:51:13 MDT Print View

I've owned a Bora bora booney, Tilley, Sunny day hat, and an OR sun runner hat. None of them are as good as my Koppen no fly zone with mesh sides.

Edited by TonyFleming on 10/08/2012 21:05:06 MDT.

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: $82.00 for a Tilley?? on 10/08/2012 20:53:21 MDT Print View

> $82.00 for a Tilley?? That's insane! What can that hat do that my $12 froggtogg can't?

It has style and is close to indestructible. Tiley used to (maybe they still do) collect stories about what their hats surivived... like being consumed and then pooped by by an elephant... multiple times?! -- That was submitted by a zoo keeper who had a troublesome elephant. Then again, if the hat was cheaper, maybe he wouldn't have felt the need to recover the hat, wash it, and wear it again :)

It was recommended earlier in the thread, but I would vote for a hat which is more expensive than your $12 hat as well. For me, it would be the sunday afternoon adventure hat which is around $36. It is the coolest wearing hat I have found with a great brim, and a veil that protects the back of my neck without bumping into my pack. Looks stupid on me, pretty nice on the women in my family which I think is no fair. One model or another from Sunday Afternoon is the favorite hat of everyone in my family, and many of the people I backpack with... at least the ones with no fashion sense :)


(packdaddy) - F
$12 hat on 10/08/2012 21:10:19 MDT Print View

My hat is more for rain and UV protection than coolness. I'm a southern Man so I can handle the "heat" while hiking. However I do like the Idea of the veil in back instead of the brim.

Edited by packdaddy on 10/08/2012 21:14:27 MDT.

Mal Hooper

Locale: Valley of the Sun
What it won't do... on 10/08/2012 21:18:33 MDT Print View


What it won't do is jump on your head and debit your bank account without your permission so I don't think you have to be so worked up about its price.

(packdaddy) - F
Not worked up... Just Surprised on 10/08/2012 21:24:33 MDT Print View

Not worked up... Just Surprised

Stuart .
(lotuseater) - F

Locale: Mountains
Waxed cotton on 10/08/2012 22:19:56 MDT Print View

Love my Barbour jacket ... for walking my dogs at a leisurely pace or standing around in the rain watching a rugby match, but for any level of exertion waxed cotton really stinks. Windproof it is, and waterproof to a point, but breatheable it is not. So a waxed cotton hat like the Tilley TWC7 Outback or a Filson Shelter Cloth Packer - as a hiking hat? Let's just say I can't get my head around that.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Best backpacking hat? on 10/08/2012 23:01:34 MDT Print View

Cheap trucker hat with a bandana wrapped around my head to protect my neck. I wore this all summer at my day job.
I have a really hard time getting hats to fit my head though. I could never put a wide brim hat on, only snapbacks work.

Edited by justin_baker on 10/08/2012 23:04:19 MDT.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Best backpacking hat? on 10/08/2012 23:18:37 MDT Print View

This hat is cotton, but it's seriously cool.

Mike W
(skopeo) - F

Locale: British Columbia
Tilley on 10/09/2012 00:20:53 MDT Print View


Edited by skopeo on 09/08/2015 15:27:33 MDT.

Raquel Rascal

Locale: Rocky Mtn. West
@ Justin on 10/09/2012 06:31:37 MDT Print View

That Brazil hat looks nice on the girls!

Jon Hancock

Locale: Northwest England
Re: $82.00 for a Tilley?? on 10/09/2012 09:39:17 MDT Print View

"$82.00 for a Tilley?? That's insane! What can that hat do that my $12 froggtogg can't?"

Last for twenty years, for starters. I've had one Tilley Hat replaced under their guarantee and own a fair few others, including a nylon one, all going strong. My old cotton duck T3 has seen serious weather of all sorts everywhere from Maine to the Scottish Highlands and it's been absolutely reliable, even when used as a padded seat, firewood carrier or for bailing out a canoe. Unless things get tremendously rough I'm much happier wearing the T3 to keep the rain off than putting my hood up.

The other thing it does is fit: I wear a size 8 and very few manufacturers make hats in that size or above, so for some people the snazzy billed sports cap or Gore-Tex brimmed hat isn't an option. That said, if the Frogg Toggs hat does the job you need it to do then there's no need to fork out for anything pricier.

Mal Hooper

Locale: Valley of the Sun
Fit on 10/09/2012 09:54:36 MDT Print View


Your second point is why I usually have to wear more expensive hats and why I don't really have many hats at all. Mass market hats that come in S-XL sizes or one-size-fits-all never fit my big head. I can't wear adjustable baseball caps at all. The only ball caps I can wear are New Era fitted caps which are not cheap. I tried on the OR Helios in XL at REI and loved it (and its price), but again, it squeezed my head and looked way too small. If I want any possiblity of wearing a properly fitted hat it has to be genuinely sized (7-7/8 in the case of my Tilley).

Edited by malligator on 10/09/2012 09:55:06 MDT.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Fit on 10/09/2012 10:04:17 MDT Print View

I'm pretty sure I've said this on this or another hat thread, but it bears repeating: my Tilley is the only hat I've ever had that fits so well I've literally forgotten I'm wearing it. Ever lose your glasses only to find them on top of your head? Yeah, that's happened with my LT3.

Brian Johns

Locale: NorCal
A hat for every head on 10/09/2012 15:47:01 MDT Print View

Too many options. For me, I like a fairly wide brim. I think the fishing/bucket style hat is perfect. It's a little hard to find i Nylon, but Cabella's has a great Goretex model for $19.95., INc. has the out-in-the-wild nylon bucket hat for $15, and looks great too. Patagonia makes a few nylon/poly bucket hats that are a few dollars more. I also like the Tilley. It's a nice, cool, light hat with good sun protection. I don't think like Ken T. that it's too grandpa. I think it's more nerdy like the pith helmet. I feel like a total dork anywhere but the backcountry in it. That said, I won't wear convertible pants around town either, but that's just me, clothes for the field and clothes for the town, always in running shoes though.