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  1. #1
    Registered User foodbag's Avatar
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    Default What are your favorite UL hiking clothes and why?

    I'd be curious to know what ultralighters are wearing these days, and how their garments of choice stack up in terms of weight and functionality. For the purposes of this discussion, let's not include rainwear. I haven't purchased hiking clothes in a number of years, so I'm sure this will be eye-opening.
    Long-distance aspirations with short-distance feet.... :jump

  2. #2

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    I got a Capilene Lightweight shirt from Patagonia as a race entry t-shirt a few years ago. It remains the most comfortable hiking t-shirt I've found to date.
    https://www.outdoorgearlab.com/revie...weight-t-shirt

  3. #3
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    I wear REI convertible pants and either smart wool or icebreaker shirts, with a slight preference for Icebreaker. I love these shirts -they perform well in all kinds of weather and don't retain (much) odor so they are nice to use in towns without necessarily having to wash them all the time.

  4. #4
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Convertible pants - I zip on the legs at camp, lighter than carrying pant & shorts. Merino t-shirts and underwear - cuts way down on the stink. Way down!

  5. #5

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    I use Columbia nylon convertible pants. On longer trips I would bring two pairs of the shorts and one pair of legs. Tye dry quick and could rinse out the shorts or the pants leg and fry them on the back of the pack.

  6. #6
    Garlic
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    I always wear light nylon trousers, light nylon long sleeve shirt, wide-brim hat. I keep covered up from sun, insects, poison plants. In my pack is homemade silnylon raingear, about 3 oz for the anorak, 4 oz for the pants. Warmer layers include a Hot Chillies jersey, a Marmot Driclime jacket, a Marmot down vest for winter. The only extras I have are boxer briefs and socks.

  7. #7
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    A good buff and hat combo, I wear a ball cap. Thinnest type of Magellan or Columbia fishing shirt with tabs to roll up sleeves. LOVE my OR ferrossi pants because they flex and are really breathable. Exofficio drawers.....basic hike wear setup.

  8. #8
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    Tye dry quick and could rinse out the shorts or the pants leg and fry them on the back of the pack.
    mmmm... love me some fried pant legs!!

  9. #9
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
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    It all depends upon where and when you're hiking. Weather (temperature, wind, rain, humidity), insects (black flies, ticks, mosquitos), flora (poison ivy, stinging nettles, etc.) all play into clothing selection even if the focus is UL. For example: what's needed in mid-summer in the southern and central parts of the AT is different than what's needed in the VT thru ME sections; a March start for an AT thru-hike requires different (warmer and heavier) clothing than what's needed after May, and so on. Most of my hiking is usually in VT and NH. Even in summer, one day it's sunny and calm and 80F, the next day it's 40F with 40 mph winds. I carry both a pair of long trousers and a pair of shorts. There's a little weight penalty, but I've never found a pair of convertible/zip off pants that fit ME properly - when zipped off, the zipper area, even if covered by the fabric, always seems to rub annoyingly against the top of my thigh just above the knee. They just aren't cut quite the same way actual shorts are. So depending upon conditions, I'll either wear a pair of Mountain Hardwear long trousers (not sure of model), or sometimes shorts (usually LL Bean Swift River swim shorts) with base layer if the morning starts off cold, or sometimes just the shorts. I really don't find it takes very long to change pants, but again, MY choice. Top and bottom base layers are Capilene, a Nanopuff jacket for upper body warmth, and a very lightweight balaclava that when rolled up works as a beenie as well. If I'm going above treeline, like in The Whites, I always carry an additional beenie (MH Dome Perignon) with windstop fabric for ear protection against the wind, eye protection (for both sun AND wind), and a pair of lightweight gloves. I usually carry a Marmot Precip which doubles as wind jacket if needed. That's pretty much it. There are lighter options, but this is what works for me.
    "That's the thing about possum innards - they's just as good the second day." - Jed Clampett

  10. #10
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Deadeye View Post
    mmmm... love me some fried pant legs!!
    Haha. I read that as tye-dye quick and rinse...hang them on pack. Stylin'

  11. #11

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    I let anticipated conditions dictate apparel rather than having set apparel that can impose on the conditions. My fav set up are New Balance 5" Accelerate running shorts with a Tencel bamboo short sleeve button down. If I need leg protection or warmth I find layering a pr of Pat light wt synthetic bottoms underneath the shorts to weigh less and be of less volume than convertible pants. I still like not the flimsiest shoes choosing most often Hoka Stinson's. A visor, 2 oz nylon running gloves, and DT, SW, or Bridge dale socks with varying amts of merino round it out. I also prefer layering with an UL synthetic vest such as the Nanopuff and either a MB Infinitum rain jacket or ZP vertices. A rain skirt or when colder ZP Vertices rain pants

  12. #12

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    I like gloves and hand pockets in my rain jackets because I night hike and start before 7 am regularly while also having experienced frost nip in extremities.

  13. #13

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    Wear a short sleeved nylon shirt in combo with arm sleeves when sun protection is required. Sleeves also keep me warm when it is cold.

    My favorite shirt brand is Arc'teryx (in discount bin) because of quality & fit.


  14. #14

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    Hot-Plain navy, black, or tan bathing suit with the liner cut out. Muscle tee gym shirt. Bandana to keep the sweat out of my eyes.
    Warm-shorts-see hot. Regular gym tee shirt. Bandana.
    Cool-shorts, see hot or maybe a regular pair of hiking shorts. Synthetic underwear and maybe a long sleeve gym shirt or lightweight polypro type thermal top. Bandana.
    Cold-Maybe some pants and the long sleeve. Fleece bandana. Wind shirt if hiking into the evening or the weather is squirrely.

    Most of the above is from Wal-mart, and often from the discount rack. Full brim sunhat until it's cold, but I don't hike in it. I did get it from Wal-mart though.
    "Sleepy alligator in the noonday sun
    Sleepin by the river just like he usually done
    Call for his whisky
    He can call for his tea
    Call all he wanta but he can't call me..."
    Robert Hunter & Ron McKernan

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  15. #15
    Registered User foodbag's Avatar
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    Some pretty good ideas here. Thanks!
    Long-distance aspirations with short-distance feet.... :jump

  16. #16
    Registered User Toolshed's Avatar
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    Bottoms:
    Extreme hot weather I have several pairs UA 5" running shorts and several pairs of unpadded 5"-7" bike shorts. For underwear, I now wear Ex-Officio Women's Bikini Brief as recommended by several other male forum members over the years. they cannot be bet for durability, fit, comfort weight and ease of washing and drying.
    In Cooler weather I have several pairs of my wife's synthetic leggings with side pockets.

    Tops: Extreme hot weather - Amazon women's Synthetic Racer back tanks are amazing (Why did they stop making these for men?). For Cooler Weather - Walmart Russell Athletic Long sleeve synthetic lightweight shirts.

    For years I would never think of wearing a female article of clothing. But after becoming a laughingstock of my wife, for being too macho to try her Ex-Officio briefs on when we were traveling in Europe years ago and while my undies were still drying, I finally bit the bullet and tried a pair and was hooked. I realize the comfort men are missing out on (It's not crossdressing). I discovered the same thing with women's racerback tanks - softer material, more colors, more synthetic options and quicker drying. It's funny, I've been backpacking for about 40 years now and for half of those years, my wife complained the clothing outfitters never catered to women and they woe smaller size men's clothing. Suddenly Women seem to have all the options - comfort, color, style, etc.
    .....Someday, like many others who joined WB in the early years, I may dry up and dissapear....

  17. #17

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    Ex-Offico clothes last for decades with hard useage. Worth the money, IMO. Another good brand is Fjallraven, especially for their field pants. You'll see a lot of their little fox insignia if you hike in Iceland or northern Europe.

  18. #18
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    Patagonia long sleeve Cap 1 is my go to hiking shirt. It keeps the bugs and sun off my arms and never really seems to bother me when the temps get high. They don't make them anymore unfortunately.

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