Nepal – Tested first-hand, part 2


How did merino perform not only in the Himalayas? Pros and cons of merino wool as seen by HER.

Maybe it was a bit of a risk to go to the Himalayas wearing clothes that we hadn’t had much experience with before. But the few trips we made before we left gave us confidence in the Crawler merino. And what pieces did we test intensively over the past few weeks, not only with a view of eight-thousanders? To make it fair, we’ll describe it each separately. So ladies first – you can look forward to Ondra’s review in the next episode.

Photo: Ondra and Jitka


Crawler in my backpack:

Summer 100% Merino Short Sleeve T-shirt: A lightweight, airy T-shirt that feels like I’m wearing nothing, which is especially comfortable on very warm days. It has also proved to perform well as a first layer T-shirt. Perhaps the only drawback is that, depending on the colour chosen, it is necessary to take in account that your underwear will be more or less visible. Summer merino is perfectly packable, so it doesn’t take up much space in your backpack.

Winter 100% Merino Long Sleeve T-shirt: For me, a top-level versatile thing, not only because I fell in love with the raspberry-grey-anthracite raglan combination at first sight. I had two of those with me and they became the most commonly used part of my stuff, not only in Nepal, but also at home, where they gradually replace my favourite casual and home cotton T-shirts. And if I didn’t feel embarrassed, I’d wear them for work as well. After all, I have tested the thin merino in the working process. Generally, I like simple long-sleeve tops in which I feel comfortable when it’s too cold or windy for a short-sleeve T-shirt and too hot for a T-shirt plus a sweatshirt. I think this is where you can best see merino’s thermoregulation features. I also use this winter T-shirt in summer on our numerous expeditions to the mountains and camping weekends. But, compared to thin merino, a disadvantage of thick merino may be that it tends to pill, especially if you carry backpacks. Nevertheless, having trekked in the mountains with a 12kg+ backpack for two weeks, I didn’t bring any lint, but a single trip to the Czech hills with a backpack in which I only had a snack was enough for the back to pill all over. So the backpack itself is probably to blame as well.

Photo: Ondra and Jitka


Merino with elastane: I had the opportunity to try a new product in the Crawler workshop, which until then focused purely on 100% merino without anything else. I had a T-shirt and a full-zip sweatshirt, both sewn from a mixture of merino wool and synthetic fabrics, the side on the body being from merino and the front side from polypropylene. This makes the garments much more mechanically resistant, and the addition of elastane prevents unwanted stretching as you know it with pure merino (which, by the way, it is always willing to bounce back into its original shape after washing). Unconsciously, I had the impression that it would endure more rude treatment, which is important to me when staying in the mountains. But it is true that even 100% merino didn’t make me distrust it in this regard. I wondered how the merino combined with another material would perform under load, whether it would show the same features and last the same as pure merino. So far it seems to me that both fabrics have very similar performance. Even after long wear, the T-shirt remains fresh and dries quickly. I would only point out that it doesn’t feel as soft on the front side as 100% merino clothing – once you get spoiled by clothes made from purely natural materials, you feel the touch of synthetics differently. But for me, these fabrics have great potential especially for sports enthusiasts, primarily for more mechanically stressed items of clothing, so we’ll see if it becomes a permanent component of Crawler’s offer.

Photo: Ondra and Jitka


100% Merino Beanie: On mountain treks lasting several days, your headgear is your best friend – all long-haired travellers definitely understand me without deeper explanation. We became friends with the merino beanie very quickly. I really perceived the thermoregulation features of the material, feeling comfortable for the whole time I wore it, both at temperatures around zero and at temperatures exceeding ten degrees. Yes, it just happened that I kept it on my head even when the temperature rose. In my opinion, in terms of material, one of the most useful beanies I have. However, the adult beanie models would certainly deserve a little bit of a cut upgrade to prevent “ears” being formed on the head, but judging from my experience with Crawler, it is just a matter of question, and a new or custom-made cut will be out there.

Photo: Ondra and Jitka


And how does he see it? You can read the next part HERE.

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