Thursday, 12 March 2009

Wool, who knew?

Driving back from our Chertsey races a few weeks back, we stopped in at a local-ish cycling shop that we'd never visited before and had a look around. Alas, my neverending quest for long-fingered bike gloves that actually fit my short fingers will remain unfulfilled, but I did come across a pretty nifty merino wool baselayer shirt made by Sugoi called the Wallaroo, regular price £50, on sale for £30.

Sugoi is one of my favourite companies, ever since I opened a box addressed to a long-moved and unreachable Vancouver housemate back in 2001 and discovered a Midzero top inside, conveniently in exactly my size. My first piece of Sugoi gear, it's still a staple of my winter wardrobe, though I've bought tons of Sugoi stuff since. They are a Canadian company after all! So despite my misgivings about wool, I decided to give this Wallaroo shirt a try.

Most people my age probably remember the wool of their childhoods as itchy, heavy, and definitely not anything to wear directly next to the skin (sorry, Nana!) but I've been quite impressed with this shirt. It's super light and thin, which made me wonder how warm it could be, but it holds heat impressively well, particularly when it's windy. A little too warm for running in anything above 5 degrees C, but it's great for fall/winter/spring cycling, either with or without a layer on top. After a wash, it's incredibly soft and not itchy, and it wicks as well as any synthetic baselayer. But what I really love about it is how it doesn't hold odours at all. That anything I've worn during a 100km bike ride can smell fine afterwards is a miracle in itself, but one I'll gladly accept without question!

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