Wednesday, July 2, 2014

#ORInsightLab: Men's Growler S/S Shirt Review

Tags on a shirt can be important, "Designed by Adventure"
(Photo by Mike Bowsher)

This week's 'Spray Down' for #ORInsightLab will be about Outdoor Research's Growler S/S shirt!  I decided to take this item for multiple test runs up at my favorite crag, Farley Ledges.  By now, you readers have to know I love this place for how much I have been writing about it and using it as my testing grounds for the #ORInsighLab program.  This past weekend was a hot one with temps reaching into the mid 80's F (~29 C for the international or scientist folks).  It is imperative that my clothing is able to keep me cool and dry through multiple lead ascents at the hot humid ledges of Massachusetts.

The shirt itself has slightly more stiffness (95% nylon vs 98% cotton of the Jinx S/S) than the Jinx S/S shirt but by no means performed in a lesser capacity.  The temperature crept higher and felt sauna-like while climbing.  Once I started perspiring I thought that this shirt would be a nightmare for the rest of the day!  But the surprise came with the shirt became wet.  Not only did it dry quickly, it brought a relieving cooling sensation much like the kind you get when you open a refrigerator door, very refreshing!  The shirt kept me cool at this point so it was time to ascertain the performance aspect of the shirt during such a sticky humid day.

Staying cool on the roof section on Oosik 5.12a at Farley Ledges!
(Photo by Shannon B.)

Quick and upfront: the shirt performed excellent!  My key favorites of this shirt is its ability to move with me and not stick to me while climbing in the heat.  It did not feel restrictive in any ranges of motion my upper body performed.  Although I do wish that the shirt had some elasticity, this preferred perk did not deter the overall performance.  The Growler S/S also seems very durable as it stood up well to some stomach drags over some roof routes.  The no nonsense collar on this shirt also maintained its fold and did not become wrinkled after washing, which is one of my biggest annoyances of collared shirts.  Once again, with this shirt also carries an element of style.  After leaving the crag you can feel at ease knowing that if you didn't get your sends that day you will have at least looked good trying! 

Definitely feeling good at the end of the day!
 (photo shot by Shannon B.)

I definitely recommend this shirt as it performs very well in the heat, tough rock situations, and can be worn in a casual setting with a cold brew in hand.  OK the last part doesn't necessarily require a brew in hand...but it definitely doesn't hurt!  Stay classy folks and send away!

Stay tuned to the blog for the next installment of #ORInsightLab reviews: The Outdoor Research Handbrake gloves!

The products reviewed in this program were given to me by Outdoor Research in exchange for honest reviews and feedback.  Any and all positive opinions presented by me in the program are my own and were not required to receive products.