Wednesday, August 27, 2014

#ORInsightLab: Men's Ferrosi 3/4 Pant Review

The Ferrosi 3/4 pants

When I got to try out the Outdoor Research Men's Ferrosi 3/4 pants, I immediately dubbed them the "barely there" pants.  The Ferrosi 3/4 pants were so light weight that it almost felt like I wasn't even wearing them.  As light as they felt, they were very durable and had an ideal amount of stretch to them.  The pockets were very low profile, which I liked since there wouldn't be a lot of bulging areas like cargo shorts or pants.  I decided the best testing ground for these were some awkward-leg-positioning, overhanging boulders at Lincoln Woods, RI.

The stretch is in all the right places!

I was worried that the pant leg would get caught on my knee when making a high leg move or heel hook and become uncomfortable or restricting in movement. What I found was that when the pant leg caught my knee, it provided enough stretch to allow my leg to move with little resistance and was comfortable.  Another big worry I had about the Ferrosi 3/4 pant was the material allowing for the dreaded "backside" sweat to show through.  Warm summers and humidity mixed with light colored, thin material clothing tend to be problematic in this area.  However, the pants were surprisingly ventilated and breathable, with no sweat problems.  Whew, embarrassment avoided!

I was never a fan of 3/4 pants for men, but after wearing the Ferrosi style I have changed my mind on not wanting to wear them.  One thing I would want added to these pants is the option to cuff them up (with latch, velcro, or button system) to become shorts to provide extra coolness on really hot days.  I plan to take these up to the sport climbing crags in Rumney, NH since they performed so well on steep boulder problems. At 8.5 oz., these pants will be easily packed with me on all my spring and summertime climbing trips.





*This concludes the #ORInsightLab reviews.  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.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

#ORInsightLab: Dirtbag RV Tech Tee Review



I know what you are thinking, "It's a t-shirt, how can you possibly have anything to review about it??"  On the surface the Dirtbag RV Tech Tee, by Outdoor Research, looks exactly what any t-shirt would look like.  But once I slipped it over my head and slid my arms through the sleeves, I noticed it had quite a different feel than most t-shirts.  It was very light-weight, soft, and had a ventilating feel to it.  I knew this shirt would be a great to try out while sport climbing and bouldering.

RV Tech Tee keeping me cool through the roof move!

What better test area for this shirt than one of the most prized crags of the Northeast: Rumney, NH.  Temps were forecast to be in the low 80s F (27 C) and I wanted to get a feel of how well it kept me cool and dry since that is its purpose.  After climbing for about 7 hours my shirt remained dry and I was staying quite cool.  However, the dark blue color absorbed a lot of the suns heat, making me quite warm.  It was fortunate for me that the moisture wicking of this material was excellent.  My shirt would be wet for about 5 minutes before being completely dry.  The performance while climbing was amazing as well.  The shirt is stretchy and elastic and also did not restrict the dynamic throws on the tough routes at Rumney.  The shirt performed so well that I wanted to wear it while bouldering the following weekend.


The only thing I would like to see different about this shirt is lighter colors to help reduce the absorbency of the sun's heat.  Overall, though, I am impressed with the Tech Tee and will continue to wear it while I climb and hang out with friends around the campfires.



Up next for the final review for #ORInsightLab are the Men's Ferrosi 3/4 Pants:


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.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

#ORInsightLab: Handbrake Gloves Review

(photo from OutdoorResearch.com)

The Handbrake Gloves, by Outdoor Research, is the product from the #ORInsightLab program I have had the most experience with this summer.  I have been out sport climbing almost every weekend this spring and summer.  These gloves have been through many trials in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Squamish, BC.  I am a huge fan of sport climbing, and I love everything about it except for belaying.  Having the rope directly rubbing back and forth on my hand, wearing away small bits of skin into a "rug burn" is very irritating.  My hands already get enough abuse from the rock and chalk, so minimizing hand damage in any way is always a plus.



Luckily, Outdoor Research wanted our opinion for the #ORInsightLab program!  When I first examined the gloves I thought they might also be used for mixed martial arts cage fighting.  Seriously, these things have some stacked knuckle padding!  The glove consists of very durable cow leather (sorry vegans!) and provides a nice, snug fit.  It allows for a smooth belay descent of the climber while leaving my hands unscathed.  I assumed these gloves would be pretty well worn after using them for about 100 belays, but they still look new with very minimal wear.  I have never worn belay gloves before, but now I have been spoiled and can no longer go back to bare-handing the rope while belaying.

While these Handbrake gloves are rough and tough and can protect my hands during a half-hour hang dog ascent, there is one thing that could make them better.  An improved ventilation system would make them more comfortable on the mid summer climbing sessions.  My hands felt like they were in a sauna and had quite the sweat fest.  But I would rather have sweaty palms instead of torn and destroyed ones, so this was definitely not a deal breaker.



These gloves go with me wherever I take my rope.  They are also about to hit their 4th climbing location this weekend up at Rumney, NH for a great rope-burn free weekend of some sport climbing.  Invest in your hands!  Get the Handbrake Gloves by Outdoor Research.  They are worth it!

Next up for review, the Outdoor Research Dirtbag RV Tech Tee:




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.