Yampa Shorts Test III
- Yampa Shorts Test, Test III 7/1/01 & 7/2/01
The Yampa Shorts held up better than my vehicles have since the last test.
Are we testing any pick up trucks soon? Ford marketing is calling
themselves gear outfitters????
The weather forecast was not very favorable for Sunday afternoon & and I
was waiting for a phone call between 8:45 & 10:00 so no long range plans
were going to take place. I wanted to check if the key clip in the bottom
leg pocket was beneficial for kayaking. On my second report I mentioned it
was a minor nuisance that low on my leg. I grabbed the kayak & headed to
the local pond. Shorts held up well while digging the kayak out from under
the roofing shingles & hiking gear that had been piled up on it since last
summer. As expected, the upper zipper pockets are above the top of the
kayak cockpit. Sure, you can zipper them shut but in case of a momentary
brain lapse, (leaving the pockets unzipped), you could have a major
inconvenience. The lower leg pocket though is below the top of the cockpit
& if you failed to secure your keys to the clip & did not fasten the
velcro, for recreational kayaking, barring capsizing, your keys would fall
into the kayak, not the lake.
I got my phone call at 9:30 and promptly checked the Weather Channel. I
was in central CT, a line of thunderstorms were in Syracuse, NY.
Destination Mt. Greylock, MA's highest point in northwest MA & likely the
first place in MA to get hit with the squall line. I arrived at the
trailhead on the east side of the mountain just before 12:00 with a
threatening sky overhead. I managed to keep a pretty decent pace & was
about two miles in when I first heard thunder off in the distance. I still
had about one mile to go. Noon time weather was very humid with a
temperature in the middle 80's and the Yampa Shorts were a bit damp. As a
person who sweats profusely & one who was also trying to get to the top of
a mountain as quickly as possible, staying dry was unlikely. Ten minutes
later, it be impossible.
As I passed the highest body of water in MA on the highest peak I figured I
was just missing a couple of golf clubs. I was within about 2/10's of a
mile from the Summit Tower when it began to rain. Thunder & lightening was
increasing but still not overhead. Once in the War Memorial Tower atop Mt.
Greylock, I put on a dry shirt & my shell & headed down before the main
fireworks began. Having a choice to walk a small section of road or go by
the pond, I opted for the road walk. Ten minutes later, the rain came down
in sheets & once again, I was soaked, head to toe. A few closer lightening
strikes but I managed to get to the car & on my way before the main cell
struck the hill.
After Sunday I had concluded that the Yampa shorts were as comfortable as
any pair of shorts I've worn soaking wet. After wearing polyester boxers
on Sunday, I also concluded they were more comfortable soaking wet in
briefs. I also carried just the two car keys, a whistle & Photon light on
the key chain & it was less noticeable than my whole key chain. (four car
keys, & a small remote entry key chain.)
I was home by 5:00 & in the early evening washed the shorts & hung them to
dry. I was going to pack the Yampa shorts & some clothes for a hike Monday
after work. Destination: arguably the Western Hemisphere's most climbed
mountain, New Hampshire's Mt. Monadnock. Monday started cool, brisk & as
clear as a crisp October Day. I started packing & the Yampa shorts were a
little damp so I threw them in the dryer for 20 minutes before hopping in
the shower. They were dry & stuffed into a bag for later. By 7:00 PM we
were on the trail & headed up for some sunset pictures & a headlamp
descent. Weather was around 60 at the base & in the middle 50's at the
summit with a brisk 25 MPH wind with gust in the low to middle 30's which
made picture taking without bracing yourself tough & four hikers glad they
brought some extra clothing. After about ten minutes of standing around,
our fingers got cold.
I had sweated a bit on this trip too but in more typical mountain hiking
weather, the shorts stayed dry. The zipper pockets are great when putting
your own wrappers in the pocket & keeping valuables safe. The last two
hikes were with a large fanny pack with the belt squarely over the Yampa
belt buckle I initially had some concerns about. No issues or problems
with the fanny pack.
Yampa shorts are well made & designed. I'd be happier if there was a
second key clip in one of the upper pockets also but if only one is going
to be included & the target market are boaters & hikers, it's much safer in
it's current place. I'd also be happier if the available waist sizes were
every inch instead of two inches (34, 36, 38) However, the belt does a
great job keeping the pants in place. Drying times on the trail I thought
may have been a little slow but after the first two hikes I was worried
they attracted rain & thunderstorms. Excessive sweating is nothing to brag
about but if you are not the biggest sweater you know, they should be fine.
On a real humid 85 degree day most people go swimming so how many days like
this exist. The shorts held up well to a couple of washings as you would
expect any "made in USA" garment to do
Would I buy a pair of Yampa shorts? This is a hard call. The suggested
price in my opinion was high but then again I worked at a large Northeast
USA based retailer for about three years buying more gear than I can use at
discounted prices. However, if you like the quality of a 100% USA made
garment (something that most outdoor retailers & gear makers can't say, as
some make material here but have assembled abroad) and don't mind paying
for that quality than these shorts should be highly considered. There is a
cliché that says you get what you pay for.