One more for the record books. I really like this one. Yahooisms
blah blah blah... HTML in test folder at
- or -
Fuzzy (Chuck Kime)
Outdoor Research Sahara Sombrero
Long Term Report November 1, 2004
· Reviewer Information
· Product Information
· Features and Benefits
· Field Testing
· Things I Like
· Things I Don't Like
· Backpacking Background
Name: Chuck Kime
Height: 5' 8" (172 cm)
Weight: 229 lb (104 kg)
Hat size: 7 to 7¼, depending on haircut
Email address: ckime AT nelsononline DOT com
City, State, Country: Upper Darby (Philadelphia suburb), PA, U.S.A.
Date: November 1, 2004
Manufacturer: Outdoor Research
Model: Sahara Sombrero
Year of Manufacture: 2004
Listed weight: none
Measured weight (size M): 4.2 oz (119 g), scale accurate to 0.1 oz
Color: Glacier (light grey)
Other colors available: Bone, Khaki
MSRP: $33 USD
Features (from web site)
· SolarLite Fabric
· WickLine Headband
· Foam-Stiffened Brim
· External Cinch-Strap
· Chin Cord with Cordlock
The Sahara Sombrero is made of SolarLite, a lightweight Supplex
Nylon. The broad brim which is longer in the back is stiffened
by a foam insert and is covered on the bottom with a black fabric.
The sombrero has a WickLine headband, an external cinch strap that
uses a cordlock on the outside of the sombrero, and a chin cord with
For a more detailed description, please see my Initial Report.
Our Boy Scout troop camps monthly. Almost all of these outings
included a minimum of 2 nights of camping, with temperatures from
lows around 30 ºF (-1 ºC) to highs around 95 ºF (35 ºC). Elevations
ranged from sea level to approximately 2,000' (610 m). My
experiences with the sombrero are basically the same as found in my
This is a nice piece of headgear. I have bowed to my lady's wishes,
and now only wear it in the field, but it is always just as
comfortable and just as effective whenever I put it on as it has been
in the past. Nice job, OR.
Things I was looking for:
· Fit. Does it fit me? Is the sizing on the web site
accurate? Does it stay on well in windy conditions?
· Fabric. Is the SolarLite durable (I have no prior experience
with the fabric)? Does it stretch? Does it fade? Is it windproof?
Waterproof? Does it pill, pull, or snag readily?
· Warmth/cooling. How warm can it get out and still keep me
cool? Does it breathe well?
· Comfort. Am I constantly aware of the hat, or does it just
seem to disappear on my head? Does the WickLine headband effectively
keep sweat out of my eyes?
· Washability. Are there special instructions? Are they easy
to follow? Does it dry well? Does it hold much dirt in the first
· Durability. Do the fittings (cordlocks) continue working
well over time?
· Fit. The size Medium just fits (as in shouldn't be tightened
if I am wearing it), and is not affected by gentle breezes. Stronger
airflow has occasionally required snugging up the chin cord.
· Fabric. After wearing the sombrero almost daily for months,
the only thing I could find is a small smudge from a camping trip. I
have noticed no stretching or fading. It does not seem to be
windproof, although this is a good thing in a summer hat, as it
permits evaporation. The fabric is not waterproof, but will bead
water for a short time if I am caught in the rain, and the design
will keep rain off my glasses and out of my collar. I have noticed
no damage to the fabric at all.
· Warmth/cooling. During a hard 30-minute bushwhack on a Scout
trip at 85 °F (29 °C) with high humidity I managed to build up some
perspiration. The headband kept this perspiration out of my eyes,
and I was able to feel what little breeze there was available blowing
through the crown to cool my head.
· Comfort. I have worn broad brimmed hats or ball caps for
many years, and am used to having a large bill above my eyes. I find
that I am actually more comfortable outside with the sombrero on than
· Washability. Instructions are basic: machine wash cold,
tumble dry warm, warm iron. There was no staining at all around the
headband, which is unusual for my hats. The sombrero had a small
brown smudge on it, which came out in the wash. When it has gotten
wet, including from the laundry, the sombrero has dried quickly.
· Durability. The cordlocks are still working fine.
Things I like
2. Black underside helps prevent glare.
Things I don't like
1. Not my first color choice.
2. It bangs rather solidly up against my girlfriend's fashion
sensibilities. She's at least ok with it as long as I don't wear it
when I am with her. Sigh
My family started car/trailer camping when I was about 5. I spent 17
years in the Army Reserve fine-tuning my packing methodology when I
got out, I was down to a fairly respectable 75-80 lb (34-36 kg)
load. When my son started Cub Scouts, I carried my 60 lb (27 kg)
ALICE pack for a weekend. With Boy Scouts we now camp monthly in
locations ranging from flat and lightly wooded to the Pocono
Mountains, in all seasons.
Advancing age, arthritic knees and a car accident have led me to
seriously rethink my gear choices, experiment with tarps and
hammocks, make some of my own gear, and take a closer look at
my `toys' with an eye for multi-use and light weight.
Thank you for your time.