I have had the amazing experience of hunting the Kalalau Trail on the Island of Kauai.  I thought it would be a great testing ground for a Synthetic Base Layer, since daytime temperatures hover in the 90s, and it drops down to 60 degrees in the evening.  Also, the Kalalau Trail is grueling, and coupled with the humid, tropical climate, you will sweat buckets!

I can’t quite describe the smell coming off me after 2 days and 14 miles on that trail, but it was one of the most unpleasant odors I have ever experienced!  It was this experience that made me look hard at checking out Merino Wool.  I ended up purchasing a First Lite Llano Shirt from HuntHardcore.com.

My First Lite Llano Shirt has become my go to gear for just about any type of hunting these days.  Fits like a glove, soft and light, and has great thermoregulatory properties, I have used it in temps ranging from below 30 degrees, to over 100 degrees.  One of its’ best qualities,  is the ability of the material to remain relatively odor-free, even with multiple days of wear, under extreme hiking conditions.

As far as their warranty, they are the best in the business, bar none!  I had some small holes develop in one of my Llano shirts after a year, and First Lite replaced the shirt, free of charge, no questions asked!

I liked the Llano Shirts so much, that I bought a second one, and I have just purchased a Chama Shirt from First Lite, for my upcoming Alaska Bowhunting trip.  The benefits of Merino Wool far outweigh the expense, for anyone serious about trekking into the backcountry for days at a time.

Filed under: Hiking and Backpacking

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