kora Shola 230 Zip

Merino wool may be all the rage but this handsome base layer is made with yak wool. Yes, it comes from those hairy beasts that I’ve encountered in the back of beyond in Tibet. In fact, the wool that’s used is actually an undercoat of yak wool, not the shaggy top layer. The premise is clearly a good one. If yak wool can withstand the worst of the Himalayas, think what it might do for your warmth on a trek or when you’re skiing. The 100% Pure Himalayan yak wool fabric garment has an ergonomic fit, an extra-long body and a zip collar (with a welcome YKK zipper) that allows you to regulate your temperature with ease. kora claims that yak wool is 40% warmer, 66% more breathable, and 17% better at transporting water vapor than Merino wool. If I was heading south to Portillo for skiing this summer, I’d take it along. As it is, Chile is not in my plans, so a test wearing on a chilly Northeastern spring day had to suffice. Warm it is, itchy it is not, and it passed the odor test with flying colors because it turns out that yak wool is anti-microbial. Yak might suggest heavy and bulky but this piece is incredibly lightweight, a keeper. It retails for $160. kora

Clothing Arts Pick-Pocket-Proof Business Travel Shirt

Clothing Arts Pick-Pocket Proof Business Travel Shirt

When a business trip takes you to places where you might be out of your comfort zone, consider the brand new Pick-Pocket Proof Business Travel Shirt from Clothing Arts. I’m a long-time fan of the brand and these new shirts, with internal collar stays, are just dressy enough to wear to a meeting in Hong Kong, Athens or Calgary. If it’s a business casual meeting in steamy Rio or Rangoon, leave it untucked, it’s cut to look good when worn that way. The anti-pick-pocket feature is a zipper secured pocket discretely tucked behind traditional business breast pocket, large enough for a passport, a couple of credit cards and a few bills. Security aside, I love the soft feel of this shirt, which is made of a cotton/poly twill fabric that was also designed to be hand-washable and will quickly dry on a line when you’re on the road. There are five different patterns and it retails for $75.95. Clothing Arts

Mammut Hiking Shorts

Ditch the baggy cargo shorts you’ve been wearing on the trail for a pair of Mammut Hiking Shorts. These are the real deal from a Swiss company founded in 1862 and known for producing technical hiking, ski and mountaineering wear. The Mammut Hiking Shorts for men are classic Alpine hiking shorts, longer in the leg than American shorts. They’re pretty much instantly comfortable and thanks to the nylon-stretch fabric they’re made with, they offer freedom of movement. They also seem plenty durable and are treated with DWR to be water repellent, the hiking shorts that you see all over the Swiss Alps. I found that they worked out well on a short hike and I’ll take them on the trail in their homeland later this month. I like the minimal slit pockets and the seat pocket – the sole zippered pocket is for maps, says Mammut. Maps? Now there’s tradition for you. They retail for $79. Mammut

SAXX

SAXX makes what is probably the best men’s underwear in the world, thanks in large part to their patented BallPark Pouch design. So when the Dad in your life is strolling down the beach this summer, he probably wouldn’t object to wearing a pair of SAXX’s CannonBall 9” Shorts. The promise is that they will keep you chafe-free against sand, saltwater, and sunscreen. I bravely put them to the test in Antigua this spring and they delivered. They have quick-drain pockets and a breathable mesh liner, as well as welcome lightweight feel. The shell is 100% nylon and the liner is 77% nylon, 14% spandex and 9% polyester. Better yet, they have SAXX’s patented BallPark Pouch, the first one they’ve incorporated into a swimsuit, so that everything stays where it should. It retails for $69.95. SAXX

Four Laps Short Sleeve Level Tee and Extend Short

I recently discovered two great pieces of technical workout gear from Four Laps that look good, feel good and are perfect lightweight pieces for travel. The Short Sleeve Lightweight Tee is ultra lightweight yet still substantial, made with 37.5® technology, which uses active particles to regulate your core temperature. It apparently works with your body’s infrared energy to cool you down or keep you warm. It also removes sweat in the vapor stage and traps odors during rigorous workouts. The reflective hem vents provide cooling while you’re sweating and visibility at dusk or dawn. It retails for $78.

The Extend Short 5” is a classic running short, ultra lightweight, with smart side ventilation to keep you cool whether you’re running in the Rockies, suburban Atlanta or the Italian Lakes. I like the single zipper pocket, which is perfect for my hotel room key. Made of 84% polyester and 16% spandex, it’s a quick dry, four-way stretch fabric, that offers wicking and an anti-microbial brief liner. The reflective tape at the hem for extra visibility is a nice touch. It retails for $68. Four Laps

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