Sean is one of our more adventurous Brand Ambassadors. He goes hiking, backpacking, camping, and skiing whenever he can in his Merino Wool! Sean is known as @mittencamper on Instagram, and has his own website including all of his own gear reviews and adventures at https://www.mittencamper.com/.
His video review is posted to YouTube, and the WoolPRO talk begins at 5:08. This features him live sniff-testing Merino Wool at about 5:53. See it here, It’s one of our favorite WoolPRO moments!
Sean says “being active outdoors is something I’ve enjoyed for most of my life. Over the last 15 years I have enjoyed mountain biking, bicycle touring, road cycling, hiking, and running. My love of the outdoors was fostered as a kid with time spent at my family cottage near Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada. In 2004 I landed a job working on the website of a local outfitter and continued working at outfitters in the U.S. and in Canada for the following 6 years. Through this experience I learned a lot about the gear and industry and developed an understanding about the culture that surrounds it.”
“As I was packing for skiing last weekend I was getting ready to throw my Under Armor Cold Gear 1/4 zip top into my bag when I heard a “thunk” on the porch. Upon investigation I found a box from WoolPro. My shirts! Inside I found 2 smaller WoolPro boxes. One containing a shirt called “The Scout” and the other called “The Agena.” The Scout is a merino wool long-sleeve with a 1/4 zip and a stand up collar. The Agena is essentially the same shirt without the zip plus a crew neck. Both are 195g merino, which I put under the “light weight” category. A really versatile weight for cold and warm conditions in my experience.
Initial impression right out of the box was that the wool is very soft. I compared it to a relatively new Icebreaker top Sarah, my girlfriend, was wearing and it felt identical. In other words high quality wool was used for these tops.
The fit was spot on and even a bit flattering. I am 5’10” and 178 lbs. Size medium fit me perfectly with a form-fitting, athletic cut. Happy with what I was seeing, I tossed my 10 year old Under Armor top aside and brought these two shirts along for the weekend. I decided I’d be wearing The Agena on the slopes and The Scout at the cabin. I didn’t bring along any other shirts because I wanted to give these “the stink test” at the end of the weekend. Would they smell after 2 days of constant wear and active use?
The conditions at Crystal Mountain on Saturday were unseasonably warm. 45 degrees Fahrenheit and sunny. I was forced to shed my hard shell jacket and ski in The Agena + a Patagonia R2 fleece. This turned out to be a great combo for the weather. The merino wicked my sweat away quickly and the ventilation in the R2 cooled me down. The weather on Sunday was more seasonal. Around 32 degrees and partly cloudy. I kept my shell on this time and was perfectly comfortable. Even on the lifts I could feel the warm merino against my skin.
At the cabin I had a chance to check out the stitching on each of the shirts.
I had read on WoolPro’s website that they use something called “ActiveSeam” technology, which looks like it gives the seams a lower profile so that chaffing is avoided. I can’t confirm this, but it seems like it would work as advertised. Another thing I noticed was that they’ve used raglan style sleeves, which takes the shoulder seams off the crest of my shoulder so that backpack straps won’t rub them into my skin. Same goes for the side panels on the torso. Less chance of a hip belt rubbing the seams into your sides.
One minor thing I noticed upon closer inspection of all of the seams is that around the bottom hem where the WoolPro tag is affixed the stitching is less straight and as a result the tag looks crooked. Obviously this isn’t an issue with performance or usability, but it may be an issue with quality control.
After 2 days of constant and active wear while skiing I gave The Agena an armpit sniff test and I can report that it smells the same as when I pulled it out of the box. In fact I decided to wear it to work today without washing it.
I’ll be taking both shirts on an upcoming over night trip to Blind Lake in a couple weeks. This will give me a chance to do a better test regarding the comfort of the ActiveSeam technology. I will also be able to test the warmth of the 195g merino wool while sleeping at night. I will be wearing but not washing the shirts to see how long these will remain un-stinkified. That’s a real word now.
I think WoolPro is making a nice product. The pricing is good, the performance is what you’d expect from merino wool. Their ActiveSeam technology is something that could differentiate them from other active merino brands. I’ve spoken with them this week and they will be releasing leggings and hoodies very soon! They also will start to offer a wider range of colors.”
Use Sean’s code WPBA1001 checking out at woolpro.cc for 30% off!