New Fall-Winter collection from SmartWool brings more versatile wool layers

Merino specialist SmartWool is introducing new items for its Fall Winter 13/14 apparel refresh. From new base layers to mid layers, we’ve spotted some interesting gear that is not just relying on the wool’s properties to be useful.

Most notable are the additions to the PhD family, SmartWool’s best stuff, known for its resistant and technical pieces like the PhD Socks. For example, the PhD NTS Light 195 Wind Zip T, a light base layer with a windproof front panel. Designed for highly aerobic activities in cold weather and with its half zip, it looks like a cool top to go running this fall.

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Still in the PhD collection, the PhD HyFi half zip is a warm midlayer pairing Merino with a nylon fabric on the outside for better wind and abrasion resistance. Although they say it is great for running and cycling I can see this working as a climbing top, provided you don’t use the thumbholes. The comfort of Merino wool in a package that can handle some abuse? Yes please!

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Let’s finish with the warmest layers of the bunch, the PhD SmartLoft Collection. Here you will get the same package as the HyFis: Merino on the inside and a resistant nylon fabric outside. Sandwiched in the middle is a layer of wool insulation for the extra warmth, even when wet. The nylon face fabric is also treated with a DWR for improved water repellency. It would be interesting to see how this stacks up against synthetic and down insulation but on paper those are definitely a great option.

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