March 15 2008 was Ocean River's Gear Sale (see here) and Paula, Richard, John and I decided to do some shopping. I knew I was going to get a carbon shaft paddle on sale for $98.99 as the price was too good to pass.
Icebreaker is a company that makes merino wool clothing items. Mention the word wool to me and I start itching. However, I was guaranteed this would not itch and I would be surprised at how soft it was. Other paddlers tell me they wear only Icebreaker now and won't ever wear polyester or spandex blends. From the piles of boxes I saw some people carrying to the cash I was becoming convinced to buy an item myself. Although on sale, the top I purchased was approximately $62 and I had to remember, this was going to last a long long time.
And....I am surprised! I've worn my top every time I've kayaked as a layer under my fleece jacket with my paddle jacket on top. I'm warm, neither too hot nor really cold either. I wore the top to the gym and did an hour workout in it. I was amazed that unlike my cotton tshirts I was dry and after stuffing it into my backpack, going home, putting it into the laundry basket for a day and on laundry day when I went to wash it, the top still didn't stink. I haven't broken out in hives or itched either. I'm saving to purchase more Icebreaker at the next Gear Sale.....some colder weather weight pieces would round out my paddling wardrobe.