It’s still National Cycling Jacket Month here at Gear Gals but this Gear Gal had to take a break from jackets and focus on the quiet conqueror of a thousand cycling jacket tests: The Icebreaker Zone!
The Icebreaker Zone is a lightweight, stretchy merino wool baselayer that I lived in for all of October.
Well, not lived-lived, but when I was doing my cycling jacket reviews it sure felt that way. I needed a test-baselayer on which to base each jacket’s fit, comfort and warmth and the Icebreaker Zone was right there in all its 200gm, 96% Merino wool, 4% LYCRA® and BodyfitZONE™ construction glory.
Escaping the modern world and turning your backpacking daydreams into reality, however, can seem daunting. The biggest hurdle, and the one that slows down far too many would-be explorers, is simply understanding what’s needed to have a successful trip. The good news is backpacking requires that you travel light, meaning you really don’t need many things, you just need the right things.
Although it’s last on the list, base layers, socks and underwear are some the most overlooked yet most important backpacking essentials. While sleeping, in the mornings and in the evenings when temperatures are cool (or below freezing, like they were during my recent backpacking trip), you’ll want a snug and warm bottom and top base layer. For that, I wear Icebreaker’s Zone Leggings and Zone Long Sleeve Crew. Both are made from ultra-high quality Merino wool (hence their higher price tag) and come in a variety of weights rated for different temperatures (but their 200 rating should do the trick for most three-season backpacking trips).