If I wasn’t so busy hiking and writing, I’d start a dream company that made and sold hiking clothes. The clothes would be just for me.
Right now, I am about to recycle the best hiking shorts I’ve ever had. If you look at the picture on the left of me with my hiking poles in the air, these are the shorts that got me through the Mountains-to-Sea Trail and many other trails. Actually I had two pairs. But now the shorts are grotty and need to be replaced.
The shorts were reasonably long. They had great cargo pockets and they were pull-ups with an elastic waist. No zipper, snaps or buttons. Because they had an elastic waist, they fit at the natural waist. The only item that should fit below the waist is the bottom of my two-piece bathing suit.
When I went to replace them, I called the company, Columbia, and asked why I couldn’t find them on their website. I read off the numbers off the label and the guy on the other end laughed.
“These shorts are nine years old,” he said. His comment had the sound of “get over it and get a new style.”
I started looking at other outdoor clothing company. I found a couple of pull-ups but the pockets were pitiful. Men would never put up with just slit pockets and one velcro pocket in the back. Finally, I dropped the elastic requirement and the choices were better, but still not right.
My dream clothing company would only make synthetic hiking tops in white. Pastel colors are supposed to attract bugs and wasps. Dark colors won’t show possible ticks. So white it is. And no frills or tight seams on the T-shirts. There’s no reason for form-fitting T-shirts.
In the “poles up” picture, I’m wearing a “Great Smoky Mountains” T-shirt. I thought that it would be clever to wear a shirt depicting the start of the MST at the end. But usually my hiking uniform includes a white top.
Long-sleeve polyester shirts would have a zipper and again would be loose fitting.
I don’t think my clothing company would stay in business for long. But I would have my dream hiking clothes.