Favorite Balaclava?

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    Meir Gottlieb


    What’s your favorite fleece Balaclava? I’ve been looking around for a fleece balaclava to use in the Sierras this summer and I have found about a dozen different options from Patagonia, Outdoor Research, Go-lite, and just about everyone else. The one from OR seems to be the lightest at one ounce. So what’s your favorite and why?

    Ryan Jordan


    Locale: Central Rockies

    OR PS 50 for its light weight. I use this often on day hikes as my only headwear; or when carrying two pieces for spring and fall backpacking, it’s that and either a PossumDown Beanie or Liphe Softshell Hat.

    For cold weather it’s the OR WindPro Balaclava, wind resistant but breathes way better than windstopper and you can hear through it, so this is what I take when climbing fall-winter-spring.

    Sandra Warner


    I have the Motion Fleece Balaclava from OR and love it.I was in the Columbia River Gorge high up on a mountion winds blowing at 35mph.winds 3ft. snow and 28 degrees and I was warm. I also had my possum hat on. This possum stuff is great.

    John Carter


    Locale: Pacific Northwest

    I was just in the gorge yesterday! I just did beacon rock, but temps were in the mid 30’s and winds were howling enough to have to lean into. I was wearing the Possumdown beanie hat and managed to break a sweat! What really amazed me, though, was that I was very comfortable wearing only my new Buff balaclava (the thin version, not the fleece version) as a face and neck mask. I could pull it right up to below my eyes and draw my beanie down to just above them. Combined with my glasses, I had almost no skin exposed.

    paul johnson


    Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest

    i have the OR PS 50.

    also own a Manzella Lightweight Polypropylene Balaclava from Campmor (Item Number: 92872) for only $5.99. it weighs 1oz.

    they seem to be very similar. IMHO, i really don’t see any functional difference between the OR and the Manzella. both weigh 1oz.

    for colder weather, the Campmor Balaclava with Hytrel (Item Number: 81420) for $16.99 trilaminate – 2 layers fleece w/a waterproof/windproof membrane in between. it weighs 2.8 oz & has a good design for venting exhaled air from either nose or mouth – it nevers causes my glasses to fog up even if i forget to use RainX Anti-Fog.

    wouldn’t be suprised (though i don’t know for sure) to find out that perhaps OR manufactures the two Campmor ‘clavas i own. OR has very similar models at higher prices.

    i have also used the Poss’mDown Beanie and the Liphe SoftShell hats that Dr. J refers to. i find them both very excellent products. IMHO, you can’t go wrong with anything BPL sells on their website.

    hope this info helps.

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