The recent sunshine gave Mum Out & About – one of our regular kit reviewers – a chance to wear the Regatta Adventura T-Shirt and Women's Geo Extol shorts during a test hike/run.
It's not often that a weekend in mid-March allows for shorts and t-shirts, and especially in the hills of Scotland. But there it was: A sunny and warm (if you kept walking) weekend and the chance to try the Regatta Women's Geo Extol shorts and Adventura t-shirt.
The chosen hill was Ben Lomond, which is Scotland's most southerly Munro. (A Munro being all the mountains in Scotland with a summit of more than 3000ft, 914m). Ben Lomond is a popular outing, especially for people living in central Scotland and is only around 35 minutes from Glasgow.
The Ben Lomond walk starts at Rowardennan, which is on the shores of Loch Lomond, and offers an easy-to-follow path, especially in sunny weather. This isn't a walk for you if you're looking for complete solitude but while you'll encounter many other walkers and runners en route to the top, it is a place for friendly outdoor chat and fabulous views.
There are two routes up and down, and they can be walked/run as a circuit. I chose Ptarmigan Ridge on the way up and the more popular tourist trail on the way down. I like to be different!
Starting out with shorts and t-shirt seemed a little optimistic even for a sunny March day so I added arm warmers (many cyclists use these and i've started to wear them for extra lightweight layering on the hills) and a lightweight waterproof jacket. I popped leggings and waterproof over-trousers to my lightweight rucksack, as well as map, compass, mobile phone, snacks and water. Even in good weather I don't take chances about sudden changes in conditions, such as cloud or rain. Just 10 minutes into the hike (incorporating fast walking and running) and I'd taken off the outer layers and enjoyed being on a sun-kissed mountain in just the shorts and t-shirt.
First impressions of the Regatta shorts and t-shirt
Both the Geo Extrol shorts and Adventura t-shirt felt so light against my skin, as though I was hardly wearing anything! I was really suprised by this because I usually find walking shorts to be quite heavyweight and stiff. Not the Geo Extols though. They also fit really, really well. I'm a tall size 10 and the shorts perfectly skimmed my hips and thighs and finished high enough my knee not to be annoying while walking, but low enough down my thigh to cover any fat bits! A stretchy waistband also adds to the comfort of the shorts.
The label tells me there is an Extol stretch panel to seat for comfort and ease of movement. I think this design feature works really well.
I am also a fan of pockets! The Geo Extols come with two zipped front pockets, one zipped back pocket and two lower cargo pockets. Excellent attention to pocketing detail!
Added to this the shorts have SPF 40+ UV Protection (useful for the recent good weather), quick drying fabric (excellent for dealing with sweat) and a water repellent finish (it didn't rain and so I didn't test this but when I spilt water on the shorts it ran off!)
The Adventura t-shirt is made of a lightweight polyester fabric, including SPF 20+ sun protection, and quick drying and wicking properties.
Performance of the Regatta shorts and t-shirt
Wearing shorts and t-shirt that felt so lightweight was a blessing on a warm day. The hike/run upwards made me sweat and thanks to the fabrics I never felt too hot or wet with sweat. It was only when I reached the higher section of the mountain that a chill wind forced me to put on my arm warmers again.
I wouldn't normally wear brand new t-shirt and shorts for a long mountain hike but these didn't cause me any discomfort during the three hours spent on the hill. I felt no rubs or irritations. Just ease of movement and dry skin.
Even with a March sun, it is possible to suffer sunburn but I had no such anxiety. (I'd taken the precaution of a smear of sun lotion on the lower part of my legs!).
Added benefits of the Regatta shorts and t-shirt
As well as being practical and comfortable for walking, I wouldn't hesitate in wearing the shorts and t-shirt for a summer's day trip to the pub or to meet friends. The tailoring of the clothing is very flattering for the female physique and the colours and style make the outfit look "outdoors trendy".
I'm all set for more walking and leisure pursuits this summer. Are you?