Alyssa Young recently transplanted from California to Arizona, where she busy getting acquainted with the deserts, mountains, rivers and canyons of the Southwest. Whether skiing, climbing, backpacking, ranching, or just generally wandering, Alyssa seeks to find and define sense of place where ever she goes. She is currently embarking on a season of exploration in and around the Grand Canyon.
Bergans Soleie Baselayers are merino performance baselayers that are equal parts comfortable and functional. The merino is soft, wicking, warm when wet, highly breathable, and the design is great for layering. These layers perform in a range of environments, from high-exertion outings in cold conditions to warm conditions as a sun-protection layer. The Soleie baselayers are a testament to Bergans‘ commitment to quality, and overall are great products.
Fit and Design
The great design and material used for the Soleie Baselayers combine to make high performance products that are as comfortable as they are functional. The soft merino easily layers under other layers without clinging or bunching. The cuffs are thick enough to stay in place without being constricting or bulky under other layers. The waistband on the pants is soft, exposed elastic rather than elastic within a fabric band, so it won’t twist around or bunch up.
Both the top and the bottom hold up to multiple days of use without stretching out, and the elastic seems like it will withstand years of washing and wearing. Initially I was critical of all the seams in this shirt, such as those on the front of the shoulders and down the arms, but the flat stitching didn’t chafe at all.
And, if you like the opposing color contrast, they’re a cute touch. Bergans products tend to fit true to size and their baselayers are no exception. These layers are designed to fit close to skin, for optimum layering ability, so if you prefer a looser fit I would recommend ordering up one size.
This 100% merino baselayer is classified as lightweight in the Bergans four-tiered temperature guide, which defines it as being suitable for low exertion activities at 0-20° C to high exertion activities in subzero conditions. It’s an ideal foundation for layering over in cold conditions and is also great for wearing alone in warmer temperatures. These layers are warm without being bulky and are very wicking when worn next to the skin. The material is soft and stretchy and of impressively high quality. I used these as my main baselayer on a month-long river trip, as well as for a handful of days climbing and skiing, and the material still hasn’t shown any sign of pilling or degradation.The wool is both wicking and odor-resistant but dries surprisingly quickly, making these ideal for extended expeditions in damp conditions or sweaty high-exertion days. They’re also comfortable for wearing around town and are great for daily use. Merino tends not to last as long as synthetics, and have a tendency to show wear and tear in high abrasion areas such as under pack straps, but it seems like the Soleie tops and bottoms will have a relatively long lifespan.