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Re: [at-l] Re: Cotton
For what it's worth, I've worn cotton on every outdoor trip, summer and winter -- every day
outdoors or not, for that matter -- for 72
years. I was born on May 4. My folks took me on my first camping trip that June.
I've climbed Katahdin in January and February wearing cotton. Why? I like the feel of a cotton tee
shirt. I hate the feel of polyesters (Capilene.) I don't wear jeans in winter. I wear wool pants. In
summer I wear cotton shorts or cotton chinos.
Cotton is a perfectly acceptable fabric for outdoor clothing. It is less forgiving than other
fabrics. But intelligent people can certainly wear some cotton safely. In many thousands of
miles, spring, summer, fall and winter, I've never once felt endangered by the clothing I've worn.
The secret of safe travel is to stay warm. That means you don't keep hiking in a total sweat, summer
or winter. You take off clothing until you are comfortable.
If you find this too complicated, buy $15 capilene tee shirts, rather than $3 cotton.
The best winter garment I ever owned was a 100 percent long fiber cotton pull over. When it got wet
the fibers expanded, making it both waterproof and breathable. It worked better than any Goretex. Unfortunately, LL Bean
stopped selling it three decades ago. Too many people read the advertising hype about "cotton kills."