Here at Gear Central, nothing fazes us. Curling is just another cool-weather activity with intermittent bursts of action. In that, it resembles many things, although at the moment, I cant recall what they might be.
MEC Ferrata Ultra Pants
Ferrata Ultra Pants
For those readers not familiar with curling, let me offer a brief synopsis. Person on ice pushes large smooth rock with a handle on it across ice rink. Team members use brooms to sweep" the ice in front of rock, changing its direction and pace. Object is to bring rock to halt inside painted circle, knocking opponents rocks out of circle if possible. I could not possibly be making this up. The sport has its roots in Canadian military culture, when to maintain their fighting edge the troops would roll cannonballs across an icy pond. That part is, of course, totally untrue. I think.
What you need is a pair of soft shell pants, which are made with material that offers some light insulation, stretches a bit, and resists moisture. On the high end, price-wise, youd find the Ibex Milo (ibexwear.com) pants, made with a wool soft shell material that has four-way stretch and great temperature regulation. Theyre US$210, which is basically CA$210 now. How about that?!? These really would be terrific pants, albeit a bit expensive.
I also like Patagonias Light Smoke pants (US$199; patagonia.com), which are made with a stretchy synthetic blend of nylon/polyester/Spandex, with a light fleece lining. Theyre fairly warm and breathable, and they offer good water-repellency. Sure, theyre not cheap, but a little less than the Ibex pants.
Up your way, Mountain Equipment Co-op (mec.ca) sells something called the Ferrata Ultra pants. These really are very nicemade with Schoeller Dryskin Extreme fabric, which is really high-performance stuff. They offer a bit of stretch with a little warmth, but not too much. Layer them over light long underwear in cold conditions. At CA$145, theyre quite a bargain. Apparel made with Schoeller Drsykin usually costs more.
Check out the new 2007-2008 Winter Outside Buyers Guide, packed with reviews of more than 300 new gear must-haves. Its available on newsstands this month.
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