For a lot of younger folks backpacking across the US or Europe has become a rite of passage. It’s a time to experience the world, meet new people, and explore all that life has to offer. For their older counterparts who never lost touch with that drive, the outdoors and nature provides them with the serenity and challenge they carried with them throughout this period. If the younger folks asked the older folks what they brought with them, they’d invariably reference merino wool.
Merino wool is some of the highest quality material for outdoor textiles known to man. Unlike synthetic fibers, it is biodegradable, and can be dyed with organic plant based dyes, mean the dyes themselves are also non-toxic to the environment. This is in stark contrast to many other synthetic fabrics that will never biodegrade because they are polyester based, which is a plastic. For those that love nature, both experiencing it first hand and sustaining it for the future, ethically farmed merino wool is one of the alluring options available, and there are a number of excellent reasons beyond the aforementioned, that merino wool clothing has been the top choice for travelling adventurers and nature enthusiasts even into the age of synthetic fiber textiles.
Durability, Warmth, and Comfort
Merino wool has sustained its reputation in an age of plastic synthetics that are cheaper to produce due in large part to its quality. Firstly, synthetic textiles are nowhere near the same quality in terms of insulation. For that reason wool is used in many homes throughout the country to provide a natural form of insulation. Generally, because wool is more expensive, it’s mixed with fiberglass or other materials or taken from discarded or recycled wool to be used as insulation, but it’s good to act as an exceptional insulator against those cold wintery nights. It is also flame resistant as well. Wool will not hold a flame, which also makes it ideal for home insulation.
Wool is durable enough to be used as carpeting. The only major disadvantage of using wool as carpeting is the expense of doing so when compared to other synthetic materials like nylon. However, once again, wool is the better option because it’s both a better insulator and because it’s flame resistant. Many families are now choosing wool because it lasts much longer than nylon and it absorbs odors better as well.
For traveling adventurers, wool has always been a top choice because it’s versatile in a number of climates, especially for those that are going backpacking, mountain biking, or hiking. It retains heat better than most other materials because it traps in pockets of air warmed up by the body. Another key consideration for travelers is that it has to last them a long time between washings. Wool hides dirt better than most other materials and can simultaneously neutralize odors, which is why it’s such a great choice for socks and carpets. Travelers also necessarily find themselves in a position where they have to travel light, so having all purpose clothing like wool on hand helps them eliminate redundancies and keep their baggage to a minimum. For travelers and adventurers of all kinds, merino wool has meant comfort, security, and cozy relief from elements.