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Reviews > Clothing > Base Layers and Undies > adidas Outdoors Agravic LS Base Layer > Test Report by Kurt Papke

Adidas Agravic LS Baselayer

Test Series by Kurt Papke

Initial Report - April 3, 2019

Field Report - June 12, 2019

Long Term Report - August 13, 2019

Tester Information

Name: Kurt Papke
Age: 65
Gender: Male
Height: 6' 4" (193 cm)
Weight: 230 lbs (105 kg)
Email address: kwpapke (at) gmail (dot) com
City, State, Country: Tucson, Arizona USA

I do most of my hiking in the desert Southwest, but occasionally get up into the Pacific Northwest and my old stomping grounds in Northern Minnesota.  I am a comfort-weight guy when it comes to most gear, trying to stay as light as possible but I don't go to extremes.  I wear a lot of different types of layered clothing; my travels take me to extremes of weather from the dry heat of southern Arizona to the wet and cold of northern Minnesota's Boundary Waters Wilderness.

Initial Report

Product Description and Facts

This product is not yet on the market and did not appear on the Adidas website at the time this Initial Report was published, so there may be some uncertainty as to naming, pricing, claimed weights, etc.  There was also very little product literature or labeling that came with the garment.

The Agravic LS Baselayer is a long-sleeved (hence the LS in the name) quarter-zip (pullover) garment.  It has a collar for neck warmth.  A distinguishing characteristic is the chest and upper areas of the shoulders are a different fabric than the back and lower/under part of the sleeves.  Both fabrics have the same waffle pattern on the inside, but the chest and shoulders outer fabric appears to be less wind-permeable, i.e. more of a shell type of material.  The back/sleeves fabric has a fair amount of stretch to it, but the chest and shoulders shell fabric has no stretch.

There is very little branding on the garment, just an Adidas Terrex logo on the upper left chest area.  The logo might be heat-stamped into the fabric; it is the same color making it difficult to see unless held up to a light to make the reflectivity apparent.

The zipper travel is exactly 12 inches (305 mm) in length.  There are no pockets in the garment.

The product care instructions in many different languages were printed on a series of white labels along the bottom hem.  It calls for "Machine wash cold delicate cycle.  Do not bleach.  Do not tumble dry.  Do not iron. Do not dry clean. Do not use fabric softener.  Use mild detergent only.  Wash with like colors.  Line dry."  Wow, that's a lot of "do nots"!

Product Information
Manufacturer
Adidas AG
Manufacturer website
https://www.adidas-group.com
Products tested
Adidas Agravic LS Baselayer
Country of manufacture
Indonesia
Color tested
Carbon (black with some grey)
Size tested
Extra Large (XL)
MSRP
USD $129.00
Warranty
2 years
Materials
Polartec Alpha
Polartec Power Dry/Power Grid
Measured weight
273 g (9.6 oz)

Initial Inspection

There were two Polartec tags attached to the garment, one describing the Alpha fabric, the other the Power Dry fabric.  Upon examination the interior had the waffle pattern that distinguishes the Polartec Grid fabric, and indeed there were two sewn tags (see bottom photo below) along the bottom hem that identified Alpha and Power Grid.  That made sense to me.

Ag01

The photo above at upper left is of the shoulder area, showing the transition between the two fabrics.  The "polka dot" pattern of the shell-type material is quite visible.  This gives the garment more of a grey tone.  At upper right is me stylin' with the Agravic and my new Tifosi sunglasses that I also just started testing.  The photo above near the bottom is of the inside near the hem; it shows the fabrics used in its construction, and the waffle pattern of the Power Grid is quite visible.

I tried the garment on over my bare skin.  Fit was "athletic", good length and form-fitting.  Just a wee bit tight around the chest - I guess I've been spending too much time in the weight room lately doing bench presses.  Torso length was excellent, as is sleeve length, both of which are often problematic for me.  It felt a little prickly as moisture wicking fabrics often do; not scratchy in any way, but the aggressive wicking can make my skin sensitive.  I'll have to experiment a bit with it to see if I like wearing it right against my skin, or a thin, soft layer beneath it to mitigate any prickliness.

I've tested several Adidas garments before, and they have all been very attractive items.  I have had no reservations about wearing their products in a group setting or around town. The Agravic Baselayer carries on that attribute - this is very sharp looking.  Some base layers just look like baggy T-shirts, but with the dual fabric types, the coloration, nice collar, quarter-length zipper, I will feel like I'm stylin' in this one.

In fact, this garment may be a bit of a puzzle for me.  It doesn't look like the typical baselayer.  With the zipper for venting, I will be tempted to wear this as a light midlayer on cool mornings.  The shell fabric is quite slippery, and seems very durable.  I would think it would hold up well directly beneath the shoulder straps of my backpack.  With the moisture wicking Power Grid fabric on the back area, I would anticipate that it would breathe well when I am huffing up a canyon.  Time will tell.

Summary

I am looking forward to getting this garment out into the backcountry and trying it out.  I am intrigued to experiment with it in different configurations (with/without a layer beneath), as both a mid and outer layer.  The temperatures are warming up in Tucson already, so I'm going to have to seek some altitude for coolness to check out the warmth.

Good Things:

  • Very attractive garment.
  • Wicks well, should breathe well across the back area.
  • Zipper gives me flexibility for venting.
  • Toasty warm.

Concerns:

  • A bit of prickliness on bare skin.  Will I need to wear a layer beneath?

Field Report

Testing Locations/Conditions

Date
Location
Trail
Distance Hiked
Altitude
Weather
April 4-5, 2019
Coronado National Forest, Huachuca Mountains near Sierra Vista, Arizona
Reef Townsite
(car camping)

2 miles
(3.2 km)
7200 ft
(3000 m)
Partly cloudy, windy.  Highs around 65 F (18 C), lows around 44 F (7 C).  Very windy.
May 5-6, 2019 Coronado National Forest, Santa Catalina Mountains just North of Tucson, Arizona AZT: Gordon Hirabayashi TH to Hutch's Pool
15 miles
(24 km)
3622-4983 ft
(1104-1519 m)
Mostly sunny, slight breeze.  High of around 85 F, low of 46 F (29-8 C)
May 18-19, 2019 Coronado National Forest, Santa Catalina Mountains just North of Tucson, Arizona AZT: Marshall Gulch TH to Lemmon Pools
9 miles
(14.5 km)
7000-8000 ft
(2130-2440 m)
Mostly sunny, slight breeze, 36-60 F (2-16 C)
May 22-31, 2019 Various locations near Juneau, AK Alaska Dayhikes & Kayaking
Dayhikes from 1-4 miles
(1.6-6.5 km)
Near sea level Sunny, 50-65 F (10-18 C)

Ag02

Carr Canyon - Reef Townsite

This was a single-night car camping trip to do some reconnaissance for the upcoming Arizona Spring Hammock Hang next month at this campgrounds.  I wasn't able to reserve the group campsite, so I wanted to check out the single sites and get an assessment of the winding mountain road leading up to the site.

Late in the afternoon as the temperatures started to drop I put the Agravic baselayer on over my short sleeve T-shirt.  This was perfect for an hour or two, as it covered my arms and gave enough warmth in the core area that I was perfectly comfortable.

It became incredibly windy towards evening, so I changed into my sleeping baselayer tops and bottoms, and put the Agravic baselayer on top of those.  This was good for another hour or so when I had to add a jacket on top.

It didn't get real cold while sleeping in my hammock that night, but the high winds really rob my body of warmth so I bundled up for bed.  Over the Agravic I had a merino hoody and a fleece pullover.  I stayed warm all night  long with no "cold back syndrome" from the wind drafting through my underquilt.  Overall a successful first outing with this garment.

AZT to Hutch's Pool

Hutch's Pool is an iconic Tucson backpacking destination, and a welcome respite for Arizona Trail through-hikers as it offers a chance to have a dip in a mountain pool.  Despite having lived and backpacked here for 10 years, I still had not been there, so packed up and did a short overnight.  The trailhead is a memorialized prison camp used to inter Japanese Americans during World War 2, and now bears the name of the man who fought so hard against this unnecessary internment.

I used the Adidas baselayer as a cover over my foam pad that I use for a pillow at night when sleeping on the ground.  It felt a lot better to have the baselayer fabric against my face all night long than the foam.

The next morning I wore the baselayer over my silk sleeping baselayer top.  It was pretty chilly that morning (46 F or 8 C), but surprisingly enough I was plenty warm without a fleece or down jacket over the top.  This garment is very warm for the thickness and weight.  It was a little hard to get the sleeves on/off over the silk top, the fabrics didn't want to slide over each other, but it was manageable.

The neck seems just a little small for me.  When I zip it all the way up it feels just a little tight.  I don't consider myself to have a large diameter neck, so it seems like the fit may be overly tight at the neck.

It's not easy to get a photo of clothing before the sun comes up, which is normally when I arise on the trail.  The above photo at upper left required my headlamp to illuminate the baselayer while I was having breakfast.

AZT to Lemmon Pools

Another overnight to a stellar but little-known water feature in the Catalina Mountains.  There is a reason I am doing so many of these this year: we had great winter & spring rains, and the mountain pools are spectacular.

I wore the Agravic baselayer for the entire trip, taking it off only to change the layer beneath.  See the photo of the garment on this trail in the collage above at upper right.  Daytime temperatures were perfect for it, around 60 F (16C).  Night time temperatures were a lot colder, but I added a down vest in the evening and had my quilts while sleeping.  The baselayer performed extremely well and I enjoyed wearing it.  I appreciated the long length in the back.  It extends nicely below my waist so that when bending at the waist the bare skin on my back does not pop out.

The only issue I had is, since it is designed to be a baselayer and not a light jacket, it has no pockets.  I had no chest pocket to store my reading glasses or sunglasses when not in use.

Alaska Dayhikes & Kayaking

This week-long Alaskan cruise departing Juneau included daily shore, kayak and skiff excursions. We had exceptional weather: a few sprinkles the first few days in Juneau, but sunny and beautiful the entire week we were aboard ship.  I wore the Agravic baselayer on-board in cooler weather (see above photo collage at lower left), on hikes (see above photo at lower right), and in the kayak, most often beneath my rain jacket which I used as a wind shell.  It was perfect in all these applications.

The one feature that I used extensively for the first time can be seen in the hiking photo in the above collage at lower right: unzipping the front to allow venting.  This was not a strenuous hike, but it was a bushwhack with some steep sections.  I had to keep my wind shell on to prevent getting snagged and scratched on the branches, and got a little warm.  Unzipping both the shell and the baselayer cooled me off just enough to be comfortable.

There was a lot of wind on this trip, which I expected from the watery environment.  The Agravic baselayer does not offer much in the way of wind protection, and I didn't expect it to.  Teaming it up with a wind or rain shell made for a very effective layering strategy.

Summary

I laundered the baselayer after each trip, just tossing it in with the rest of my stuff.  Comes out of the dryer looking like new.

Good things:

  • Attractive garment, suitable for wearing out in public as well as in a sleeping bag
  • Good warmth for the weight
  • Easy care, washes up nicely
  • Comfortable to wear all day long

Areas for improvement:

  • Sizing on the neck seemed a little tight, but easily worked around by not zipping it up all the way
  • It's a baselayer, I can't expect a chest pocket.  But I want one.

Long-term Report

Testing Locations/Conditions

Date
Location
Trail
Distance Hiked
Altitude
Weather
June 22-23, 2019
Mount Baldy Wilderness, near Pinetop, Arizona
Mount Baldy Loop
20 miles (32 km)
9190-11142 ft
(2801-3396 m)
Sunny, breezy, temperatures 30-68 F (-1-20 C)
July 6-7, 2019 Tonto National forest, Pinal Peak just south of Globe, Arizona
Various
~2 miles
(~3 km)
7600 ft
(2310 m)
Partly cloudy, 55-70 F
(13-31 C)
July 20-21, 2019 Chiricahua Wilderness, Southeast Arizona Crest Trail
14 miles
(22.5 km)
8300-9450 ft
(2530-2880 m)
Sunny, breezy, 50-70 F
(10-21 C)
August 3-11, 2019
San Juan Mountains, near Durango Colorado
Colorado Trail
38 miles (61 km) total,
22 miles (35 km) backpacking
8080-12500 ft
(2460-3810 m)
Sunny, rainy, hail, wind, we had it all.  Temperatures 45-75 F
(7-24 C)

Ag03

Mount Baldy Loop

I have lived in Tucson, Arizona for 10 years, and never visited, much less hiked, Arizona's White Mountains.  Mount Baldy, Arizona's second-highest peak is located there, and I needed some high-altitude training.  I drove 5 hours to the trailhead early Saturday morning, hiked until I could no more, then got up the next morning and completed the loop before driving back. I was pretty beat that night when I arrived home.

I wore the baselayer in camp in the evening, while sleeping, and for my first hour or so of hiking the next morning.  See above photo collage, upper left for a snapshot of the baselayer on the trail.  The exterior of the fabric is nice and slippery, I like the way my backpack straps can move around a little when I move.

Despite the freezing temperatures that night, I had to take off my down vest midway through the night because I was too warm.  This baselayer does a good job of keeping in the heat.

Pinal Peak

This was an overnight car-camping trip to a campground I had never been to before, despite being less than 3 hours from my house by car.  I had intended to do more hiking, but there weren't a lot of trails near the peak, and I really just felt like chilling.  I wore the baselayer most of the afternoon as I as was relaxing in my camp chair, as the temperatures were a lot cooler than what I am accustomed to during summer in Tucson.  Also slept with it on over my silk baselayers.

It's a very nice lounging garment, very comfortable with the stretchy sleeves.

Crest Trail

One-night backpacking trip to the second-highest of Arizona's Sky Islands.  The Crest Trail follows the high ridgeline, so maintains enough elevation to keep a hiker fairly cool even in an Arizona summer.

I slept in the baselayer, and then wore it while hiking the next morning for the first hour or so.  This seems to be the pattern I am developing with this garment.  I like the fact that it is versatile enough that I can wear it at night, but it is very comfortable for hiking as well.  It feels very comfortable beneath a backpack.

Colorado Trail

I do an annual trip to the San Juans for about a week.  The first few days we day hike to acclimate to the altitude, then I lead a 3-day backpack.  We are trying to hit some sections of the Colorado Trail, this year was Segment 26.

I wore the baselayers every night for sleeping, and sometimes for an hour or two in the mornings depending on temperature to warm up.  Unfortunately I don't have any pictures of me wearing the garment on this trip.

It was pretty wet and humid, so while on the backpack trip I wore the baselayer as my next-to-skin layer for the first time while backpacking so I could hang my merino wool shirt up to dry.  It's really pretty comfortable and does not prickle my skin.  It didn't bother me to wear it against my skin all night long.

I did notice some seam-tearing sounds coming from the garment when putting it on.  Close inspection turned up a couple of very small (less than one inch or 2.5 centimeters) seam rips. These would be easily sewn back up, but are likely to spread if not nipped in the bud.

Summary

All the comments from my Field Report still apply.  The only thing I can add is the baselayer is starting to wear along the armpit seams.  This may be due to the difficulty in putting on/taking off the garment over another layer.  This baselayer creates a lot of friction against another baselayer beneath it, and that may be stressing the seams when pulling it on or off.


Many thanks to Adidas and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test this product.


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Reviews > Clothing > Base Layers and Undies > adidas Outdoors Agravic LS Base Layer > Test Report by Kurt Papke



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