MEC Neck Gaiter (Kids')
Owner Review by Andrea Murland
August 22, 2011
|| Andrea Murland
|| amurland AT
shaw DOT ca
British Columbia, Canada
|| 5 ft 2 in (1.57
|| 125 lb (57 kg)
I began hiking frequently in 2006 and have
since hiked in Western Canada, Australia, and spent 2 months
backpacking in the Alps. I spend most weekends either day-hiking or on
2-3 day backpacking trips, with some longer trips when I can manage
them. I also snowshoe and ski in the winter, but don’t have a lot of
experience with winter in the backcountry yet. Elevation is typically
500-3,000 m (1,600-10,000 ft), in the Canadian Rockies and the Selkirk,
Purcell, and Monashee ranges. I try for a light pack, but I don’t
consider myself a lightweight backpacker.
Image Courtesy of MEC
Equipment Co-op (MEC)
| Year of
|| CAD $7.00
|| Small, Medium,
| Size Reviewed:
|| Black, Blue Ink
| Listed Weight:
|| 15 g (0.5 oz)
|| 14 g (0.5 oz)
|| 18 cm (7.1 in)
|| 23 cm (9.0 in)
The MEC Kids’ Neck Gaiter is a lightweight 100% polyester fleece neck
gaiter. It has a flat seam running up-and-down along the gaiter, and
hemmed top and bottom edges. There is a sewn-on cloth label on the
outside of the gaiter, and a set of tags on the inside detailing the
size, care instructions, and that it’s made in Canada.
-30 C (-22 F) and snowing in
I purchased the MEC Neck Gaiter in late 2010. It was put to its first
test while skiing on-resort in temperatures of -32 C (-26 F) with
windchill down to -45 C (-49 F). Yes, I’m crazy. I kept using it
throughout the winter, on more ski days with temperatures down to -35 C
(-31 F), and up to -10 C (14 F), a total of 8 days. I also used it on
several days backcountry skiing and snowshoeing, at temperatures at the
upper end of the range given, for a total of 9 more days and evenings.
It has been used on calm, sunny days, as well as windy, snowy days.
First off, I have always hated neck gaiters. I have avoided wearing
them under any but the coldest conditions, with the excuses that they
were uncomfortable, got cold and wet, and took up so much space inside
my collar that then I couldn’t tuck my face in so that I was actually
colder. Well, this wonderful, simple piece of gear changed all that.
This winter I finally decided that it was time to try something newer
than the inherited neck gaiters in my drawer that were older than I
was. Figuring that since I have a pretty small head and neck, and I was
looking for something less bulky, I decided to go for a kids’ model.
Comfort & Fit:
I will start by saying that my small head has a circumference of 54 cm
(21.25 in). That fits well into the range of sizes for most kids’ hats
(and below the range for adult hats), so, naturally, the neck gaiter
for kids fit me just fine. It is just snug enough around my nose and
cheeks to stay in place while I move, without being binding. When up
around my nose it comes just to the collar of my shirt, so it’s long
enough to cover my neck, but nothing more. Perfect. This neck gaiter
doesn’t bunch up inside my collar and around the base of my neck, so it
successfully covers my face and still allows me to tuck my chin inside
The fleece is extremely soft and comfortable. I don’t know what else to
say about that...I would cuddle inside of it all day if I could!
This neck gaiter has successfully kept me frostbite-free through some
pretty nasty conditions. On several of the really cold days that I was
skiing I had companions with white cheeks, but I escaped the bite.
Given that skiing creates its own windchill, that seemed pretty
impressive. The gaiter kept my chin, nose, and cheeks warm, as well as
the back of my neck up to my hat or helmet.
When it gets damp, the fleece gets frosty and freezes, but I found that
my breath was enough to thaw it and even damp it kept me warm. It was
easy enough to rotate the gaiter a bit at lunch, or turn it upside
down, so that I had a nice dry spot for my face in the afternoon. On
that note, the
fleece dries quickly. In a warm spot for lunch, the material would
usually be almost dry by the time I was warm and fed.
The neck gaiter is showing a bit of pilling and has collected some
light-coloured fuzz, but otherwise is as good as new. It feels as soft
and comfortable as always. There are no loose threads showing.
I love the MEC Neck Gaiter (Kids’). I never thought I would be a wearer
of neck gaiters, and now I can’t wait to put it on. I’m looking forward
to it serving me for many winters to come.
Still functional when damp
Read more gear reviews by Andrea Murland