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Reviews > Clothing > Shirts > Terramar Body-Sensors Hoodie > Owner Review by Kathleen Waters

TERRAMAR BODY-SENSORS GEO FLEECE WOMEN'S FULL ZIP HOODIE
BY KATHLEEN WATERS
OWNER REVIEW
April 01, 2009

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Kathleen Waters
EMAIL: TheMiddleSister@usaring.com
AGE: 58
LOCATION: White Lake, Michigan USA
GENDER: F
HEIGHT: 5' 4" (1.63 m)
WEIGHT: 125 lb (56.70 kg)

I started hiking in 1998 after an eye-opening climb up Hahn's Peak in Colorado. Hooked, I return to Colorado often. I've hiked/snowshoed glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in domestic and exotic locations, including Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley. At home, I plan for 2-3 hikes of 6-8 mi (10-13 km) weekly and one weekend hike monthly. Weekday hikes take place in Pontiac Lake Recreation Area, a mixture of heavily-wooded moderate hills and flat terrain. Weekend hike locations vary. My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight. Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) including food and water

PRODUCT INFORMATION

Manufacturer: Terrmar, Inc.
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.terramarsports.com
MSRP: N/A
Listed Weight: N/A
Measured Weight: 13 oz (369 g)
Sizes Available: S, M, L, XL
Size Tested: Medium
Colors Available: N/A
Color Tested: Black
Terramar Body Sensors Full Zip Hoodie
Terramar Body-Sensors Full Zip Hoodie

Other details: (from Manufacturer's website)
Full zip front featuring zipper garage and wind flap
Ergonomic zipper pull
Hoodie with drawstring
Functional thumbholes
3" self fabric contoured band at bottom opening
Flatlock seam construction

"The GEO micro-fleece is our warmest temperature control layer. A blend of 95% micro-polyester and 5% spandex provides total freedom of movement, adding warmth without overheating. An essential and versatile layering piece for intense outdoor activities."

Fabric features: 95% Micro-Polyester and 5% Spandex, ec2® Qwik-Dri ™ Thermoregulation Comfort Technology, Highly Breathable and Fast-drying, Fabric Weight: 220 grams 6.5 oz, UPF Rating 50+.

Made in China.

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

Terramar calls the hoodie, "An essential and versatile layering piece for intense outdoor activities" It is a very lightweight base layer that goes over and under other layers of clothing seamlessly. The structure is typical of most full zip hoodies; a hood, long sleeves, two front pockets and a zipper. The hood can be adjusted to fit more tightly by means of a cloth cord threaded through the hood's hem. The waist band is a generous 1.5 in (4 cm) wide and stretchy, not adjustable or elasticized. Where the Terramar hoodie's appearance differs from others is in some subtle but very beneficial features.
Inside Terramar Hoodie
Inside of Terramar Hoodie
I noticed first off the fabric of the hoodie. Both inside and outside, the hoodie has a windowpane pattern created from the weave of the fabric. Inside the material is a slightly heavier micro-fleece and the windowpane pattern is more pronounced. Outside the hand is smoother, but the pattern is still noticeable, albeit not until I more closely examined the hoodie.

Thumb loops are a new feature for me. When I first saw the Terramar hoodie, I didn't even see the loops. It wasn't until I pulled the hoodie on that I saw the "holes" 1.5 in (4 cm) above the hem of the cuff. It didn't take me but a minute to realize the purpose of these neat "holes".

I found the 0.75 in (2 cm) thumb loops to be great for keeping the hoodie in place when donning overlayers. The thumb loops are hemmed and bound to keep their shape.
Thumb Loops on Terramar Hoodie
Thumb Loops on Terramar Hoodie


The outside front pockets are nice and big - 9 in (23 cm) by 5 in (13 cm) and are easily accessed via a very slightly slanted opening. A bonus are the two deep inside pockets which back up the outer pockets. While the inside pockets are not as wide as the outside pockets they are perfect for items I want to protect from the elements such as my digital camera, sunglasses, etc. Since the top of the pocket is parallel to the hem, there is very little chance of things dropping out of the opening. Neat!

The zipper is a nylon YKK zipper and does not have a zipper pull, not that one is necessary. The zipper pull is on the on the left side and a 1 in (2.5 cm) wind flap backs it up. A thoughtful feature is the zipper "garage" at the neck of the hoodie which keeps the metal pull away from my body. Very nice when it is cold.

All the seams are double flat-stitched which speaks of the manufacturing quality throughout the garment. Lastly, the care and washing instruction tag is located at the back neck seam, but constructed from a very soft material. Again, nice!

FIELD CONDITIONS AND USE

Since I acquired the Terramar Body -Sensors Hoodie, I have worn it a total of 15 times. Half of that time was casual wear at work worn over casual long sleeve t-shirts. Temperatures generally were between 65 F and 70 F (18-21 C).

The other half of my wearing time was time spent on the trail, hiking and backpacking as detailed below plus various dayhikes.

February 6-7: At night, the trail at the Tennessee Pass was a very pleasant 28 F (-2 C) when we started snowshoeing and a still-pleasant 14 F (-10 C) when we stopped. Clear skies, little or no humidity and no wind at all made it a gorgeous trek. We started at an elevation of 10,500 ft (3200 m) and had a slight, but constant elevation gain to 10,800 ft (3292 m). The trail was hard-packed snow and meandered through a tall growth pine forest.
At Ridgway State Park
Terramar Hoodie at Ridgway State Park
The next day, we were snowshoeing on the same trails, but it was sunny and 32 F (0 C). Still, no wind and very little humidity were present.

February 20-21: Ridgway State Park and Reservoir, including the Uncompahgre River trails. Elevation started at 6880 ft (2097 m) and rose to 7000 ft (2134 m). Temperatures were from a low of 33 F (0.6 C) at night to 54 F (12 C) in the bright afternoon sunshine. There was, at most, just a light occasional breeze. Terrain varied from sandy beach shore to medium size rocks to very large rocks at the reservoir's edge, then changed to dry hard-packed dirt to mud to icy snow patches in the offshore higher treed sections of the trail. The mileage for the entire east side trail was 7.5 mi (12 km).

March 3-5: Hike and camp in the Bureau of Land Management properties in the Royal Gorge area of Colorado (Cooper Mountain range, included). Elevation started at 5400 ft (137 m) and gained about 200 ft (5 m). Daytime temperatures were a pleasant 50 to 67 F (10 to19 C) and nighttime temperatures hovered from 18 to 34 F (-8 to 1 C) from Tuesday to Thursday respectively. A pretty steady wind of 10 to 15 mph (16 to 24 kph) was present most of Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Wind gusts were plentiful and blew as high as 35 mph (56 kph). The terrain was very dry. We were (and still are) under "red flag" warnings for forest fires. Vegetation was sparse juniper and pinon pine eking out a barren existence on powdery dirt to granite slabs. Desolate, but very beautiful against the brilliant blue sky!

The hoodie fits me just the way I like a base layer to fit. It is not so tight as to constrict but it is form fitting enough to hug my body. I can easily wear other base layers over or under the hoodie and still move about freely. The fit is great for sleeping in, too. I don't get tangled in excess fabric but still can squirm around. And the hood is just the right weight to keep my head warm on nights I don't want to use the hood of my sleeping bag.

The sleeve length is just slightly over my wrists. I'm not a fan of sleeves I can practically pull over my finger tips. That causes excess bulk. Conversely, I don't like too short sleeves which leave my wrists exposed, particularly in cold weather. The thumb holes on the sleeves were really helpful when layering. By putting my thumbs into them, I was able to insure the sleeves would stay put. I did try leaving my thumbs in the holes to keep the sleeves in place when donning gloves, but after a short while, I would end up pulling the gloves off and my thumbs out of the holes. I couldn't get used to the tight fit of the thumb holes.

I tend to prefer my tops to be long rather than short and the Terramar Body -Sensors Hoodie falls a very nice 7 in (18 cm) below my natural waist. It is not long enough to sit on but certainly long enough to cover my hips and if I want to, I can tuck it into my pants.

The inside of the hoodie is very soft, like a very light fleece, and it feels great on my skin. I have found it to be an excellent insulating layer in the cold. I have had very good experiences wearing the hoodie over a first layer with a light fleece and a windproof jacket or with one of the mid layers removed. This depended on the weather, of course, and what my activity level was. Mostly, I would start out with four layers and then strip the fleece off first, then the hoodie as I heated up. When hiking at Ridgway State Park, I actually spent most of the hike with just a base layer and the hoodie on as the temps rose above 50 F (10 C).

Sweating is something I manage to do even in the coldest weather when snowshoeing or gaining elevation rapidly. I did not notice any dampness inside the hoodie, even when vigorously snowshoeing. Terramar claims "ec2® Qwik-Dri™ fabrics work with your body’s natural heating and cooling system to promote rapid evaporation while providing effective insulation". Seems to have worked for me!

Unlike a lot of tops I have, as of yet, the hoodie has not shown any signs of pilling or fabric weakening from the friction caused by the straps and hipbelt of my pack

The washing instructions provided by the manufacturer are: "Machine wash cold. Wash dark colors separately. Non-chlorine bleach. Tumble dry low. Do not iron/steam or dry clean. No fabric softeners or dryer sheets."

After wearing the.hoodie a total of 7 days and three nights on the trail, I finally broke down and threw the hoodie in the wash. Since, currently, I am using commercial washers and dryers; I knew I would be air-drying the hoodie. I used cold water and the hoodie looks just like it did when I got it.

THINGS I LIKE

1.) Super-soft interior.
2.) Light weight belies its heat retention capabilities.
3.) Hood actually fits and is comfortable, even for sleeping.

THINGS I DON'T LIKE

Terramar Body Sensor Hoodie Zipper
Zipper on Terramar Body-Sensors Hoodie

1.) Zipper pull is on the left side making it a little awkward for me to use (I'm right-handed), especially one-handed.

SUMMARY

Prior to receiving the Terramar Body-Sensors Hoodie, I wasn't a fan of tops with hoods. Even my wind jacket hoods rarely were used by me on the trail. Mostly, except in horrible weather conditions, the hoods stayed tucked up into the jacket collars.

I gave the Terramar a try based on the intriguing "body sensor" concept and the incredible feel of the hoodie interior. The comfort of the hoodie definitely lived up to Terramar's claims. The versatility of the Terramar Body-Sensors Hoodie will keep this front and center in my gear closet.

I have to say now, I even like the hood! The fit and feel of the hood makes it perfect for those times when I need just a little more warmth without more weight. For sleeping, this hoodie is now my favorite cold weather top.

Kathleen (Kathy) Waters

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.

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