Yep. I’m picky about the stuff I wear and the stuff I use when I’m fly fishing. I have very little patience for gear that doesn’t do what it’s supposed to do, or makes me uncomfortable, or just generally sucks (like this awful lamp). A winter hat seems like something that’s so simple, it shouldn’t require much thought. Therein lies the beauty of the UnderArmour Primaloft Ridge Reaper Hunt Beanie: it’s warm. It’s comfortable. It does what I want it to do.
For starters, I like to wear a ball cap when I’m fishing, even in the winter. The visor keeps the sun out of my eyes and precipitation off my glasses. On those really cold days, I like to wear a ski-type hat over the ball cap. My issue with previous hats was that they were too snug or too small or not warm enough. The last thing I want to be doing out on a river when it’s 20 degrees is be futzing with my hat. So the Ridge Reaper, even though it’s one size, is stretchy and roomy but snugs down nicely around my head and ears with no fuss.
New hat: the UnderArmour Primaloft Ridge Reaper Hunt Beanie.
Cosmetically, I like that the logo is understated. I’m not a fan of high-visibility, high-contrast logos, and as an outdoors person, you can understand wanting to blend in. According to the UA website, the yarn in this hat is breathable and water resistant, and it has a double layer knit lining. Sounds perfect. Like most UA products, this is more than I’d like to pay. $40 for a hat? But, as with so many other things, my eventual cost-per-use will make me forget the price, as will the hat’s performance and comfort.
A post-steelhead-landed victory shot, hat under the hood. A warm angler is a happy angler.
Probably not warm enough for winter steel heading, but I have found the Simms Ultra Core Beanie and gloves just the ticket for fall and spring trout fishing. Plus they take up no room in the vest so there is no excuse for not carrying them.
It’s always a treat to find something that you like. On not-freezing days I like a head band to go around my ears.
How about attacking the age old question “what is the best form of fly vest”. Soooo many choices! Vest, chest pack, sling, etc., etc.
From my perspective, Steve, there ain’t no best — people like what they like, and the best vest in the world won’t satisfy someone who wants a pack…or a sling…etc. I use both vest and chest pack, for different applications. Perhaps I’ll write about that some day. Thanks for the suggestion!
Small chest pack. You don’t have to carry the whole fly shop on your back. I found that this works for me and I don’t have to carry a lot of stuff. Bill
Thanks, Bill. See my comment above. Glad you’ve got a system that works for you!
I purchased the RR beanie back in October of 2018. I recently lost it and went to replace it only to find that UA downgraded the quality of the original RR beanie with a 100% polyester blend. Formerly, the blend was 51% poly / 49% wool and came in a grey charcoal color. It didn’t itch what so ever and stayed warm even in cold/damp climates. It was one size fits all and always kept it’s snugness to the dome no matter how many times I would take it off and put it on again and never once had to wash it. Being an outdoorsman we can all appreciate the quality of wool in the winter. I just don’t understand why UA would change this design other than to push a lesser quality product of around the same price and use cheaper fabrics thus boosting profits. It’s shameful that UA would do this to a an already great product in the RR line of hunting gear. I think I’ll be switching over to folks that primarily focus on hunters and hunting gear rather than a Sports and Athletic company taking advantage of hunters by choosing profits over quality of gear designed for hunters.
I’m sorry to hear of your disappointment — I know how frustrating it is when you’re expecting one thing and you get another. I have nothing to judge the cap against other than other hats I’ve used, so I’ll stick to my original review — in which I say that I wish this hat were less expensive. C’est la vie!
Yeah, it’s frustrating when manufacturers decide to change original quality. The 100% poly may still be a viable choice in given circumstances but it’s hard to beat a good wool blend especially if when the itch can be removed and replaced with a smooth feel on the grape. I still enjoyed the review as I’m always interested on how other outdoor enthusiasts make use of their gear. Cheers.