The Sherpa Geluk is one of the best-looking hiking shirts we’ve come across. Elegant and chic, it delivers wool-like comfort with fibres derived from recycled bottles and crushed oyster shells. On top of green credentials and support for positive global causes, the Geluk effortlessly combines style with trail performance.
No odor control
Not suitable for vegans
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Sherpa Geluk: first impressions
At first glance, the Sherpa Geluk (available in the UK from Alpine Trek (opens in new tab)) seems more suited to a night on the tiles than a day on the trails. Handsome, well-tailored and screaming chic, it’s a looker. In fact, we found the prospect of drenching it with sweat a little horrifying. This shirt should be saved for dinner parties and date nights, right?
Think again. Made from a blend of SeaWool fabric (opens in new tab) (formed from crushed oyster shells and recycled plastic bottles), cotton and spandex, the Geluk is designed to mimic the properties of wool; insulating against cold, cooling you during exertion, wicking sweat away quickly and delivering exceptional comfort. Design features include off-shoulder seams to prevent chafing under pack straps, a single chest pocket with button closure and UPF 50+ sun protection.
Aside from style, performance and green credentials, Sherpa provide a day of education for a child in Nepal for every product sold (see also: the best eco-friendly outdoor brands). Plenty of positives on the face of things. But is it all style over substance?
• RRP: $85 (US) / £80 (UK)
• Materials: Cotton (54%), recycled SeaWool (43%), spandex (3%)
• Weight (men’s large): 410gg / 14.5oz
• Sizes available: S / M / L / XL / XXL
• Colors: Rathee Blue / Tamur River
Sherpa Geluk: on the trails
From the moment we slipped on the Sherpa Geluk, its soft and wool-like comfort impressed us a lot. While the tailoring is complementary to the figure, the shirt feels breathable and offers excellent freedom of movement.
Against fresh winds on exposed moorland, the Geluk insulated well, as we would expect from a shirt that weighs 410g / 14.5oz. The real test here was how it handled under exertion. Midway into a steep climb, the moisture-wicking capabilities of the Geluk were proved beyond doubt. Sweat was quickly moved to the outer layers of the shirt, leaving us feeling dry and comfortable. Once backpacks were removed, the outer layer did remain wet to touch for some time but this didn’t affect the on-skin comfort.
The Geluk doesn’t have odor control Like some others in our best men’s hiking shirts buying guide), so isn’t the best choice for multi-day hikes. Also, the cuff buttons were a little fiddly for our sausage fingers when rolling sleeves up. Press studs would be more convenient but would possibly detract from the look of the shirt. Some may find the single pocket a tad small, too.
While we wouldn’t recommend the Sherpa Geluk for the hottest of days, it’s a great choice for the majority of the year. It also worked well underneath waterproofs, making it perfect for winter hikes. The £80 price tag might put some people off, but the money ultimately buys a hiking shirt with abundant class and performance features. Overall, a fantastic offering that proves style and substance can coexist.
A journalist, writer and editor with a passion for self-powered adventures, Dan combines a love of landscape, wildlife and culture with a need for exhilaration, good times and endurance tests. Raised in the Peak District, Dan loves nothing more than exploring the national park’s rolling hills, picturesque dales and wild moorland. However, you’ll find him walking, running and cycling in lots of landscapes in the UK and further afield. Dan’s most cherished hiking experience is bivouacking on Volcan de Acatenango, in Guatemala, and watching the ‘Volcano of Fire’ across the valley erupt golden lava into the black tapestry of stars and galaxies.
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