by: Dave D’Abate
The Sherpa Adventure Gear Tashi Mock Neck sweater is unique in many ways. First, Sherpa Adventure Gear manufactures all their apparel in Nepal, so every purchase goes toward supporting the local economy of Nepal. From Sherpa Adventure Gear’s website,
Sherpa Adventure Gear has partnered with Alpine Ascents to donate up to $.50 for every item sold to The Sherpa Education Fund … we are also in the process of setting up additional non-profit partnerships to benefit the health, education, and welfare of underprivileged Sherpa children. In addition to this, we employ local Sherpas in our office in Katmandu, and contract with Sherpa artisans (some of whom are our own cousins) to create our beautiful, hand-made wool hats. So every product you buy makes a direct impact on the lives of these amazing people.
The company employs local Nepali workers to create a high quality product you can count on when the weather turns for the worse. Second, the Tashi Mock Neck is a great technical blend of Polartec Power Dry and merino wool for the first merino garment I’ve ever used that I can safely put into the dryer without worrying about ruining it. The layering of the merino and Polartec material lets the entire sweater dry quicker than other 100% merino pieces. The design of the sweater is unique to say the least. One of my favorite aspects of the design is the off-set zipper that sits near the collarbone, not straight on the neck as you normally see in most apparel. The off-set zipper is a wonder when it comes to layering because the zipper doesn’t stack on top of your neck with your outer layers, making the Tashi Mock Neck an incredibly comfortable piece to wear when the temperature drops.
I recently took the Tashi Mock Neck up Wheeler Peak, the highest mountain in New Mexico at 13,161 feet. The sweater performed admirably at the colder, higher altitude. As with most sweaters, the wind tends to cut through a little bit but the Tashi kept me plenty warm. Once I started moving again in the hot sun and cold air of the summit, the PowerDry fabric really shines in letting moisture wick away while the merino wool fabric helps keep me warm. Merino also has the benefit of not holding odor like all synthetic fabrics and when you’re being active and sweating, the Tashi doesn’t smell terrible after a few days on the trail. That’s a great benefit for you and your hiking buddies to have!
One thing I noticed about the Tashi is that since the wrist hem has no elastic, it can be difficult to slide up the long sleeves if you need to but it was a minor qualm at best. The comfortable, semi-loose fit of the sweater makes it a great piece for layering and since the zipper is off-set, it works very well with any base layer.
The more I’ve worn the Tashi around, the more and more compliments I get about others simply liking how it looks. The design stands out away from other technical midlayer sweaters and for me, that is a very good thing. Wearing a piece of clothing made in Nepal and bearing the name Sherpa makes me feel that much closer to the Himalaya and I don’t get that feeling with other brands. The Sherpa culture and influence seems to radiate from the piece and you feel empowered to tackle the world’s highest peaks. The Tashi Mock Neck is an excellent technical sweater that I am thoroughly enjoying and and excited to take it even more places in the great outdoors! Hitting the trail again in an hour but I’ll update you all soon!
$109 – sherpaadventuregear.com