Reviewers Paid: $22.00
60 g / 2.6 oz
I'm a sucker for mountain ridges, topo lines, and the color blue—so this reversible mountain beanie from NativesOutdoors hits a whole lot of high points for me. I bought the White Shell Mountain Beanie six months ago, and despite getting it at the start of summer, I've managed to wear it camping, skate skiing, and hiking in the snow, rain, and wind so far. And it's not even winter yet. This beanie was an easy addition to my hat roster. Plus, $10 of my purchase went to charity.
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Nice outdoors-inspired designs
- Made from partially-recycled polyester
- $10 to COVID Fundraiser
- I don't need another polyester beanie
- Not perfectly round at the top
- I'd like it to be a tiny bit bigger—but I have a big head.
The White Shell Mountain Beanie is a straightforward, comfortable winter hat. It's well made of performance knit partially-recycled polyester. It dries quickly when wet (like all polyester) and is easy to wash if needed. I've worn mine hiking in the rain and snow and it's dried afterwards reasonably quickly. It's also lightweight (60 g/ 2.6 oz) and stuffs into a pack or jacket pocket for convenience.
I'd call the fit of this beanie medium/average unisex. I have a large head and wouldn't mind this beanie being just a tad larger in circumference, but normal noggins will be fine, and I still wear mine a lot. It is a comfortable depth, covering my ears, without also covering my eyes. My only other issue is that it's not completely round on the top, so you can get some points at the seams.
The beanie fits under a climbing or ski helmet, not surprising since the company is founded by a climber. At $22, with $10 going to COVID relief I thought it was reasonably priced.
As mentioned above, I'm a fan of mountain ridges, topo lines, and the color blue. So, this hat is a design winner for me. Plus, it's reversible, so you can switch back and forth. For what it's worth—without any prompting—my middle-school-age daughter has told me several times that she likes this hat, and thinks the lighter blue mountain and trees side is the best (I prefer the darker blue with topo lines).
NativesOutdoors partners with Native designers and artists to develop its gear, and this hat was designed by Vernan Kee (Diné). So, why is a blue hat called the White Shell Mountain Beanie? The name is a reference to the eastern Navajo sacred mountain Sisnaajiní, which is also known as Blanca Peak in Colorado.
This is yet another polyester beanie for hiking, climbing, and other outdoor recreation—though a well-made and nicely designed one—so knowing more about the brand helps set it apart.
NativesOutdoors was founded by Len Necefer (Diné), an avid climber, to highlight stories and photos of Native people in outdoor recreation. Essentially it's an outdoor gear company and an outdoor industry consulting business with a mission to "empower indigenous communities through our products and storytelling for a sustainable world."
The company has a strong climbing vibe. It offers this beanie, trucker hats, tees (I bought my son one for summer trail work), a chalk bag, stickers, and more. It partners with Native athletes—climbers, trail runners, skiers, and others—as ambassadors.
It's also a member of 1% for the Planet; Necefer says the company has donated around 10 percent of its profits on average the past few years. You can read its Environmental Impact Statement.
This is your basic, essential polyester beanie for outdoor activities. It's well made, lightweight, and versatile, so you can throw it in a pack or under a helmet. And since it sports two outdoorsy sides, you get double the value in one hat!
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $22