Transatlantic Personal-Gear Test
It didn't stop raining for two days, allowing us to discover more than a few deck leaks, including one right over the Harken Squall Bag ($95) that contained all my clean clothes. Fortunately, due to the waterproof fabric and water-resistant zipper, not a drop made it onto my gear.
|The windproof and waterproof Atlantis numbers softshell pullover has a fleece lining.|
With the weather getting a little less torrid after the front, the Atlantis Numbers Softshell Pullover ($275) I'd been wearing solely as night-watch apparel began to come out during the day. Along with the Gill Polo shirts, this pullover was the piece of gear I wore the most, from damp tropical nights in the Caribbean to the cool northwesterly gale of a mistral in the Mediterranean. Its stretchy, windproof, and waterproof fabric and light fleece lining made it my choice most of the time, and, not that there was anyone around to notice, it's really good-looking, too.
As we neared the Azores, nighttime temperatures in the 50s F made a pair of Gill i5 Crosswind Salopettes ($150) a welcome midlayer under foul-weather gear and, when the weather was dry, a good top layer. They were warm and waterproof, and I pulled them on over shorts, as it never got cold enough to break out long johns. When the spray was really flying, I used the Line 7 Ocean Jacket and Trousers ($1,025). Their three layers of waterproof breathable fabric kept me snug and dry. Because they're unlined, both items are fast drying, and the pants are easy to pull on and take off over boots. The collar lived up to expectations, keeping my face and neck dry and comfortable.
I've written about my Dubarry Shamrock boots ($300) before. After three years of fairly heavy use, I haven't changed my mind about any of the good things I've said about these breathable Gortex and leather boots: At the end of a watch, my feet never come out of these boots damp and chilly, as they often did with plain rubber boots.