Salt Lake City-based Snek Cycling has developed a growing lineup of cycling apparel and accessories via crowd and self-funding. The all-new Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee goes back to the Kickstarter model as Snek launches a high-quality Merino pocket tee for cycling, lounging or for daily use.
Snek Cycling Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee Features:
- Modern, Merino wool tee shirt
- Natural anti-microbial fabric
- Moisture-wicking and fast-drying
- Slight drop in the back for added coverage
- Front, left pocket
- MSRP: $95
A sheep shirt with a pocket
Merino wool and me always get along just fine. I have several Merino tees that see regular use — with my two favorites finally showing signs of age after 10+ years of wash and wear. Not all Merino fabric blends are the same, and you always get what you pay for. The Snek Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee isn’t going for the budget market, but every part of this shirt is built for the long-haul.
With your choice of three solid colors, the Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee aims for long-term style with classic colors that will look great both on or off the bike. Beyond that, Merino wool has some of the best antimicrobial properties you’ll find, so it can be worn several times between washing. This makes it better for the environment and it reduces wash cycles (which causes extra wear). Oh, and as a travel shirt, Merino is hard to beat.
To test the Dry Creek Tee, I wanted to see how well it would perform on the bike, trail and around town. What began as a morning mountain bike ride subsequently turned into a 4-day affair to test the antimicrobial limits and versatility of this new shirt.
Day one: Labor Day
I got kitted out with the Gore Wear Fernflow Shorts and the Snek Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee for a morning mountain bike ride (view Strava log). Those particular shorts have handy carrying pockets and the Trek Top Fuel 9.9 features internal storage, so I didn’t necessarily miss my jersey pockets. On that ride, I did notice that the size large is a little flappy at speed (I’m between sizes), but yields extreme comfort. Note that this was all before washing.
After a long climb, I did notice that the front of the shirt tended to capture all my dripping sweat. It pooled up (as you can see) and did cause a little bit of sagging. But, that’s definitely not a death sentence. After that long climb came a fast descent and a subsequent fast pedal back home. And, once home, the fabric was pretty much dry.
I came home to my wife and kids in garage cleaning mode. You’ve been there. I just took it all in stride and proceeded to go about my day, cleaning the garage while wearing the full kit from my bike ride. Later, I decided to wear the shirt into the night and the multi-day test was born. All it took was a quick dab to clean off the sweat marks around the collar and I was all good. My family got a little annoyed as I asked them to do the smell test, but it checked out, so off we went.
After an hour road bike ride, I didn’t have time to shower, so I put the Dry Creek tee on and proceeded with my day, full of online meetings. I also had to zip out to take care of a minor fender-bender that my daughter was involved in (not her fault, no injuries). During that little adventure, I realized how helpful it is to have a pocket. I used it to store my phone and then dropped my Kaenon Clarke sunglasses into it, when signing documents. I then wore it the rest of the day and again asked the family for the sniff test, which it passed.
I had a trail run planned, so the Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee was the obvious choice. I put it on and went on a trail run (view Strava log). At running speeds, you’ll begin to notice that the fabric doesn’t allow much airflow. As a result, it feels warm and wouldn’t be my first choice as a dedicated trail running shirt — particularly in the summer. It was too saturated to wear to the office, so I let it air dry. When I got home from the office, I put it on for the rest of the evening and it again passed the family sniff test.
As a change of pace, it was time to take the pup for a 3-mile walk/hike/run around the hood (see Strava log). I wore it with the Patagonia Slope Runner Endurance Vest and it played nicely with a vest. I didn’t notice any body chafing or any fabric pilling afterwards. The day started coming at me fast after that and I didn’t have a choice but to keep rolling. At the end of the day, there was a tinge of smell, but it still wasn’t terrible. It was finally enough not to pass the family sniff test.
The next week
Now, after washing and drying the shirt, I’m so glad I got the size large. With a family of six, there’s just no way I’m going to reliably care for this shirt as specified. It got washed cold, with dark colors and dried on medium heat and now it fits great as it shrunk down just enough to no longer be flappy. You’ll notice that it will stretch out as you wear it throughout the day.
Wrapping things up, I did go on another trail run to further push its limits. My previous riding and running tests were on days with very low humidity. Just this morning, I went on a 4.5 mile trail run in 55-degrees with 80% humidity (see Strava log). As you can imagine, the whole shirt was drenched, but not beyond what you’d see with other shirts. It does sag a little, but much better than inferior Merino blends. Of course, I’ll post long-term updates with continued use, but it is performing on par with the best Merino shirts I’ve tested.
Fit: I’m 5’11” and 175 lbs. Snek suggested going with the large, since I’m between sizes. It’s a nice fit for casual and athletic use, but definitely not form-fitting. It will shrink in the dryer.
- High-quality Merino fabrics
- Just the right stretch and next-to-skin comfort
- Wicks away moisture and dries quickly
- Stays stink-free after extended use
- Versatile enough for biking, running and around town
- Pocket comes in handy
- Fabric doesn’t allow airflow at low speeds (e.g. trail running)
- Quality doesn’t come cheap
- The inevitable dryer cycle will shrink it (size up)
The Bottom Line: Snek Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee
I heart Merino tees. If I could end it there, I would. Snek’s take on the classic pocket tee does open the door for its use across a variety of disciplines — mountain biking, trail running, hiking or casual wear. With solid colors, a soft hand and a nice cut, the Dry Creek Merino Pocket Tee will be a staple for a long time.
Buy Now: Snek Cycling on Kickstarter