We recently caught up with adventure lover Kim Havell to hear about her two week trek through the Salkantay Trail in Peru. Kim and her partner Pete Linn were planning to visit Antarctica when plans fell through. But they didn’t let that get in the way of an adventure, and instead honed in on South America and booked flights to Peru after what even they’ll admit was fairly limited preparation and planning. Turns out they discovered unbeaten tracks, new cultures and just how good our MicroMerino® really is.

Kim trekking through the Salkantay Trail with all 60 pounds of gear on her back

Having skied on all seven continents, with first descents on four, it’s fair to say Kim loves a good mountain adventure. She’s ventured to over 50 countries with climbs, skis and hikes up, down and around some of the highest peaks and biggest mountains in the world. So when National Geographic announced the Salkantay Trail as one of the top 25 trekking destinations in the world – Kim couldn’t resist.

So off they went, embarking on one heck of an adventure at the beginning of the monsoon season while planning to carry all 60 pounds of gear on their backs.

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According to Kim, packing for this trip was more difficult than usual. She says, “we had to prepare for a two week adventure that would take us from sea-level rainforest to a mountain pass at sixteen thousand feet with everything on our backs.

“We had to pack for snow, rain, heat, insects and everything in between while keeping our load manageable for long days with unknown mileage and undetermined camps.

“Our gear had to be simple, light and effective. We needed clothing that would work through a large temperature gradient, layers to protect us in different climates”.

Kim packed her I/O Merino Altitude Tees, Altitude Full Length Tights, Zodiac Boy Briefs and Nordic Vest. According to her, “wool is the only way to go”. Our range of MicroMerino® base and mid layers are perfect for a trip like this as they’re not only incredibly lightweight and easy to pack but the antimicrobial properties help keep you smelling fresh for days (maybe even weeks) at a time. What’s more, when you come face to face with a range of extreme weather conditions, the natural temperature regulation and breathability helps keep you warm when it’s cold and cool when it’s warm.

“We had to pack for snow, rain, heat, insects and everything in between”

“These layers are light and efficient to carry but pack a lot of punch” Kim explains. “They wick well, keeping moisture off the body and they regulate the body temperatures from hot, humid to cold, dry sensationally well.

“The underwear (Zodiac Boy Brief) is fantastic. Comfortable and ideal for mountain travel. The tees (Altitude Active Tee) offer just the right protection in varying degrees of hot and cold. And, the long underwear (Altitude Full Length Tight) is light and simple to use to keep layering systems flexible and maintain good mobility”.

Click here to see a complete list with the gear Kim and Pete packed.
*All images supplied by Kim Havell
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