Yak Wool – the next wool revelation? Peak to Plateau is bringing Tibetan Yak Wool to the outdoor sporting community. No longer will yak wool be just for Mongolian yak herders! On paper, yak wool looks really impressive. It is warmer than merino and therefore lighter weight to achieve the same insulation. We put the Peak to Plateau Kailash and Herder’s beanie to the test in our own mountains of Colorado.
Who is Peak to Plateau?
Peak to Plateau started in 2015 after the founder, Stefan, a Kiwi, and appreciator of New Zealand Merino wool spent several months traveling the Mongolian Steppe. He spent much time with the herders on his adventures through the Himalayas. Learning all about the benefits of yak wool and experiencing it first hand. After the traveling, he envisioned bringing this natural fiber to other adventures and helping the native yak herders by offering fair prices for their wool. Their mission is to create a superior wool garment and support the Tibetan herders. Sounds pretty awesome!
How does Yak Wool perform?
I took the Kailash 1/4 zip long sleeve shirt and Herder’s beanie out for a week of hiking, camping, lounging and sweating in the Rocky Mountains. Most of the time was spent at 11-12k feet with temps as high as 75° during the day and 30s at night. It rained much of the time as well. Good conditions to really test garments out. We have been testing a lot of wool over the last few years, so we have some expectations on what a good wool garment should do.
Peak to Plateau Yak Wool Review
We were pleasantly surprised by the Peak to Plateau Yak wool. First, it feels like cashmere! Mind blown. The feel is so amazing that you don’t want to take it off. So we didn’t. We wore the shirt non-stop for 2 days of hiking and camping. What we noticed was the fabric always felt comfortable. It never itched or got too warm (or cold). It just worked. The beanie was easily the most comfortable beanie we have worn. Both the Kailash and beanie are thin, which is very desirable for us. They are lightweight and perform like a heavier weight wool. In fact, there is proof that the Yak wool (190g) is as warm as 260g Merino wool! Think about that for a moment. You get the same thermal resistance (how warm it will keep you) from a 190gsm yak wool as you would a 260gsm Merino wool.
Helping the Herders
Peak to Plateau is doing a great job of creating an opportunity for the Tibetan yak herders to maintain and grow their business while providing the rest of the world with a truly great wool garment. We are impressed with the warm to weight ratio, the softness of the fabric and ethical way of creating a mutually beneficial business. Peak to Plateau offers several products, from 1/4-zips to long and short sleeve crews and beanies. Grab it all from their website.
Kailash 1/4 Zip Long Sleeve MSRP $118
Herder’s Beanie MSRP $36
Nomad Crew Long Sleeve MSRP $108
Namtso Short Sleeve MSRP $88
Concordia Leggings MSRP $100
40 Below Neck warmer MSRP $36