Most people aren’t aware that Montrail has been part of Columbia for the last 11 years, but this year is really the moment when they are stepping out hand in hand. The new branding now combines into Columbia and Montreal into a single lock-up which looks a lot like Columbia’s Titantium line, but clearly welcomes them into the family. The good news is, nothing has really changed except the logo.
Titan Ultra Half Zip Shirt
Retailing at $70, Titan Ultra Half Zip has become a staple for me this spring. It fits true to size (more athletic fit than other Columbia models), comes in red, grey, and light green, and is super light. It features Columbia’s Omni-Freeze and Omni-Wick technologies, which in everyday terms means it breathes well and keeps the sweat off your body. For me, its all about the lightweight material and believe me, I have plenty of half-zips in my drawer. This thing weighs next to nothing yet still does a good job keeping me warm on cooler days, but somehow I don’t overheat when the temperature shifts warmer during the run or even need to roll the sleeves. It also has a nice drop tail, so you get better coverage in the rear. My only nitpick is the lack of any pockets at all, but you can always through a gel in your shorts or in a hydration pack. You can find out more on their site here.
Titan Ultra Short Sleeve Shirt
This is your staple base layer in the spring and a really easy go to on warmer days. It’s exactly the same as the Half-Zip in terms of tech, using Omni-Freeze and Omni-Wick as well. In fact, it’s almost like they were built to be worn together… which I do, all the time. My biggest problem here is probably the $55 price tag for a short sleeve performance tee, but fit and feel are on point. It is available in white, grey, and lime green (and there was a red version as well) and you can find out more or purchase here.
Titan Ultra Short
This is definitely my second favorite of the bunch and from the time I tried them on I was hooked. It’s a solid length, coming in at 5 inches, and it has all the tech of the above including Omni-Wick and also Omni-Shield (repels water really well and will not stain). It has an interior compression brief which I require of any short. It does have hand pockets, but the rear zip pocket is honestly nice and roomy and gives you plenty of space for a gel, keys, or other small items. My favorite part is the waist band, it’s elastic which means no drawstrings! I honestly have no clue why more companies aren’t going this way and while I know some people worry about chaffing, if you build it well then its not an issue. In the case of the Ultra Shorts, my biggest problem is really the little vented side panels and their durability. If you are wearing a top or a hydration belt that rubs against them at all, this material gets worn very quickly… almost to the point of being a flaw in the design. For $60, they are competitively priced, perform really well, and the fit and feel is solid
After spending some time with the new Columbia Montrail spring lineup, I can definitely say I am excited by the direction. Taking Columbia technology and applying it with Montrail styling is a great way to go. This lineup is a really good reflection of how to integrate two brands together in a way that should really improve the consumer experience.