Fall found our little corner of the East. Although I miss the mountains of Colorado, Vermont autumn is something to be cherished. I’ve been stealing runs in the Dynafit Trail Tank and Trail DST Shorts through the changing foliage. I often choose the ridge-line above the Mad River Valley to daydream about snow in full view of Mad River Glen and Sugarbush — the ski runs like veins through a colored landscape.
We’ve been fortunate to have cool, sunny days perfect for testing out this Dynafit kit that Wildsnow previewed at the 2013 Summer Outdoor Retailers Show, available Spring 2014. In 2012, Dynafit launched its line of summer alpine running textiles for “Speed Mountaineering,” tapping into the market of alpine runners who do their off-season training on the same mountains they ski. The line focuses on smart, minimal designs with high-tech materials.
Together, the Trail Tank and DST Shorts embody Dynafit’s efforts in the alpine running world. The design is minimal, materials are high-quality, and the get-up is pretty stealth. It doesn’t hurt your training psychology when your clothes make you feel fast. The tank is a close-fit poly top with UV protection and underarm venting. The straps are wide and stable and don’t rub or shift in sustained effort. My favorite feature is the high-cut arm holes, which keep the top’s structure in place and prevent skin-to-skin chafing.
The Trail DST Shorts are a welcome deviation from classic women’s training shorts. The cut is longer, with an inseam measuring around 3.5 inches. They feature a wide, elastic waistband that doesn’t cut into you, no matter how many pancakes you ate before running up that mountain. The subtle side-vents and lightweight material make these shorts breathable and comfortable. The shorts have one back zip-pocket perfect for a car key or a GU packet, but don’t expect to be able to pack much into this kit.
Only a few issues with this new iteration of Dynafit’s alpine running gear. The top is dangerously close to being too short on us long-torso ladies. This is fine if you wear the top and shorts together because the shorts can be worn high. It would pose some problems, however, if you tried to wear any sort of fuel belt. I also have long-standing confusion about the utility of a built-in bra in a top like this. Even for the small busted, it’s not enough for activities more strenuous than cruising the local farmer’s market. It just seems like a constricting waste if you have to wear a sports bra under it anyway. Lastly, the seams on the inner-thighs of the shorts became rather sharp after a few hours of fatigue.
All in all, this would be a great training and racing kit to get out and enjoy the climbs, leaves, or whatever it is that gets you out into the mountains when the snow’s not flying.
Jess Portmess currently lives in Boulder, Colorado. Having grown up in New York and Vermont, she’s now chasing snow covered peaks, endless trails, and a legal career in the West