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Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero Review

Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero
OR Seattle Sombrero
Credit: Outdoor Research
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Price:  $65 List | $32.48 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Totally waterproof, style, decent sun protection.
Cons:  Not breathable, the dark colors absorb more sunlight than lighter hats.
Manufacturer:   Outdoor Research
By Devin Chance ⋅   ⋅  Jul 2, 2012
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  • Protection - 30% 6.0
  • Breathability - 20% 4.0
  • Comfort - 20% 8.0
  • Durability - 15% 9.0
  • Style - 15% 7.0

Our Verdict

The Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero was the only hat we tested that is totally waterproof. It isn't the best hat for hot days, but it does great in the rain and on cold sunny winter days. The brim and top of the hat are made with waterproof Gore-Tex, making it great in the rain and snow. This Gore-Tex also prevents more UV radiation from coming through than any other hat does. So if you are looking for a warm hat for those cold sunny days, or a hat that will protect you while it's raining, then this is the hat for you. If you want a hat that can breathe and has a little bit more protection, then check out the review for the Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat or the Outdoor Research Sombriolet.

Our Analysis and Test Results


There is no UPF rating for this hat, but because of the Gore-Tex laminate and many layers it would most likely be rated higher than UPF 50. The brim measures 2 1/2" in the front 4" in the back and 2 3/4" for the sides. It's not the biggest brim we tested, but it will still give you some good protection. Unlike the other hats we tested, this hat is waterproof and will keep your head totally protected in a rainstorm. However if you know you are looking for a hat with more protection from the sun, then check out the review on the Outdoor Research Sun Runner Cap


This was one of the more comfortable hats we tested, mainly due to the soft Brushed Tricot Lining which makes your head feel nice and cozy. It also has a Velcro strap in the back for tightening, and a removable chin cord for when it gets windy. But if you want your head to be really comfortable, then check out the lighter, more comfortable Outdoor Research Sun Bucket.


This was the least breathable hat we tested because it's meant for colder and wetter conditions while the other hats are meant for warmer, sunnier conditions. That said, we love it in the cold because it keeps the heat inside the hat, keeping us warm, and if we do any high output activities with it on the liner does a good job of wicking some of the sweat off your brow. If you are looking for a hat that is very breathable and better for more high output activities such as running, then check out the Outdoor Research Sombriolet.


Because this hat is made with heavier materials it is more durable than most of the lighter weight hats we tested. We haven't had any issues with it throughout the months of testing except that the waterproof coating needs to be reapplied every once in a while. Other than that it is a very well made, burly hat.


The Seattle Sombrero isn't the most stylish hat out there, but it also isn't the ugliest. It comes in a variety of colors (red, blue, black, green, yellow, etc…) and some of them will give you more weird looks than others. However, overall we liked the style of this hat and enjoyed wearing it over a lot of the other hats even if it wasn't the most practical thing to wear.

Devin Chance
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