Traveler's Gear Box: DryDudz

DRY DUDZ are an evolved version of boardshorts that dry extremely quickly and are perfect for river trips. If the price doesn't catch your breath.

River trips inherently involve getting wet. And then getting dry, and getting wet again. Throughout the day. So what you wear is critical to your comfort level throughout the day. And that's where DRY DUDZ come into play.

My typical paddling wear involves either a swimsuit or a pair of shorts. DRY DUDZ evolves these a bit by replacing the usual mesh liner (which can be extremely loose fitting) with a stretchy DD Quick Dry wikTec fabric liner short that you wear beneath a pair of polyester boardshorts. The combination of the two resolves the problem of a too-loose mesh liner and offers a more stylish appearance, one that's extremely quick drying.

The company claims the liner shorts dry more quickly than a somewhat similar pair of shorts that utilize a greater percentage of Spandex through a waffle-weave that pulls moisture away from your body and improves ventilation to help with drying and comfort. And the fabrics are treated with an antibacterial coating to fight odors that might arise during long trips.

To prevent the boardshorts and the liner from going different ways, the company developed what it calls a "Quick Mount System" in which a Velcro tab on the liners fits into a slot in the back of the boardshorts' waist band.

A recent four-day trip down the Green River through Dinosaur National Monument provided a perfect opportunity to field test DRY DUDZ. They performed as advertised, providing a quick drying and extremely comfortable fit throughout the trip.

That said, there are a couple of issues you might have with these shorts. One is that they won't comfortably fit large girths, say anything over 35 or 36 inches. The other is their cost: $95 for a pair of men's, and $85 for the women's version.

And if you like pockets, these will take some getting used to. There's a small zippered pocket on the left side good for holding Chapstick or some other small item, and a small back pocket that closes with Velcro. And that's it.