I recently retired my Sunday Afternoons Solar Bucket in favour of trying something new, the great thing about the Solar Bucket is its wide brim and packablity, so I needed something with at least those two attributes – the Helios hat fits the bill and in fact has a wider brim than my trusty Solar Bucket and as neither hat has a wired brim they can be stuffed into a rucksack without any serious damage.
The brim on the Helios Hat will bend out of shape, but it can be recovered with bit of effort and a little recovery time. There’s a cord chin strap which is removable if you don’t want it – I normally keep these as I thread the chest strap of my pack through it – this keeps it out of the way while providing security in the event of a strong gust of wind whipping it foo your head.
Having said that the Helios hat has a crown cinch cord which allows you to keep it secure in windy conditions – this works very well as its at the brim position and adjusts about a third of the perimeter.
Finally the material in the crown is very lightweight compared to the brim (although it still provides 50+ Factor protection), exactly what you need in a sun hat, along with the internal sweatband so that you don’t end up with sweat in your eyes.
I appreciated this hat on a recent trek in Peru – it’s a no-nonsense piece of kit that provides a high level of protection and needs no looking after.