Badest Shorts in the Land
OK, it’s still April and the weather forecaster is calling for six-to 12 inches of snow today with temperatures starting at 37 and falling to the mid-twenties by afternoon. I’m watching wind-driven snow fly by the window right now, lots of it. A freakin’ whiteout. I’ve got the kids today so I’m shackled a bit, but even with the snow I wish I could be floating the Madison with Tate and Myka, turning over rocks, looking at worms and Baetis nymphs. And casting of course, then handing the rod over to the kidos when a fish hits.
What I’m getting at is this: it’s still late winter in a lot of places, but it’s not too early to expect some 70-degree days. In fact, by the weekend we’re supposed to hit 67 degrees. If that happens, the first thing I’m going to do is pull on a pair of Ex Officio’s Nio Amphi Shorts, which are the most comfortable and useful shorts I’ve worn in a long, long time.
I used to wear a pair of heavy canvas Gotcha shorts that fit well and looked great, but I wet waded with them and they took two days to dry. And they tore apart after a summer. Ex O’s new Nio Amphi Short is made of nylon Ripstop fabric, which is ultra lightweight and super durable. The fabric, according to Ex Officio, is treated with Repeloff, which is new technology that is stain and water resistant. They dry quickly even after being thoroughly soaked. The shorts are cut for knee length, which I really like because I’m still trying to escape those 1980s photos of me wearing John Stockton-like shorts while playing basketball. Did someone shout from the crowd, “Leave something to the imagination!”
Steve Bendzak, general manager of Ex Officio and a dedicated father and fly fisher, says the Nio Amphi shorts are a must-have on any of his travels, which range from family fishing trips in British Columbia to full-on bonefish and permit assaults around the globe.
“The length of the shorts is to the knee, which is not only good for hiding scars from my youthful days of accessing private waters in my shorts, it also keeps me from burning my Seattle skin tone,” Bendzak said. “We positioned the pockets appropriately to house small accessories—chew cans and other necessities. The short is clutch for summer wet wading and the ultimate board-short length for ‘chilaxing’ in the hot tub after a day on the flats.”
You got it guys; Bendzak and Ex Officio are founding sponsors or Angler’s Tonic, so why wouldn’t I say good things about their product, any product? Well, I bought my dad a pair of Ex O zip-off pants/shorts back in the mid-1990s and he still works out in those pants almost every day and they don’t have a broken stitch on them. For a long time the only shirt I fished in was a long-sleeved, collared Ex O shirt, but I lost it while couch surfing back in the late-1990s and I’ve always regretted that. The truth is, I offered Ex O a spot on Tonic because they make great product, clothing I can endorse and feel good about suggesting to you. So, Bendzak sent the Nio Amphi shorts to me last spring and I wore them like crazy last summer and fall and I’ve lounged in them this winter, indoors, in the mornings, next to the wood-burning fireplace. I’ve completed dozens and dozens of wrestling matches with the girls, skidding around on the carpet with these shorts on and nothing to report as suspicious. Total comfort and built solid, snap.
During the hundred or so days I’ve worn these shorts I have no complaints. They fit loose and well, they look great and they perform well on the fishing front. You can come to your own conclusions on these shorts, but I encourage you to buy a pair and wear the heck out of them this year—I think you’ll be just as happy wearing them, and impressed with their build, as I am.
Here’s a link to the Ex O site where you can order direct. www.exofficio.com