Gear Review: The Trapper Hat by Screamer

A good winter hat should be at least treasured, and these just might turn you into a Screamer.

Hats, I have to admit, are a source of eternal frustration to me in the winter. I like my ears covered, and maybe to have a little protection for my face as well as the top of my head. However, I have really yet to find the perfect winter hat, essentially because nothing I’ve tried every stays in place properly.

Toques are a frustration, because they ride up my somewhat over-sized melon like someone trying to sneak out the door from a boring party. I’m a fan of Peruvian-style and trapper hats, because at least I can try to tie them into place using what someone I met last week not-so-kindly refers to as idiot-straps.


“I don’t mean you of course,” he hastened to add, eyeballing my Peruvian hat with string exposed to the world.

I took no real offence at the comment. I’d rather have a hat with idiot strings when I’m in temperatures pushing -30 and -40C and be warm than be cold and fashionable, but that’s just me.

That’s where the Screamer Trapper Aviation hat comes in handy. This is a hat with lots or warmth, a handy and practical nylon shell, and the proverbial idiot strap to help ensure the hat stays put. Actually, it’s more of a hook and loop style, but that just doesn’t have the panache of idiot strap, does it? Really, what more do you need in a hat?

How about a little style? The Screamer Trapper Aviator has it in spades. To my mind, it radiates cool… and practicality. Did I mention I’m a fan of practicality?

Screamer traces its roots all the way back in 1992 when Steve and Jan Burkholder first met:

“We were both working square-peg-in-round-hole type jobs,” Jan states on the company website. “Our professional careers were hardly full of days full of SCREAMERS so we made up for it in our personal lives, always seeking some fun, often accomplished through a mutual love of the outdoors; biking, hiking, skiing and more. In early 1993 we gathered a group of our 24 closest ski friends and headed for the powder of Park City, Utah in pursuit of some mid-winter Screamers.”

“On a whim we decided it would be fun to make the whole group matching hats as an easy way to spot each other on the slopes. Unbeknownst to us at the time, those were the first few stitches in the now long history of Screamer Hats. Getting back to the story…a friend had suggested that I make the hats for Steve and I a bit different, to signify we were the group’s ring-leaders. So be it, I did. I guess I did so just enough to be attention grabbing as one fine day we were walking past the plentiful shops in Park City heading for the gondola when some store owner actually comes running out of his shop and says, “I love your hats! Where did you get them? I want to buy some.”

The rest, as they say is history.

For more information on Screamer Hats, visit

One thought on “Gear Review: The Trapper Hat by Screamer

  1. I have lived north of sixty for 40 years and have never heard the strings to tying ear flaps called idiot strings. That term is used for the strings for tying you mitts or gloves to yourself. Most are like a small shoulder harness that slips over the head and sits on the shoulders . Greg

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