I'm looking for suggestions on the best shirt to wear on rides in the Summer. I know there are plenty of you that ride in Death Valley at noon in the middle of the summer, that might suggest that I just suck it up, but the reality is that I won't; not to that degree anyway.
I've picked up some great sandals and ultralight wool socks and that has really helped for my feet. I also was given a lightweight wool t-shirt that seems to do just as well, or maybe a touch better than the loose cotton t-shirt I used last time it was warm. The wool wicks better, and stays dry, but I still begin to get uncomfortable at too low a temperature. There's also a balance that I would like to acheive with protecting from the sun as well, ideally the best shirt would protect the arms so I don't have to cover with sunscreen for every ride.
There seem to be lots of options: loose fitting shirts made for sun protection but to keep you cool, tight synthetics, tight summerweight wool, and Jerseys. There are a lot of different brands to consider Smartwool, Ibex, Underarmour, CoolMax, generic (Target's C9). Cost could certainly factor in (like if C9 for $10 was almost as good as $70 Ibex). Is there a reason that the summerweight wool shirts are typically such dark colors - doesn't that seem counterproductive? I don't need to make a fashion statement - I would just like to find the shirt that will keep me riding into the summer the longest, and get me back on the bike the quickest once the heat has peaked. Thanks.