Marijuana Strain Reviews

Why Colorado Tokers Love Sweat Helmet

Sweat Helmet smells much better than it sounds.
Sweat Helmet smells much better than it sounds. Herbert Fuego
Picking strain partners for a breeding experiment is becoming more science than art as growers, customers and genetic researchers come closer together. Entire seed banks are now built on a stud strain, bred with different flavorful varieties to create new lineups for years. Grape Pie and Rare Dankness are just a couple of backbone strains popular with breeders, while Washington-based Exotic Genetix has planted its flag in Grease Monkey.

A strong yielder with reliable potency, Grease Monkey has been paired with strains like Lemon Tree, Runtz, Zkittlez and its own father, Cookies & Cream, to create strains popular in their own right. My handful of experiences with Grease Monkey provided nothing memorable, but finding out that Den-Rec, a Denver operation run by Ryan Bufkin, had taken in a Grease Monkey child was enough for me to give the family tree another chance. And after a week of amazing sleep, I might have to give more Exotic Genetix relatives a call.

Den-Rec's Grease Monkey foray was Sweat Helmet, a nighttime hybrid with a Sunset Sherbet mother. Although a funky helmet didn't sound like the first thing I wanted in my joint, the jar of gleaming violet buds seduced me on sight, and the sharp, sweet flavor quickly disarmed my concerns. This Sweat Helmet swiftly won me over in a way that musty Pro-Techs at the skate park never would.

I respected Sweat Helmet's reputation and saved my first session for 10 p.m., but it should have been earlier. Although mentally relaxing, at first the high wasn't heavy. Sitting down in front of the TV didn't satisfy my curiosity, so I put on headphones and took a walk around my neighborhood, covering a mile before I recognized it. Upon returning home, I sank into the couch and didn't move until 7 a.m. the next day. It became obvious that even though Sweat Helmet doesn't put me to sleep in fifteen minutes, it's a damn good mid-week primer for a late dinner and bed, and a smart way to counteract any coffee jitters left over from work.

Den-Rec, 1136 Yuma, Doc's Apothecary, the Farmers Market, Karing Kind and Native Roots have all been caught with Sweat Helmet, with Willie's Reserve supplying the majority. You might find it at other stores that carry Willie's Reserve, but Den-Rec's in-house cut is the better bedtime companion. If you can't find Sweat Helmet flower and still want to experience some of the strain's flavor and high, look out for the Greenery Hash Factory's Lebanese and Moroccan hash mixtures of the strain.

Looks: Bulbous and chunky, Sweat Helmet's buds range from wintergreen to an intense purple, with a prickly coat of trichomes that brings flashbacks of pulling real weeds in the front yard.

Smell: Funky, skunky, sharp and fruity could all be used to describe Sweat Helmet's aroma, a smorgasbord of the strain's Gorilla Glue and Cookies lineage. I tend to notice sour notes of lemon and skunk up front blanketed by a subtle tennis-ball smell, followed by sweet hints of raspberries.

Flavor: I taste more rubber and Skunk in Sweat Helmet than anything sweet, with the raspberry and doughy Cookies characteristics taking a quiet back seat to lemon-citrus flavors in the aftertaste.

Effects: Sweat Helmet doesn't take me out immediately, but I can always feel it settling in like a movie I've seen fifty times over. The stress relief is instant, giving me a manageable sense of bliss as my eyes slowly puff up. Those therapeutic effects are an easy pre-game move for bedtime, especially if a meal comes soon after the session, but the best part of Sweat Helmet's high is that it allows me to enjoy the ride for an hour or two before my eyes shut for good. For a modern strain, it's a classic 9 p.m. smoke.

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Herbert Fuego is the resident stoner at Westword, ready to answer all your marijuana questions.
Contact: Herbert Fuego