Review: Fall/Winter Cycling Clothes
This year's crop of fall/winter cycling clothing offers outstanding technical features.
With the ever-increasing popularity of cyclocross riding, not to mention the fact that many athletes seem to be willing to brave cold conditions to get their cycling fix, investing in some fall or winter training gear probably makes more sense than ever. This year’s crop of winter cycling clothing offers some outstanding technical features, and great looks, too. Here’s a look at some of the offerings available at your favourite cycling or triathlon store this fall.
iJ.habu5 ($429) and tK.607 ($329)
Continuing the Assos tradition of outstanding craftsmanship and attention to detail in it’s high performance cycling clothes, the iJ.haBu5 insulator jacket offers outstanding warmth in a lightweight jacket that will keep you comfortable in early winter conditions without feeling like you look like the Michelin man. The iJ.haBu5 will keep out the elements thanks to the airblock protection and high collar. There’s a reflective front zipper, Assos Stabilizer Technology on the rear back panel and two zippered rear pockets. All tech-talk aside, this jacket looks and feels great while providing outstanding performance features. Pair this with one of the Assos ClimaRange base layers and you’re guaranteed to be comfortable even in the coldest conditions later this year. If you’re a fan of the Assos T bibshort, and, really, who isn’t, this lycra knicker provides anatomical compression performance without any bunching around the back part of your knee. Ideal for spring, fall and early winter riding, especially when combined with the habu jacket.
Womens: ETS LS jersey ($145), Ultimate tights ($150) and Geminix ($150)
Made with brushed, breathable fabric that wicks moisture away from your body and helps maintain a constant body temperature, the ECS LS jersey is a great pick for early spring riding, or as an underlayer for really cold days. The women’s specific construction in the Ultimate tights use a wide waistband for even distribution of pressure around the waist, while Power Lycra panels use compression to aid blood circulation and muscle performance. The final piece of the women’s outdoor-riding picture is the super-comfortable and form-fitting Geminix jacket made with WindDry 12k fabric that’s waterproof and breathable.
Men: ETS LS Jersey ($145), Massimo Bib 2 ($195), Massimo 2 Jacket ($170)
The men’s ECS LS Jersey will also serve as a great early spring or fall piece, or a perfect first layer on colder days. Add the mix the Massimo Bib 2 tight made with moisture-managing lycra that offers both wind and water protection and then finish off your cold-weather outfit with the Massimo 2 Jacket. Extremely comfortable thanks to the four-way stretch fabric, the Massimo 2 is warm, waterproof and breathable.
Inferno Long Sleeve Jersey ($160)
Arenberg Bib Knicker ($160)
Offering winter weight thermal protection for cold conditions, the Arenberg Bib Knicker uses Hincapie’s comfortable SuperRoubaix fleece fabric for warmth and breathability. The comfortable Power Chamois moves with the rider, too, making this a great choice for those long days in the saddle. These are cut very long and have Gel-Grip Elastic leg openings so they won’t ride up. The Inferno Long Sleeve Jersey uses a textured external fabric for durability, while the ThermoRoubaix fleece on the inside will keep you warm. The jersey is seemless under the arms, over the shoulders and at the neckline for added comfort and an ergonomic fit. There are two oversize pockets in the back and a zippered security pocket that provides access to headphones.
Eureka Jersey and Eureka Jacket (Pricing not available at press time)
Therminal Tight (Pricing not available at press time)
Using high-tech Therminal fabric which is brushed for loft and insulation, these tights provide varying amounts of insulation depending on the conditions. As with so much of Specialized’s products, ergonomics are integrated into the design – in this case the ankle zips are angled for optimal fit and ease of use. Using VapoRize material, the Eureka Jersey will keep you warm while also wicking sweat away from your body. There are splash resistant rear pockets and a zippered security pocket for valuables, extra clothes or snacks. The full-length zipper is specially designed to be smooth against your body. The Eureka Jacket will allow you to get out the door on through even the most challenging weather conditions thanks to the water-resistant Element soft shell material that provides lots of form-fitting protection. It’s specifically designed to expand so you can layer appropriately underneath. The soft fleece inner layer keeps you warm and comfortable, while the Velcro-adjusted cuffs keep the sleeves snug to keep out the elements.
P.R.O Thermal Jersey ($180)
Barrier Long Sleeve Baselayer ($80)
Thanks to the P.R.O Thermal fabric, the Thermal Jersey provides lots of warmth and moisture transfer. The countoured fit along with the elasticized gripper make this a snug-fitting, comfortable top that won’t ride up. There are three back pockets and one zippered chest pocket for your phone or valuables. We really liked the one hand pull elastic draw cord at the collar to help bundle things up when the temperature drops. Combining a windproof front panel and Pearl Izumi’s P.R.O. Transfer Fabric, the crewneck Barrier Long Sleeve Baselayer will provide some on-the-skin warmth for even the most demanding of weather conditions.
Membrane Jacket ($249)
Using 2XU’s Lite Membrane Fabric which is, well, super light as well as waterproof, this comfortable, form-fitting unisex jacket will keep you protected from the elements while also wicking moisture away from your body. The droptail design also has a silicone gripper to stop it from riding up. The full length zipper has an internal storm flap to help keep rain out, while the two additional layers of micro-filament polyester will keep you warm and dry, too.
Thermal Compression Leg Warmers ($80)
If you like Zoot’s compression tights, which we do, you’ll love these leg warmers that offer the perfect compromise for those long fall rides that start out cold and warm up after a couple of hours. Using Zoot’s graduated compression technology, these comfortable leg warmers will keep you warm while also helping blood flow through your legs for enhanced performance on your ride.