cycling jackets to keep you warm in the coldest weather

cycling jackets to keep you warm in the coldest weather

The British winter, much like the British summer, is a strange beast that often can’t make up its mind what it wants to be.

Unless you live in the far north of England, in Scotland or high up in the Welsh mountains, chances are you’ll only get a few really extreme days and most of the time it will be fairly mild.

This leaves you with a bit of a clothing dilemma. It’s too cold to wear just a regular jersey, even with a decent base layer, but a full winter jacket, on the other hand, will be far too warm.

Luckily, most makers of cycling clothing recognise this and so offer garments that are somewhere between the two – essentially regular jerseys but with long sleeves and made from fabrics that offer a bit of extra protection from the elements, such as thermal Roubaix Lycra to keep you warm, and occasionally with some degree of water-resistance, if not full waterproofing.

While your legs are constantly moving on a bike, your torso and arms spend a lot of the time pretty static on the bike. Keeping them warm by wearing a great fitting winter cycling jackets is paramount, not only for your riding enjoyment, but as the key controllers of your bike, in keeping you safe too.

The difference between winter racing and a gentle commute in the coldest months of the year is vast. Meeting your specific needs is careful balancing act of keeping the weather out and the warmth in and the best winter cycling jacket for you will need to match these exacting requirements.

Often ‘thermal’ and made from a Roubaix-style soft, fleece-backed fabric, the winter cycling jackets will come with a reinforced windstopper front, which is often paired to a more breathable fabric at the back to allow for heat dissipation.

Waterproofing is something you’ll also find in the many winter cycling jackets, along with storm flaps on the zips, either internal or external. Pockets will often be waterproofed with zips or flaps, as well as deeper – designed for stowing one of the  best waterproof cycling jacket or best cycling gilets.

Shorter days and longer nights in winter will mean that at some point you’re probably going to be riding in the dark, or at least lower light levels, so winter cycling jackets often come with more reflective details than most of the short sleeved summer cycling jerseys.