Howies Dyfi Active Shell jacket £39

Windproof outer layer with decent breathability

BikeRadar score 4/5

The windproof Howies Dyfi Active Shell jacket stops wind from stealing your soul… Uh, body heat, when you get caught out by shady evenings or windy hilltops. The hydrophobic coating shrugs off splashes and light showers, but soaks through in full-on rain.

It’s fine having a windproof and splash-proof shell, but without breathability you end up wet anyway. The Dyfi’s main fabric is reasonably good, but most of the breathability comes via the stretchy fabric on the inside of the arms down to the waist. This keeps things dry inside and isn’t in an area that’s affected by wind and rain. 

The stretch panels aid fit too; it’s generous without being flappy. There’s plenty of room around the torso to put it over a couple of layers, the shoulders can move unrestricted and the cuffs don’t pull up at full reach either. 

We’d like to see the back drop a little further for those who prefer a racier riding position, and there aren’t any pit zips for extra venting – at this price, though, it’s not a deal breaker.

At 218g for a medium, weight and price is reasonable, both helped by its relatively simple design, with a full length standard zip and a single chest pocket (which doubles as a stuff-sack too). 

The pocket has a headphone port, and it’s a nice touch to see one by the collar too. A reflective patch on the back and two by the wrists are ideal for signalling in traffic.

This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

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