Snowy weather and cold temperatures are no reason to hang up your bike this winter. With the right clothing and equipment you can avoid the trainer and head outside for the open roads.
However, staying warm on these winter rides can get tricky with changing temperatures and sudden rain or snow showers. Here at BikeRadar we’ve given some women’s long sleeve jerseys – Gore’s Power 2.0 Thermo Lady, Bontrager’s RXL Thermal and Rapha’s Women’s Souplesse – a thorough workout in different conditions to see which ones will keep you warm and happy this season.
Gore Power 2.0 Thermo Lady jersey
Gore’s Power 2.0 Thermo Lady is the best of our bunch
Gore keeps things simple with the Power 2.0 Thermo Lady Jersey. The brushed inside is soft and comfortable while the outside material is suited for the winter elements. Three large pockets easily fit extra jackets, vests, and gloves in case the temperatures drop mid-ride. An additional security pocket zips shut and keeps valuables safely tucked away.
The 2.0 Power Jersey is a mid-weight jersey – warmer than the Bontrager and lighter than the Rapha – and suited for colder days on the bike. However, it’s still thin enough to easily fit under extra layers without feeling bulky or restricting.
With nine different shades available, the 2.0 Power Jersey will suit anyone’s style and preferences – and is reasonably priced.
$130 / £90
Bontrager RXL Thermal jersey
The colorful Bontrager RXL Thermal jersey quickly won us over with its lightweight Profila Thermal fabric, which feels cozy but not bulky. This material also traps in heat and wicks wetness to keep you warm and dry on wintry rides.
Grippers on the back of the jersey prevent it from riding up and keep everything fully covered and protected even when bent over in the riding position. Perfect for mild mornings or cool winter days, the RXL Jersey is fairly lightweight and a great base for adding extra layers during rides in more severe conditions.
The sleeve cuffs are a bit loose – our only complaint about the RXL. The thin elastic around the wrists doesn’t seal off the arms and cold air easily sneaks up the sleeves while riding. Even so, the RXL jersey is a steal. With the lowest price of this roundup, it is a great choice for any budget-minded cyclist looking to brave the elements this season
$110 / £90
Rapha Women’s Souplesse jacket
Rapha’s Souplesse is halfway between a jacket and jersey
Cold, wet, and snowy rides have met their match this winter with the Rapha Women’s Souplesse jacket. Despite the maker’s description, it’s not actually a jacket but it’s not a jersey either. The Souplesse is something in between that takes the best of both sides to create a superb piece of clothing.
The fabric is insulated yet breathable to keep you warm and protected without overheating. The front is windproof while the back is lighter and easily vents extra heat and moisture. The windproof material makes for a tighter, stiffer fit, but the jacket is well tailored and both looks and feels great.
Given that it walks the line between jacket and jersey, the Souplesse is certainly meant for colder and wetter riding conditions. However, it’s not too thick to accommodate additional jackets or vests when temperatures get extra cold.
While the Souplesse does have three back pockets (plus an extra valuables zipper pocket) the middle one is quite narrow and it’s difficult to squeeze in more than a hat or small pair of gloves. However, this garment is so warm and windproof that you may not need to carry as much extra clothing as usual.
The Souplesse definitely isn’t the most affordable option in this roundup. However, it bridges the gap from jersey to jacket in the most stylish and comfortable way we’ve seen. When it’s too cold out for just a jersey but not quite cold enough for a thick and bulky jacket, this truly has you covered.
$195 / £130