First look: Capo cold weather kit

Solid-looking gear for the winter months

Winter's harsh conditions can turn riding outdoors into an exercise in masochism, but investment in proper clothing goes a long, long way towards making it more enjoyable.

We just took delivery of a wide range of cold weather gear from Capo and though it's barely November, some unseasonably cold and wintery conditions at our US office in Colorado – plus a bunch of early morning cyclo-cross workouts – have given us a head start on testing it. Stay tuned for more in-depth reviews once we've managed some more time on everything.

Topping the range is the Limited Edition (LE) collection, which uses Capo's highest-end fabrics and more performance-oriented cuts. The LE Jacket features highly insulative Sphere dual-layer polyester weave on the upper front torso and front of the sleeves, stretchy Windtex Dream across the shoulders and upper back, and water-resistant Teflon-treated Thermo Roubaix everywhere else for breathability.

Three rear pockets with a piggybacked zippered pocket plus an additional zipped chest pocket provide plenty of storage, and a tight-fitting hem and cuffs keep drafts at bay. Suggested retail price is a reasonable US$199 (Capo don't have a UK distributor at present).

The matching LE Roubaix Bib Tight uses eight panels of cozy fleece-backed and water-resistant Thermo Roubaix fabric with additional Windtex Dream protection across the front of the shins, knees and thighs. Thermo Roubaix is even used throughout the high-cut torso and bib straps, and zippers down below and up high make it easy to get them on and off. Our $259 test piece also includes a multi-density, multi-thickness stretch Cytech chamois.

Rounding out the LE collection is a range of accessories such as arm ($59) and leg ($69) warmers with wind- and waterproof front panels, snug-fitting fleece-lined gloves ($69) with wind- and water-resistant panels and silicone grippers, matching four-panel booties ($79) and a merino wool short-sleeved base layer whose impressive ability to shield us from winter chill has already nearly made us forget its premium $79 price tag.

Riders who are on a tighter budget (or don't need something quite so burly) can instead look to the $159 Atlas Thermal Jacket with its slightly more generously cut medium-weight Super Roubaix and Winter Quattro brushed fabrics and less-stretchy Windtex Diadema front torso, double-thickness upper back, and tight-fitting cuffs and hem.

Three pockets (an unfortunate rarity for some reason on many other winter jackets) adorn the rear for lugging the essentials and the front zip is a two-way affair for more flexible ventilation options.

More temperate climates look to be a good pairing for the $129 Atlas Wind Vest with its lightweight and highly packable Windtex Flight Plus 2 front and full open-mesh back or the matching Atlas arm ($39) and leg ($69) warmers and Roubaix Hat ($49), all with breathable Super Roubaix construction. 

For those who already have the rest of the Atlas summer-weight gear, it's worth noting that Capo have managed to line up the colours and patterns with all of these accessories perfectly – and we mean perfectly, right down to the little oval icons.

Final bits of Capo test kit include middleweight Winter Wool Socks ($18) with a 12cm cuff, the Milano Skull Cap ($39) built with Super Roubaix and a windproof front panel, and the casual Felpe Trainer ($174) for hitting the cafe after the ride is through.

James Huang

Former Technical Editor, US
James was BikeRadar's US tech editor from 2007-2015.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: Up in the Colorado high-country where the singletrack is still single, the dirt is still brown, and the aspens are in full bloom. Also, those perfect stretches of pavement where the road snakes across the mountainside like an artist's paintbrush.
  • Beer of Choice: Mexican Coke
  • Location: Boulder, CO, USA

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