It sounds counter-intuitive to add windproofing to a baselayer, after all, the jacket that goes on top is likely to do that job, so why bother? But the excellent protection that Gore’s M Windstopper long-sleeve baselayer offers from the cold is definitely worth it and helps to bridge the gap on those transitional days in autumn and spring when an insulated jacket just might not be needed.
The baselayer’s super-efficient wicking comes courtesy of polypropylene. The material is very efficient at dealing with any amount of sweat, and while older versions of the material used to get pretty stinky, modern versions of polypropylene, as found here, happily have all the performance but none of the smell.
The faster sweat can be moved away from the skin the drier you remain and the more warmth is retained. This is especially important when you stop riding.
Combined with the jacket’s highly water-resistant and windproof Windstopper fabric, this all makes for a baselayer that is a great standalone piece, and one that makes all your other kit better too.
The Windstopper panels are on the front, sleeves, shoulder and kidneys – all the vulnerable spots, especially when riding into a headwind or descending.
Gore M Windstopper long-sleeve baselayer performance
On dry days that have the edge of an autumn chill and when I’ve been reluctant to break out a jacket, it added just enough warmth, deflecting any hint of a breeze and didn’t overheat. And, as everyone knows, extending jersey days means extending summer.
In colder weather it proved to be the perfect partner to the new generation of lightweight insulated riding jackets, too, which although warm, tend not to be windproof because they need to be able to shed heat quickly in order to be comfortable.
And wearing the baselayer underneath an insulated and windproof jacket on sub-zero days delivered just the right balance of protection from the cold on exposed sections or when descending thanks to the jacket’s features and the additional protection from the baselayer’s windproofing.
Gore M Windstopper long-sleeve baselayer overall
The construction quality is excellent, as you’d expect from Gore, and at a not-too-out-there price it’s a good addition to the kit bag.