When you’re pushing down hard on the pedals, zooming through twigs and branches and bouncing over hard rocks, you’re likely to sweat profusely. This can dangerously decrease your body temperature, leaving you exposed to the elements. Good mountain biking jackets can be what makes the difference between you getting sick, and having to wait to recover, or being able to continue having fun. They are the best ally you have to take care of your upper body when riding your bike.
The best mtb jacket should keep you warm and dry but not stifle you, be lightweight but also tough, give your body space to breathe but not become an aerodynamic nightmare. Few products on the market can boast all of these performances, and we have regrouped some of them in the article you are about to read. Finding the best mountain bike jacket is not easy, but here we have prepared a complete guide on how to go on about it, so read on to discover some useful tips and tricks.
How To Choose A MTB Jacket – Buying Guide
While one would suppose that waterproof cycle jackets would be the obvious and best choice, there still are reasons to consider a soft shell one. Yes, they will not deliver the total protection from the elements that waterproof ones do, but softshell jackets will let you feel the weather better and will still stay warm even if they get wet. The danger with waterproof jackets, although there is no real substitute if what you need is the highest degree of protection, is that they tend to be less breathable and you might feel you’re starting to cook inside them during a climb.
Breathability means that your mtb jacket can transfer the sweat and moisture that build up inside it to the outside environment, helping the rider maintain a constant and pleasing temperature around the body and not get too wet or stifled. This is achieved, for the most part, by installing zippered vents or other openings on the jacket, which can be opened or closed depending on the feeling you have of heat. The wicking layer of your jacket is arguably even more important that the outer one, whose job it is to stop wind and rain, since there can be days when you won’t need those features but sweat will be your companion every time you climb on your bike.
Unfortunately, no material is ever completely waterproof or weatherproof. The jackets we have presented in our mtb jacket reviews do an excellent job at keeping out mud and water as best they can, and if you are only heading out for short rides they might even keep you completely dry underneath. On longer rides, however, especially if the weather takes a turn for the worse, your collars and wrists will still let some water in, sooner or later. This is not to say you shouldn’t bother with looking for water-resistant jackets, quite the contrary. A good waterproof mtb jacket will be of great aide in letting you perform at the best of your abilities and we warmly recommend buying that has at least some weather-resistant features. We are simply warning you to manage your expectations when you will encounter rain and mud.
A durable jacket is crucial for a serious mountain biker, since the sport involves diving head-first on trails littered by sharp rocks and gnarly twigs. Most jacket strive to achieve a balance between strength and weight, since you don’t want your garments to slow you down. Several excellent options exist, using nylon or polyester to the maximum of their capacity, although all jackets tend to stay quite thin to not impede a rider’s movements. It is likely you will start to see signs of wear and tear quite soon on bike jackets, and you may have to make them undergo a second waterproofing treatment after a while that you’ve had it on you.
Synthetic materials are you best bet when it comes to mountain bike jackets, since cotton cannot come close to the weather-resisting features of polyurethane or nylon. These two materials are also lightweight and reasonably durable, making them a perfect fit for this kind of application. Remember that how you wash and take care of your jacket will also have a significant impact on its lifespan.
A mountain bike jacket needs to fit tight and snug against the body, all the while providing enough space to let some air pass through. The best would be to try one on before heading out, so see if a friend near you can lend you one. If not, manufacturers usually provide reasonably accurate sizing charts for you to get a good idea of what would fit you best, once you have written down your own body measurements.
Q: Do I Need A Special MTB Jacket?
Even if you are only a beginner, having an mtb jacket will let you cycle in almost any weather conditions and so increase your chances of going out on the trail. It might not be among the first things you think of purchasing, but before a bike computer or a high end pump we believe it's worth every penny.
Q: What Is The Difference Between A Regular And Mountain Bike Jacket?
A regular jacket is not built with aerodynamics and performance in mind, so it can be much bigger and heavier than an mtb jacket and nobody would complain. Cyclists, on the other hand, need something thin and lightweight that fits close to the body and lets them cut through the air while feeling nice and protected.
Globo Surf Overview
You might think you’re all set up and ready to ride your bike when you’ve figured out what tires you need and have a good helmet, but without a valid mtb jacket the first drop of rain or cloudy day will be enough to keep you from having fun outside. In our article we have presented you with the best mtb jackets that money can buy, so you can head out and enjoy yourself regardless of what Mother Nature throws your way.