Gore Helium Gilet
wasn't actually in the market for a gilet but as I'm heading down the
Pyrenees for 3 events in 10 days (this year who knows what the weather
will do) I took a quick look on the rail at Pedal Power.
Before I knew it I had a gilet in my hand with a proposal of, "if you
don't like it bring it back". Once more I was duped in to an offer
I couldn't refuse!
As sad as I am, I went home put my race jersey on, then put my gilet
on over that. Just to make sure I had the right size; they let me
take two home.
The very close-toothed zip
flew in and rode up the front, all the way to the top of the high
collar. Which had a sexy little piece of material that stops you
pinching your neck when you razz the zip up too quick. If you've
never done it you'll never know the pain. Not as much as a
"down-stairs" pinch, but when your your putting on your gilet while
descending you don't need extra distractions!
It was a pleasant surprise
that I didn't have to wrestle the storm flap out of the way or unjam it
half way up like you have to with some clunky, open gapped zips. So far
so good. The arm holes felt a little tight, but that's because
they're elasticated. I then spent the next few minutes checking
out the pockets and built in features.
Features & Benefits
The front is made of WindStopper material and has a mesh back which a)
lets the heat out and b) means they can read your number when you wear
it in an event. It has two front zipped pockets, which are plenty
big enough for a wallet, mobile phone or energy gel.
Also, inside the jacket are
two massive mesh stowage pockets that would easily hold a couple of
energy bars each. And the mesh on the back panel has two access
vents cut in to it so you can put your hands in your rear jersey pockets
without having to lift the gilet up your back! It seems this gilet
has been designed by a cyclist.
The shoulders are covered in
the same material as the front and it looks as though it is at least
shower proof. There is reflective piping across the front, back
shoulders and the hem of the elasticated tail. At best it'll get
you noticed in the dark, at worst it'll give them something to aim at.
Next morning was bright and
chilly. Which meant I got to wear my gilet! Once on the bike
the arm hole tightness disappeared and the reason for the elastication
became obvious. The shoulder area of the gilet is now held tight
so there isn't any of that annoying flapping of material when riding
quick, which I don't, or descending fast, which I do! So another
tick in another box.
Before very long the sun
began to warm the morning and I was tugging at the zip, all zips have
zip tags so even with gloved hands there isn't a problem getting some
ventilation or access to your energy gels. I was also surprised at
how easy it was to reach through the rear access vents and get some food
from the rear of my jersey. No fight, no struggle and no riding up
of the tail.
The final test came when I
decided to take it off. It rolls up in to a package the size of
your hand and as thick as your wrist. It easily packed in to my
rear jersey pocket. I was concerned that the zips and inside
stowage pockets would bulk it out. But it actually stows smaller
than my previous, no features, no nothing, gilet.
All in all another
top product from Gore Wear and Pedal Power. They have
various sizes and colours in stock and I'm sure they can find one for
you. Of course you can get cheaper gilets but you have to look at
the value, not the cost. If you're going to get one get a goodun,
and the Helium is as good as it gets.
A perfect companion for all
year round, especially when travelling home from evening events or
riding in sportives where the weather can change in an instant.
Never leave home without one.
WINDSTOPPER Shell laminate material
High neck to keep out drafts
Mesh back to let out the heat
Four pockets, two zipped
Ergonomic cut for on-bike comfort
Rear access vents
Long tail that doesn't ride up
Where can I get
Pedal Power for £43.50 Support your
local bike shop and if you're not local, call the number in their logo
at the top of this page or click their ebay shop logo in the right panel
to get one on line.