Our favourite bad weather gear picks

Our favourite bad weather gear picks

We don't want to think about it eithe, but the bad weather is coming (and already here, in some places) and that means you need to make sure you're equipped if you want to ride outside during winter. So we've put our collective heads together and come up with a few of our favourite things to wear outside when the conditions aren't exactly ideal. Sometimes if you want to ride, you just have to tough it out, but having some good kit definitely makes the decision easier...

Madison DTE 3-Layer Waterproof Jacket

DTE stands for 'Defy the Elements' which gives you a pretty good idea of what type of weather this jacket has been designed for. With 20K waterproof and 20K breathable fabric, this is a jacket for riding on days when you maybe shouldn't go out but can't resist the idea of a ride. That hard-wearing fully-seam-sealed three-layer fabric keeps you dry whilw making sure you dont overheat, and the stowable hood is designed to perfectly integrate with a peaked helmet, or alternatively stay out of the way when you're not using it. 

The hem and hood have draw cords so you can form a properly water-tight fit if you need to, and waterproof zippers on the hand and chest pockets keep anything stored in there safe and dry so you dont have to worry. 

Other nice touches include sillicone print on the shoulders to stop hydration packs from sliding around, and front-facing chest zippers which let you open up a bit of ventilation if you're riding hard and need a bit of extra airflow. 

Pearl iZUMi Launch Shell Shorts

We've extolled the virtues of Pearl iZUMi's PI Dry so many time here that it's almost not worth doing again. Almost. Put as simply as possible, PI Dry is a treatment to each individual fibre of the material in a garment, making for a lifetime water repellency that won't wear off with use like DWR. It works incredibly well and better than that it's now in a whole bunch of their winter tights - the range-topping AmFIB that we've picked here, the AmFIB Light and the Thermal Cycling Bib tights all use it to make for more comfortable winter riding than every before. 

The great thing about the AmFIB tights is that they have a lot of other fantastic features, too, like the Elite Escape 1:1 Chamois with floating top sheet (aka incredibly comfortable), leg openings that do away with zippers for - you've guessed it - increased comfort and the shoftshell AmFIB fabric that's made with recycled content that feels great and makes sure nothing goes to waste. All the tights in Pearl's range are great, but if you're really out there battling the elements through the roughest part of the winter then these will be your best friend. 

Madison Flux trousers

Shorts are ideal for riding, but sometimes if the weather gets really bad you just wish that shorts were available in a longer variety, that maybe came all the way down to the ankles. Fortunately, trousers are far from a new invention, but Madison's Flux trousers are something that's been used by the Madison Saracen World Cup Downhill Team in their races for a while now and if it's good enough for Matt Walker, it should get the job done on your local trails. 

Lightweight, practical and stylish, the Flux trousers aren't necessarily winter-specific, but the DWR coating means they'll fend off the worst of the water and, being trousers, give you more coverage for a bit fo extra warmth too. Plus - if you're going out in the really nasty stuff - there are always the DTE trousers to match the above jacket that promise to keep you going whatever the weather. 

Shimano S-Phyre and Madison Shield Neoprene overshoes

One of the most miserable things about winter riding on the road is wet and cold feet. And once your feet get cold, there's no warming them up again other than getting off the bike and inside for a bit, which obviously isn't the point of riding in the first place. 

The reason we have two products here is that they're at opposite ends of the price range. Shimano's S-Phyre overshoes are a true masterpiece, an overshoe that fits like a glove and seals your shoes wonderfully well but the kicker is that they're £65. While we totally agree that you can't put a price on performance, we also get that some people are looking for a more cost-effective solution and that comes in the form of the Madison Shield overshoe (closed sole) or the Element for open sole shoes. Both are neoprene while insulated superbly and both will keep you more than happy riding through bad weather. 

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