First Impression: Gore Bike Wear Alp-X Jacket

“If Napoleon’s army had been wearing Alp-X Jackets, they totally could have pulled off that winter invasion of Russia thing.”

Back in December, when I posted my Bicycle Holiday Wish List, I wished I still had a Gore Bike Wear Alp-X Jacket. The Alp-x had been my go-to piece of outwear for the past two winter seasons. In fact it was the only shell I wore all winter, in all conditions. So how stoked was I when a new one showed up at my house? You guessed it: Ten. Ten on the stoke-o-meter (BR will be reviewing Stoke-O-Meters in March). Unlike a true Retro Grouch, who refuses to see improvements in anything…ever, I like to see a product change for the better, and the Alp-X has changed for the better, it even looks better. Well, it looked better until I shot snot all over it during my snow ride and then took the above video. (Note to self: trim your noise hair.) Be forewarned: if you watch the above video, you will have your MIND BLOWN by my mad cinematographic skills (they are mad because I leave them under the couch and constantly forget to use them). You’ll be wishing I posted another Sweet Fixie Tricks vid or something else with Liz Hatch in it (alright, admit it, you would have watched that thing if it were called “Liz Hatch Reads The Phone Book.”).

This is just my first “initial, first impression” (to be completely repetitively redundant). I’ll be following this post up with some wet weather testing. (Oh boy, I can’t wait!), and hopefully some better photos.

The manufacturers specs and a few more incredible (look at my face, am I serious?) photos after the break…

I love the “Napoleon Pocket” as they call it. It gives you easy access to say, your camera. (So you can take pictures of the pocket your camera came out of.)

This a pose I like to call “Back To School.”

If nobody makes fun of my of my odd combo of kits, I will be severely disappointed.

One of the most noticeable improvements over the previous generation Alp-X’s is the high collar.

Although the collar has some stiff competition from the stow-able hood in the noticeable improvements department.

The one issue I had with my old Alp-X was the zipper. The zipper on this model seems much more robust. It’s even easier to grip, which is nice when you’re wearing gloves and your dexterity is lacking.

The Napoleon Pocket again.

If Napoleon’s army had been wearing Alp-X Jackets, they totally could have pulled off that winter invasion of Russia thing.

Features:

  • GORE-TEX® Paclite® Shell
  • GORE-TEX® stretch inserts on arms for maximum comfort
  • Slim fit
  • Ergonomic 3D fit
  • Raglan cut
  • “High collar, ergonomically shaped”
  • Adjustable collar with easy-to-operate cord stopper for one-handed use
  • Velcro fastening for separate hood
  • Zip tags for easy handling
  • Double flap to cover zip
  • Napoleon pocket with zip
  • Reflective logo on collar
  • Reflective inserts on front pockets
  • “Reflective piping on front, back and sleeves”
  • Pre-shaped elbows
  • Adjustable cuff
  • Hem-width adjustable by easy-to-use covered cord stoppers and elastic draw-cord
  • Press-stud fastening for cord on inside
  • “Fold-away shirt tail, extra-long”

MSRP – $269.99

For more info, visit Gore Bike Wear’s website.

Comments

bc - 01/11/11 - 11:23am

The price is crazy…

Carlito - 01/11/11 - 11:53am

Yeah, $$$ is no joke. How’s the breathability? Can you do a long climb in this jacket without getting soaked inside?

ThomP - 01/11/11 - 12:05pm

The breath-ability is awesome. The only time you’re going to experience condensation from sweat is on warmer days (like over 55°-ish). But that’s what the vented zipper area is for. I’ve actually done cross races in the snow wearing this jacket and had no issues. A couple years ago I even wore it during a 45°, rainy, 50 mile mountain bike race in Vermont. That thing had about 9,000 feet of climbing and I don’t recall having issues with getting soaked from the inside on the climbs.

- t

Gillis - 01/11/11 - 1:16pm

how is the pack size? Can I carry it in my pack on questionable days without it taking up a ton of space? Second, how is sleeve length?…I have longish arms.

ThomP - 01/11/11 - 1:25pm

Pack size is good, I’ll be sure to demonstrate that in the next vid.

I have freakish-monkey arms and I feel slightly more comfortable in the Large over the Medium sized jacket (that, and I can fit base layers underneath easier). Based on the fact that I could wear the medium at all, I would say that the sleeve length is ample.

Gillis - 01/11/11 - 11:18pm

Thanks for the info.
Also are you special or something? because website doesn’t show the all-black version you’re wearing. Only a grey/black. And some other colors. I like the all black, it makes me look thinner.

ThomP - 01/12/11 - 2:11pm

I am special, at least that’s what my mom always told me.
It looks like they haven’t updated the site with the 2011 stuff yet.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering: that green jacket is no longer available. (No joke, that’s actually the one I wanted, but I’m not normal.)

- t

Pépin - 01/12/11 - 3:11pm

Hey boy !
Where is your helmet ?

ThomP - 01/12/11 - 3:27pm

Pepin,

You gotta watch the video buddy!
At no time am I riding without a helmet…I might be crazy but I’m not stupid.
(OK, I am pretty stupid, all the more reason for me to always wear my helmet — I don’t want to get any stupider due to a brain injury.)

I wear my helmet when I walk my bike down the basement stairs, I wear it when I look at pictures of bikes…in fact, I’m wearing a helmet right now.

Thanks for reading guys.

- t

[...] like the Gore Alp-X jacket I reviewed, this is the last time you will see these things not-covered in [...]

André Cerri - 07/04/11 - 2:01am

Hi… you said you’re wearing the Large sized one.
Can you please write down your body measures? Chest, Waist, Hip and Arm length…
I’m from Brazil and next year will go for a RTW trip.
A friend of mine will bring it to me and I want to go with the right size.

Regards,

André.

tim - 09/13/11 - 10:30pm

Awesome review! Best I’ve found yet.
Did you get around to getting the followup review on “wet weather” and with “better photos?”

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