Haglof Fuse Vest
For running, cycling and general `”outdoorsiness” a softshell gillet is one of those bits of kit that, once you’ve got one, you’ll wonder how you ever did without. In the UK we often have days that are neither here nor there and a gillet provides a versatile alternative to lugging around a full jacket.
For running on cold days, in combination with a decent long sleeved baselayer, the Fuse does a great job of keeping the wind out but also breaths brilliantly. The Gore Windstopper softshell used on the front panels do exactly what they say but then the stretchy rear and underarm panels let moisture and heat out. Even on in-between days when I wasn’t 100% sure if I needed an additional layer, I didn’t overheat or get soaked from sweat but, when the mercury dropped and I needed the warmth, it performed too. The fit is spot on with elasticated arms, a drawcord hem, snug soft collar and fully baffled front zip meaning there are no gaps for chilly winds to exploit. You’ve got plenty of pocket space to stow gloves, food etc and, being zipped, there’s no chance of stuff bouncing out. You’ve also got a chest zip pocket for your phone.
On the bike it performs brilliantly too. It’s long enough in the back and has enough inherent stretchiness so that it doesn’t ride up when you lean forwards. On long descents, the Windstopper on the front is a joy but, with your arms uncovered, breathability is infinitely better than a full jacket when the road kicks up. If you have misjudged the day, it easily packs down small enough to stuff in a jersey pocket. With a baselayer and long sleeved winter weight jersey, you’ll be sorted in all but the most Arctic conditions.You’ve got plenty of room in the rear pockets for stashing spares and fuel and, with the double headed zip, you can leave a section of the pocket open for easy on the fly access to gels or bars.
Obviously, being a softshell, it’s not waterproof but, if the last couple of winters are anything to go by, cold and dry and snow are going to be the main conditions we’ll have to contend with. In those sorts of conditions, for all high energy level activities, you’ll struggle to find a more effective and versatile garment.
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