Gore Countdown Windstopper® Active Shell LADY Vest

 

The Gore Countdown Windstopper® Active Shell lady vest is quite possibly the best gilet we have ever tested.  The windstopper front panel, combined with a mesh panel at the back gives the best of both worlds; wind protection and ventilation, in a lightweight, packable format.

 

Gore Countdown Windstopper Active Shell Vest

 

In our opinion, no one does windproofness like Gore and the addition of their trademark Windstopper fabric to this gilet makes it stand out from the crowd.  It gives total protection from the wind, combined with fabrics that offer excellent breathability, so there is no danger of over-heating and if you do work up a sweat, the moisture wicks away.

 

We were really impressed with this gilet from the moment we first tried it, because it is incredibly lightweight and beautifully styled.  Gore call it “slim fit”, which means it follows female curves, but there was plenty of room for layers underneath, without turning you into something resembling the Michelin man!  Most important of all, we did not find it restricted our range of movement on the bike in anyway, in fact we forgot we were wearing it and have just been glad that it has allowed us to continue to ride with lighter layers as the weather gets colder.

 

The Windstopper fabric covers the whole of the front panel of the gilet and wraps around to the back as well, saving the core body from wind chill on cooler days and long descents.  This leaves a wide panel of mesh that runs from the base of the neck, to a point three quarters of the way down the back and this gives the gilet a serious amount of breathability, just where you need it most and away from any wind chill.

 

The gilet is entirely lined in the mesh fabric to aid the wicking away of moisture from the body and the arm holes are finished with Gore branded elastic, which guards against any rubbing from this area and further demonstrates the thought that has gone into designing this garment.

 

Gore have given this gilet a lovely high neck, that gives great coverage.  With their typical attention to detail, this neck has a soft lining and there is a little port to tuck the zipper away into as well, so there is no chafing under the chin.  The zip itself is super smooth to operate and has a wind guard cover.

 

There are two pockets are on the front of the gilet and both are zipped.  They are certainly big enough to carry anything you might need on the road or out on the trails.

 

Interestingly there is no gripper tape or elastication around the bottom hem.  Gore rely on the ergonomic cut to keep this gilet in place and in our experience, that is all that is required.  There was no riding up and our lower back felt well covered.

 

There is some reflective piping under the pockets at the front and across the shoulders, as well as a reflective Gore logo.  Not enough to rely on alone, but anything that will catch the light is appreciated.

 

It is getting to that time of year when we would never leave home without a gilet and our tester tells us that the Gore Windstopper Active Shell will be her choice because it provides such great protection in a compact and lightweight package.  Gore have a winner here and we were really happy to have the opportunity to test it.

 

 

Sizes: XS to XXL

Colours: black or white

Price: £74.99 (but we’ve seen it for £56.24)

Website: Goreapparel.co.uk - lady vest

 

Performance: 9/10

Value for money: 8/10

 

Tested by Jan Birkmyre

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