Vaude Minaki Jacket  2016 Mountain Bike Review

Vaude Minaki Jacket 2016

Reviews / Jackets

Vaude 115,549

At a Glance

The Minaki jacket is a hybrid jacket which combines Primaloft insulation with water resistant stretch panels to deal with serious cold weather riding. It is ecologically manufactured under Vaude's 'Green Shape' label which guarantees environmentally friendly, sustainable products. Green Shape includes Blue Sign approved fabrics which are independently certified as being environmentally and socially sound as well as Vaudes' own Eco-Finish waterproofing. This jacket is aimed firmly at the environmentally conscious cold weather rider who want to get out no matter what the conditions. The light weight insulated jacket is cut specifically for cycling with water resistant stretch panels under the arms and down the back to give a close and comfortable fit

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On the Trail

With its low volume, long arms and low cut back it is an incredibly neat and tailored fit, with space only for a base layer underneath. There is no wasted space in the jacket and although designed as a warm jacket there is no feeling of restricted movement usually associated with winter kit. The silicon gripper on the rear hem is a nice touch and a draw cord round the neck keeps the heat in well. Keeping heat in is the name of the game with this jacket, but does create some climatic limitations, as finding temperatures cold enough to ride hard whilst wearing the Minaki were very hard to come by. Many a cold morning started with the jacket zipped up, making the transition from house to bike a very comfortable experience, but as soon as the legs were warm it became far too hot. Although it has a full zip to provide venting, it still wasn't enough to keep the heat down and it had to come off. More recently temperatures have got well below freezing and the jacket starts to make a lot more sense, further proving its sub-zero potential. The jacket will deal with some rainfall but wont keep much moisture out other than the water resistant panels however, the Primaloft remains warm when wet, so getting caught out is no great problem. Two chest pockets are easily accessible on the move and reflective detailing on the back seams are another thoughtful feature. The jacket packs down small and is extremely lightweight making it ideal for big adventures in the winter where keeping warm is essential. Combining this level of insulation with an outer shell gives a feeling of invincible weatherproof armour which could cope with anything. Wear and tear has been great and is showing very few signs of the abuse it has received (and it has also spent plenty of time in the washer and drier with no ill effects).

Overall

An exceptionally well cut jacket for the coldest of conditions, it will make you wish for cold snowy days in the mountains where you can laugh in the face of sub-zero temperatures. With it's exceptional eco-credentials and build quality, Vaude have created a truly great piece of winter riding kit, just make sure you live somewhere cold to get the most out of it!

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By Ewen Turner
Ewen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.

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