For keeping warm whether you’re dry or wet, wool remains the fabric to beat. That said, it was with great interest that I hit the trails and streets this fall to test new riding gear from SmartWool. Specifically, the company’s Men’s Rambition Bib Knicker, a below-the-knee biking suit made of a blend of merino wool (39%), Spandex and elastic. I’ve found them to be the ticket for chilly bike rides this time of year.
Not cheap, to be sure, the SmartWool suit costs $180. But for biking wear, I’d put the feel of these somewhere near the sweatpants-level for comfort. Soft and warm, even the chamois is covered in merino wool. Bonus: wool is anti-odor. These puppies smelled nearly as fresh after the ride as they did pre-ride. In fact, I rode on them several times before washing just to prove a point.
My only complaint is that the bib straps are a bit long for me. Keeping the bibs tight require a good hitching every once in a while. But from temps in the high 30s and up this fall, these wool bibs were better than I expected. Next time I see a sheep, I’m gonna give some thanks.