Right as the weather showed its first hints of cooling off a few months ago, Giro was kind enough to fire some cool temperature apparel for testing. The Roust Long Sleeve Wind Jersey features front panels at the chest and sleeves that are made from a wind resistant fabric with a merino blend on the back of the core and the sleeves for a nice combination of warmth and moisture management. The Havoc Pants are what I’d call mid duty in terms of their weight – not really a DH/Freeride pant, but rather a fairly tough but flexible and breathable pant aimed at Trail/AM/Enduro. Let’s see how this stealthy little combo has been working out…
Details: Roust LS Wind Jersey
- Sizing: S, M, L, XL, XXL
- 84% Recycled polyester / 11% Merino wool / 5% Elastane
- $140.00 USD
The chest/shoulder intersection features nicely laid out paneling which made for unconstrained movement and a comfortable resting position without bunching – both on and off the bike. Also pictured is one of two bits of (subtle) branding on the garment. The front panel, shoulders and front of the sleeves all feature a stretchy wind resistant material as an outer layer that covers the merino blend fabric.
Out back you can see the dark grey panels which are stretchier still and super soft to the touch. Also sneaking into the picture above is subtle logo number two, located on the lower left.
The cuffs are also made from the same plush fabric, doubled over.
The Roust LS Wind Jersey features a nice, long midriff with an ample amount of tail drop so you won’t get any crud where you don’t want it.
I really liked the way that Giro executed the built in eyewear wiping/cleaning cloth. It’s stitched into the lower left side but left unattached on one of its 3 sides. This made for double the clean surface area and was easier to use.
Lastly, there is a single small zipper stash pocket for keys, a protein bar or a phone – provided it isn’t too large.
Details: Havoc Pant
- Sizing: 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40
- 94% Nylon / 6% Elastane
- Bluesign approved fabric
- DWR (durable water repellent coating)
- $170.00 USD
The Havoc pants feature two slash pockets with openings at a 45º angle.
Starting above the knee area and running nearly all the way to the ankle are a ton of little circular dotted vents to improve the breathability, particularly around where things tend get hottest and sweatiest – around the kneepads.
The waist closure is a bit different. It features two buttons and a thin velcro strip between them sitting at a 45º angle because hey, you can never be too safe! The fly is a standard average length zipper. I found those features easy to get along with and sturdy.
There are also two velcro cinches as well as a few belt loops.
There is also a bit more ventilation sitting critically placed on a flexible panel just below the waist band.
Lastly, there is a single additional side pocket with a zipper closure positioned below the main slash pocket on the right leg. To be honest, I found this to be a bit strange in its execution. More on that below…
On the trail
Beginning with the jersey and its fit, I found the sizing to be accurate. At 6 foot tall I found the size Large that I tested to be slightly generous in length in both the midriff and the limbs, but not exceedingly so. The cut wasn’t bulky, but rather was fairly trim overall. Because I’m long limbed I’m used to things feeling a little short, but that wasn’t the case here so keep that in mind. I found the merino blend fabric to have an excellent surface feel on my skin and the proportionality / cut and sew was spot on. This jersey felt ever so slightly heavy in relation to Giro’s recommended temperatures (40-60ºF) and I mainly found myself happily wearing it on the lower end and very comfortably below that range, which is fine, but worth pointing out.
The fabric tasked with blocking wind did an excellent job while still managing moisture nicely…It never became heavy with sweat despite its wind repellant properties. Complimenting that at the rear was the poly/merino blend. All in all I found that it wicked moisture better than most and was extremely comfortable. After a few months of constant usage it has shown no signs of shrinking, degradation, pilling or decreased performance. It also hasn’t taken on any weird odors, which is a huge bonus. While the jersey itself is relatively simple, I did appreciate the two small features called out above – the eyewear cleaning fabric patch and the small stash pocket.
As for the Havoc pants, again let’s start with fit. I found them to be true to size. With a 31″ waist, per usual, I was stuck in between sizes but found them overall to be accurately cut and managed to have a secure but comfortable fit via the waist band and its two effective velcro cinch tabs. The inseam length was proportionate and appropriate, but it’s worth mentioning that Giro doesn’t offer a Long sizes. That said, they do have seven sizes in total, which is pretty darn good. The fabric was very stretchy and on my first few rides I did notice the DWR coating’s tendency to repel water nicely, but per usual that only lasts so long. While this surface treatment is great, these are a more breathable and stretchy option with less of an emphasis on waterproofing, so if you want to maintain their moderate water shedding properties you’ll likely want to reapply a spray coating on your own terms after every few washes.
As far as comfort and features were concerned, I think that Giro did a fine job with the material choice and ventilation – particularly in its strategic location. In addition to offering the right amount of room for the appropriately sized kneepads, having breathability in that area was brilliant as well. I appreciated that despite being made from a highly stretchy fabric, the Havoc pants still were cut to be pre-articulated for maximum comfort in a seated position on a bike, without any awkward tension or pulling. If I had one complaint it would be the layout of the pockets. I do typically prefer two slash style pockets for easy access and while I never lost anything from them, their open feeling and 45º angle made me a little nervous as I didn’t trust that I wouldn’t lose contents on rowdier trails. While that never happened, they seem a bit loose. As for the third zippered pocket, I think this is a great approach for stowing super important items like keys, but the pocket itself ran on the front of my leg all the way down toward the top of my kneepad, which I found highly disconcerting. It wasn’t the end of the world, but a location with less movement and a lower chance of impact would certainly be an improvement.
For the most part, I’ve been rather impressed with this kit. While I was less than thrilled about the pocket layout in the pants, I did find that stashing my key in the jersey was a fine solution, but I realize that not everyone will be considering these two pieces of apparel as a combo. Setting my minor pocket complaints aside, I found the fabrics, fit, design and finish of both of these garments to be excellent. All in all, they felt like a second skin to me and have both proven perfect for mid-duty riding in the shoulder seasons as well as in milder winter weather. As far as value is concerned, I think that $170 is about what most would expect to pay for a premium pant, however $140 is a bit on the pricey side for a jersey – even if it’s a bit more technical. With that in mind, I have no gripes with the jersey itself from a design or material standpoint. In fact I quite like it. Perhaps for Giro, being understated aesthetically is both a blessing and a curse as for most they aren’t top of mind when it comes to apparel. All in all however, they put in a great deal of effort to their garments – not just their shoes and helmets – and as such, they’re worth considering next time you need some new threads.