Wool fabrics are an excellent option in the winter. Both cotton and wool absorb water, but with cotton water fills in the spaces between fibers and leaches out your heat. Wool fibers, on the other hand, maintain pockets of air to insulate you, even when the fabric is wet.

A dense wool, even a light-weight one, can easily keep water at bay. Wool works well for light rain and on-again, off-again days. Wool also airs out well and does not develop the wet-weather stink that synthetics are prone to have. From base layer to sweater, coat, hat and scarf, wool is the way to go.

Well constructed wool jerseys are also an excellent choice for your intense rides.

For staying try while riding casually though the city, add a couple dense wool sweaters to your closet. You can often find excellent sweaters at thrift stores if you keep your eyes out. A nice pair of wool knickers or pants are also an excellent choice. Even if you aren’t wearing a thick (think military issue) style of stiff wool pant, they’ll air out nicely and dry surprisingly quickly. Pull some wool tights underneath for extra cold days.

Hot tip: Both Nau and Icebreaker have annual sales in Portland where you’ll find quality made wool products at bargain prices. We love these sales so much (I’m currently wearing three pieces from the sale) we were reluctant to share this tip. The dates change every year, so keep your eyes out.


How have you added wool to your weather defense? Comment below.