The Pearl in winter.
If any one item can be said to be the undisputed king of Pearl Izumi's cold-weather range, it's the P.R.O. Softshell Jacket. This is because its combination of race-ready fit, function, and understated aesthetics also make it the ideal jacket to establish your rule over all manner of winter conditions. Other jackets in Pearl's line, like the P.R.O. Softshell 180, use a mix of Softshell and other fabrics in order to keep you from overheating in cold conditions, but this jacket is meant for capital-C Cold conditions, so it offers no quarter to winter.
The P.R.O. Softshell uses Pearl's Softshell material throughout its construction, providing a level of wind and water-resistant that is only rivaled by the amount of insulation netted by the slightly lofted lining. The fabric provides an accommodating stretch, so your cold weather armor doesn't actually feel like armor, and it doesn't compromise breathability, either, so water vapor will move freely from the inside out, even while the outside water is denied entry.
The jacket's construction incorporates a small army of thoughtful details. The full-length front zipper has corresponding internal and external draft flaps at the upper portion to keep the wind's probing fingers at bay. Both the small and large rear pockets are zippered to provide a similar courtesy to their contents, and the larger pocket can be accessed on either side of the smaller one. From the collar, which accommodates an in-the-saddle posture, to the contoured sleeve to the shaped cuffs, the jacket was put together to provide a sleek, race-cut fit that eliminates any excess material and flapping, even while you're stretched out on the handlebars. Reflective elements help keep you visible in low-light conditions.
The Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Softshell Jacket is available in five sizes ranging from Small to XX-Large in the colors Black, Black/Mykonos, and Black/true red.
- Item #PLZ002H
- Q & A
Solid jacket but not the be all end all
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Wanted something to replace my Addidas Climawarm jacket which has not let me down but wanted a winter weatherproof jacket a few steps up that didn't cost me half a paycheck. Wore this jacket on a 1.5 hour 5 degree mtb ride with a Craft Active extreme base layer. This jacket worked great and was warm the entire time. It is cut so it feels awkward standing but once you get into riding position it works. My only thing I have noticed is the cuffs should have a thinner material so putting winter gloves over or under weren't such a chore. I'm sure they're much nicer jackets but this is solid performer for the price. That's my two cents which might not be worth sh*t.