When foul weather interrupts your ride but a rain jacket is overkill, a weather-resistant vest like the Pearl Izumi Elite Barrier Vest is essential. The breathable, weather-resistant fabric takes the sting out of blustery winds, while the ventilation panels on the chest and back keep you from working up too much of a sweat. One of our favorite things about this vest is that it's extremely packable. While you're climbing or the weather is fair, you're able to leave it folded up in a pocket so you don't overheat, only to zip it over your jersey when the clouds break or you start your descent.
The Elite Barrier vest is constructed with Pearl Izumi's breathable yet weather-resistant Elite Barrier polyester, which works to protect you from the elements without trapping heat. It wicks moisture through the fabric to keep you dry, while simultaneously blocking harsh gusts of wind and rain. Additionally, the Direct Vent panels at the chest and back enhance the vest's ability to regulate temperature.
This vest was designed according to Pearl Izumi's Semi-Form fit, which means that the upper-torso employs a relaxed, yet anatomic cut to allow for layering. The tall collar fights off gusts of wind, while the full-length zipper makes quick layering changes a snap. Reflective accents increase your visibility to motorists in low-light conditions, and the pocket at the back ensures you don't sacrifice easy accessibility of your ride essentials.
- Item #PLZ008K
- Q & A
Poor Back Pocket with Flapping Shoulders
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
- Fit: True to size
The vest blocks wind but it hamstrung by annoying design decisions. I ended up returning the vest.
The rear pocket is closed with velcro, making access while riding nearly impossible.
The shoulders flap above 20mph in the slipstream. The body of the vest was correct fitting but the shoulders were really too much noise and motion to ignore.
The wind blocking was adequate and made the difference between chilled and comfortable. The back of the vest was well vented. I just thought the pocket and shoulders weren't worth messing with so I didn't keep it.
Good vest, a bit loud
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
So far i have had good experiences with this vest, the shoulder flaps tend to be pretty loud on the descents but not a huge deal as the flaps also help dump heat on the uphill so I am happy to say this vest breathes really well while at the same time shielding wind like a champ.