Racing isn’t calling to me right now, but I enjoy the stories and laughs that roll before and after. Fortunately, most promoters don’t use every last trail in a system for their events, so I sometimes tag along to new places where friends are racing and go for a ride while they test their times.
A fortnight ago I sardined myself into a Fiat Panda with two buddies who were giddy to tape numbers on their backs and pedal the day away. I was similarly stoked to climb a higher alpine loop in the area. Our three aluminum, long-travel bikes atop that little grocery-getter tugged it off-kilter like a lead sail as we rolled through a brisk autumn rain in the mountains. It surely looked like a cheeky cartoon.
The race kicked off early enough that I was able to climb with folks to the summit of their first stage before continuing on to a higher one. It was about 14° C at the start line, warm enough that I only needed a light wool shirt and this feathery MaxM Vest from Maloja. Knowing that temps would dip closer to 6° C up high, I stuffed a rain jacket up the back side of the gilet to warm the long crest descent. It turned out to be the perfect amount of gear to keep comfortable on a long fall pedal.
My modus operandi in the winter is to wear just enough gear to stay warm if I keep moving, without boiling on long climbs. This gilet is ideal for that minimalist sort of outfit through the shoulder seasons. It can be quickly opened and closed to ventilate, and the holes across the back help minimize dampness. The full-frontal torso is made of solid swatches of fabric that do well to block wind chill when you’re moving faster. It also fits nicely into the pocket of my pants when the temperature rises.
The fit with my usual size small is somewhat tight, with ample stretch in the waist and shoulder openings to keep it comfortable on the bike. If you’re looking for a light gilet or vest to warm your torso this fall, this one is about as simple as they get. The MaxM Vest retails for $109.
Check the Maloja page for availability.
- Comfortable and packable
- Durable fabric and zipper
- Self-packing pocket
Pros and cons of the Maloja Cycling MaxM Vest.
- No snack pocket
- Might to too tight for some