- Excellent protection from cold, harsh winds
- Grid knit fleece side panels and zipper vents for breathability and reducing heat buildup
- Stretch fabric for unrestrictive movement
- Higher collar design for additional face protection
- Plenty of storage with three rear pockets, two side zipper pockets, and one zipper chest pocket
- Silicon grippers and a longer back hem provides coverage even in the drops
- Asymmetric zipper prevents chin rub
- Velcro wrist closures keep out the chill
- Black reflective material in key areas enhances visibility in low-light
- Only comes in black, not highly visible to drivers during the day
Size: XS-XL (women’s); S-2XL (men’s)
Fit: True to size
How Obtained: Company sample
Availability: Online and retail
RBR advertiser: No
Don’t Let a Blustery Cold North Wind Keep You From Riding
Located in Minnesota, 45NRTH is known for its high-quality winter cycling gear. I’ve had my Wolvhammer boots for several years now but have never tested the company’s outerwear until now.
45NRTH’s new Naughtvind jacket is an excellent choice for cold winter rides, hikes, or skiing. It keeps the chill out in cold, windy conditions but is still breathable, so you don’t get all sweaty. The side zipper vents and the grid knit fleece side panels combine to reduce heat buildup and overheating.
I found myself experimenting with layering under the Naughtvind jacket to find the perfect combination in various temperatures. I initially wore a light long sleeve jersey or a base layer. While the jacket is awesome in keeping the wind out, I found that I needed more layers in temps 20-35. (I run cold, so you may need to wear less.)
Designed for Comfort and Performance
You can tell a cyclist designed the Naughtvind because of the little touches. The high collar lined with soft fabric adds face protection from the elements. A longer rear hem and silicone tape keeps the jacket in place and the backside covered. Tighten the Velcro wrist closures to keep the cold air from blowing up your sleeves or loosen them for added ventilation. There’s also a cinch cord at the bottom hem to keep the cold out.
There’s plenty of storage built into this jacket with three rear pockets, two side zipper pockets, and a chest zipper pocket. The center rear pocket securely fits a water bottle. It’s easy to remove the bottle while riding, but I had to stop the bike to put it back. If you can ride without both hands on the bars, then problem solved. The chest zipper pocket is large enough to fit a cell phone and does not interfere with straps from a hydration pack.
There are black reflective elements in key locations on the jacket to provide visibility in low-light conditions. However, since the jacket only comes in black, drivers won’t see you as quickly during daylight rides. I know many riders like wearing black cycling kits, but the brighter, the better on the road for me. I wore my neon yellow helmet, and shoe covers on my test road rides to help with visibility. I’ll continue to use this jacket primarily on trail and gravel rides.
The Naughtvind is available online or in retail shops and comes in men’s or women’s versions. The features are identical, with the fit/sizing being gender-specific. The $295 price tag might scare people off, but you’ll have this jacket for years. And if it gets you out riding all winter comfortably, it sure beats the basement pain cave.
I laundered the jacket in cold water, gentle cycle, and hung it to dry, following the tag instructions. Even after several washings, it came out just fine.
The 45NRTH Naughtvind is now my go-to jacket for winter trail and gravel rides. It does an excellent job of keeping the cold winter wind out. But I don’t overheat because of the zipper vents and breathable side fabric. Experiment with layering and temperature to find the right combination for you. It took me a few rides, but I think I have it dialed in perfectly now. Pair the Naughtvid jacket with 45NRTH’s Draugenklaw Drop-Bar Pogies for even more protection from the elements.
Sheri Rosenbaum regularly contributes articles and reviews products for RBR. She’s an avid recreational roadie who lives in the Chicago area and a major advocate for women’s cycling, serving on the board of directors and volunteering with the Dare2tri Paratriathlon Club. Click to read Sheri’s full bio or visit her web site sunflowersandpedals.com.