- Tough fabric
- Odd fit
- Rubbish breathability
Alpinestars' Tahoe WP jacket is a casually-styled waterproof with a focus toward the bikepark end of things, with tough, heavy fabric and a solid build. However, its weather-proofing ability is ruined by a really poor cut, and it's very sweaty – the breathability could be a lot better.
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With all the features you’d hope for – tape-welded seams, waterproof zips and a hood that covers your lid – the Tahoe WP is initially promising, especially with its silliness-proof build and abrasion-resistant sleeves.
But the waterproof fabric is a generic one, with no real details from Alpinestars on it. It's well stitched together at least, with taped interior seams and a good overall finish.
The fabric is rated at a 10k waterproofness with 5k breathability, and on the trail, it feels warm. It builds up condensation even with the side vents open and the neck unzipped. It happened whether it was mild, near freezing and no matter how many layers I wore beneath – even just a long-sleeve base layer.
On very wet rides the interior of the jacket could end up saturated, not because it had leaked but from condensation. The Tahoe WP has that classic boil-in-the-bag feel. There's no point having a waterproof fabric if you get super damp from condensation.
The cut is meant to be loose to accommodate armour, but the result is very square, and not long enough either in the body or the arms. Stand around posing and it fits OK, but once on the bike it leaves a couple of inches from the cuff to your wrist. I forced the Tahoe WP onto several other riders and they all suffered the same problem.
There are some waist adjustments to pull the square shape in to your hips, and a drop tail to cover your backside, but this too could have been longer (yet have with less material on the sides).
Silicone grippers on the shoulders do work to keep your pack stabilised, the hood is a good size to cover a helmet, and drawcords in the neck stop stop the hood billowing at speed... but when you're all sealed up the zip sits awkwardly under your chin, and can be uncomfortable despite the fleece protection there.
The colour tested is very similar to a popular food delivery service, which is a shame, as the colour is pretty nice. There are a few reflective details for some added safety and visibility.
I’m not a big fan of the Tahoe WP (did you notice?). Its odd fit and desperate lack of breathability means it misses the mark before you even start comparing it to its rivals. Yes, it’s tough and hardwearing, but that just means you'll have to wear it longer...
Even as a casual, hanging-out-at-the-bike-park jacket, it’s just not up to the standard of other comparable jackets.