- Proprietary armoured material fends off brambles from the forearms
- Light and breathable
- Insanely expensive
- Too short at the front
The Trail Women’s Long-Sleeve Jersey is one of the first all-mountain tops from ASSOS, a predominantly road and cross-country brand. Although it's as impressively lightweight as claimed, the poor fit, odd choice of material and high price make it hard to recommend.
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Earlier this year ASSOS launched a new range of mountain bike gear with more trailish styling than the cross-country apparel it already has. Enter this lightweight, long sleeve jersey, available in three colours: purple, blue and green.
One very noticeable feature of this jersey is the proprietary material ‘dyneRope’ on the underside of the forearms. This is a densely-woven fabric that ASSOS say is super durable, there to protect your forearms against trail hazards such as brambles without catching or snagging. It works, but to be truly effective it needs run all the way up to the shoulders.
The protective fabric won’t protect you against injuries, though. The jersey arms are loose and move around, meaning you still bear scratches on rough ground. The dyneRope material is a little rough against the skin too, plus it stops you rolling the sleeves up if you get too warm.
The left arm has a small stash pocket on the forearm with a rather chunky zipper, presumably for cash, an uplift pass or such like. I’ve seen these on jackets before and never used one, but it's there if you want it (as are the comments below if, like me, you suspect these pockets are of no use to anyone...).
The rest of the jersey is made from very light fabrics with plenty of stretch. The majority is a circular-knit designed to wick sweat away from the skin. Under the arms, down the sides of the jersey and up to the collar is a pretty thin mesh that keeps air flowing.
Two seams run over the front of the shoulders – an odd choice, though as they're flatlocked they're smooth and didn’t cause any rubbing during our (winter) test period. We couldn't test if the same is true on sweaty summer rides with backpacks, but if any issues emerge in future we'll update this review.
The top is certainly light and airy – again, it's winter here (I received this for test in September) so I can't say definitively, but impressions on our milder days are that the Trail is a light number that will perform well in the heat.
The cut is on the fitted side of loose. I wore a size small (I’m usually a dress size 8 when wearing tops) and found that, despite the dropped hem, the jersey is a little short at the front. The neckline is lower than average too, a feature presumably there to improve airflow.
Stylewise, the ASSOS Trail jersey has some way to go to hit the sweet spot. Whilst there’s nothing really bad about the looks, they're arguably a little dated, especially given the boutique price.
At £105 the cost is simply mindblowing. The next most expensive jersey I’ve tested is the ION Scrub Amp and I thought that was pricey at £70. For triple figures, however – especially if (like me) you're not that fussed about having too-small areas of special ‘anti-bramble’ fabric – I find it hard to recommend the ASSOS Trail LS Jersey.