The Gore Wear brand, with obvious access to some of the finest materials available, remains a sleeper brand to most people. With a wide range of year-round kits, the heritage of Gore remains cold and wet weather gear (although their summer range is quite nice). The Gore Wear C5 Thermo Jersey has been a great option for cold weather road, gravel and mountain biking this fall.
Gore Wear C5 Thermo Jersey Features:
- Thermal stretch Gore Selected Fabric
- Mesh insert in back panel for optimized ventilation
- Added sleeve length for proper coverage and dropped tail
- Ergonomic collar shape (shorter in the back)
- Zipper garage at top
- Backed zipper channel for snag-free use
- Elastic hem grip on back panel
- Three, gusseted back pockets with single zip pocket
- Mesh back panel maintains structure
- Reflective logos and back hem
- Slim fit
- MSRP: $130
Visible, cold weather champ
Utah’s extended shoulder season has been perfect for testing thermal jerseys. With consistent temperatures ranging from 45-60 degrees, I have been testing a variety of long-sleeve thermal jerseys. The MAAP Training Thermal LS Jersey has been my go-to, but as temperatures have dropped slightly, the Gore C5 Thermo Jersey has jumped into the mix.
Gore has chosen to make the C5 Thermo with a variety of materials — each optimized for its placement on the jersey. The majority of the jersey is stretchy thermal fleece with a smooth face fabric. While it would have been nice to have a little DWR treatment for water resistance, the C5 Thermo has none. So, keep this one around for cold, dry rides or as a mid-layer and stuff a waterproof jacket (like the Gore Race Shakedry Jacket) into the center pocket just in case. While the fabric isn’t windproof, it actually does an admirable job of blocking the wind at speed. Picking up the fabric and attempting to blow through it from the front will highlight the wind protection.
This year, Gore has revised their sizing. They have always been race fit, but this year they sized everything up. It’s a little odd, but trust me on this… size down one size from your usual with this jersey. I’ve traditionally been a large, but the medium is spot on. I can’t speak to the rest of their garments, but I’ve gone with medium in the C5 Gore-Tex Infinium Thermo Jacket and C5 Thermo Bib Tights+ as well. Initial feedback is that the medium jersey fits perfect while the jacket and bib tights fit well, but I could have actually gone with the size small bib tights, I think. Those reviews are coming later, so hang tight (or hang loose).
I have worn the C5 Thermo both with and without a base layer. I’ve also worn it with and without a vest or jacket. For temperatures in the 50’s, I’ve gone with a sleeveless base layer and the jersey. In the upper-40’s and low-50’s, I add a vest. Below that, I’ve either worn the Gore Shakedry 1985 Jacket or the POC Mantle Thermal Hoodie. On the upper end of the spectrum, I’ve worn it without a base layer into the low-60’s and the front zip comes in handy.
With the three jersey pockets, you can haul a good amount of gear. The center pocket is standard sized and capable of carrying a jacket. The left pocket is narrower and the right pocket is even narrower still (about the width of a standard phone). That narrow width is due to the attached zipper for the zippered sleeve. That zippered area is great for a phone or other items that you don’t want to accidentally fall out. You’ll have to test out placement of a pump, multi-tool, gels, phone and such to figure out optimal placement. That said, once you get everything situated, the mesh backing provides excellent structure to keep everything in place.
I have found it easy to retrieve items from and put items into the pockets. Placement is such that I don’t have to be a gymnast to reach them and the top of each pocket is easily found — with or without full-finger gloves on. I applaud Gore for not doubling-up the thermal fabric at the pockets. The mesh material does allow better breathability, but that efficiency can often be blocked by the contents of the pockets. It’s good in theory and practice, so long as your pockets aren’t completely stuffed anyway. With a grippy rear hem, the jersey stays put nicely.
The front zipper is smooth and easy to pull up/down. And, that garage at the top is a nice touch for added comfort. Zippers can sometimes snag on base layers or chest hair (yeowch), but Gore has outfitted the C5 Thermo with a backed fabric panel so the zipper doesn’t snag.
Thermal jerseys are notorious for becoming bulky at the collar when worn with a jacket. Gore chose to outfit this one with a tall-ish collar. I like how it’s cut lower in the back, but the front will get bulky with any jackets you have that have a tight collar, so keep that in mind.
Fit: As mentioned, I wore a size medium in the C5 Thermo and I am 5’11” and 170 lbs.
- Mixture of materials aids breathability
- Excellent overall fit
- Extra sleeve and hem length is always welcomed
- Zipper is easily pulled up/down
- High-visibility color options
- Right rear pocket is really narrow
- Tall collar can get snug with jackets
The Bottom Line: Gore C5 Thermo Jersey
File this one on the lower-temp end of thermal jerseys that can slip alongside thinner jerseys. I love how versatile the C5 Thermo Jersey is and the overall fit is fantastic. Kudos for extra length in the sleeves and hem for proper coverage.
Buy Now: Available from Backcountry.com