Emily from Womenclimb reviews the Mountain Warehouse Snowdon Women’s Microfleece:
£19.99, now reduced to £12.99. This fleece does what it says on the tin. It’s a simple, lightweight fleece, which sits firmly in the ‘budget’ category of clothing. It fulfils the basics and no more.
It weighs in at only 185g for the size 8, so in this respect its design makes it perfect to chuck in your bag if you feel you might need a smidgen of additional warmth. With a very straightforward no frills design it works well in a layering system. It’s not a pretty design and there is nothing fancy about it. It is very much a functional item at a low price and the design reflects this.
The sizing for the fleece is accurate. I am a size 8 and it feels like you have space to move and be active. For climbing it did feel a little short in the back, so that when you stretch right up it slips out of the back of your harness, but that is often the case with outdoor garments designed without climbing specifically in mind.
It’s not a well fitting fleece – there’s not a lot of shape to it, but it’s not really designed with high fashion in mind and it does what it needs.
This fleece kept me as warm as I needed out on a 12 mile hill walk on a spring day with snow on the hills in Wales and with a bit of a chill in the air. I wore it with the following items: wicking vest, long sleeved merino baselayer, the fleece, waterproof jacket, buff, hat, gloves.
The space around the neck meant that I could wear a buff without being choked and the zipper has a fabric strip so you can pull down the zip whilst wearing gloves, which is a really useful feature.
The real drawbacks were the absence of pockets and the absence of thumbholes on the cuffs to keep the arms right down over your wrists, which lose a lot of heat. It doesn’t have a hood. This isn’t something that I like on a fleece, especially when it starts raining and gets in the way of your jacket hood and helmet, if you are climbing. The fabric is very lightweight, so if you’re looking for something really toasty then this isn’t the fleece for you.
If you’re planning to go on an epic adventure into a cold climate then you’ll need to look elsewhere. If you want a well-priced entry-level fleece that you can layer up with your other clothes, then it’s a great option.
At this price I didn’t expect a garment that would wash and wear very well. It fared better than expected; it started going bobbly after three washes and is showing signs of going baggy, but not excessively. There’s no sign of any other wear and tear at the moment, so that’s positive.
Value for Money ****
For the price of £19.99, reduced now to £12.99 it’s hard to give criticism on the value for money scale.
The Verdict ***
Good value lightweight entry-level fleece, available in a range of colours.
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