Review – Montane "Vice" fleece



Adventure sports tester Wayne pushes gear in the outdoors, this time the Montane brand from Britain.  Well known in that part of the world for making hiking and climbing gear to a high standard.

The "vice" fleece is made out of Mt Thermo X Stretch.  A thin lightweight one sided, four way stretch, brushed fleece with a tightly knitted outer face.

The Vice was designed as a general purpose fleece as a go to jacket for a range of activities, trying to find a middle ground in wind proofness, breathability and minimal bulk to work as an outer or mid layer according to the conditions.

The jacket has a moderate amount of wind resistance, sitting in between a normal fleece and a softshell or windfleece.

Weight for mens size is 360gm, fabric weight is at 375gm/m2

Despite the relatively high fleece weight per square metre, it packs down to a small size for a fleece, easily fitting into a small pack.

Trying on the jacket, its obvious this is an athletic cut and fits my slightly scrawny average frame very nicely, the cut and fabric allows enough room for movement,  fits like a glove, not too tight, not too baggy.

It has a nice tailored feel, it looks to be well designed for an average frame. If you're generously proportioned you will need to make sure you size up.

This isn’t your average western cut jacket for someone with a generous midrift in the medium size.

It has a drop hem to cover the top of your backside nicely.  Length at the front is at my waistline on my 1 80cm height.

The seems are all flatlock stitched for a tidy finish.  The collar is a mandarin style and has a brushed microfleece for comfort.

The collar is snug around your neck with the zip done up.  A small full length zipper has a thin anti snag baffle behind it that doubles as a wind stop.

This is a minimalist design with only one pocket, a generous sized Napoleon pocket spanning the top half of the left side of the jacket.

The sleeves are articulated so the jacket doesn’t ride up when you raise your arms, they taper nicely on the arms for a good form fit.

The cuffs are minimal made of the same stretch fabric allowing for the sleeves to be pushed up the arms if needed.

The outer surface has very stylish finish.  I’m a bit confused now, I bought this to wear in the outdoors but looking at the material, I could wear this out anywhere around town and at the office

I took the jacket out for a walk for several walks, one was a couple of hours wilderness walking directly into a stiff winter wind of 12 degrees. It has a nice amount of wind resistance to hold a good amount of warmth without needing a windproof layer over the top. The snug fit does a great job of retaining warmth.  

I’ve found it's still breathable enough to easily dissipate sweat.

Target Market?:

Tramper, climber , mountaineer, runner, cyclist , any activity where you'd consider a light to medium fleece /softshell you could use this.

I wouldn't recommend for any activity where you're immersed in water, it’s a dense fleece and not the fastest to dry. not sure adventure racers would like that aspect of it.

Overall, there’s a lot to like about this jacket so far.  I haven't seen anything I don't like about its minimalist design.. 

Rate chart – 1 low - 10 Excellent

Quality: 9

Durability: 8

Warmth: 7

Lightness: 8

Packability: 10

Overall: 8.5


Jacket provided by We were under no obligation to provide a favourable review.

Reviewer: Wayne Clark