Peter Macfarlane says the Alpkit Woodsmoke is a genuinely do-it-all top with sustainable manufacturing origins and awards it his ‘Best Buy’.
The Alpkit Woodsmoke features in our guide to the best fleeces, made with a light and stretchy polyester fabric with a brushed surface which feels very pleasant against the skin. The Thermocore fabric is described as having hollow core fibres which trap air for insulation and there is good warmth here despite the noticeably thin fabric. I’ve worn the Woodsmoke over short and long-sleeved base layers and often it’s been layered under a shell or windshirt. The insulation level for layering is useable outside of winter temperatures. I’ve found the moisture management very good too. While I can wet out the back area under a pack, it does dry quickly.
Price: $99.99 | £89.99 (available to buy from Alpkit) | Weight: 386g size L | Materials: 95% Thermocore polyester/ 5% spandex fabric, metal poppers | Hood: No | Front Closure: metal poppers | Pockets: two high chest, flapped and poppered | Hem: plain | Cuffs: shirt style, popper adjustable | Sizes: XS to XXL | Women version: Yes
The fabric is treated with Polygiene, designed to reduce odours which are hard to avoid in your clothing over repeated wears without washing. I found this to be at least partly effective as the Woodsmoke remained wearable in company with daily wear and no washing over a number of weeks. When finally washed the fabric was odour free although I have noticed some light pilling (bobbling) starting in the contact areas under a pack.
The fit is neat but not close and the Woodsmoke layers well over any weight of baselayer. Freedom of movement is excellent with only a small amount of hem movement if I lift both arms over my head. General comfort is excellent with the amount of stretch in the fabric.
The shirt design gives you a collar, handy for both warmth and sun protection. The chest pockets are handy but could be a little bigger to be more useful. The popper adjustable cuffs roll over my elbows easily and while the poppered front closure is unusual on current outdoor wear I had no issues with it and at times it was easier to operate than a zip when I had gloves on. This is a genuinely do it all top with sustainable manufacturing origins.