Thanks to its versatility and comfort, the Montane Allez Micro netted our ‘best buy’ award as David Lintern puts it to the test on the hill.
The Montane Allez Micro has been around for a while now and won lots of fans, myself included which is why it has previously been featured in our guide to The best fleeces. It’s the lightest mid layer in my test, and the main ingredient is Polartec Power Grid, which has a smooth outer face and a ‘dotted’ inner.
Weight: 160g | Insulation: Polartec Power Grid | Outer: None | Sizes: Various | Women’s version: Yes
This structure imparts warmth (from the dots) and plenty of breathability elsewhere. This version keeps things simple with only a zip at the neck, but a hooded version is also available. The material is 90% recycled.
As is common with much of Montane’s kit, the fit is athletic and then some. It’s designed to be very stretchy and close fitting, so will sit fine over a synthetic t-shirt, but expect to feel a little constricted if you wear your normal size over anything more.
While it’s often sold as a mid-layer, where I think the Montane Allez Micro excels is as a winter baselayer, or a just-in-case standby. As a baselayer, the flatlock seams are so comfortable as to be invisible, and the close fitting power grid fabric wicks superbly. Polygiene impregnation means it resists whiffs and pongs well. The hoody version has become my go-to winter baselayer, especially for more technical multi-dayers where I’m working harder and need to keep dry. And if I’m not sure what conditions to expect, it packs down tiny and provides a boost for those nippy ridge walks or frosty runs.
Some are happy to use this as a standalone mid in summer, but for me it’s not quite enough to rely on, on its own – at least if I’m in Scotland at Munro height. In all other circumstances however, it’s excellent.