With mid-layering becoming more popular by the season, ensure you know you're getting the best on the market. Take a look at Alf's recent review on the Icebreaker Descender.

PRICE: £150

WEBSITE: Icebreaker Descender Long Sleeve Zip Mid-Layer

WHAT THEY SAY: "A technical midlayer designed to insulate and breathe during cold, high-output days up in the mountains, out on the slopes or on the trails, the Men’s Descender Long Sleeve Zip is designed for those on the move. Made with our 240gm textured terry corespun fabric, which uses nylon fibers wrapped in merino wool for added durability and quicker drying, the Descender features a high-loft brushed back with heat-trapping channels to help regulate your temperature during technical high-exertion pursuits like skiing, climbing or running in cold conditions. Lighter-weight side panels help manage moisture and dump excess heat when you’re moving fast, while the zippered chest pocket with media cord port keeps your music flowing or stashes small essentials.

WHAT ALF SAYS: The Descender is one of the nicest bits of kit I’ve reviewed this winter – the 240gm textured fabric feels great against the skin and the cut is also just right, being neither too tight nor too loose. On top of this it looks really good, so much so that you could wear the Descender just about anywhere.

It’s designed as a technical mid-layer for high exertion activities so freeriders and ski tourers will love it, but that wouldn’t stop me from recommending it to just about any skier of any ability. The fabric is a mix of merino wool, lycra and nylon for warmth, wicking and stretch, and features a high-loft brushed back with heat-trapping channels to help regulate your temperature, along with lighter weight side panels for moisture management.

The zip is long enough to allow for good venting whilst the collar is high enough to keep you warm, without any sensation of restriction in colder weather. Other features include a large, zippered chest pocket, thumb loops and elasticated cuffs and hem, all of which come together to make an excellent and versatile mid-layer.

FOR: Effective, versatile and good looking


Alf Alderson is an award-winning freelance ski journalist who will be working on gear reviews throughout the 2016/17 season for the Ski Club of Great Britain.