As it’s made from merino wool, you could honestly live in the Icebreaker Cascade Full Zip for months without washing it because of its natural antibacterial properties. Made from Icebreaker’s RealFleece (260g/m2), this is a thick, warm full-zip jacket that keeps you very toasty but also breathes well so you shouldn’t ever get clammy. You can feel stronger wind through the material, so it is best worn under a wind- or waterproof jacket in such conditions. The collar is soft and snug around the neck but the cuffs are a little baggy and there are no thumb loops for extra hand warmth. The rest of the Icebreaker Cascade Full Zip is well-fitting and very smart, meaning you could wear this top as casual wear too as it doesn’t scream “I’m a hillwalker!” The absence of a hem drawcord is not noticeable as it fits well around the bum, with a slight drop tail to add to the warmth and cover your kidneys when reaching up for rock holds when scrambling. The two side pockets are just about accessible with a rucksack hipbelt and there’s also a small lipsalve/iPod pocket on the arm. The Icebreaker Cascade Full Zip’s weight is reasonable at 422g (size UK12) without a hood or thumb loops.
Pockets 2 side, 1 arm
Material Realfleece merino wool weight 260g/m2
Thumb loops no
Hood no (Cascade Hood available though)
Men’s version yes
The Icebreaker Cascade Full Zip is a very warm, smart and well-fitting natural fleece jacket that’s especially great for multi-day trekking when washing facilities are non-existent.
Review by Claire Maxted
First published in Trail magazine October 2012