Foehn Orford Polartec Merino long sleeve shirt review – super comfortable mid-weight riding top

The Foehn Orford Polartec Merino is a versatile long-sleeve riding jersey combining mid-weight warmth with a lightweight feel

Foehn Orford Polartec Merino long sleeve shirt review
(Image: © Paul Brett)

BikePerfect Verdict

Very comfortable lightweight Polartec-powered jersey whether it's worn on its own or as a mid-layer.

Pros

  • +

    Super comfortable

  • +

    Fast drying

  • +

    Elasticated cuffs

  • +

    Lightweight

Cons

  • -

    Availability

  • -

    No women’s version

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Foehn Clothing is a small outdoor clothing manufacturer located in Quebec. Founded by ex-pro skier Anthony Boronowski and Ingrid Sirois, the brand produces technical clothing with a modern aesthetic for rock climbers, runners, and mountain bikers.

The Orford Long Sleeve jersey is a versatile mid-weight Polartec Merino jersey, it's not aimed specifically to be the best mountain bike jersey but it works as well on the bike as it does for other outdoor activities too.

Foehn Orford Polartec Merino long sleeve shirt review

There is a single black on black logo on the chest (Image credit: Paul Brett)

Design

Foehn is a small outfit and their MTB range only consists of a couple of key items, a pair of Tobin Schoeller MTB-specific pants and the Orford Long Sleeve jersey. The jersey is made from Polartec Merino which has a Polyester exterior with merino wool next to the skin. Foehn says that by combining these two textiles the jersey is able to better regulate temperature as well as wick and evaporate any moisture away from the body.

The sleeve cuffs are double-layered and the hem is neatly laser-cut and bonded. There are also two laser-cut holes under the armpits for a little extra ventilation.

The jersey is only available in a plain black color and features a single small logo on the chest. Foehn offers sizing from XS to XL, we went for a medium and felt that sizing was as expected. Foehn does a couple of women’s long sleeves tops, although they don’t appear to have an equivalent Polartec Merino jersey. 

Foehn Orford Polartec Merino long sleeve shirt pictured from behind

Our size medium had a very comfortable fit (Image credit: Paul Brett)

Performance

First off, the Orford is a very comfortable layer to wear, it's soft against the skin and I found it fitted me well. The sleeves are a good length and the sleeve cuffs give a tighter fit around the wrists. There are no pockets or zips on it either so the Orford feels very light to wear. It works well as a single layer in chilly conditions, but can also be used as part of a layering system on colder days. We would usually wear it on its own in mid-double figures, add a base layer in low-double figures, and combine it with an outer shell in single celsius conditions.

The use of the merino means it performs very well with heat management and stink resistance while the Polyester protects it from snaggy foliage and becoming a twisted and misshaped mess after a few washes. 

The Orford is not cheap though and as Foehn is a small brand, getting your hands on one may require some patience. Unfortunately, they are currently out of stock with no word on when they will be available again.

Foehn Orford Polartec Merino long sleeve shirt details

Hems are laser cut and neatly finished (Image credit: Paul Brett)

Verdict

Foehn’s Orford is an excellent technical long-sleeve jersey if you are looking for a versatile MTB top that will also work very well for other outdoor sports or as super comfortable casual attire.

Getting a hold of one might be tough though and while the detailing, finish, and fit of the Orford is to a really high quality, there are definitely cheaper more readily available Polartec-powered options around including the heavier weight and warmer Specialized Trail Thermal Jersey or the considerably cheaper Altura Esker Long Sleeve. 

Tech specs: Foehn Orford Polartec Merino long sleeve shirt

  • Price: $119.95
  • Sizes: XS-XL 
  • Colors: Black
  • Weight: 182g (medium) 
Graham Cottingham
Senior reviews writer, Bike Perfect

Graham is all about riding bikes off-road. Based in Edinburgh he has some of the best mountain biking and gravel riding in the UK right on his doorstep. With almost 20 years of riding experience, he has dabbled in downhill, enduro, and gravel racing. Not afraid of a challenge, Graham has embraced bikepacking over the last few years and likes nothing more than strapping some bags to his bike and covering big miles to explore Scotland's wildernesses. When he isn’t shredding the gnar in the Tweed Valley, sleeping in bushes, or tinkering with bikes, he is writing tech reviews for Bike Perfect.


Rides: Canyon Strive, Stooge MK4, 24 Bicycles Le Toy 3, Surly Steamroller

Height: 177cm

Weight: 71kg