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Ibex Outdoor Clothing — Nomad FZ Hoody

IbexWear 'Nomad FZ Hoody' wool top

Having tried synthetic biking gear for cool weather riding, I know that some things work (wool with the right layers), and some don’t (synthetics lose insulating value).

What works best for intensive exercise is a wicking base layer along with a wool layer. Add a wind vest or jacket for when it’s wet or windy. Interpose another layer if conditions are even colder.

I’ve long used the Ibex 'Shak' jerseys for my cycling in cool weather (over the right summer-weight jersey), and they work great. When it turns a little colder, enter the 'Nomad FZ Hoody', by Ibex Outdoor Clothing.

Note that the Nomad FZ Hoody is designed as an all-around mid-layer; it’s not specific to any sport. I see that as a big plus because when I need to be warm on my bike, most cycling gear falls short. And I want clothing I can use when photographing or biking or hiking.

Note that Ibex has other weights of hoodies and Shak jerseys and so on, so it’s best to have 2 or 3 weights of fabric and warmth to cover the conditions.

UPDATE 20 Aug 2015: the exact model keeps changing, but your for photography outings and similar, I now STRONGLY prefers the Ibex Hoody with a front zippered hand-warmer pocket, not just for hands but for carrying small items, like a lens (e.g., Zeiss Batis or similar — Lloyd Chambers.

'Nomad FZ Hoody'

Let’s dissect ''Nomad FZ Hoody''—

  • 'Nomad' is the product name (there can be multiple variants).
  • FZ = “full zip”. A full zip piece extends the range of comfort by allowing ventilation if conditions become warmer.
  • 'Hoody' = built in hood, which can be used to protect the head, sides of the face and neck, and it is comfortable under the helmet also.

The last point is worth noting— a hood add tremendous warmth and yet has little impact when not needed. I also use the hood for sun protection at high altitude when a hat is unwanted or in the way. Should the wind and/or temperatures take a turn for the worse, that hood is good for a big boost in comfort. In short, if you can only carry one piece, the Nomad FZ Hoody with its hood and full zipper offer a very wide temperature range.


Good value starts with a good product and a non-nonsense warranty:

We’re committed to our uncompromising craftsmanship— and to your satisfaction. Exchanged or get a refund for your garment for any reason.

I can attest that Ibex stands behind this, even years later.

Cap or hood?

A light wool cap under the helmet works great, but the “Hoody” design takes it one step further: it keeps the back of the neck warm also, as well as providing the option to surround the edges of the face for even more warmth.

Warmth — dual design

The Nomad FZ Hoody is WARM, more sophisticated in build than might be obvious; the inner layer is what Ibex calls a “lofty fleece” and the outer layer a “flat finished face”.

I was astounded at just how much warmer this dual-sided construction is compared to the regular 'Shak' jerseys I use; the heat-trapping soft fleece-style finish on the inner layer can be felt immediately. Very impressive.

While I have a conventional wool cycling jersey, it’s open weave means that I am forced to wear a wind-blocker vest or similar over it (which kills breathability). By comparison, the Nomad FZ Hoody has an inherent wind-blocking action due to the tight weave of the outer fabric. Yet it breathes (moisture) extremely well, being wool. It’s a great combination.

For intensive exertion where a lot of body heat is being produced, I’d say that the Nomad FZ Hoody is best used at 53° F and cooler temperatures. If one is not generating much body heat, then the 50—66° range should work very well.


Cycling gear too often doesn’t acknowledge that pockets are useful. The Nomad FZ Hoody has an arm pocket (left arm) and two hand-warmer pockets. The arm warmer pocket is handy for any lightweight item, say a $20 bill for that warm mug down the road. The hand-warmer pockets are good for any extras. They don’t get in the way, and I’m much rather have them than not. And when I’m not cycling, having the pockets is great for a small camera, lens cap, whatever.

Ibex says

Wool fleece at its finest. This thicker mid-layer is richly warm and all-day wearable with handwarmer pockets and a durable outer finish that seals in the softness of 100% Merino.

Our new mid-weight Nomad fabric takes the traditional fleece to higher levels of softness, warmth, and durability. The 21-micron, mid-weight fleece regulates temperature like only wool can, while the versatile cuts of our new Nomad line are built to perform in every activity.

21 micron 100% Merino wool fleece; 320 g/m2
Reverse coil zipper at center front
Exposed locking pull reverse zippers on pockets
Contrast binding on sleeve openings, thumbholes and hood
Flatlock Seams
Machine washable
Made in the USA

IbexWear 'Nomad FZ Hoody' wool top


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