For me, the key to outdoor sports is clothing. To be able to fully enjoy my outdoor activities, I need to possess the right equipment, but mainly, the right clothes. Winter outdoor enthusiasts absolutely know that layering is essential. You must know how to evacuate your heat during exercise and be able to cover yourself adequately when resting. The Otero Fleece Hoodie from Cotopaxi remains a remarkable item in my wardrobe. I had the chance to test it mainly during my backcountry skiing trips. In my outings this winter, I usually wear a long sleeve base layer that fits snugly. I used the Otero Fleece as my middle layer and have a windproof, waterproof shell to go over it. I used to have a similar product to the Cotopaxi Otero Fleece from another brand. I was happy to be able to compare them and identify the strengths of this jacket.

But first, let’s talk about Cotopaxi

The priority of this company is sustainability. They are conscientious of both the people and the planet. Sourcing for materials, manufacturing and sustainability of their product are at the heart of their thinking. They make sure to partner with companies that respect workers’ rights. They are certified carbon neutral and B Corporation (Power of Business for Social, Environmental and Economic Good).

What can I mention about the sweater

The Otero Fleece is a full-zip hoodie. There are two concealed zippered hand pockets and one zippered patch chest pocket. This sweater is produced from recycled polyester, with a particular texture. It is a raised grid-back fleece. This apparently allows very adequate ventilation while keeping the heat.

An interesting aspect that optimizes the comfort of the sweater is the seam offset under the arms, about four to five inches lower. There is less friction compared to a seam directly under the armpits. The Otero Fleece also has a scuba hood. This makes it perfect for ice climbing or skiing, where I typically place my hood under my helmet. It is thin and doesn’t go too low, it doesn’t restrict vision.

The sweater has thumb loops. Since I use the multi-layer system a lot, the thumb loops allow me to easily hold the sleeves of the sweater when I put on my shell. The holes are comfortable and they are not too small and tight. I can keep them in for a long time, without it becoming irritating.

I noticed that I could wear this shirt for several outings in a row without needing to wash it. It doesn’t retain odors, even when I was very hot on my ski touring trips. This is an aspect that I found interesting when traveling for a few days.

This may not seem like a big deal, but the fabric does not hold the hair. As I own an Alaskan Malamute, this factor is very significant for me, because I hate it when my sweaters are completely covered by my dog’s hair. This is not the case at all with the Otero Fleece.

In conclusion

This incredibly versatile and functional jacket is absolutely great. The Otero fleece is light and does a pretty good layer. It is listed at $150 USD. Cotopaxi offers a life-time warranty and repair. They said that their products are made to last, but they are not indestructible. Therefore, they cover it with a life-time warranty and repairs program. Not only does this company make great products, but Cotopaxi has undoubtedly a sustainable vision. I highly recommend this mid-layer from this amazing company. 

You can have more information about Cotopaxi here:




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Maxime has always lived near Quebec. Since his childhood, he has a passion for mountain biking. As an electro-mechanic he has been travelling the roads for several years, both for work and adventure. Always searching to surpass himself, he began in 2020 with his girlfriend Sophie-Gabrielle the build of his second camper. This particular project is designed to bring all the equipment he needs to practice his favourite sports during their trips. Mountain biking, rock and ice climbing, ski touring, hiking, it is in nature that Maxime feels at home.