If you're looking for gear that's going to keep you warm, dry, and ripping all day, look no further. Whether you're looking for a new jacket for the 2017 season or trying to determine which baselayer is the one for you, we've got you covered, literally.
Dalbello Lupo AX 120 ($800)
Why We Chose It: While many skiers are constantly searching for that ultimate one ski quiver, the Lupo serves as a perfect one boot quiver, featuring both tech inserts for touring as well as Grip Walk soles compatible with WTR (Walk to Ride) Alpine bindings.
Why We Liked It: The external removable tongue was surprisingly easy to work with even with gloves on, allowing for a comfortable and efficient touring mode when removed, while still retaining the stiffness you want when re-installed for the descent. The 100mm last is an ideal width that allows a comfortable fit without making your foot overly cramped inside the boot.
Tester Tip: If possible, visit your local shop and get professionally fitted for your boot size. Every company’s sizing is a little different, and the last thing you want is to be riding a pair of boots that’s a size too big or too small all season long.
Icelantic 17/18 Nomad 105 LTE ($749)
Why We Chose It: Borrowing all the best features from Icelantic’s top-selling Nomad 105 freeride ski, the Nomad 105 LITE sheds some serious weight (just over a pound at the 181 length), making it a no-brainer choice for someone looking for the perfect freeride touring ski.
Why We Liked It: For only being in its first year of production, the Nomad 105 LITE already feels like a ski that’s had years of testing and tweaking to bring it to perfection. While it’s under the touring category, it’s still a freeride ski at heart, with a super playful rocker profile and twin tips, making it a blast to ski on the downhill, while still being light enough to slap on some skins to go back up for more.
Tester Tip: Looking for a ski you can charge a little harder on and not worry about working it too hard? Opt for the regular Nomad 105, Icelantic’s flagship, tried and true freeride ski.
Marker Kingpin 13 ($649)
Why We Chose It: The Kingpin has long been an industry favorite when it comes to touring bindings. Its bombproof construction and ability to handle the burliest of conditions makes it an easy go-to for anyone looking for the hardest charging alpine touring (AT) binding available.
Why We Liked It: To match the playful, freeride nature of the Nomad 105 LITE, we knew we wanted a binding that would not only excel on the uphill, but one that also wasn’t afraid to get aggressive on the way down. The Kingpin is the closest you’ll get to alpine binding performance while still saving weight over an AT frame binding.
Tester Tip: While they might ski like an alpine binding, the Kingpins still are a touring binding, so keep in mind they’ll require a boot with tech inserts.
Pret Cirque X ($200)
Why We Chose It: Featuring the newest in helmet technology, safety features, and the ability to fit well with nearly any goggle on the market, the Cirque X belongs on every head this winter.
Why We Liked It: As someone who tends to get a toasty noggin when skiing hard, Pret’s new VTT4 (Vent Tuning Technology) offered a massive amount of ventilation with a super low-profile design.
Tester Tip: While it might be on the more expensive end of the helmet spectrum, the safety tech packed into this helmet makes it worth it. You only get one brain: Take care of it.
Electric EG3 ($200)
Why We Chose It: The classic, oversized frameless goggle design not only has an awesome look, but allows for an unrivaled range of vision over traditional framed goggles.
Why We Liked It: Electric’s Press Seal lens swap system makes quickly swapping lenses a breeze, and with every goggle purchase coming with a 50% discount on an additional lens, you can make sure your goggles are ready for any conditions the mountain can throw at you.
Tester Tip: Have a smaller face? Electric’s EG3.5 goggles have all the same features of the EG3, but are scaled down for skiers who prefer a smaller frameless goggle.
Hestra Morrison Pro Model ($200)
Why We Chose It: Hestra has been producing high quality gloves for 80 years, and Seth Morrison has been one of the biggest faces in freeskiing for decades. Bring them together, and it’s safe to say you’re going to come up with one badass glove.
Why We Liked It: Hestra’s three-finger design takes the best features of both gloves and mittens to create the ultimate glove. The grouping of three fingers brings the warmth and comfort of a mitten, while the trigger finger allows for the dexterity of a glove for dealing with finicky boot buckles and backpack zippers.
Tester Tip: Because they’re leather, these mitts require a bit more care than your average glove. Greasing them regularly with Hestra’s leather balm will help prevent the leather from drying out, and extend the life of your gloves.
Patagonia Nano-Air Hoody ($149- 209)
Why We Chose It: When it comes to warm, comfortable midlayers, Patagonia is hard to beat.
Why We Liked It: Patagonia’s stretchy FullRange insulation combined with a DWR (Durable Water Repellent) finish makes this hoody perfect to toss on under a shell to stay warm during a cold day lapping the resort, or worn by itself grabbing beers at après.
Tester Tip: Buying online and unsure of your size? Patagonia has an incredible, multi-step size calculator that uses feedback from previous buyers to give you the best suggestion on the right size for you.
686 GLCR Gore-Tex Smarty 3-in-1 Weapon Jacket ($500)
Why We Chose It: While 686 only officially broke into the ski game last season with the signing of pro skier Parker White, skiers have been rocking their gear for years, and for good reason—they make great outerwear.
Why We Liked It: The Weapon Jacket is packed to the brim with new tech and features. Its removable SMARTY Primaloft liner allowed us to have just a shell on those warm blue bird days, or layer up for the stormy cold days. The super waterproof 2 Layer Gore-Tex is the best in 686’s lineup, and kept us dry even when it looked like it would never stop snowing.
Tester Tip: The jacket falls under 686’s “Articulated Fit” category, and fits fairly true to size, if not leaning on the looser end of the spectrum. If you like a more slim fitting jacket, think about going down a size.
686 GLCR Gore-Tex GT Pant ($300)
Why We Chose It: Nothing is worse than having your powder day ruined by a pair of pants that just can’t keep out the wet. Thanks to 2 layers of Gore-Tex and a DWR coating, a wet chairlift bum will be a thing of the past.
Why We Liked It: Amazingly dry and super comfortable, these pants are a perfect all-around pant. Their shell design allows plenty of room to layer underneath for the cold days, but the inner thigh vents can keep things cool on a spring day or a tour.
Tester Tip: If you’re looking for something with a little more coverage than a traditional snow pant, check out 686’s Satellite Bib.