Gear

2016 Gear Room

We vet products to find the best gear, so check back every week for new reviews.


Julbo brought back the iconic Vermont Classic glacier glasses for their 125th anniversary, and boy, am I happy. These are worn by my favorite skiers…

Julbo brought back the iconic Vermont Classic glacier glasses for their 125th anniversary, and boy, am I happy. These are worn by my favorite skiers and mountaineers for good reason. The removable leather nosepiece and vented leather side shields block out any peripheral light that could snow-blind you, and the spectron level four lenses protect against 100 percent of UV rays. The completely adjustable rounded temples assure these glasses don’t budge, no matter the activity— I personally tested this by falling face first into a snow bank. Believe me, these babies stayed put.  [$150; Julbo.com] –Kellyn Wilson

 Remember the harsh sounds of rollerblading from your childhood? The clacking of every contact with the pavement, the grinding of your parched…

Remember the harsh sounds of rollerblading from your childhood? The clacking of every contact with the pavement, the grinding of your parched bearings as you petered to a halt.  Luckily your mom isn’t buying your gear anymore and you can get yourself some real skates, like Rollerblade’s marvel of stealth efficiency, the Maxxum 90.  Step into these skates and the quality is immediately apparent.  The racketing system of the straps is simply the best on the market, locking you in firmly and evenly.  The ventilated shell offers all the support of a high end ski boot, while vibration absorbing liners and foot beds keep the ride smooth. High-set 90mm wheels steamroll over road debris, and offer an amazing combination of durability, suppleness and rebound.  Add to that quick-rolling bearings and an aggressive geometry that get you up to speed fast, and don’t want to slow down.  You may also want to invest in a bullhorn, “Out my way people! Hot blades coming through!” 

Rollerblade Maxxum 90 – $279

-Bailey LaRue, Associate Photo Editor

On my recent trip to Kiroro Mountain Resort on Hokkaido, the M1 was my go-to glove. I am not a fan of expensive, bulky gloves. Really, what’s the…

On my recent trip to Kiroro Mountain Resort on Hokkaido, the M1 was my go-to glove. I am not a fan of expensive, bulky gloves. Really, what’s the point? I can be pretty rough on gear, especially gloves, so I have always used Kinkos and a tub of Sno Seal due to the combos toughness, warmth, and low cost making them a great option if you go through a pair every season. The M1 delivers ruggedness, warmth, and durability for nearly the same price as a pair of Kinkos and waterproofing wax but Truck uses better, longer lasting-ski specific materials. I especially like the toughness of the water-resistant goat leather, the breathability of the 4-way stretch nylon, and the suede nose and goggle wipe on the thumbs. I was worried about the tight fit when I first tried these gloves on but after one use they packed out and formed to my hands without losing any warmth. I guess you can consider me a Truck man now. [$29.95, http://www.truckgloves.com/] – Paddy O’Connell, associate editor

Ortovox’s Merino Fleece Light Hoody doesn’t feel, look, or fit like your typical merino layer— and that’s a good thing. The hoody almost feels like a…

Ortovox’s Merino Fleece Light Hoody doesn’t feel, look, or fit like your typical merino layer— and that’s a good thing. The hoody almost feels like a really light fleece fabric because it’s blended with polyester, but it still has the breathability, warmth, and moisture wicking capabilities that we count on in our merino layers. The hoody is super versatile— a perfect four-season piece perfect for climbing in the summer, outerwear in spring and fall, and insulation in the dead of winter. — Leslie Hittmeier

Available for men and women.  MSRP: $219.00

To bib or not to bib? That, friends, is a common question among avid backcountry skiers. The Roam Pant meets half way. Not a true bib but the waist…

To bib or not to bib? That, friends, is a common question among avid backcountry skiers. The Roam Pant meets half way. Not a true bib but the waist raises above my navel, or as I like to call it – my fuzzy bagel. My first time since preschool using suspenders but I have grown to love them and the high cut waist. I just returned from Hokkaido and these pants were a dream. TREW always delivers technical gear and the slim, athletic cut Roam Pants were perfect for deep snow, resort laps, and big tours. These are probably the best venting pants I have ever used. I typically run hot but there’s no overheating with the Roam. I wish the thigh pockets were a bit larger but storage is pretty darn good. The right side hand pocket comes equipped with an internal elastic “beacon bag” which I use to keep my money clip, chapstick, and pocket knife from flopping around. They are tough, warm, and really breathable. [$419, https://trewgear.com] – Paddy O’Connell, associate editor

I have been in the Scarpa Hurricane for a long, long time and have not wanted another boot. But the Freedom RS is too good not to use. 101mm last,…

I have been in the Scarpa Hurricane for a long, long time and have not wanted another boot. But the Freedom RS is too good not to use. 101mm last, 130 flex, incredible range of motion with the walk mode, sleek, and responsive, I love this boot. I had some basic boot work done at Larry’s in Boulder (molded and shaved the liner, slipped in my foot beds, a slight punch here and there) and they were good to go. They have performed very well on tours, on-resort, in the great white depths, chop, variable, bumps…you name it, they do it. The Freedom RS slay. [$829, https://www.scarpa.com/freedom-rs] – Paddy O’Connell, associate editor

I love everything about this jacket and it all started with building it myself online. With over 1 million creative possibilities, including chest…

I love everything about this jacket and it all started with building it myself online. With over 1 million creative possibilities, including chest and sleeve monograms, constructing this puffy was truly fun. The Microtherm Jacket is lightweight, warm, and very packable for backcountry adventures, though I do wish it had an internal zippered pocket so it could be stuffed and stowed more easily. On a recent trip to Japan, it was my go to layer for cold days in epic deepness. I wear it everywhere and always have it in my pack. [$279, http://www.eddiebauer.com/custom] – Paddy O’Connell, associate editor

Because sometimes you need to carry more than a beacon, shovel and probe. The Rise 34+ is large enough to carry enough gear for a weekend hut trip,…

Because sometimes you need to carry more than a beacon, shovel and probe. The Rise 34+ is large enough to carry enough gear for a weekend hut trip, yet not overly large or cumbersome to ski with. The signature Deuter Alpine Back system and Vari-Flex pivoting hip contour to your back and hips as you move, granting unhindered mobility while skiing and trekking. So much mobility in fact, that taking skins off with the pack on is a breeze, and there are ample pockets to tuck them in to before schralping back down the hill again. [$175, www.deuter.com] — Stephen Sebestyen

This incredibly breathable hoody is just the right amount of soft, light, stretchy, and warm for spring conditions.  An ideal jacket for stuffing in…

This incredibly breathable hoody is just the right amount of soft, light, stretchy, and warm for spring conditions.  An ideal jacket for stuffing in a backpack for any excursion and perfect to pull out when the wind starts blowing, temperatures drop, or when the sun goes down. This ultra light jacket is technical, functional and feels good on the skin. If you’re someone who loves to trail run, hike, or bike, the Ferrosi should be front and center in your gear closet this summer. [$129 www.outdoorresearch.com] — Jesse Hackett, contributing editor

This 100-percent ripstop nylon puffy stands out in the world of down sweaters by feeling like a quilted cloud. A stretchy liner and exterior are…

This 100-percent ripstop nylon puffy stands out in the world of down sweaters by feeling like a quilted cloud. A stretchy liner and exterior are packed with four-way-stretch insulation that stays put—and requires less stitching than traditional insulation. It’s breathable enough for skinning and climbing in cold temps, but warm enough to insulate you during transitions and apres. It’s also available in a covetable hoody. I wear this jacket on pretty much every ski mission. [$249, www.patagonia.com] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

Forget chafing from cotton blends and/or going commando on your year-round adventures. These ultra-light, breathable/wicking baselayer briefs are…

Forget chafing from cotton blends and/or going commando on your year-round adventures. These ultra-light, breathable/wicking baselayer briefs are made with 100-percent merino wool, insulate your tush when you need it, and wick sweat. Plus, they don’t itch or stink. [$29, shop.bergans.us] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

Smartphone batteries be damned, this charger’s got your back for day-long adventures. Small enough to fit in a pant or chest pocket, this five-volt,…

Smartphone batteries be damned, this charger’s got your back for day-long adventures. Small enough to fit in a pant or chest pocket, this five-volt, featherweight device takes about two hours to charge via USB. Once fully loaded, its lithium polymer energy will recharge a smartphone once, or digital camera twice. It includes both standard and micro-USB outlets to keep both iPhones and Androids from dying at 2 p.m. [$30, www.brunton.com/] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

A harsh judge of travel mugs, I expect mine to keep my coffee hot and contained whether I drop the mug or toss it in a bag. This steezy stainless…

A harsh judge of travel mugs, I expect mine to keep my coffee hot and contained whether I drop the mug or toss it in a bag. This steezy stainless matte mug accomplished those goals—withstanding several “Oops!” moments. A convenient one-push-to-sip button kept coffee dribbles at bay. It’s not suited for long winter days, as it didn’t keep hot liquids hot for more than about four hours, but if you chug coffee like me, it’ll suit you just fine. [$26, www.avexsport.com] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

This plyable three-layer shell stretches in every direction, an essential for the skin track as well as the way down. Its Dermizax fabric is…

This plyable three-layer shell stretches in every direction, an essential for the skin track as well as the way down. Its Dermizax fabric is windproof and waterproof, lightweight, and quiet—no crinkle sounds emanate from this high-end design. The easy-to-reach pit zips and pockets are placed right where you need ‘em, and the high neck keeps cold at bay. [$499, shop.bergans.us] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

Designed as a packable midlayer, this toasty hoody kept my cold-blooded torso happy through chilly tours and transitions thanks to an insulated hood,…

Designed as a packable midlayer, this toasty hoody kept my cold-blooded torso happy through chilly tours and transitions thanks to an insulated hood, PrimaLoft insulation throughout, and a double ripstop nylon shell. It’s reversible, so I can swap in another style for apres, but it also has become a transitional jacket for shoulder season (aka: unexpected snow storms in Colorado). I love, love, love all the pockets, too. [$250, www.trewgear.com] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

Whether on spring corn harvesting missions or in-bounds rando races, these boots perform well. They’re light enough, with ample ankle rotation, to…

Whether on spring corn harvesting missions or in-bounds rando races, these boots perform well. They’re light enough, with ample ankle rotation, to make the hard uphill parts of ski touring easier, and the heavy tread on the sole grips icy bootpack tracks and dry patches alike. A carbon fiber cuff holds up on the downhill, and you’ll get to the down faster since the boot transition from ski to hike mode is a mere flip of the top buckle. Make no mistake though, these boots are built for serious skimo rippers. [$750, www.dynafit.com] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

Ideal for hut trips and backpacking, this 55-liter pack boasts a few features that make it comfortable for skinning and hiking, including an…

Ideal for hut trips and backpacking, this 55-liter pack boasts a few features that make it comfortable for skinning and hiking, including an adjustable torso length, what seems like a bajillion straps (a good thing), and an internal steel helix structure (think DNA) to distribute the load. External pockets make it easy to stash or grab gear like gloves and water bottles, and the top lid detaches into a daypack. Comes in a version for ladies, too. [$269, shop.bergans.us] — Elizabeth Carey, contributing editor

After testing this pullover out, I’m convinced that heaven is a onesie made from its deep-pile, 51-percent recycled fleece material (worn after a…

After testing this pullover out, I’m convinced that heaven is a onesie made from its deep-pile, 51-percent recycled fleece material (worn after a full day of fresh pow). Its über softness provides a cat-on-lap feeling, and a giant kangaroo pocket offers a convenient storage (and hand-warming) option. Perfect for cold mornings, après ski, hut-trip lounging, and 24/7 wear. [$119, www.patagonia.com] — Elizabeth Carey, associate digital editor 

A comfortable grip with a big strap, easy length adjustment, and a big powder basket—the G3 Via aluminum poles have everything you need in a strong…

A comfortable grip with a big strap, easy length adjustment, and a big powder basket—the G3 Via aluminum poles have everything you need in a strong but lightweight backcountry pole. The swing weight is comfortable, and the handle has a knob on the front that’s great for opening boot buckles without bending over and flipping risers on touring bindings. Plus, it’s only half an ounce heavier than G3’s carbon equivalent and costs $50 less. [$80, www.genuineGuideGear.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Julbo’s new Universe goggle touts a large field of vision, and that’s definitely one of its perks. The low-profile, relatively small frame also fits…

Julbo’s new Universe goggle touts a large field of vision, and that’s definitely one of its perks. The low-profile, relatively small frame also fits well, meshes with the variety of helmets I’ve coupled it with, and is comfortable. But the Snow Tiger photochromic lenses are easy to scratch. I take really good care of my goggle lenses, but these were definitely softer than many others I’ve used. What’s more, the photochromic, tint-changing properties were just OK; I was left wanting more, especially in flat light. [$220, www.JulboUSA.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Like a good boyfriend, these mittens are both tough and cuddly. Made with cowhide leather, Kevlar reinforcements, and softshell nylon, this highly…

Like a good boyfriend, these mittens are both tough and cuddly. Made with cowhide leather, Kevlar reinforcements, and softshell nylon, this highly water-resistant mitt is durable, but super soft, thanks to a fleece lining. The cuff is long enough to keep your hands dry and warm even when you’re slaying deep pow or practicing an avy rescue scenario. And the Park City, Utah-based brand set a revolutionary low price, which is amazing. [$60, www.FreeThePowder.com] — Elizabeth Carey, associate digital editor

Steezy cables: You didn’t know you needed them. Eastern Collective makes mini-USB, micro-USB, Lightning, 30-pin, and auxiliary cables, plus earbuds.…

Steezy cables: You didn’t know you needed them. Eastern Collective makes mini-USB, micro-USB, Lightning, 30-pin, and auxiliary cables, plus earbuds. The cables are durable, the earbuds sound good, and they’re all easier to find while digging through your tangle. Plus, Eastern Collective’s founder is a ski bum from Burlington who got started knitting beanies, gloves, hoodies, and other freeski apparel. [$14–$26, www.EasternCollective.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

If you bring only one shiny gadget on a ski mission, make it the Fenix 2. It records heart rate and all the standard GPS data (including waypoints),…

If you bring only one shiny gadget on a ski mission, make it the Fenix 2. It records heart rate and all the standard GPS data (including waypoints), and you can upload to the interweb to track your adventure. It wirelessly connects to your phone to display texts and can control a Garmin helmet cam (sold separately). [$400, www.Garmin.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

On adventures from dawn patrols and hut trips to 12-hour rando races, the Tikka RXP performs awesomely. Its “reactive lighting” automatically adjusts…

On adventures from dawn patrols and hut trips to 12-hour rando races, the Tikka RXP performs awesomely. Its “reactive lighting” automatically adjusts the beam from two to 215 lumens depending on the setting. Look at a map and it’ll dim; look up the trail and it’ll blast. [$90, www.Petzl.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

One of Hestra’s most well-known styles, the Heli Ski Mitt is built for the slopes, and it shows. The upper is made of wind and waterproof fabric to…

One of Hestra’s most well-known styles, the Heli Ski Mitt is built for the slopes, and it shows. The upper is made of wind and waterproof fabric to keep your hands warm on cold chair lift rides, and there’s an extended cuff to keep the powder out on those deep days. Bonus: The don’t have finger separators, so they keep your digits warmer. The downside: For people with super cold hands you still may need a heat pack or two. [$125, www.hestragloves.com] — Jackie McCaffrey, contributing editor

Imagine your favorite down sweater and your trustworthy shell had a love child, and that child went to Harvard. The Black Diamond Convergent Down…

Imagine your favorite down sweater and your trustworthy shell had a love child, and that child went to Harvard. The Black Diamond Convergent Down Hoody is flush with clever points. The lightweight Primaloft Gold Insulation Down (which mixes synthetic and down insulation) and the Gore-Tex’ Windstopper shell keep the warm air where it should be while allowing the coat to breathe. The fleece collar and seamed zippers are a nice touch and keep the coat cozy during strong gusts or tumbles in the powder, and the barrage of pockets are sized for everything from skins to car keys. The fit seems to be about a size off (I’m normally a large, but this felt like an extra large), but it grants full range of motion for skiing and climbing. Just beware when considering your size choice. [$500, www.BlackDiamondEquipment.com] — Stephen Sebestyen, contributing editor

It’s like a sleeping bag for your dog. The d-fa Puff Doggy is a synthetic-insulated, wind- and water-resistant jacket that clips under your dogs…

It’s like a sleeping bag for your dog. The d-fa Puff Doggy is a synthetic-insulated, wind- and water-resistant jacket that clips under your dogs chest and has elastic rear-leg loops (and a tail loop) to stay in place. My Australian cattle dog has worn hers on backpacking trips, while stuck in the car during Christmas brunch in frigid Minnesota, and nearly any other time when she needs a bit of help staying warm. It’s super versatile, packs really small, and, unlike a blanket, stays on while she moves around. [$110, www.d-fa.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Designed to perform on any aspect of the mountain, the Outdoor Research Trickshot touts every detail I want in a soft shell. Beyond the requisite…

Designed to perform on any aspect of the mountain, the Outdoor Research Trickshot touts every detail I want in a soft shell. Beyond the requisite water- and wind-proofing plus breathability, it has pockets everywhere I need them (two internal, four external), easily accessible pit zips for dumping heat, and a tall neck cuff with adjustable, helmet-friendly hood. Most importantly, it has great range of motion making it ideal for touring and hot laps alike. [$425, www.OutdoorResearch.com] — Elizabeth Carey, associate digital editor

Best known for tents and sleeping bags, Big Agnes recently moved into the apparel arena. Its Ways Gulch Vest proves that the Colorado brand knows…

Best known for tents and sleeping bags, Big Agnes recently moved into the apparel arena. Its Ways Gulch Vest proves that the Colorado brand knows what it’s doing. Filled with 85 grams of 700-fill water-resistant down, the vest is really warm without adding weight or the worry of getting it wet. It’s yet to disappoint, whether worn as a mid-layer while skiing or as an outer layer on cool shoulder-season days. Plus, it has big mesh pockets on the inside to put skins during backcountry ski tours. This vest has become my in-between go-to when a down jacket is too much and other layers aren’t enough. [$180, www.BigAgnes.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Full disclosure, I am a sucker for backpacks. My closet is stuffed with packs for every style of adventure, from the sunrise skin to the week-long…

Full disclosure, I am a sucker for backpacks. My closet is stuffed with packs for every style of adventure, from the sunrise skin to the week-long expedition. Yet not all packs are created equal, and a select few get significantly more use and love. Black Diamond’s Axis 33 is one of these packs. Elegant in its simplicity, it’s large enough to hold a tent and cookware, but light enough to toss on for a short jaunt. The oversized top zipper grants easy access to everything in the pack, and the helmet carrier keeps your lid accessible. The true genius however is in the ergoACTIV suspension system and SwingArm hip belt, which keep the pack centered and secured regardless of orientation. [$170, www.BlackDiamondEquipment.com] — Stephen Sebestyen, contributing editor

The Tuis are my muse. Not only are the new premium headphones from Outdoor Tech Bluetooth enabled, they pump out rich and savory tunes for more than…

The Tuis are my muse. Not only are the new premium headphones from Outdoor Tech Bluetooth enabled, they pump out rich and savory tunes for more than 15 hours without rebuttal or charge. The sleek five-button interface controls Bluetooth connectivity, volume, and track changes. It also lets you switch between jamming to Led Zepplin and calling your buddies about your next ski trip. Two hidden hinges let the phones fold in half for storage, and the 3.5mm jack lets you plug them into your device when Bluetooth isn’t available or the battery dies, making them ideal traveling companions. Snag a pair. Your ears will thank you. [$150, OutdoorTechnology.com] — Stephen Sebestyen, contributing editor

The low-profile and blizzardproof Sol Republic Deck wireless speaker has great sound clarity with minimal distortion at max volume. It’ll connect to…

The low-profile and blizzardproof Sol Republic Deck wireless speaker has great sound clarity with minimal distortion at max volume. It’ll connect to your device via Bluetooth, near field communication, or auxiliary cable. And it has a microphone for that business call you have to take while crushing après beers. 
[$100, www.SolRepublic.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Beverages in the backcountry provide a conundrum. Cans and bottles of beer and wine are heavy to tote in, not to mention packing out containers, and…

Beverages in the backcountry provide a conundrum. Cans and bottles of beer and wine are heavy to tote in, not to mention packing out containers, and while whiskey fits nicely in the pocket, it all to often makes early mornings painful. Enter Pats Backcountry Beverages. Using a brew concentrate, carbonation packet, and a reusable pint sized plastic bottle, Pats provides libations far from the trailhead at a fraction of the weight. Fill the bottle with snowmelt, choose your style of brew (or soda), mix, carbonate, and enjoy. The process takes a few trials to get just right, but with practice the taste is akin to a solid microbrew. [about $56, patsbcb.com] — Stephen Sebestyen, contributing editor

There’s serious tech beneath this watch’s durable glass face. Bluetooth connectivity lets you control your tunes and see texts and caller ID without…

There’s serious tech beneath this watch’s durable glass face. Bluetooth connectivity lets you control your tunes and see texts and caller ID without having to dig into your pocket. It also runs various smartphone apps that let you track vert, number of runs, and more all from your wrist. [$199, GetPebble.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

While it’s no everday phone case, the SLXtreme5 is great for backcountry excursions like hut trips. Besides keeping your iPhone 5 or 5s (and soon…

While it’s no everday phone case, the SLXtreme5 is great for backcountry excursions like hut trips. Besides keeping your iPhone 5 or 5s (and soon your 6 or 6 Plus) safe from snow, drops, and spills, the waterproof case has a solar panel and integrated battery to keep you juiced when an outlet isn’t available, promising endless hours of tunes and sweet selfies. [$150, snowlizardproducts.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

No ski pack should go without a multitool. The MP1 Has all the standard components, like spring-loaded pliers, wire cutters, serrated and straight…

No ski pack should go without a multitool. The MP1 Has all the standard components, like spring-loaded pliers, wire cutters, serrated and straight blades, and the ever important bottle opener. But it also has a magnetic bit driver that comes with a #2 Phillips and a pry bar for tweaking bindings. [$115, gerbergear.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Let’s face it. When you’re taking keg beer
 for the road, you need something reliable to transport it and keep it cold. Enter the Hydro Flask…

Let’s face it. When you’re taking keg beer
 for the road, you need something reliable to transport it and keep it cold. Enter the Hydro Flask Insulated Growler, a 64-ounce container that’ll keep your brew chilly for up to 24 hours—though we didn’t wait that long to drink ours. It’s double-wall-insulated stainless steel and has a lifetime warranty. [$55; hydroflask.com] —Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Nikon’s AW1 is the go-anywhere, do-anything camera that’ll take a beating and still shoot great photos. It’s waterproof to 49 feet, freezeproof to 14…

Nikon’s AW1 is the go-anywhere, do-anything camera that’ll take a beating and still shoot great photos. It’s waterproof to 49 feet, freezeproof to 14 degrees Fahrenheit, and dropproof to 6.6 feet. It sports easy manual controls and is compatible with Nikkor interchangeable lenses (sold separately) that go from macro to hella-zoom. [$750; nikonusa.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

The Sequence 33L is no exception to Dakine’s tradition of offering highly functional products. You don’t need to be a professional to take advantage…

The Sequence 33L is no exception to Dakine’s tradition of offering highly functional products. You don’t need to be a professional to take advantage of the pack’s removable camera block and 15-inch laptop sleeve. Ideal for shooting all sports, it is very ergonomic with adjustments galore. Although tripod securement leaves a bit to be desired, this pack will protect your investment, er, camera on the hill. —Alex Stuart, associate photo editor [$220.00, Dakine.com]

The classic work-shirt styling and PrimaLoft insulation give this jacket a one-of-a-kind blend of off- and on-hill performance. It’ll field…

The classic work-shirt styling and PrimaLoft insulation give this jacket a one-of-a-kind blend of off- and on-hill performance. It’ll field compliments in the bar and keep winter’s bite at bay. It’s time to up your midlayer game, and the Snap Jack can help you out. [$195, www.TrewGear.com] — Kevin Luby, senior editor

Whether you’ve got food allergies out the wazoo or are sick of GORP and 1,000-ingredient energy bars, Epic bars offer an alternative packable snack.…

Whether you’ve got food allergies out the wazoo or are sick of GORP and 1,000-ingredient energy bars, Epic bars offer an alternative packable snack. At first, I called them “Meat Bars,” because that’s what they are. These gluten-free, low-sugar, and Paleo-friendly protein bars are made with grass-fed, hormone-free bison, turkey, beef, or lamb blended with dried fruits, nuts, or other natural ingredients. My go-to is the Turkey, Almond and Cranberry bar; I stash one in my pocket for ski days, bike rides, or after trail runs. —Elizabeth Carey, associate digital editor [$34 (for box of 12), EpicBar.com]

This weather-resistant, multi-beam headlamp is a jack of all trades. Whether I'm camping, hiking, or running at night, it delivers 120 lumens, plus a…

This weather-resistant, multi-beam headlamp is a jack of all trades. Whether I’m camping, hiking, or running at night, it delivers 120 lumens, plus a “boost” mode of 160 lumens (for when I’m running away from Sasquatch). It also has a blinking strobe mode to help ensure others see you coming. Unlike other headlamps, it fits like a budge-free, jiggle-less headband. It lit my way through my night stages in a nearly 30-hour Ragnar relay race in Colorado’s mountains without any issues. — Elizabeth Carey, associate digital editor [$55, Petzl.com]

I’ve got two herniated discs in my low back, and if I don’t manage them, they’ll put me on the couch for weeks at a time, which can be rather…

I’ve got two herniated discs in my low back, and if I don’t manage them, they’ll put me on the couch for weeks at a time, which can be rather inconvenient during epic Rockies storm cycles. Swimming is a great way to keep them in check, but, truth be told, I find it incredibly boring. Then I found this boredom-killing little get-up from Underwater Audio, which lets me bring tunes and podcasts into the water with me. The company uses a proprietary way of waterproofing the Shuffle, which is small and light enough to clip onto a swim-goggle strap. In addition to an extension cord for land-based training, the waterproof swimbuds come with an extra-short cord, so I’m not dragging wire down the lane with me. [$165; UnderwaterAudio.com] —Sam Bass, editor

I love big snow years for two reasons: powder days and the good water year that inevitably follows. I almost consider myself a fisherman before a…

I love big snow years for two reasons: powder days and the good water year that inevitably follows. I almost consider myself a fisherman before a skier. Skiing has the adrenaline, but there are few things as calming as a day on the river. And my life demands a little calm from time to time. Because I’m always landing big ones, I trust the Fishpond Nomad Mid-Length Net. Its composite construction is incredibly light, and it works great with my lumbar pack, tucking neatly against my back as I’m wading around. It’s the best net I’ve ever owned. [from $150; FishpondUSA.com] — Kevin Luby, senior editor

I don’t subscribe to the whole minimalist-running thing. I weigh 200 pounds, and even though I try to be light on my feet, I’m still a bit of a…

I don’t subscribe to the whole minimalist-running thing. I weigh 200 pounds, and even though I try to be light on my feet, I’m still a bit of a pounder, so I like padding underfoot. I had pretty much thrown in the towel on the whole running thing, then I discovered the Hoka One One Bondi B2, which I wrote about here. I loved those so much I ran them to shreds, so I’ve graduated to these Conquests. I love how light and precise they feel on my feet, even with all of that cushion, and the rockered toe eats up rough terrain just like a rockered ski does. And the best part is that they don’t aggravate the two herniated discs in my lower back the way my old minimalist shoes did. [$170; HokaOneOne.com] — Sam Bass, editor

Steezy and safe are two of my biggest requirements in a mountain bike helmet, and the new Bern Morrison has both. The roughly dozen vents do a great…

Steezy and safe are two of my biggest requirements in a mountain bike helmet, and the new Bern Morrison has both. The roughly dozen vents do a great job at keeping air moving, and it has a removable visor and goggle strap, so you can change up the look depending on your style of riding. And unlike a traditional bike helmet, the back of the Morrison comes down to the base of your skull for added protection. It’s lightweight, has removable pads, and an adjustment dial at the rear that cinches the helmet much like a ski helmet. There’s little more I’d want in a good lid. [$100, BernUnlimited.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

A toasty puffy is an important piece in the outerwear quiver, and while I like down insulation in the backcountry because of weight and packability,…

A toasty puffy is an important piece in the outerwear quiver, and while I like down insulation in the backcountry because of weight and packability, I prefer synthetic around town and at the resort. It requires a little less care, yet provides plenty of warmth. The Pegasus offers the best of both worlds. It’s a featherweight that packs down into a small internal pocket, and it’s insulated with PrimaLoft ONE, so I’m less concerned about it around mud, campfires, or drinking games. If it gets dirty, I can just pitch it in the washer with some tech wash and be done. [$200, Sportiva.com] — Kevin Luby, senior editor

I started using this GPS watch when I was training for the Elk Mountains Grand Traverse. Getting in-the-field feedback about my pace, mileage,…

I started using this GPS watch when I was training for the Elk Mountains Grand Traverse. Getting in-the-field feedback about my pace, mileage, elevation, and lap time helped immensely as I prepared for the grueling race. I used the interval timer to remind me to eat and drink every 30 minutes, and I geeked out over my training stats on the Movescount.com program. Now that the race is over, I use the Suunto Ambit 2 on just about every run, bike ride, and ski tour. When I’m out exploring, it’s great for collecting GPS data on new zones. When I’m just trying to get exercise, it’s the added push that ensures I run a full five miles rather than bailing at 4.2. The Ambit 2 has completely changed how I stay active. I don’t think I could go without it. [$550 with HR monitor, Suunto.com] — Kevin Luby, senior editor

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Smith’s new Lowdown shades feature a classic straight-top frame that’s lightweight and perfect for medium-sized faces. A rubberized nose and…

Smith’s new Lowdown shades feature a classic straight-top frame that’s lightweight and perfect for medium-sized faces. A rubberized nose and flexible, rubberized earpiece tips keep the shades comfortably in place. We didn’t take them to the lab, but Smith’s new ChromaPop lens is designed to provide better contrast, clarity, and color than other lens technology. [www.SmithOptics.com; $209, Tortoise with ChromaPop Polarized Brown Lenses] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

A badass blend of urban style and backcountry credit, Forsake’s new Warrant boots have been the perfect all-around spring season kicks. Mid-top…

A badass blend of urban style and backcountry credit, Forsake’s new Warrant boots have been the perfect all-around spring season kicks. Mid-top construction gave my ankle a boost of confidence without hindering mobility yet allowed me to loosen up the knot for kicking around town. Without a protest, my pair have topped rocky peaks, slogged through thick mud, booted soccer balls, danced atop roofs, and been worn with a casual suit. The leather and canvas exterior protected my feet while tromping through snow, yet the breathable top layers kept my dogs cool and dry in the Moab desert in late April. The Warrants are one of the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever worn, and they’re only getting better with time. [$110, Forsake.com] — Stephen Sebestyen, contributing editor

For a goggle-sized Bluetooth speaker, the Outdoor Tech Turtle Shell is amazing for just about any BBQ, après party or townie cruiser ride. It…

For a goggle-sized Bluetooth speaker, the Outdoor Tech Turtle Shell is amazing for just about any BBQ, après party or townie cruiser ride. It features a microphone (for conference calls during a BBQ), an audio-in port, and a shockproof and incredibly water resistant shell (for après hot tub parties). My biggest gripe is that I wish it got louder. For the size, the speaker puts out great sound and a surprising amount of bass, but unless you’re within 30 feet of it you’ll have a hard time hearing your jams. [$150; OutdoorTechnology.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

If you’re trying to take your POV footage to the next level, check out the Dinkum Systems ActionPod. It’ll clamp to almost anything with surprising…

If you’re trying to take your POV footage to the next level, check out the Dinkum Systems ActionPod. It’ll clamp to almost anything with surprising force, so you can mount your camera to a variety of objects. The tripod-sized mounting screw works with nearly any camera—or add the $8 GoPro mount head (gopro.com) for seamless attachment. [$35, DinkumSystems.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

Looking good is just as important during après as when you’re skiing. Enter the OR Sawtooth Shirt. It’s 100 percent polyester, so it’ll wick while…

Looking good is just as important during après as when you’re skiing. Enter the OR Sawtooth Shirt. It’s 100 percent polyester, so it’ll wick while you’re sweating. And it does. On a warm ski day in Utah, the shirt wicked well and dried quickly at the end of the day. The Sawtooh Shirt is heavier than a typical flannel, so I’ve been treating it like a traditional mid-layer, but it’s not bulky or too warm either. The best part: at beer o’clock, I don’t look like I’m kitted out in ski garb. [$85; OutdoorResearch.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

I love shotskis as much as the next guy (perhaps more), but how often most shotski glasses are washed is questionable. Enter the Instant Shotski.…

I love shotskis as much as the next guy (perhaps more), but how often most shotski glasses are washed is questionable. Enter the Instant Shotski. It’s a brilliant shotski setup that uses super sticky tape to adhere a mounting bracket to your ski. Space out the brackets, peel the paper backing, stick, and call your friends. Each mounting bracket has a rubber gasket that holds in the glass—and lets you easily remove it for washing. [$39; InstantShotSki.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

(Prefer to drill holes into your ski? Here’s how we did it.)

Insertable into any headphone-compatible helmet, the Outdoor Technology Chips have great sound, are easy to setup, and manageable while wearing…

Insertable into any headphone-compatible helmet, the Outdoor Technology Chips have great sound, are easy to setup, and manageable while wearing gloves or mittens—and they’re Bluetooth enabled, so you don’t have to mess with cords. Tap the right speaker to control power, play/pause, and answer/hang up; tap the left to control volume and next/back. The only downside is that you won’t be able to take conference calls while skiing, because your co-workers will hear the wind noise. [$130; OutdoorTechnology.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

To some extent, a jacket is a jacket as long as it’s waterproof, breathable, and good looking. The Mountain Hardwear Snowtastic is all of those…

To some extent, a jacket is a jacket as long as it’s waterproof, breathable, and good looking. The Mountain Hardwear Snowtastic is all of those things, plus it’s pretty lightweight. It uses Mountain Hardwear’s Dry.Q Elite to keep you dry, and it has a giant hood, pockets in the right spots, and pit zips to dump extra heat. It’s a great backcountry or hard-charging resort jacket. [$500; MountainHardwear.com] — Ryan Dionne, digital brand manager

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This immensely warm down jacket will keep even the most cold-blooded gals toasty—it's virtually a sleeping bag with sleeves. You can thank its…

This immensely warm down jacket will keep even the most cold-blooded gals toasty—it’s virtually a sleeping bag with sleeves. You can thank its 800-fill goose down insulation paired with a water-resistant Pertex outer fabric for its warmth, the spunky colors (bright pink, citrusy orange, and turquoise), slightly longer length, and hand gaiters with thumb loops for its panache. Ladies will also appreciate the mini-powder skirt, which keeps the jacket in place and hits just below the hips. [$500; Mammut.ch] — Sam Berman, contributing editor