Behind the Slogan "Guide Built"

An inside look at how Eddie Bauer designs ski gear.
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Building ski outerwear isn’t an exact science. It involves designers, athletes, and business people, each with different goals with a given piece. Ultimately, good outerwear must work in the field, impress media blokes like us, have an understandable tech story for the consumer, and sell through at retail.

One of the common stories we hear from outerwear manufacturers is athlete involvement in product design. It’s called things like “athlete-driven,” “athlete-proven,” or in the case of Eddie Bauer, “Guide Built.”

We decided to dig a little deeper and see exactly how Eddie Bauer’s team of mountain guides and pro skiers influence the creation of Eddie Bauer ski wear. The development of the this season's Neoteric Jacket and Neoteric Pant began in 2011 when EB guides voiced a need for a mulit-use snowsports-specific outerwear kit. They wanted high-performing and versatile pieces for both the resort and the backcountry. The original prototypes performed well, but needed work, which is where more testing from the Eddie Bauer athletes came in. Use the interactive below to see how Eddie Bauer arrived at the final product, a light, technical shell jacket and pant made with Polartec Neoshell.


Vermont-based Skiing Magazine contributor Berne Brody gets her spring corn harvest in.

Steelies and Coulies: Idaho Style

This time of year in Central Idaho means corn skiing at Sun Valley Resort, backcountry touring in the Sawtooth Mountains, and Steelhead fishing on the Salmon River. We spent the week doing all three while testing gear from First Ascent and helmets and eyewear from Smith Optics. The trip was as good as they get. Check out our gallery here.


What Ski Guides Carry

This is the gear Arc'teryx athlete and ACMG assistant ski guide, Christina Lustenberger, trusts for long days of ski guiding in the hills. Photos by Bruno Long.

One of my buddies loves to get on the slopes but doesn’t have the means to get up to the mountains as much as he would like or buy the best gear. His bargain bin goggles are probably the best example. Sure, they work, but they put a very uncomfortable orangish-brown spin on an otherwise colorful world. To remedy the situation, I’m getting him a fresh pair of Smith I/O goggles. They come with two high quality spherical lenses— a light one for overcast, a dark one for sunny days. The lenses can be switched easily thanks to Smith’s tricky quick release lens system. Plus, the goggles fit well with a helmet and are about as stylish as goggles can get. -K.L. [$165;]

Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide

Last minute shopping? Stumped on what to get your your high-maintenance mama or lifitie cousin? Still need some ideas for yourself? We’ve got your back. From our slightly-crazy families to yours.

Designed by some of the world’s foremost adventurers for dialed backcountry layering, the Microtherm’s 800-fill goose down makes this mid-layer nice and warm but allows it to pack down small and fit easily in your pack. It will repel some precipitation, which is ideal for skinning during light snow flurries, and the jacket’s athletic cut fits well under an outer shell.  [$169:]

Gear for Getting Out There

Skiing’s December issue is all about adventure—what, when, why, and how to get out beyond the typical day trip. Here’s more adventure-certified gear to help get you way out there.


Skiing Magazine's 2008-09 Backcountry Gear Guide

Last March, our two dozen testers hammered laps on Crested Butte’s bony steeps for two days, filling out evaluation cards after each run. The results are listed here. “AT” means the gear was reviewed by alpine-touring skiers. “Tele” means tested by telemark skiers. Some skis were tested by both groups. Our goal: to help you find your perfect backcountry setup.