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Gear

Our Favorite Gear of the Year

We get to try out a lot of gear around here, but the stuff we truly love can be rare and hard to come by. These are the goods, from boots to barbecue sauce, that we abused the heck out of this winter. We like this stuff a lot, and there's a good chance you might too.

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Like a Snickers ice cream bar, the Dalbello Krypton Pro is a refinement of a time-tested design. Interchangeable tongues and footboards satisfy a…

Like a Snickers ice cream bar, the Dalbello Krypton Pro is a refinement of a time-tested design. Interchangeable tongues and footboards satisfy a kid-like desire to tinker, but the results are legitimate. Thanks in large part to its three-buckle design and wrap around liner, the Krypton Pro finds that fine balance between performance and comfort, without sacrificing either. Also, I’m pretty sure Tanner Hall uses them. www.dalbello.it

Alex Witkowicz, Multimedia Editor

Mother bought me this jacket for Christmas and I’ve worn it every ski day since, rain or shine, backcountry or lifts, Utah, Colorado, Montana, Idaho.…

Mother bought me this jacket for Christmas and I’ve worn it every ski day since, rain or shine, backcountry or lifts, Utah, Colorado, Montana, Idaho. It kept me dry, blocked the wind, and looked wicked stylish while doing so. It took a lot of abuse this season but I’m pretty confident it will continue to do so for years to come. www.flylowgear.com

Kevin Luby, Associate Editor

Never in my life have I been accosted by so many six-, or sixty-year-old girls. I hear shrieks of “those skis are sooo preeeettty!” in literally…

Never in my life have I been accosted by so many six-, or sixty-year-old girls. I hear shrieks of “those skis are sooo preeeettty!” in literally every lift line. But I can handle chairlift conversations with geriatrics and babies if it means I get to ski these skis. They’re killer in any condition, barring coral reef re-freeze, but mainly they make me want to ski really fast in really deep snow. www.volkl.com

Heather Hansman, Online Editor 

It’s rare to find ideal light conditions every day you’re on the hill— sometimes it’s bluebird, sometimes it’s nuking snow. So I like a goggle that…

It’s rare to find ideal light conditions every day you’re on the hill— sometimes it’s bluebird, sometimes it’s nuking snow. So I like a goggle that can adapt. I first wore the I/O a few seasons ago, and was impressed by how easily I could change the lens. This season, I snagged a pair of the I/OS— same lens interchangeability, but with a smaller frame size to fit the ladies. If I scratch the lenses (which is highly likely), I can order new ones, meaning I don’t have to buy new goggles every year. smithoptics.com

Sally Francklyn, Online Editor

Mounted on a pair of Line Prophets, these were a super secure and fun binding. They rocked in deep powder and the park, and were stable and reliable…

Mounted on a pair of Line Prophets, these were a super secure and fun binding. They rocked in deep powder and the park, and were stable and reliable in both areas. Held on to my feet and wouldn’t let go. www.salomon.com

Stephen Sebestyen, Assitant Digital Developer

Narrower boots tend to ski with more precision, but comfort is often the price paid. I want both, and in a traditional, four-buckle, overlap design.…

Narrower boots tend to ski with more precision, but comfort is often the price paid. I want both, and in a traditional, four-buckle, overlap design. My Lange RS 130 Wides are stiff and responsive, but have enough forefoot width—100 millimeters—for all-day comfort. langeskiboots.com

Sam Bass, Editor

I’ve always hated wearing a helmet and find most of them uncomfortable after a few hours of wear, but this helmet fits great and keeps you warm on…

I’ve always hated wearing a helmet and find most of them uncomfortable after a few hours of wear, but this helmet fits great and keeps you warm on the coldest days without overheating you on bluebird days. pocsports.com

Keri Bascetta, Photo Editor

Despite the prevailing dirt bag beer culture of ski country, Pabst makes me sick. While I still drink it because it’s cheap and never in short…

Despite the prevailing dirt bag beer culture of ski country, Pabst makes me sick. While I still drink it because it’s cheap and never in short supply, the Champagne of Beers just tastes better and doesn’t make my guts feel as if Mr. T just “pitied the fool” the next morning. Try it with a lime wedge—poor man’s Corona. 

Kevin Luby, Associate Editor

I’ve ripped my Sidestashes on groomers, plowed through crud and found powder stashes – sometimes all in one day. They’re fat enough for most powder…

I’ve ripped my Sidestashes on groomers, plowed through crud and found powder stashes – sometimes all in one day. They’re fat enough for most powder conditions, yet the slight camber underfoot makes them suitable on corduroy too. Throw a pair of AT bindings on them, grab some skins, and they’re ready for anything. k2skis.com

Ryan Dionne, Content Director, Skiing Business

 Arc’teryx pants are really warm and keep you dry all day with Gore-Tex and WaterTight zippers, but the fabric is so soft, flexible and light you’re…

 Arc’teryx pants are really warm and keep you dry all day with Gore-Tex and WaterTight zippers, but the fabric is so soft, flexible and light you’re not sacrificing your comfort for performance. They also have plenty of pocket space and ventilation zippers. arcteryx.com

Keri Bascetta, Photo Editor

Your pack should be light and comfortable— bonus points if it organizes your gear. The Freerider is spacious and compact. A smaller pocket organizes…

Your pack should be light and comfortable— bonus points if it organizes your gear. The Freerider is spacious and compact. A smaller pocket organizes your avy tools, and the larger pocket holds your shovel and probe. The A-frame ski carry system is quick and easy to use, and a mesh panel straps your helmet to the exterior of the pack. It also features a built-in spine protector for big days. ortovox.com

Sally Francklyn, Online Editor

The Black Diamond Spot is, in my opinion, the greatest headlamp currently on the market. It puts out an impressive 75 lumens, so I’ve never been…

The Black Diamond Spot is, in my opinion, the greatest headlamp currently on the market. It puts out an impressive 75 lumens, so I’ve never been disappointed with it’s light output, whether I was making a night descent, or reading in my tent. It’s dimming capabilities allow me to always pick the perfect amount of light, and the power level indicator lets me know when it’s time to get some new batteries — before I hit the trail. blackdiamondequipment.com

Rob Woodworth, Intern

 These skis are total game changers. They were my go-to ski all season, in all conditions. You can carve sweeping GS turns on piste, and then take…

 These skis are total game changers. They were my go-to ski all season, in all conditions. You can carve sweeping GS turns on piste, and then take them into bottomless powder, and just float through it. I got my dad on the S7. After his first day on them, I asked him what he thought. He said, “I felt like a ballerina.” He’s 6’5’’, sort of a stiff and a man of few words. Coming from him, that’s about the best compliment you could ask for. www.rossignol.com

Kelley McMillan, Associate Editor

One of the major perks of our job is getting to try out next year’s new hotness. This winter I lucked in to this jacket (available this fall), which…

One of the major perks of our job is getting to try out next year’s new hotness. This winter I lucked in to this jacket (available this fall), which is my ideal Colorado shell. It’s breathable and vented for backcountry days, but it’s more than warm enough for resort skiing, too. Plus, it fits nice and doesn’t have the built-in hips and boobs that a lot of lady jackets have. mountainhardwear.com

Heather Hansman, Online Editor

The Black Diamond Bandit is the only pack I’ve skied with that feels weightless, even when fully stuffed. Don’t let the small size fool you: I’m able…

The Black Diamond Bandit is the only pack I’ve skied with that feels weightless, even when fully stuffed. Don’t let the small size fool you: I’m able to comfortably carry a shovel, probe, skins, helmet cam, radio, and my lunch in this pack. For side-country missions, it’s unbeatable.  blackdiamondequipment.com

Alex Witkowicz, Multimedia Editor

Durable fabric, a Gore-Tex membrane, inner and outer thigh vents, plenty of pockets and a relaxed fit are why I’ve worn these pants everywhere from…

Durable fabric, a Gore-Tex membrane, inner and outer thigh vents, plenty of pockets and a relaxed fit are why I’ve worn these pants everywhere from ice climbing and heli-skiing in Alaska to lounging in 55-degree sunshine at Alta. They’ve been my go-to snow pants this winter. www.outdoorresearch.com

Ryan Dionne, Content Director, Skiing Business

Can pulled pork rip the space-time continuum?  If it’s from Moe’s, it will make your pulse quicken, it will make your head ring,and  at the very…

Can pulled pork rip the space-time continuum?  If it’s from Moe’s, it will make your pulse quicken, it will make your head ring,and  at the very least, it will make you take lunch early, even on a powder day. Something special happens when Hot-Pit, Alabama pork meets tangy sauce and the occasional pickle oversees the proceedings. Add a side of creamy macaroni and a banana pudding chaser and you’ll forget your own name. moesoriginalbbq.com

Johnny Lasker, Digital Producer

There is a reason they're called Hot Chilly’s. When its chilly out, these puppies keep you darn right toasty. They’re just the right amount snug,…

There is a reason they’re called Hot Chilly’s. When its chilly out, these puppies keep you darn right toasty. They’re just the right amount snug, meaning they don’t restrict any movement or blood flow, but they’re not so loose that you have to continuously fiddle with them, which is perfect for avoiding awkward moments on the chair lift. hotchillys.com

Ian Kaylor, Marketing Intern

I’m stubborn and refuse to give up my tele turn in the backcountry, so I love the Axl. Free pivot touring meets burly, Hammerhead-style downhill…

I’m stubborn and refuse to give up my tele turn in the backcountry, so I love the Axl. Free pivot touring meets burly, Hammerhead-style downhill performance. I’m also a huge fan of the 6-hole mounting pattern because it decreases the chance of the binding ripping out of the ski. Best all-around tele binding I’ve had the privilege to put on my feet. twentytwodesigns.com

Kevin Luby, Associate Editor

For three years Black Diamond’s Contour Elliptic Carbon poles have been my pick. Lightweight (only 19 ounces each), well balanced, adjustable with…

For three years Black Diamond’s Contour Elliptic Carbon poles have been my pick. Lightweight (only 19 ounces each), well balanced, adjustable with gloves or mittens, makes them ideal for all kinds of skiing. With the upper third being carbon and the lower two sections aluminum, they stand up to ski edges while saving some weight up top. They’re also easy to stash when travelling, and they come with both summer and winter baskets, so you get your money’s worth year round. blackdiamondequipment.com

Ryan Dionne, Content Director, Skiing Business

I love my hot, retro-style bibs from Apres by Ck Bradley. They look good, feel good, and fit and perform well, in all conditions. I toured,…

I love my hot, retro-style bibs from Apres by Ck Bradley. They look good, feel good, and fit and perform well, in all conditions. I toured, heli-skied, hit the resort in them, skied off the Jungfrau, and apres’ed in them. I was never too hot, too cold, or wet.  And, I always felt sexy. Seventies style rules. apresck.com

Kelley McMillan, Associate Editor