Skiing's Hot Gear: SIA 2015
Here's the best gear you can't touch yet. Start drooling.
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Fully recyclable goggles aren’t going to change the world but we like the attitude and the effort by Bern. The new Plusfoam goggle collection is made from 100 percent recyclable materials, so in turn the goggles are virtually 100 percent recyclable themselves. The foam is also extremely lightweight, with the men’s Eastwood ($140) one of the lightest goggles on the market. Bonus points for Bern: If you return a Plusfoam goggle for official recycling, you’ll get a discount code for your next buy. Beside, we like the name for the men’s goggle. The women’s version? The Monroe, of course.
New core all-mountain flat ski collection, four men’s, three women’s. Simple naming convention, by waist width. Lighter and stronger thanks to new Carbon Tank Mesh, a prepreg carbon laminate.
True all-mountain daily-driver ski at a price designed to make it one of Icelantic’s best values ever. 96 mm.
This super-light touring shell is made with Polartec Neoshell and is among the lightest in the category. With forgiving four-way stretch and articulated sleeves and shoulders, the genius of this jacket is its backcountry versatility.
New 102-mm lasted boot series for hard chargers with wide feet. All new molds, classic FT three-piece construction with an Intuition Pro Wrap liner.
These lightweight Polartec Neoshell pants are DWR-coated and boast four-way stretch, inner thigh vents, and articulated knees for freedom of movement in the backcountry.
Hate foggy goggles? Us too. Especially on a climb. Julbo looks to blow the fog away for uphillers with the Aerospace ($230) goggle and its Super Flow System. The new technology features a lens that can be pulled slightly away from the frame, creating a venting system. Kind like cracking a window in your car.
Avalanche airbags are great, but they require you to use one, and only one, pack. Not anymore. TNF’s Modulator system hugs whatever pack you want (like saddlebags), allowing you the safety of an airbag with the versatility of using any ski pack you want.
Blizzard added carbon to the tip and tail in the rockered areas, which reduces swing weight, calms tip flap, and enhances dampness and stability while reducing weight.
4frnt teams with its neighbors at Saga Outerwear on limited edition YLE ski that has a camo pattern taken from Saga’s Monarch jacket. Only 200 pairs of skis will be sold, exclusively online.
Head joins the cabrio market with a new three-piece Triad Ergoflex shell that has an ergonomically correct hinge point. The Hammer is for freeride (130 and 110 flex), and the Thrasher is more park-oriented (100 and 80 flex).
A new addition to the Sun Valley Collection (The Ski, Black Majic) with a wider (100 mm) waist width. Is that real sage brush you can see in the topsheet? You’ll have to find out.
It’s the reintro of a successful model name in Head’s new collection of all-mountain freeriders. With 83-108 mm waists, they have high-end constructions with reduced swing weights.
This sweet, simple 700-fill waterproof down layering piece compacts easily enough to be stored in a pack or large pocket and works great under or over your ski jacket for a little extra core warmth.
This pack relies on the same avy airbag technology as last year, but with cleaner lines and a vertically adjustable waist strap, made to fit three different sizes of torsos.
These two-part, adjustable-length, and lightweight poles have the standard riser/binding/boot adjustment notch and sand-papery grip, but also have a snow scraper on top of the handle to clear all the pow you’re slaying from your skis or skins.
Next-gen Ski/Hike System 2.0 with Power V-Lock: a new metal-on-metal locking mechanism for enhanced skiability; wider V-Lock for increased hiking range-of-motion and maximum mobility in “hike mode”; WTR rocker sole compatibility; lightweight shell and liner
Redesigned for enhanced ease of use: more moderate rocker eliminates tip deflection, and they have a more forgiving tail release.
Finally, a lightweight tech AT binding that doesn’t sacrifice downhill performance. A traditional Marker heel simply moves back to release the heel for touring. Toe pins have six springs instead of the traditional four, which grip more firmly and decreases prereleases. It’s also the first tech binding to be ISO DIN certified.
It has Volkl’s 3D Ridge Construction (thick in the middle; slim near the edges), and it has a lightweight, lively feel with a 141-108-124mm shape. It’s a directional ski with a flat tail, full rocker, early taper, and an open (20 to 22m) radius for a more surfy feel than past skis in this width category.
Fischer unveils revolutionary skins made from P-tex instead of traditional mohair. They won’t soak up water weight on the hike, they glide 20 percent more efficiently, and they’re easier to cut and store. Available for Fischer skis next season, and for all skis in 2016-2017.
Fischer has three new models in its Ranger series (90-108 mm waists). They have rounded shoulders for lighter weight, a carbon tip, and Aeroshape construction (milled core for lightness).
K2 Konic Technology places dense, stable materials along the perimeter of the ski and lighter, more forgiving materials in the center of the ski. This allows for added ease and control without sacrificing lively high-end performance.
Armada enters the mainstream with all-mountain skis. Great skis to a wider variety of people? We look forward to finding out.
It’s a new lightweight backcountry build that emphasizes fast ascents and class-leading downhill performance. Significantly lighter than Pure3, DPS’s flagship construction, and comparable in weight to the lightest backcountry-specific touring skis on the market.
Exciting news for fans of Honey Stinger’s portable, freeze-resistant skier fuel: the waffle will soon be available in a caramel flavor. As with the other waffle flavors, this sweet snack is inspired by the European stroopwafel, consisting of honey sandwiched between two thin baked waffly cookies. Yum!
Utilizing Gore’s new C-Knit backer, the Cerro Torre shell is highly breathable, fully waterproof, and a top-of-the-line performer. Now it’s also softer on the inside and offers better range of motion, too. A win-win.
Give a big ol’ welcome to the new fabric in town, Gore-Tex C-Knit, 15 percent more breathable and 10 percent lighter than Gore Pro. When used in the Spencer all-mountain kit, it amounts to a supremely lightweight and versatile yet fully featured shell.
Cheap and easy to use works for us every time. The new Dakine pack cam mount secures to your pack strap and costs all of $20. Sweet.
When heading uphill, less is more. And if you’re competing, way less is way more. But what we like about Mammut’s new Spindrift Ultralight pack ($80) is that it lives in the real world. (Or at least in our real world.) Sure it’s seriously minimal, but it’s not one of those featherweight competition packs that don’t hold up to regular uphill rec slogs, which is what we TRY to do regularly on weekends and occasionally before hitting the office.
The new Auric helmet won an ISPO award this year. We’re on board, too. The Auric has a ABS shell and a multi-impact EPP liner that extends the helmet’s life—and also yours.
This sharp number is lightly insulated with Polartec Alpha throughout for a midlayer that does the job on the slopes but looks like it was meant to be rocked at the bar.
Push these goggles’ button. When you do, they send battery-powered heat through an invisible film across the polycarbonate lens to combat fog. In a consistent, low mode the rechargable battery will last six hours; or you can use a quick blast of high mode intermittently. This innovative approach to the foggy gogg impressed us.
Eric Pollard’s latest creation. At 114 mm underfoot, the ski Pollard uses when conditions aren’t stupid deep. They’re lightweight and responsive, with Cloud Core (same balsa wood and flax construction as the Magnum Opus).