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Labor Day is a weird time for skiers. There’s still some time before ski season starts, which means a) There’s still time to enjoy summer; b) It’s time to get your rear in gear for when the flakes fly; c) A lot of great winter gear is already on sale.
Luckily, Recreation Equipment, Inc.—better known as REI—has everyone covered during their expansive Labor Day Sale. While a lot of the ski equipment is just getting rolled out on the sales floor, there are tons of options worth checking out for summer, fall, winter and beyond, and you can use the money you’ll save to pick up new skis when the time is right.
Arc’teryx Proton LT Hoody with Exclusive REI Colorway
If there is one insulated midlayer that rules them all, it would have to be the Arc’teryx Proton LT hoody. Made with Fortius Air 20 face fabric, the Proton LT has both high air permeability to breathe when the going gets hot, but is also extremely durable against wear from backpack straps, tree branch snags, and more (which equates to fewer duct tape patches). Synthetic Coreloft Compact insulation sweetens the deal by keeping you the perfect temperature from chilly September days to freezing January temps back to cold nights camping in May. We’re big fans of the mellow, dark colorways exclusive to REI as well.
- Men’s Styles – MSRP $299, REI Labor Day Sale: $224.19 [BUY NOW]
- Women’s Styles MSRP – $299, REI Labor Day Sale: $224.19 [BUY NOW]
Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody
This synthetic insulated layer boasts the best of Arc’teryx’s high-performance pedigree. Part of the brand’s Atom line, this versatile hoody is a weather-resistant insulating layer that can be worn as a stand-alone jacket in fairer conditions, or as a minimalist and lightweight layering piece in less forgiving weather and environments. Featuring weightless, highly compressible Coreloft insulation in the torso, arms, and hood, the Atom LT has beef in all the right areas, yet air-permeable fleece in the side panels and underarms to make the LT Hoody the perfect activity layer.
- Men’s – MSRP: $259; REI Labor Day Sale: $194 [BUY NOW]
- Women’s – MSRP: $259; REI Labor Day Sale: $194 [BUY NOW]
SealLine Blocker Dry Sack
As someone who uses a lot of backpacks throughout the year, it’s easy to lose track of backcountry essentials. That’s why I keep the must-haves in SealLine Blocker Dry Sacks to easily and quickly swap snacks, extra layers, first aid supplies, and more between packs before heading out skiing. They are absolutely critical for hut trip supplies as well, and I take a few every time I travel in case I need an extra grocery or souvenir bag.
- 5L – MSRP: $16.95, REI Labor Day Sale: $11.19 [BUY NOW]
- 10L – MSRP: $20.95, REI Labor Day Sale: $14.19 [BUY NOW]
- 15L – MSRP: $21.95, REI Labor Day Sale: $14.89 [BUY NOW]
prAna Bridger Jeans
First off, don’t go skiing in these jeans. Now that that’s clear, we do highly recommend wearing them everywhere else: the bar, the local climbing crag, doing housework, the list goes on. The organically grown cotton is blended with just enough stretchy spandex that the Bridger Jeans will move with you on the go but are so soft and comfortable you’ll probably never wear another pair of jeans ever again.
- MSRP: $89; REI Labor Day Sale: $65.99 [BUY NOW]
prAna Cozy Up Printed Sweatshirt
When you look good, you feel good, and vice versa. It’s hard not to do both in the oversized Cozy Up Printed Sweatshirt, an über-soft, comfy layer made from a hemp/recycled polyester/Tencel blend offering UPF 50+ and natural odor-reducing properties. Wear it year-round, at home with sweatpants or at the après bar—the Cozy Up fits in anywhere.
- MSRP: $79; REI Labor Day Sale: $59 [BUY NOW]
Arc’teryx Beta SV Bib Pant
Arc’teryx doesn’t mess around when it comes to gearing up for the elements. Featuring breathable, windproof, and waterproof Gore-Tex, the Beta SV Bip pant was built to withstand prolonged exposure in severe conditions (hence the SV in the name), and everything from the WaterTight two-way zippers to the elasticized waist and bootlace hooks to keep cuffs securely attached to boots is designed to keep the weather out while you do your thing out in the mountains.
- Men’s – MSRP: $549; REI Labor Day Sale: $412 [BUY NOW]
- Women’s – MSRP: $549; REI Labor Day Sale: $412 [SOLD OUT!]
Oiselle Triple Threat Capri Tights
These Nyelle Compression tights (made from nylon/spandex) are deemed a triple threat for a reason (well, three): they’re high performing, versatile, and also supremely comfortable. Featuring five pockets—a rear zip, two waist side mesh pockets, and two side leg pockets to fit your phone—these sporty tights are as practical as they are fashionable, and the reason women all over the world would rather wear leggings all day every day than squeeze into a pair of jeans.
- MSRP: $78; REI Labor Day Sale: $59 [BUY NOW]
GoPro Hero7 Black
The Hero7 Black is a revolutionary step forward for GoPro, with in-camera stabilization that significantly improves the quality of footage and makes it more watchable than ever before. Add in voice control, splendid still-photo capture, and a completely waterproof camera body, and the GoPro Hero7 Black is probably the best POV camera ever made.
- MSRP: $400, REI Labor Day Sale: $329.99 [BUY NOW]
Grayl Geopress 24oz. Water Purifier Bottle
I keep a Grayl Geopress bottle in my car at all times. That way, when I end up at a backcountry trailhead, ski area parking lot, or even just on the side of the road, I can dip it into a creek and have drinkable water in an instant. The filtering process is as simple as it gets, and the Geopress can be carried as a one-liter water bottle for long days on the hill. It also filters out viruses and nanoparticles that some paper filters miss, meaning it will also come with me on an upcoming surf trip in Mexico.
- MSRP: 89.95, REI Labor Day Sale: $67.39 [BUY NOW]
Arbor Foundation and Venice Shoes
The snowboard brand Arbor’s first foray into the world of shoes is impressive. Not only are the Foundation and Venice shoes super comfortable and stylish, but they are also made sustainably with recycled rubber and free-range leather. I prefer the slip-on Venice in black suede to make it easy to go from parking a car to getting into my ski boots, but fans of aglets should check out the Foundation.
- Venice – MSRP: $69, REI Labor Day Sale: $51.69 [BUY NOW]
- Venice LX – MSRP: $79, REI Labor Day Sale: $59.19 [BUY NOW]
- Foundation – MSRP: $79, REI Labor Day Sale: $59.19 [BUY NOW]
- Foundation LX – MSRP: $89, REI Labor Day Sale: $66.69 [BUY NOW]
Danner Vertigo 917 Boots
Don’t be fooled by how hip these boots look—they come with enough technical specifications to take on much more than just urban hiking. A full-grain leather upper dresses up a waterproof Gore-Tex liner and no-joke Vibram mid- and outsole to make the Vertigo 917 a stylish pair of boots with some serious performance credentials. And with a removable ortholite footbed, the Vertigo 917 cover comfort bases to boot.
- MSRP: $220; REI Labor Day Sale: $165 [BUY NOW]
NikWax Tech Wash
Here’s a pro-tip: Wash your ski outerwear before the season starts. Don’t do it for anyone else but yourself, because it probably stinks the most on the inside of your gear, which only you can smell. NikWax is still the industry standard for washing technical apparel without compromising waterproofing or breathability. Also, if you’re going into your second or third season with the same jacket and/or snowpants, re-up their resiliency from the elements with NikWax’s TX.Direct 2.0 Wash-in Water repellent treatment, which is on sale, too.
- Tech Wash 10oz – MSRP: $9.75, REI Labor Day Sale: $7.29 [BUY NOW]
- TX.Direct 2.0 Wash-in Water Repellent – MSRP: $13, REI Labor Day Sale: $9.69 [BUY NOW]
Brooks Rebound Racer Sports Bra
For high output days, ladies need another level of support and comfort. Enter the Rebound Racer high impact sports bra, designed with front-adjustable straps and adjustable rear closure to deliver a snug, personalized fit and locked-in support even when bashing moguls and skating across cat tracks.
- MSRP: $50; REI Labor Day Sale: $35 [BUY NOW]
Suunto 9 Baro GPS Watch
This watch is amazing. Whether it’s tracking my pre-season trail running mileage or counting my vertical off the chairlift, it’s hard to think of the last time I took it off. Fully Strava compatible for fans of the app (as well as TrainingPeaks, which is better for true data nerds. Don’t @ me), the Sunnto 9 Baro is a bit of an investment, but if you use it half as much as I do, it pays dividends on both fitness and ease of use. Plus it can provide an alarm for when it’s about to snow, which is the best alarm ever.
- MSRP: $599, REI Labor Day Sale: $419.29 [BUY NOW]
Sunski Treeline Sunglasses
With “ski” in the name, it is no wonder that SunSki has created the ideal sunnies for your brightest ski days. Their Treeline shades are made from super-sturdy 100 percent recycled plastic and are the brand’s take on glacier glasses. Designed with magnetic, removable, and ventilated side shields, these glasses won’t let side-penetrating rays cloud your peripheral view or steam build up while you’re ski touring under a hot sun. Besides that, they’re just plain comfortable thanks to the lightweight frame and nose and side grips that prevent the shades from slipping when you start sweating.
- MSRP: $89; REI Labor Day Sale: $67 [BUY NOW]
Hydro Flask Insulated Tote
Having a big tote bag can make getting ready for driving to the ski hill super simple: Throw all the stuff you need into it and go. But while the rest of us are living in 2019, Hydro Flask is already years ahead with their Insulated Tote bags. Not only will it hold everything you need for skiing, but it will also keep après beverages chilled or warm (depending on your preference). It also makes for a great option for getting groceries home for mountain home dinners.
- 20L – MSRP: $64.95, REI Labor Day Sale: $48.69 [BUY NOW]
- 35L – MSRP: $74.95, REI Labor Day Sale: $56.19 [BUY NOW]
PEARLiZUMi Elite Thermal Arm and Knee Warmers
The hardest thing about pre-season training is making sure to train throughout the cold, short days of October and November, when there isn’t quite enough snow to ski, the roads are still mostly dry, and the gyms are overcrowded with anxious snow enthusiasts. Keeping arm and leg warmers handy for lunchtime rides is critical for both comfort and joint strength, and PEARL iZUMi’s Elite Thermal warmers are just the ticket to make sure you don’t lose fitness when it counts the most.