Where has the time gone? It feels like only yesterday we were spinning our wheels on new mountain biking gear and perfecting our summer car camping setups. But while autumn certainly isn’t over, the first flakes have already descended on the high peaks in the Rocky Mountains and here on the East Coast too. Without getting too far ahead of ourselves — we’re not packing up the bikes just yet — we’re eagerly sifting through the new winter gear that’s recently been revealed by our favorite brands. Here’s just some of the new outerwear we can’t wait to wear in the mountains this season.
The North Face FutureLight Brigandine Jacket and Bib
We’ve already put FutureLight, The North Face’s new breathable waterproof membrane technology, through the wringer. So we know the stuff works, and we’re itching to try out more of it. At the top of the ski and snowboard collection are the Brigandine FutureLight Jacket and Bibs, which are made to handle blizzards but can ace a hike to hidden pow stashes just fine.
Picture Organic Clothing Harvest Jacket
The snowsports industry is well aware of the threats it faces in climate change, but outerwear makers are still figuring out how to lower the impact their products create. Picture Organic Clothing has led with sustainability since its founding, and its latest jacket, the Harvest, proves that eco-friendly can also be ultra-technical. The Harvest swaps a petroleum-based waterproof membrane for one made of castor seed oil yet maintains an impressive 20K/20K waterproof breathability rating.
Jöttnar Ragnarok Jacket
In Norse mythology, Ragnarok is the end of days. That seems to be what Jöttnar built its jacket of the same name for; with a hearty helping of 900-fill goose down insulation, fully waterproof (20K) shell fabric and a slightly oversized fit, this thing is ready for the mountain’s worst days. (Which is good, because those are often the best days.)
Backcountry Hayden Infinium Jacket and Bib
Using intel gained through decades of selling gear from every brand you know, Backcountry is selecting the best features and fabrics to make its own outerwear. A highlight from this year’s collection, constructed in collaboration with Gore-Tex, is the Hayden Jacket and Bib. Both use Gore-Tex’s Infinium fabrics to create a kit that’s extraordinarily breathable for backcountry touring, plus features from its staff of gear nerds, like an extra central zipper that reveals a vented channel of perforated fabric.
Beringia Tsurugi Jacket
From the founder of the Japan-only outerwear company Teton Bros., Bozeman-based Beringia places equal emphasis on style, innovation and performance. The trifecta might be most apparent in the Tsurugi, an anorak with an extra-large diagonal zip entry. The jacket looks good enough to wear off the mountain, but with Polartec’s NeoShell as its main fabric ingredient, it’s a formidable opponent to wind and snow.
686 GLCR Stretch Gore-Tex Dispatch Bib
The Dispatch might be the bib to challenge the notion that overall-style snow pants aren’t for everyone. California-based 686 teamed up with Japanese backcountry guides and the terrain park staff at Mammoth Mountain — who work in the snow 200 days per year — to make a lower layer that’s both versatile and practical. To those ends, the Dispatch has an array of chest pockets for snacks, your phone and other items as well as a stretchy back panel that won’t get you too sweaty on a hike.
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