It doesn’t matter if you’re heading to Whistler for early spring powder turns or Fort Lander for the summer climbing festival; mountain style is a little different than your garden variety runway fare. Put the moonboots and sweat pants down. You’re not fooling anyone. We’ve put together a few indispensable mountain style standards, chock full of storied, quality brands, to help you blend in with the locals — unless you’re heading to any ski resort in Montana. In that case, it’s time to stock up on Wrangler and Carhartt.
Salewa Alp Trainer Boots
Salewa is a relative newcomer to the alpine trekking and mountaineering world, but their heritage stretches back to the early twentieth century with the Oberrauch family climbing business in Austria. This new line of climbing and trekking boots continues their storied tradition of excellence. Featuring vibram soles, a full kevlar rand, a cable fit system and a lightweight gore-tex pro shell, Alp Trainers are leading the wave of new ultralight hiking boots for the uncompromising adventurer. Their sticky rubber soles will keep you surefooted whether you’re on an approach hike in Red Rock or navigating the bar scene in Boulder.
Kühl The Law Pants
Born in the rugged Wasatch mountains, Kühl got its start developing alternative mountain wear. When every other manufacturer was focusing on spandex and technical designs, Kühl returned to the functional, no-frills roots of mountaineering. Featuring a proprietary cotton blend canvas, articulated knees and a reinforced seat, these pants most comfortable around town but have the functionality to take on an impromptu trek to your favorite fly-fishing stream.
Pladra Leon Shirt
Every Pladra shirt’s custom print plaid and line is selected with mountain life in mind. The Leon is no exception. Its simple, wide gingham print and suede elbow pads update the classic fishing shirt for the 21st century. With prints of Grizzlies fishing a whitewater river on the collar, yoke and cuffs, you can take a little bit of the backcountry with you, even if you spend more time exploring the boardroom than the Wind River Range.
Dale of Norway Totten Sweater
Dale’s Norwegian wool sweaters have been a staple of Scandinavian mountain and coastal towns since since 1879. We know what you’re thinking, and no, this is not your father’s ugly Christmas sweater. Utilizing a robust R&D program, Dale has pushed their merino knitting into the same realm as many technical waterproof fabrics used today. The Totten features a weatherproof membrane and flannel lining, ensuring that you stay warm and dry even when you strike out with the cute Norwegian girl from the lodge and have a long hike back to your hotel room.
Fjällräven Yupik Parka
We’re not through with the Scandinavians yet. Well known for their rucksacks and cold weather parkas, Fjällräven’s pioneering G-1000 fabric and use of down insulation brought them to the forefront of a European resurgence and finally to the U.S. in the ’70s. The Yupik Parka is equally at home on the glaciers of Greenland or the morning commute on the FDR. Rugged beard and arctic survival tips not included.
Filson Cowichan Knit Scarf
In 1914 C. C. Filson was asked what separated his line of outerwear from the competition. His secret? Only choosing the very best materials and using time- and backcountry-tested designs born from personal experience. Almost 100 years later, this commitment to quality is still crafted into everything that bears the Filson name. You could get a cheap knock off, but you’re not going to find the same hand-knit wool with this heritage anywhere else.
Hestra Classic Lambskin Gloves
Good enough for the Swedish military is good enough for you. Hestra’s expertise is readily evident in these hand-sewn, wool-lined lamb skin gloves — though they’re to be confused with Hestra’s more technical ski and mountaineering lines. These gloves are best for your drive in that new Range Rover up to the ski hill or for the pub crawl after a long day on the slopes.
Randolph Engineering Sportsman Sunglasses
Randolph’s military heritage means their eyewear is bombproof. They’re ready for your trek through Bryce Canyon and can pull double duty out on the town afterwards (although if you can find any semblance of night life within 50 miles of Bryce, we’d be surprised). Made-in-the-USA quality means making it through any adventure. We don’t recommend taking them into a combat zone, but if you find yourself in one, at least you’ll know your sunglasses will survive — and you’ll be the most stylish guy in the gunfight.
Any piece of gear or gadget that has multiple functions is a boon when traveling in the mountains. The Casio Pathfinder Series’ solar charging, built-in compass, altimeter and barometer not only simplify your gear loadout, but keep you updated on location and weather situations — eminently important when you’re making a summit bid and fickle weather can make or break an expedition. The classic styling means you won’t look out of place back in civilization after your trek.
Eddie Bauer First Ascent Bacon Summit Pack
The First Ascent line has redefined how many professionals use mountain travel gear, having outfitted treks through Nepal, heli-skiing expeditions in the Canadian Rockies, and SUP adventures in the South Pacific. The Bacon Pack is an excellent example of First Ascent’s commitment to light, adaptable gear. Its 210-denier ripstop nylon is sil-coated for water proofing and features an innovative webbing suspension, yet only weighs 650 grams and can pack entirely into its top pouch. Its packable design means you don’t have to sacrifice space or weight to bring along an extra pack for summit days or just hanging around town.