Meet your new do-it-all ski. With a wood core and snappy turning power, this beast can dampen the chatter of hard, nasty snow, and absolutely rails when the conditions are right. Comfortable at speed, it’s the perfect choice for a season at the local hills, while also ready for big mountains when you travel.
Well ventilated with 105 air-flow vents and light enough that you almost forget you are wearing it, this helmet—which is certiified for both skiing and climbing—does not sacrifice protection for light weight. The MIPS system lessens the chance of a concussion via an internal layer that rotates with the skull upon impact.
Drawing on Swiss design and tapping a braintrust of former Black Diamond and Burton execs, this innovative ski boot promises snowboard-boot comfort thanks to a plastic shell with a series of strategic cutouts, a hinged entry system, and a swanky Italian-made liner that takes the pain out of ski boots.
With a Boa closure system that dials in the fit and an aggressive crampon on the bottom, this snowshoe will not only tromp through deep, untracked snow, it will also get you to the top of steep, burly terrain.
Tipping the scales at just 9.4 ounces per pole and adjustable from 110-145cm, these sturdy poles work for everything from resort skiing to snowshoeing. Plus, you can use the binding basket system to adjust ski touring bindings and boot buckles while you stand.
Protect Our Winters (POW) and Jones founder Jeremy Jones made sure this smooth, responsive board had a Forest Stewardship Council-certified core to be more eco-sensitive. It rides like a dream (the women’s version is slightly more supple than the men’s), thanks to a tapered shape that floats in soft snow and Flax/Basalt Power Stringers that hold a serious edge.
Snowshoes are the ticket for off-trail exploration but when you are just out to hike winter trails with some ice and hard-packed snow, microspikes get the job done with far less bulk and fanfare. The flex system in these easy-to-slip-on spikes means they follow the roll of your gait with each step on the trail—or an icy sidewalk.
The right baselayer feels dreamy against your skin, wicks away sweat and stink, and keeps you warm without overheating. That’s a lot of demands on a fabric, but merino wool is up to the task, especially in this body-mapped layer that fits like a second skin.
Flylow upped the performance on our favorite winter kit with Omnibloq, a new eco-friendly DWR that beads water off the shell and pant without messing with the membrane, and doesn’t use the earth-degrading chemicals that go into the usual DWR. Plus, you still get the same three-layer, no-nonsense protection and breathability we have come to expect in these standbys.
$420 (jacket), $360 (pant); flylowgear.com
This warm insulator can serve as your primary shell on balmy days. Tested on expeditions in Tibet, its permeable Cordura material outer layer and warm, light Climashield insulation keep it breathing even when you are huffing and puffing.
While many gloves warm your fingers, you have to remove them to fiddle with gear. Not so here: Articulated fingers and a perfect fit mean you can adjust your bindings with them on, while goat leather and GoreTex Windstopper Breeze keep your hands warm and protected.
Down Care Kit
Down is a pain to wash and dry, which means we tend to avoid washing and drying it. No bueno. But this simple kit gives you a wash treatment that cleans and revitalizes your down as well as dryer balls that keep it from clumping up. $23; grangers.co.uk
The brand of choice in Germany, Jack Wolfskin has just begun to make big inroads here in the U.S.—for good reason. Built with 100% recycled materials, this cozy combination of women’s jacket and pants can withstand a winter of hard use and weather but won’t feel out of place when you are sipping a toddy on the deck. $250 (pant), $400 (jacket); jack-wolfskin.com