WildSnow.com 2007 Best Gear Awards


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | December 31, 2007      

Friends, we all blogged about this some months ago (see post here) and I figured we’d better get the final list published. Bear in mind that since this is a blog, this is a somewhat personal take that’s been influenced by talking to various skiers over the past year as well as watching your blog comments. If you agree or disagree, please leave your take in the comments. Perhaps we’ll add a few things or make some changes based on your ideas. Should be fun. For example, you’ll notice we missed best hat, best bivy whisky, stuff like that.

Please know that our bias is for backcountry skiing that involves lots of uphill travel, so we trend to the lighter side. As for timing, to make this list useful for holiday season shopping we’ve included some of the newer product we think fits, mixed with tried and true items that have been around forever. We’ve linked to blog posts or review articles where possible, and some sort of shopping option if we don’t have a blog post. (Note we frequently do have reviews about this sort of stuff, because we try to review what we like.)

Best fatter ski: Goode, Carbon 95 (AKA BC 95) (This ratio of weight/performance/width is tough to beat.)

Best conventional construction midfat non-twintip lightweight ski: Dynafit, 7 Summits

Best softshell jacket: Cloudveil, Serendipity (Why don’t other jackets we like have Napolean pockets? Is this a mystery of the universe?)

Best water and wind resistant softshell pants: Outdoor Research, Tremor

Best classic softshell pants: Cloudveil, Rayzar

Best lightweight yet supportive backcountry ski boot: Dynafit Zzero TF

Best midweight backcountry ski boot: Scarpa, Spirit Three

Best beefy yet Dynafit compatible backcountry ski boot: Garmont Axon (Flat boot board under the foot wins our hearts.)

Best 4-stroke sled: Yamaha Nytro MTX (To take WildSnow honor must have custom ski rack and custom exhaust extension, we’ve got the rack done and will blog soon.)

Most interesting backcountry ski boot: Scarpa F3 (We’ll have a review up soon.)

Best backpack for longer day trips: BCA Alp 40

Most interesting backpack: Black Diamond, Covert Avalung

Most improved product: Black Diamond, Whippet (Wow, ergonomics, what a concept!)

Best backcountry skiing binding: Dynafit ST (The concept remains the same; high performance — low weight.)

Best Book: Davenport! (I wrote the foreword but that’s a tiny part of the book, so not intention to be self serving, it’s Dav and designer Art Burrow’s accomplishment, well worth owning.)

Best baselayer: Outdoor Research, Sequence LS Zip Tee (A touch of wool is the ticket.)

Best Trailhead Thermos: Stanley 2-quart (Some things are hard to improve.)

Best TAV (Trailhead Approach Vehicle): Jeep, Wrangler JK4-door, Rubicon edition with aftermarket winch bumper

Best gift for a woman: Goode Carbon 95 (AKA BC 95) Skis — in ski rack on Lexus RX hybrid SUV.

Best gift for a man: Jeep, Wrangler JK4-door, Rubicon edition with aftermarket winch bumper mounted with Warn 9.5 XP winch spooled with synthetic winch rope. (You’ve already got 8 pairs of planks in the garage, so no skis included.)



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Comments

6 Responses to “WildSnow.com 2007 Best Gear Awards”

  1. mark worley December 31st, 2007 7:33 pm

    I agree with much on the list. Could’ve used the Jeep when my Golf with lame tires got stuck in the neighborhood mini drifts!

  2. mark worley December 31st, 2007 7:37 pm

    How about “Best auto navigation tool?” Got a Magellan Maestro for Christmas and it’s really great out on the roads.

  3. Jeremy January 2nd, 2008 10:39 am

    Good list Lou. Although I would prefer the patagonia ready mix jacket to the cloudveil serendipity – I am partial to jackets with hoods.

  4. Lou January 2nd, 2008 12:55 pm

    Jeremy, I know what you mean. Sometimes that’s a dilemma. I certainly want a hood when I’m in places such as Northwest, and for EU I brought the detachable one for the Tremor, in case the weather is “good.”

  5. Lewis January 4th, 2008 9:12 am

    Ditto on the hood. I still love my Cloudveil Ice Floe (basically a Serendipity w/ a hood).
    No storm shell jacket in the list?
    I’m on my way down to pick up a Koven Plus. Got a Marmot Oracle for xmas but it’s going back and the Koven Plus will be mine! I initially wanted a light shell to go over the Ice Floe and thought the Oracle would be great but the Koven Plus looks to be only slightly heavier and powder skirt should make it much more useful for me in nasty weather.
    =L=

  6. Lou January 4th, 2008 1:39 pm

    I forgot to include the lightweight shell, and need your suggestions for a heavy duty storm shell. Bring it on.

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  • Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free ski touring news and information here.

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