9 Pieces of Essential Ski-Touring Gear
Fast on the ups and the downs
Outside's long reads email newsletter features our strongest writing, most ambitious reporting, and award-winning storytelling about the outdoors. Sign up today.
In-bounds touring—in which skiers ditch the lifts and slap on climbing skins, like the Fischer Profoils, to get up the mountain—is catching on everywhere. It helps that most resorts keep access free and encourage the fun.
Dragon NFX2 Goggles ($180)
Dragon’s frameless goggles provide a huge field of vision, and two side levers allow for quick switches among the 20 lens options.
The North Face Summit L5 Shell ($600)
The North Face Summit L5 shell is tailored mostly from a single piece of DryVent fabric for a trim fit with a minimum of seams. Hem cinching at the waist keeps it from riding.
Blizzard Zero G 108 Skis ($960)
The carbon-fiber Zero G 108 skis (136/108/122) are light enough (3.6 pounds) for all-day uphill duty, yet the sidewall construction and paulownia core lend them power to carve trenches on hardpack.
Dalbello Sherpa TI I.D. Boots ($850)
These boots have a two-piece tongue for more range of motion. At 8.4 pounds, they’re a great everyday option and sacrifice little on the descent.
POC Fornix Helmet ($160)
POC’s Fornix helmet tips the scale at under a pound, but its layup of aramid fibers (think Kevlar) meets alpine ski-safety standards.
Backcountry Access Scepter 7075 Aluminum Poles ($80)
These poles add built-in ice scrapers to already bombproof adjustable sticks.
SmartWool PhD Ultra Light Long Sleeve Base Layer ($80)
This base layer blends polyester and merino to resist pilling and funk. For maximum breathability.
Eddie Bauer Hangfire Pro Hooded Jacket ($129)
Eddie Bauer’s Hangfire Pro pairs Polartec Power Dry panels under the arms with a polyester-spandex outer.
Dynafit Radical 2.0 FT Bindings ($649)
The Radical 2.0 FT bindings boast rotating toe plates that let boots release from the front—helpful in a cartwheeling fall.