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Snowsport Pants

Top Picks

How we choose: The best snowsport pants highlighted here were selected based on 18 reviews of 16 products. Our top picks are those that are readily-available in the United States and have received the highest overall ratings from reviewers.

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Flylow Baker Bib

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

When I decided it was time for me to switch to bibs, the Flylow Baker Bibs beat out all of their competitors across all winter uses.

Reasons to Buy

  • Great fit
  • Great pockets
  • Full mobility
  • Great colors

My Flylow Baker Bibs were a game changer this season. I knew I wanted to make the switch to bibs after seven previous seasons of constantly re-tucking my mid-layer into the back of my ski pants. The shifting of bottom and top layers during the four major movements that take place during any single ski day were causing me madness; boot up, lift riding, skiing, and hiking. These movements are far more enjoyable when done in the total-cover-comfort of the Baker Bibs. While booting up my entire system used to become completely untucked.

Read more: Flylow Baker Bib review (1)

Columbia Bugaboo IV Pant

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

Omni-Heat is no joke, making these waterproof snow pants super warm without the need for overly bulky layers.

Reasons to Buy

  • Waterproof
  • Warm
  • Comfortable

Reasons to Avoid

  • Could use a little more range of adjustment in the waist

I've come to expect high-quality products from Columbia, and these pants are no exception. I've used them for downhill skiing and snow tubing so far. I'm 5'8" @ 180lbs, and the size Medium/Regular fit me pretty well, though I could use the ability to tighten down the waist a bit more for the ideal fit. The small was too small for me though. I have unrestricted range of motion in these pants, and they have not yet ever felt like they were getting in my way. I've been very comfortable in them for up to five hours of skiing, and I suspect I would be for even longer sessions.

Read more: Columbia Bugaboo IV Pant review (1)

Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bibs

user rating: 4 of 5 (1 review)

The Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bib is an excellent snowsport pant. It was designed with backcountry touring in mind, but works well as an all-mountain pant, and is equally functional both on and off-piste. It has an extremely strong construction and fits me well, (I'm pretty skinny and there's still some room left in them, although this isn't a problem). The full Gore-Tex construction holds up to the brand's waterproof, all-weather protection claims and will keep the wearer dry even in pouring rain.

Reasons to Buy

  • Waterproof
  • Good fit
  • Flexible
  • Breathable
  • Durable

Reasons to Avoid

  • Low profile for a bib (feels like a high-waisted pant)
  • Torso pocket hard to access
  • Silhouette is tighter around the crotch, baggier near the ankles. (This is a personal quibble about how it looks. For going uphill, this is actually a good thing, but style-wise it doesn't look too great.)

About The Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bibs are premium, waterproof, backcountry-oriented snowsports pants for skiers and snowboarders. They're offered in both men's (S-XL) and women's (XS-XL) sizing. There is also a coordinating Hemispheres Jacket for men and women.  I use the Hemispheres Bib as my only pant, both for park skiing and backcountry and sidecountry skiing. They definitely stand out as a touring bib, as they are extremely lightweight and breathable. I've been using them for about 100 days so far this season, and skiing at least three hours a day in them.

Read more: Outdoor Research Hemispheres Bibs review (1)

Top Snowsport Pant / Waterproof

Patagonia PowSlayer Bibs

user rating: 4 of 5 (1 review)

Patagonia's PowSlayer Bibs are a premium, lightweight yet durable, waterproof snowsports pants for the backcountry-focused skier and rider. They work equally well for inbounds and side-country trips too. Their Gore-Tex Pro fabric keeps out all types of precipitation—not just powder—reliably and comfortably all day long. With a 100-percent recycled face fabric, they bring together environmental credibility with technical waterproof/breathable performance. At $599 the PowSlayer's MSRP is decidedly steep, but if you spend your winters on snow and they fit your budget (or you find them on sale) they're an excellent long-term option. Plus, with their solid construction, recycled fabric, and Patagonia's customer service and repairs program they're a worthy investment for the dedicated skier and rider. Note that overall sizing is roomy, and they're more of a high-waisted pant versus traditional bib though.

Reasons to Buy

  • Superb waterproof protection for all types of precipitation
  • Well-constructed
  • Good range of movement
  • Lightweight (19.9 oz, women's medium)
  • 100% recycled face fabric
  • Fair Trade Certified sewn

Reasons to Avoid

  • Oversized fit, may want to size down
  • Not traditional bibs, but high-waisted pants
  • Can't fit my climbing skins in either thigh pocket
  • Price—MSRP is $599, though they can be found on sale at the end of the season (like right now)

  About The Patagonia PowSlayer Bibs, corresponding Pants, and Powslayer Jacket are lightweight, packable, waterproof Gore-Tex Pro shells designed for backcountry touring, but which work well for inbounds snowsports as well. According to Patagonia, they feature "the first 100 percent recycled nylon face fabric to deliver the highest level of durable waterproof/breathable and windproof protection available." Bibs Weight: men's 20.6 oz / women's 19.9 oz (my women's medium also weigh 19.9 oz) Pants Weight: men's 19.3 oz / women's 17.5 oz Material: 100% recycled nylon ripstop Gore-Tex Pro fabric Fit and Comfort The PowSlayer bib and pants are very similar, with the bibs being more of a high-waisted pant with adjustable suspender straps.

Read more: Patagonia PowSlayer Bibs review (1)

Norrona Trollveggen Gore-Tex Pro Bib

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

A top-quality (and top-price) Gore-Tex Pro bib. Tough, waterproof, breathable, and wind tight. Built for mountaineering but works well for rando/telemark and light backcountry skiing. It’d be a shame to use and wear it out away from snow and ice.

Reasons to Buy

  • Top quality materials and construction
  • Highly waterproof and breathable Gore-Tex Pro
  • Built-in gaiter (removable in newer version)?
  • Gusseted ankle accommodates both ski and mountaineering boots
  • Drop seat zipper doubles as thigh vents

Reasons to Avoid

  • Long sizes please!!
  • Could use another thigh pocket
  • Shoulder strap can twist uncomfortably in back
  • No women's sizes

Like many outdoor people, I’m always on the lookout for a deal. Not to the point where I obsessively pick through sales racks of outdoor clothing or haunt discount websites, but I’ll take a peek if I’m passing by. Sometimes that works out well, with a score on some quality item at a deep discount. Sometimes, not so much. Take, for example, my search for some decent shell pants for backcountry skiing. Most outdoor wear, and especially shell layers, comes in the four canonical sizes, made for the all-around average guy.

Read more: Norrona Trollveggen Gore-Tex Pro Bib review (1)

The North Face Freedom Pants

user rating: 4 of 5 (1 review)

Good pants for playing in the snow.

Reasons to Buy

  • Adjustable waist
  • Side zipper vents
  • Zippered front pockets
  • Belt loops
  • Powder cuff

Reasons to Avoid

  • Fit a little large
  • Small protecting shield
  • A little heavy

I have had the pants for a couple of years now and they are my main alpine ski pants. They have held up well considering what I put them through.  I mentioned most of the pros already. These also have a large thigh pocket that I have never used because the zippered front pockets are deep enough to handle what I carry. I am not sure how breathable these are, but you will appreciate the side vents that are on the inside thigh. And these pants are a little on the heavy side. With that said they always keep me warm and dry.  The only changes I would make is the front closer is a snap with a small Velcro backup that could hold better.

Read more: The North Face Freedom Pants review (1)

Snowsport Pant / Waterproof

Jöttnar Valdyr Pants

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

A severe condition hard shell, drop-seat pant for winter climbers, alpinists, and ski-mountaineers. Used in all the previously mentioned as well as long winter hikes, snowshoeing, and backcountry Nordic skiing. Workmanship is excellent, Colour schemes limited, Internal powder gaiters along with kevlar instep protectors for protection against skis and crampons + errant snowshoes.

Reasons to Buy

  • Workmanship—excellent
  • Design—fit for the purpose and more
  • Value for money—seriously
  • Windproof, waterproof, breathable, construction are top notch
  • Kevlar insteps very welcome
  • Water-repellent leg zips for easy on/off over boots and crampons
  • Articulated and reinforced knees and seat for durability
  • Detachable braces for a perfect fit
  • Ergonomic patterning and an athletic fit
  • All zippers and closures work well with gloves on
  • Drop seat function—got to be a winner

Reasons to Avoid

  • Pockets could do with being a little deeper—personal thing
  • Braces can have a tendency to slip over the course of a day
  • Belt feels a little like an afterthought, but does the job admirably

image courtesy Jöttnar Fit & Comfort I'm 6'2" (187cms) and the large size fits surprisingly well. They don't feel like a pair of swishy-swishy "fabric balloons" on your legs. They feel like hiking pants; it's kinda unreal. There's enough room in the crotch for a good step up when climbing and your waistline doesn't feel as if it needs choking to keep them up, mainly in part because of the braces.  The knees are reinforced and ergonomically designed bringing a welcome addition if you are out hiking and/or climbing in winter months or sitting down at a summit or campfire.

Read more: Jöttnar Valdyr Pants review (1)

Mountain Hardwear Hestia Bib

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

When your bibs last ten years you need to tell folks. This is my go-to bib for any winter activity that I will be human powered. Superb durability and fantastic venting.

Reasons to Buy

  • Flexible for every move on the hill. When performing sketchy kick turn on the skin track these bibs never held me back.

Reasons to Avoid

  • Wish the waistband came up a couple more inches. Otherwise the bib is perfect

The greatest advantage is the ability to easily zip and unzip legs for breathable venting during uphill travel. I paused as I went to grab my bibs for a day of skinning and skiing the other day. Wow, ten years. So often we complain about the shortcoming of a piece of gear. But I just have to give a shout-out to Mountain Hardwear. The number of backcountry adventures and daily use for these bibs is a testament to the name Hardwear. I’m not particularly easy on gear and have been happy with this product as they have never let me down. Superior craftsmanship and materials. 

Read more: Mountain Hardwear Hestia Bib review (1)

Salomon Sideways Bib Pant

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

The are awesome, and very versatile bibs that come with plenty of pockets and can handle anything you throw their way.

Reasons to Buy

  • Bibs
  • Waterproof
  • Vents
  • Pockets
  • Reinforced cuffs

Reasons to Avoid

  • Velcro on suspenders

I have only used these bibs for half a season now but so far I am very impressed. Full disclosure I very much prefer bibs over snow pants, I like having the extra pockets, warmth and not getting snow down my pants. With that being said these are a great combo pant that can be used either way. There are more than enough pockets to stash your lunch, keys, wallet phone and whatever else you may need. The reinforced cuffs are bomber and are showing no signs of wear yet and the dual crotch vents are a lifesaver when your bootpacking or skinning.

Read more: Salomon Sideways Bib Pant review (1)

More Reviews of Snowsport Pants

Trailspace reviewers have shared 18 reviews of 16 different snowsport pants.

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Other Types of Pants

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Waterproof Pants

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