RAB SHARP EDGE
OUR TAKE Although women’s gear is generally as technically capable as men’s, there are a lot of female ski pants that look and fit like they’re made for mannequins. The Sharp Edge breaks that mold. “These strike a balance between being snug enough to look decent and roomy enough to be functional,” says our tester. “On long tours, I could actually stash a bunch of snacks in the pockets instead of having them too tight to store lip balm.” (The Sharp Edge also comes in men’s sizes.)
THE DETAILS The three-layer Pertex Shield AP is waterproof, breathable, and cuts wind, as it demonstrated on a fourday trek through the San Juans in southern Colorado. “They stayed totally dry (without being swampy) when it started snowing,” one tester says. “On day three, I unzipped the long thigh vents and was happy climbing on a cloudless day above treeline.” Integrated suspenders keep the pants from sliding below a hipbelt, even when you’re wearing a harness. The 2-inch wide straps are ultra-thin, making them comfortable under pack straps, even for bustier ladies.
TRAIL CRED “I usually hate wearing suspenders under a loaded pack, but these felt great. The plastic adjuster sits low, and never rode up over my shoulders,” our tester says. $350; 1 lb. 4 oz (w’s S); w’s XS-XL, m’s S-XXL; rab.equipment/us