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As you wait for your favorite hill to open, your mind wanders to all the gear you want for an even better season up on the hill this year. We have you covered. Here are our picks for the equipment that will help you perform better and feel more comfortable out in the snow and on the lifts.

1. Dynafit

Tigard 130

Here’s the boot that can do it all. Dynafit built this baby to be able to drive big skis when you are baniging the lifts with 130 flex and the Hoji Lock System that keeps the foot stable and in control in the boot. That said, it’s also built to tour, easy to slip into, and features a Grilamid sole for those days when you have to hike over rocks carrying your skis. In short, it’s a boot for all occasions. $900;

2. Dalbello

Cabrio LV 130

Dalbello merged the best attributes of its Lupo (Freeride Tour) and Krypton (Freeride) boots to craft this backcountry boot that can take on the resort as well. It’s quite stable both in tour mode and railing groomers—credit that performance to a design that combines the middle buckle with the ankle hinge point. $700;

3. Atomic

Hawx Ultra XTD 130 Boa GW

Meet the beast you want to wear to prove your mettle at big resorts like Jackson, Taos, and Telluride. But it’s also just as reliable and versatile for day-to-day at whatever resort you call home. A Boa system dials in fit on the go and the heat-moldable memory foam inside helps you sync it to the oddities of your foot. It tours like a dream when you go off-piste, with a surprisingly good range of motion for a stiff, high-performance boot. $1,150;

4. Nordica

Santa Ana 104 Unlimited

A take-on-all-comers women’s board for skiing up and rocketing down, this is the ideal ski for those who want just one pair for the resort and the backcountry. At 104mm underfoot and imbued with tip and tail rocker, they stay on top of soft stuff and crud. On groomers they serve up swooping, stable turns. And on the uphill, they shimmy up the track with a light, carbon-blend core. $850;

5. Fischer

RC 86 One GT

Here’s your answer for those typical hardpack, frontside days when you want to dust your friends. Built with the DNA of a race ski and serving up triple sidecut (different in tip, waist, and tail), it absolutely rips on blues. It’s also got the backbone to take on challenging terrain and can hold its own on a chopped-up storm day. It’s ideal for typical Colorado conditions. $1,150;

6. Vökl

Blaze 114

Big fat days call for big fat boards. The beauty of these beauties is that they hop around in the deep stuff like much more svelte skis. They may be 114mm underfoot, but they deliver an 18-meter turn radius on-piste from the center of the ski in a 184cm length. Oh, and ride easy: The base is made of recycled material and the core is a combo of sustainably harvested wood and green core tech. $750;

7. Faction

Le Mogul Pro

This specialized weapon is made for bumpers—racers and those who want to be them—or maybe just for someone who wants to hit moguls over and over at Mary Jane on a hardpack day. If that’s you, this super-snappy, 66-mm-underfoot slicer will bring you to a new level. $799;

8. Jones Snowboards

Hovercraft 2.0

The tapered latest version of this proven charger with directional rocker is certainly going to put you above the masses when you ride powder. But don’t think that’s all it does. With a long sidecut and camber underfoot, it can also bomb groomers and give you the power to explore the whole resort. $600;

9. Leki

Spitfire 3D

The selling point of this freeride pole is a quick release system that ensures you can both wear the straps and not worry about sangging them on an errant tree. Or use Leki integrated 3D gloves and mittens that snap right in and out. The lightweight aluminum shafts are strong enough to handle hardcore turns too. $140;

10. Outdoor Research

Aspire Super Stretch

Gore’s Paclite material gives this stretchy jacket the power to head out on the skin track or partner with a comfy midlayer for a full day on the hill. It’s also fully waterproof/breathable and good for ski touring and high-energy activities off the hill too. $300;

11. Flylow

Foxy Bib

These women’s bibs deliver comfort and performance, keep snow and wet out and never feel too bulky on the hill. The softshell fabric means it’s not too crinkly and stretches a bit as you move and a powerful DWR treatment beads away water. Plus, smart chest and phone pockets help keep everything organized. $430;

12. Rab

Khorma Diffuse Gore-tex

Athletic skiers and riders will want to suit up in this waterproof/breathable shell that’s perfect for laps on the uphill skin track followed by leg-burning turns. It’s made from 100% recycled face fabric with a Gore-tex membrane and tips the scales at just 22 ounces in a medium. $525;

13. Columbia

Wintertrainer Snow Suit

You had better be good to show off in this insulated one-piece. Or you at least need to be comfortable with looking the part of someone still stuck in the ’80s. Settle in and this waterproof/breathable suit is sure to keep you warm and dry in the worst conditions. $300;

14. Gregory

Verte 18

With a stretchy hip belt made to move with your torso, an insulated hydration sleeve, and a snow-shedding design in the back panel, this hauler is the ticket for days hiking, hopping out the gates, and riding lifts in between. The A-frame ski/snowboard carry makes it quick and painless to pack up your gear to head up places like Highland Bowl. $150;

15. Zeal


The interchangeable lens system in this do-it-all goggle not only gives you the chance to swap for the conditions as the sun pokes in and out during the day—it also offers a wide, unobstructed view so that your vision is not cramped on the hill. $199;

16. Baïst

Scott Schmidt

Made in conjunction with the legendary ski flick star, these sturdy gloves live up to the need of their namesake. The Cordura outer and reinforced rubber knuckles can stand up to day-to-day punishment and a removable liner means you can adapt to changes in weather during the day or the season. $190;

17. Sweet Protection

Igniter 2Vi Mips

Perfectly ventilated and providing plenty of protection for your noggin (including Mips, which mitigates the chance of concussion), the latest iteration of this already impressive lid, provides a sleek fit and nice interface to work with Sweet’s Connor Rig Reflect Goggles ($220). $229;

18. Gordini

Burke Lightweight Ski Socks

Socks are of course the secret sauce to your resort gear kit. Glove brand Gordini wowed us with its new line that combines two fabric technologies for an easy fit and lots of cushion—it will keep your piggies warm. $25;

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