8 Best Men’s Ski Pants| Men’s Ski Pants

best mens ski pants

Staff, Courtesy of Columbia

Your ski pants are about fit and function, but fashion shouldn’t take a back seat (no pun intended). You’ll want waterproofness and breathability for protection against the elements; insulation and durability for warmth; pockets with easy access to essentials for the day’s adventures; and a look that makes you feel confident and inspired.

The Expert: I choose what ski pants to wear based on the mission. I have lightweight shell pants for uphill touring, insulated pants for cold days riding lifts, and bibs for powder days. I own a pair of solid black Columbia Sportswear shell pants that I just can’t seem to destroy even after a half-dozen years of hard use, and they go with any color jacket.

I’ve been a professional gear tester for more than 20 years and it’s taken me to some amazing places. When I’m not out trying to break tents and shoes and bikes and skis in a remote locale, I’m testing gear right out my back door at 9,000 feet above sea level in Colorado. Having been a writer and contributor to publications including Backpacker, Men’s Health, Gear Junkie, 5280, Elevation Outdoors and others, I delight in providing the context and experience that will help you make great gear choices—and have more fun outdoors.

Features to Consider

Fact: Winter sports take a toll on your body. The cold and wet environment coupled with unpredictable or rapidly changing snow conditions combined with intense physical exertion means you’re laying it on the line every time you venture outdoors. You need to stay light, agile, and dry. One general rule: too many features or too much weight will only slow you down in situations that require extreme mobility and quick thinking.


Measured in millimeters, the waterproof rating tells you the amount of liquid your ski pants can resist without leaking. Look for at least 5,000mm, or 5K. A rating of 20,000mm (20K) or more offers the highest quality construction with more reliable waterproofing membranes. Lower waterproof ratings are suited for fair weather where you’ll take frequent breaks. Full days out in any conditions require 5K to 10K ratings. Going to be in the backcountry? Then 20K or more is the way to go.


Insulation determines warmth and comfort. For frequent rides up the chairlift go with insulated pants so you don’t lose all your heat between runs. Heading somewhere super cold? Insulation is crucial in consistently low temperatures. Skiers who prefer touring at higher intensities benefit more with little to no insulation to avoid getting too hot and moist. Others prefer a non-insulated shell so they can layer their own way underneath.


Similar to waterproof ratings are ones for breathability which are measured in grams per square meter. Choose a garment with a 5,000-10,000g rating for lower intensity activity like in-bounds downhill skiing. Move into the 10,000-15,000g range for moderate touring in the backcountry. Ratings over 15,000g boast enough breathability for big days, warmer climates, or extended touring through deep and steep terrain.

Get Set For the Slopes: Best Men’s Ski Jackets • Best Ski Boots • Best Women’s Ski Pants • Best Roof-Mounted Ski and Snowboard Racks


Ski pants come two ways: pants or bibs. Pants are, well, pants. They stop at the waist with button and/or zip closure systems, usually with some hook-and-loop tabs or a belt, sometimes suspenders, to keep everything in its proper place. Bibs include added material up to the belly or chest and suspender straps over your shoulders for more security and weather protection. Bibs may offer a few more pockets but are a little harder to get in and out of, and they will be warmer as well.

How We Selected

I picked these ski pants from top brands based on the spectrum of qualities that skiers need in a range of styles, features and fits. There’s something for every type of skier depending on what the day holds: touring, powder, in-bounds or out, cold weather or warmer, low budget or high rolling, and niche needs versus overall best in show. These are the best ski pants for you to buy now.

Best for Touring

Rab Khroma Kinetic Pant

Key Specs

  • Material: Proflex, stretch woven nylon, and [Durable Water Repellent] DWR finish
  • W/B Rating: 10,000mm/35,000g/m2
  • Insulation: None
  • Style: Pants

The Rab Khroma Kinetic ski pants deliver versatile protection in mixed, challenging conditions, and for your most technical adventures. Rab’s new three-layer Proflex fabric is completely waterproof, yet highly breathable, and stretchy and soft enough for unmatched mobility. Waterproof zippered pockets offer stash storage of essentials. These are perfect for the extreme adventurer who wants to stay dry and on-the-go all day.

  • Flexible
  • Lightweight
  • Adjustable
  • Limited availability—these pants fly off the shelves.

Best for Powder Days

Norrona Tamok

Key Specs

  • Material: Gore-Tex Pro
  • W/B Rating: 28,000mm/ 9 RET (Resistance of Evaporation of a Textile)
  • Insulation: None
  • Style: Bib

This bib pant from Norrona (a brand that’s been around since 1929) is extremely weatherproof and ready for the deepest of deep days. Its low RET rating, anything between 6 and 9, makes it ideal for moderate activity. Gore-Tex Pro fabric keeps snow at bay so moisture isn’t trapped inside. These are perfect for the skier who spends the whole day harvesting secret pow stashes around the globe. Four-way stretch fabric allow a more stylish, European inspired fit, and inner and outer thigh vents add even more breathability and functional motion in any conditions.

  • Bluesign Certified recycled materials
  • Extreme waterproofing
  • Vents for moisture and heat control

Best for Intermediate Skiers

Columbia Wild Card Pant

Key Specs

  • Material: Omni-Tech Lux, Nylon and Polyester
  • W/B Rating: N/A
  • Insulation: Omni-Heat Synthetic Insulation
  • Style: Pants

The Columbia Wild Card pants are specifically designed with the intermediate skier or snowboarder in mind without sacrificing warmth or durability. The Omni-Heat synthetic insulation keeps you comfy on even the coldest mountain days minus extra bulk. For warm spring days, the built-in leg vents rid you of excess heat. Reasonably priced, these ski pants offer a straightforward, no-frills option ideal for those still focused on building their quiver of skills.

  • Durability
  • Insulation quality
  • Streamlined design
  • Simple, lacking more technical features

Most Budget Friendly

Scott Ultimate Dryo

Key Specs

  • Material: 2-Layer Dryosphere Fabric
  • W/B Rating: 10,000mm; 10,000g/m2
  • Insulation: Lightweight synthetic
  • Style: Pants

The Scott Dryo 10 snow pants make the cut for the budget-conscious skier. You’ve already spent plenty on gear to get you down the mountain, now you need to fill in the gaps without breaking the bank. These pants keep warmth in when you need it while protecting against the cold, wet, and wind. No shortage of features here, either, with lightweight insulation as well as thigh vents to release internal heat.

  • Lightweight insulation
  • Vents for moisture control
  • Durability
  • Availability; only limited sizing still up for grabs

Best for Cold Days

Obermeyer Perseus Bib Snow Pants

Key Specs

  • Material: Polyester and Nylon with HydroBlock Sport
  • W/B Rating: 10,000mm; 10,000g/m2
  • Insulation: 40g Polyester Fills
  • Style: Bib

The Obermeyer Perseus Bib wins for dark and cold days on the mountain. If you’re the skier who pushes to get out and hit the slopes even when the weather is less than ideal, this bib is for you. The 40g polyester fill from top to bottom keeps you warm when you need it, and well-placed ventilation allows the heat to escape when you don’t. If you run cold or ski in biting humid climates (like the East Coast), these bibs will introduce a new level of comfort.

  • Warmth
  • Flexibility and range of motion
  • Durability
  • Side zipper for ease of use
  • Maybe even too warm for some skiers

Best for the Backcountry

The North Face Brigandine FUTURELIGHT Bib Pant

Key Specs

  • Material: FUTURELIGHT
  • W/B Rating: 20K/20K
  • Insulation: None
  • Style: Bib

The Brigandine FUTURELIGHT Bibs are made for the strain of all your most high-intensity adventures. Highly waterproof and breathable, these ski bibs are adjustable and extremely durable. The new and innovative FUTURELIGHT fabric allows air to pass through, but blocks water from doing the same on the smallest level, making this the North Face’s most breathable fabric yet.

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Articulation for intense movement
  • Breathability
  • Price
  • Risk of new technology, not yet tried and true
  • Could be a little light for some resort users

Best All Around

Mountain Hardwear Men’s Boundary Ridge Bibs

Key Specs

  • Material: Gore-Tex & Reinforced CORDURA Nylon
  • W/B Rating: 20K/20K
  • Insulation: No
  • Style: Bib

The Boundary Ridge Kit is Mountain Hardwear’s top-of-the-line bib and jacket combo. It’s their toughest, most fully featured duo, although they can be used separately, and is designed with maximum durability in mind. The three-layer Gore-Tex construction ensures dryness no matter the weather, in addition to reinforced CORDURA nylon for an extra boost of confidence. The integrated RECCO avalanche rescue reflector technology is a bonus for those venturing out of bounds.

  • Durability for high-intensity adventures
  • Bluesign Certified Recycled Materials
  • Highly waterproof
  • Versatility for a variety of uses
  • Sizing, only offered in Regular Length… (not for especially short or tall skiers)

Flylow Chemical Pant

Key Specs

  • Material: Intuitive Oxford fabric, Reinforced CORDURA Nylon, OmniBloq DWR
  • W/B Rating: 20K/20K
  • Insulation: None
  • Style: Pants

This shell pant sticks to a no-frills, low-profile design, but there’s plenty of easily accessible pockets, including a designated spot for your beacon, which means you can keep equipment, lip gloss, or whatever, at arms’ reach instead of deep in your pack. There’s nothing extra to get in your way especially if you’re dropping your knee in a Telemark turn or dropping a cliff off the back side of the mountain. These ski pants are also plenty breathable for days in the backcountry with help of effective venting systems for warm spring days and intense efforts.

  • Accessible pockets and beacon attachment system
  • Effective venting
  • Lightweight
  • Attractive design profile
  • A bit of a slim cut for some skiers

Our Expert Aaron Bible on Spring Skiing, Favorite Slope, and Why Beginners Should Take a Lesson

Spring skiing or winter?

Deep winter skiing has always been my happy place. I love racking up ski days between the Christmas break and early February. That said, a lot of people love spring skiing and I understand why— longer days, warmer weather, and April is actually one of the snowiest months in Colorado, so you get a lot of deep days. Although I prefer the cold, soft, dry powder days of mid-winter, slashing slush and the deeper snowpack found in spring certainly hold their appeal!

Favorite place to ski?

I love small family ski areas, giant corporate ones, and everything in between, from rope tows (Ski Cooper) to gondolas that let out into five-star restaurants (Telluride). And then there’s Europe. Skiing in Europe is next level, a completely different experience. Then there’s Japan, Alaska, and the list goes on. Some people might also say their home mountain is their favorite place, even though it might not necessarily be the “best” skiing. I fall into that camp, too. I don’t have to sit in traffic to get to—my local ski hill, Eldora Mountain Resort. But if I was forced to choose one place then it’s Verbier, the largest ski area in Switzerland. It’s the heart of what they call the “4 Valleys” of the Swiss Alps. The terrain is limitless, yet the town has retained a small, old-school village feel.

Any advice for beginners?

Take a lesson. Of course, everyone wants to charge it and follow their buddies into the trees and down slopes they shouldn’t be on, but there’s time for that. Just like basketball or any other sport, you have to master the fundamentals. Especially if you aspire to ski out of bounds. With a lesson you not only get a tour guide for the mountain, but an experienced and trusted companion to chat with on the lift about gear, the history of the area, ski culture, and technique. Get a solid foundation, and some reliable pointers, and you’ll be out shredding on your own before you know it.

This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io

Next Post

What Does Men’s Business Casual Look Like Now?

Thu Feb 10 , 2022
AFTER NEARLY two years of working from home, many men are saying goodbye to daytime pajama bottoms and returning to the office. This is a tricky proposition. The rules governing workplace attire were already relaxing pre-Covid; throw in two years of Zoom calls and a universal acclimation to comfy outfits, […]

You May Like