It’s a pretty safe bet that a backpack designed to haul 45 pounds of gear into debris-spewing, quadruple-digit infernos can also handle muling a shovel, miscellaneous clothes and tools up a sleepy peak. That’s the way Nargear figures, anyway. The company has been manufacturing burly backpacks for parachuting firefighters for more than a decade and has expanded into backcountry ski packs for “civilians” this winter.
Nargear ski packs borrow features, like high-strength 1000 D nylon double stitched with military-spec parachute harness thread, straight from its firefighting line, making them rugged enough for any mountain adventure. Of course, they get ski-specific features, too, including vinyl shovel blade pockets, ski/snowboard carry systems, soft-touch goggle pockets and ice axe loops. The chest strap has an integrated safety whistle, in case things go a wry, and there’s room for a hydration bladder in back. In addition to sheer strength and function, Nargear designs its packs for comfort — because whether you’re boot packing a tight chute or sweating it out in fiery trenches, you want a pack that fits and feels correct.
Nargear’s ski packs run the gamut from a full-sized 2,900 cu. in. guide pack designed for Alaskan heli-guide and all-around badass, Theo Meiners, to a compact 950 cu. in. sidecountry pack. Prices start at $99.
Buy Now: $99+
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