The best backcountry skiing apparel hits the sweet spot of fit and moisture management, two areas these thin tights have dialed. They’re designed for skiing, with an above-boot cut that never rides up (thanks to a bonded finish at the cuffs) and a 1.5-inch-thick waistband that layers flat under shell pants, pack hipbelts, and harnesses. And though they’re 100-percent merino, they were light enough to dry quickly when we went from broiling climbs to high-altitude snack breaks. Caveat: They’re not the warmest, so pick a heavier pair if you run cold, your route has a lot of transitions, or you spend a lot of time at the belay station.
The Wool Baselayer Tight moves well for full merino and never hindered us on ski tours around Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Bonus: They were the most stink-resistant out of all the baselayers we tested.
“We started our climb to New Zealand’s Mueller Hut in blindingly sunny conditions, but by the time we reached the ridge, we were in biting winds and getting pegged with graupel,” our tester says. “These tights kept me comfortable at both ends of that spectrum and everywhere in between.” thenorthface.com