By Kim Fuller Published in Elevation Outdoors
Sustained comfort and durability are two of the key components to look for in backcountry gear, and that’s why Stio’s Environ Bib is exactly what every big mountain skier will want to wear for touring sessions and even resort days this season. Stio recently created a women’s version of the waterproof bibs after seeing the level of popularity reached with the men’s version.
I started testing the bib on a ski-accessed hut trip near Leadville, Colorado, as well as a full day of lift-served terrain on Vail Mountain. The last time I remember wearing a bib skiing was when I was a kid, but the style and features have come such a long way. Long gone are the days when bib straps make the pant legs ride up while skiing, and no longer do you have to take every layer off to go to the bathroom.
The Stio Environ Bibs have rekindled my relationship with torso-to-ankle comfort and coverage while skiing, and really are making it apparent now that once you go bibs, you never go back.
Pros: The high-waisted design on the Environ Bib makes for sufficient coverage while still giving a flattering fit. The seams are sealed on the 3L Dermizax® waterproof shell fabric, so you stay dry through powder turns. In addition to great zippered pocket storage options, there are plenty of ventilation options on the bibs when you’re working up a sweat skinning uphill, as well as a convenient drop seat so it’s easy to stop for a pee, even in the woods.
Cons: The bibs are pricey at $445, but if you’re willing to make the investment they will last in your winter gear repertoire for years.
Where I Took It: Skinning and skiing on a hut trip to the 10th Mountain Division Hut in the backcountry near Leadville, Colorado, and for a full day of downhill skiing mixed terrain on Vail Mountain.
Kim Fuller is a freelance writer and editor based in Vail, Colorado.