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Arcteryx Sidewinder SV pant

post #1 of 2
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Overall rating (1-5): As a ski pant: only decent (4+); as a piece of Arcteryx gear- miserable failure (1); there are better options on the market for less money. 

Arcteryx has a reputation for making the perfect gear that justifies its perfectly stratospheric price, and most of the time it is true. Not this time.  Overall, the pants are nice and well-made and they are available in Tall length- horray...   I got them on sale, which eased the sticker shock quite a bit.   The pant is typical Arcteryx- form follows function, minimalist and clean. Definitely a skiing pant- no snowboard-inspired cargo pockets, baggy fit or anything like that.  Very light. 

Now the bad parts: The fabric is lightweight and totally waterproof, but it is not tough enough on the bottom. I got a couple of ski cuts right away and I have not had those in my previous pants- Cloudveil Koven Plus in sevral year's worth of use.   Why Arcteryx could not make the bottom part from a tougher fabric is beyond me- that part goes over the ski boots and those don't breathe, so there is no reason to use expensive ProShell there.   

Second, the most annoying part:  the pockets are made in a way that it is a royal pain in the b&tt to open them on the lift, the zipper is vertical and bends when you sit.  Why they could not make them properly slanted, is beyond me.  I am sure Arcteryx testers and designers never touch the lift and prefer to earn their turn skinning in the backcountry, but most of their customers are resort skiers, and if they pay $400 MSRP for a ski pant, they don't want to struggle with the zipper every time they want to take out a cell phone on a lift (yes, real people do that occasionally).  I am cursing the designers every time I need to get something out of my pocket on the lift.   Also, for $400 it would be nice to include removable suspenders to give people options.  

Reasons for the "failure" rating:  If you pay Arcteryx price you should expect to buy a near-perfect piece that would last almost forever.  This pant has several obvious design flaws and questionable durability.  
post #2 of 2

I agree that's why I purchased the Arcteryx Stingray instead. I think it is their best ski pant by far.

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