I am one of those guys who is constantly overestimating the shelf-life of things. I will use something until it is worn into the ground or threadbare, because I get attached to gear and don’t really expect things to diminish or deteriorate, even when they are clearly done.
Anyone who rode the gondola with me last winter could assess this immediately, just by looking at my ski pants. In a word, gross. It didn’t help that they started life many moons ago as an off-white color, which had evolved into something else entirely, with blotchy shades of purple and dirt.
So needless to say, like some good pitching for the Rockies, new ski pants were at the top of my off-season acquisitions list. I set my sights on the Buttermilk sale in early November, getting there when the door opened at 9 a.m. so I could get out of town for an off-season vacation.
After quickly breaking down the situation — I wanted something a little darker but still khaki colored, with cargo pockets — I had three options in my hand and was headed for the dressing room.
At first, the Burton Restricted Pant stood out for its steeze, incorporating black knee pads and trim in the design. Being designed for snowboarders, they were a little baggy, but comfortable. It was still a tough call until I noticed a little metal item hanging off one of the belt loops — yep, a bottle opener. These were for me, I decided. I was in and out of there in 20 minutes, and for under $100 with the discount.
I’ve been using the pants for a few weeks now, and I keep finding new features. The leg vent is a semi-circle with one zipper going from knee to knee across the crotch. Velcro waste adjusters are on the inside of the pant, and there is even a little hole going from the front pocket to the inside of the pant, allowing a headphone chord to stay out of the cold.
So far, so good with the new pants. We’ll see how they hold up in the long run — I’m somewhat skeptical that snowboarder-designed gear can survive being subjected to two extra edges. But for all of those who will be sharing a gondola with me this winter, you’re welcome.
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Burton Restricted Comeback Pant