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Best Snowboard and Ski Backpacks

While having a great snowboard or ski backpack may not be a totally essential piece of ski gear (like skis, boots and poles), it can definitely be a nice piece of gear to have when you are up on the mountain.
Whether you are casual ski holidayer who makes it up to the mountain a few times a year, an experienced front-country skier or a badass backcountry superstar, having a great ski backpack can make hauling all the essential items for the day a whole lot easier.
Like all backpack daypacks, ski and snowboard backpacks come with all sorts of extra features and are intended for different types of use. Ski and snowboard packs vary from sleek and comfortable packs to carry your cash, bagged lunch and extra goggles in to highly technical packs that have pockets for all your backcountry safety equipment, built in hydration systems, and the ability to strap on your skis.

A ski and snowboard backpack should last you several ski seasons so do your research and pick a bag that is sure to not only meet all of your ski needs this year, but your ski needs of the future.
Hoping to get more into backcountry skiing? Then you may want to spend the extra dollars to invest in a quality backcountry touring pack that features Black Diamond’s potentially life saving Avalung. Whatever you ski or snowboard backpack needs, weigh out which features are most important to you, how much you want to spend, and whether the bag meets all of your powder riding needs.
There are a hundred different kind of great ski and snowboard backpacks out there, so here’s a list of some of the best packs out there on the market:

Backcountry Ski and Snowboard Packs

DaKine Ski Packs

  • Dakine Pro 2—a pack that can carry everything from racing skis, to fat powder skis to a snowboard with ease
  • Dakine Heli Pro DLX Backpackgreat combination ski/snowboard pack with quick draw camera belt for capturing those epic lines
  • DaKine Heli Women’s Packwhat could be better than a badass backcountry backpack built specifically for the ladies (that also happens to be pretty)
  • Dakine Mission Backpacksa great pack to pop into the backcountry with or pack up your gear for the plane
  • Dakine Tactic BackpacksA great pack for inbound and backcountry with hydration bladders and pockets for all your backcountry gear

Gregory Ski Packs

  • Gregory Targhee the first backcountry pack out there to integrate ski and board carry system directly into the pack suspension
  • Gregory Drift Backpack—a scaled down version of the Targhee, this pack is perfect for riding the chairlift or quick backcountry day trips

Marmot Ski Packs

  • Marmot Eiger 35a classic, comfortable daypack perfect for alpine style climbs and forays into the backcountry
  • Marmot Diva 45— designed specifically for women, this top-loading pack is big enough for a day or two in the backcountry
  • Marmot Diva 35A smaller and scaled down version of the Diva 45 perfect for day-trips out of bounds

Osprey Ski Packs

  • Osprey Kode Backpack – a minimalist design that includes everything a skier or snowboarder needs for a day of backcountry touring
  • Osprey Switch Backpacks—an ideal pack for all-day ski mountaineering and touring adventures

Other Brand Ski Packs

High End Avalung Backcountry Backpacks

With the invention of the Avalung, Black Diamond revolutionized backcountry ski packs a few years back. Black Diamond Avalung Ski Packs include an amazing filtration system that removes carbon dioxide out of the tube (away from your mouth and nose) to prevent an ice layer from forming and cutting off your oxygen supply. The Avalung can extend the amount of time you can breathe when buried in an avalanche increasing the amount of time your friends have to dig you out. You can buy and Avalung on its own or built into one of the packs listed below.

[Photo courtesy of Andrew Charland]