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Why is snow gear so expensive?

Updated: May 26, 2021

If I've said it once I've said it a hundred times "I'm all for a bargain" and at Back to the Slopes that's exactly what we want to be able to offer our customers. But getting a bargain should never outweigh keeping yourself or your loved ones properly protected from the elements. Remember the snow might look soft and fluffy and the sun may be shining on the advertising videos but you are heading out into harsh weather conditions. In peak season, temps are often below zero, winds can get above 100 kms, snow (which is wet) could be falling for hours, rain is a possibility also and the snow and ice that you are touching, sitting or playing in for a whole day is simply cold and damp. The only thing between you and the elements is your clothing. When you think about it, we are really asking a lot out of the clothing we wear and sometimes that doesn't come as cheaply as we might want.

So why is snow gear so expensive? In short, good quality snow gear is specifically designed and engineered to protect you in tough conditions. That thin piece of fabric and insulation needs to be waterproof, windproof, warm yet breathable, durable yet not heavy, fast drying, fashionable, functional, seam sealed and have gaiters, powder skirts, tapered cuffs and specially taped zippers to stop water getting in. It needs to withstand wind, rain, snow and be able to survive even when the wearer is repeatedly falling and sliding on the fabric. Companies who care about the quality of their snow gear spend a lot of time and money developing new and improved garment technologies to deliver the best possible durability, functionality and features. This is essentially what you are paying for and it is worth every cent when you consider that being wet and cold takes away from an enjoyable day (that you've spent so much time and money organising) and can even make you unwell in some cases.

That said, we don't think you need to take out a second mortgage for the right gear. Shop with us (of course), look for sales or buy in the off season (if you are really organised). Remember, if you look after your gear you will have it for years to come saving you money in the long run. If you have kids, consider buying new with a view to handing down to younger siblings.

Preowned gear is an excellent money saving option but quality is still key. It is worth paying a little extra for well kept, good quality items, from trusted brands that are not too old. Garment technology has changed quite a bit over the years. Vintage items may look funky but chances are high that waterproofing or insulation quality isn't great. If a garment looks over washed, faded or worn it may also lack waterproofing which wears off over time and multiple washes. Tears or damage will often let water into the insulation layer so look out for these when buying preowned. At Back to the Slopes we take pride in our preowned collection. We only stock good quality items, that are not too old, damaged or over worn. All items are cleaned using a water-repellent treatment that is designed to bond to fibers to restore waterproofing. Check out our preowned snow gear at

The above also applies to boots. Beware of cheap preowned boots that have cracks, tears or appear well worn. These may not have maintained their waterproofing or durability. Water can leak in which will result in a very unpleasant day.

Remember, Back to the Slopes also offer trades ins and buy back so please contact us if you want to sell your good quality gear or upgrade to something new at a fraction of the price.

Stay safe, stay warm and have a great time at the snow.

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