Oakley Gore Pants get Tested in Chamonix, France


It’s too damned warm in Europe. Chamonix has been in the perfect afternoon thunderstorm pattern for weeks, but freezing lines have been up to 3500 meters, sometimes even higher. Its hard to sit in this 15 square-meter apartment and listen to the rainslap outside without dreaming of ankle-deep turns over some exposed objective hazard.
So we have been going up to take a look here and there. Cedric Bernardini and I decided to stay close to the lifts and check out the triangle on the Mt Blanc du Tacul. I mean, there has been light precip and stormy clouds almost everyday, and the base of that thing is about 3600 meters, so couldn’t we steal a quick 500 meters of those early June, ankle-deep turns. Please?
Nope. Sorry kid. But it was a great chance to test out Oakley new 2012 Gore-Tex Pro Shell pants and Gore-Tex Windstopper jacket. Both these products show how far Oakley has come in the technical outerwear game. The pants are ultra-light and comfortable, with a clean, simple design. The leg cuffs are reinforced to help with crampon/ski edge holes, and the fit is slim enough for fast ascents. Both the jacket and the pants breathed well on the short climb…….of ice. The rain line was a bit too high, leaving us with a few cm’s of snow on top of really soft grey ice. It was good climbing, and I thought the ice was maybe edgeable, but we decided to turn around regardless.
Oh well, the search continues…..


Mark Shelp


June 10, 2011

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