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Old 11-05-2013, 01:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question New guy getting his first gear

Hi all

title says it all really.
Im going on my first now boarding trip to Japan in late Feb early March, and am looking at buying my first lot of gear.

I have just bought my pants online. I got the Burton 2012 Cargo.
I think i made a good choice there.

Looking into all the other gear i need to buy i may need a little help.
Im not a huge fan of the big massive snowboarding jackets.
Can i get a soft-shell jacket like this?

Its just an example. But i was wondering how something like this would hold up as the outer layer?

Base layer, i have read a lot about merino wool. Does anyone have any other suggestions for this?
Maybe brands and types that would be great

I was thinking about this sort of set up but not sure if it is recommended as i have never been to the snow before.
If anyone can point me in the right direction of what i should be looking at per layer, that would be great.

Base layer: merino wool, thermals???
Mid Layer: maybe a fleece hoodie or jumper???
SoftShell: jacket like listed above???

thanks all for reading and hope to get some great advice.
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Old 11-05-2013, 11:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Softshells are more like a glorified sweater kind of. Get a proper jacket. Look for a high waterproof/breathability rating of at least 10,000/10,000 if you plan to ride for a few hours and take a lunch break. But I'd recommend at least 15k for better performance, and 20k or higher if you plan to do some hiking.
You got a good plan for base and mid layers so I'd say look for a shell instead of an insulated jacket. Not sure if places like would ship to you but look for places selling least years gear since it will be way cheaper.
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Old 11-05-2013, 11:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Not sure how the snow is in Japan, but here in CO I wear a softshell 95% of the time. You don't need great waterproofing here. I've done a lot of riding in 5k pants. I think my softshell is rated at 8k. If you're out there rolling around in the shit then you're doing it wrong.
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Old 11-06-2013, 12:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Japan is a marine environment. You'll want a proper jacket. 10,000mm waterproof should be good enough. If you don't want a bulky jacket, get a shell jacket. Which it looks like you are doing with all that plan for layering. Also, you can find slimmer fitting jackets out there. There is probably a thread on it somewhere on this site.

My advice about base layers: Get a onesie. It'll be a lifesaver if you are new, because you'll be falling on your butt a lot. When I was new, Even thought I had a powder skirt, there would still be some snow getting up under my shirt and on my back. If Merino wool is your bag, they have onesie Merino wool base layers, like the Airblaster Ninja suit.

grab any random fleece out of your closet if you think you'll need a mid layer that day.


Last edited by blankparagraph; 11-06-2013 at 12:38 AM.
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Old 11-06-2013, 12:34 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Yes, most of Japan is maritime. But is is a cold maritime - especially during peak season (Jan-Feb in Hokkaido) when it is generally overcast, slopeside temperatures are predominantly below 20 all day (sometimes single digits) and much lower at night. As a result, conditions are generally pretty 'dry' and high-end waterproofing not required.

That said, there is so much powder that one gets pretty much covered in it, so some proofing is helpful - 10k is plenty, especially for resort riding.
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Old 11-06-2013, 06:08 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I recommend going oversized with a pow skirt....meaning in a jacket you want to be able to raise your arms over your head without the arms, back or stomach becoming exposed. want loose to be able to move around, even swimming in the deep without any snow getting in.

Ime, softshells don't breathe very well and often not set up for air flow with pit zips and the like...I get waay overheated and sweat my arse off...which is bad when it gets cold. In a sense a gortex technical shell is pretty adaptive to more different activities and environments than a soft shell...thus if ur shelling out some coin, get something that is adaptable to wind, wet, dry and deep. Around here in pnw...the wet side...20k is min and 30-40k is best.

Last edited by wrathfuldeity; 11-06-2013 at 06:15 AM.
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Old 11-06-2013, 12:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Marino wool base layers (including socks). IMO nothing beats that. I wouldn't use a hoodie for a mid layer because the hood will do nothing but get in your way. I prefer a thin prima loft or down vest as a mid layer because it keeps me warm and doesn't restrict arms.

Invest in a high quality shell. Waterproof and breathable.

Finally get two pairs of gloves. One for warmer days i.e. gloves allowing high mobility for fingers (nothing beats Heastra in that department), and a pair of mitts for cold days.
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Old 11-06-2013, 01:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I like at least 10k/10k gear. I hate that clammy feeling so much. The jacket just looks nicer when it's a higher quality. You can pickup some nice jackets for cheap on geartrade.
I like the merino wool stuff a lot but it can be pretty pricey.
derailed has some icebreakers stuff that's ok.
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Old 11-06-2013, 02:03 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Just picked up a merino 1 piece suit from for $70!
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Old 11-06-2013, 02:17 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Sweet. I didn't know about geartrade. That's a good one!

So I'm getting mixed feedback about jackets. I guess it's just personal preference?

How do I figure out what size board I need also and what type?
I'm about 175cm 5 ft 9
And 100kg
Foot size is 10.5us

Just curious so I can keep an eye out
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