Review: Section Black Label Snowboard Pant
I didn't plan on purchasing these pants, but when they were nearly $200 off at overstock.com, I couldn't resist. 20K waterproofing, 20k breathability (IIRC) & Taped seams...All for $85. Pretty damn good deal if you ask me.
When I opened the box I was actually slightly disappointed. The outer shell of the pants is so soft that I was pretty sure they would rip into a million pieces the 1st time I crashed and slid on the snow. Other than that concern, my initial impression was good. Lots of pockets, whith zipper and velcro close, and they look pretty damn good, if I do say so myself.
Even though the description said they were supposed to be tighter than normal boarding pants, they fit perfectly when I tried them on. From wearing them around the house, they seemed like they'd have plenty of room to maneuver while busting out park tricks/grabs etc, but not so loose that I was swimming in them. Bottom line is these pants feel great.
2 months later:
Now that I've worn these pants 10+ times this season, they are without a doubt durable. I've crashed way hard on icy slopes and skidded 100's of feet on my knees/ass and these pants still look brand new. They are indeed roomy enough to bust out any trick that I can muster the courage to attempt.
As for the temperature rating, lets just say that I've ridden these pants with nothing but a pair of shorts underneath in 5 degree weather, with a windchill below zero and was toasty warm. I've also ridden them in 40 degree weather a few weeks back and once the leg zippers were opened up, I was just right temp wise.
I honestly haven't found 1 thing I don't like about these pants. They fit great, feel great, perform great and look great. I guess if I really had to nit-pick, if I'm kneeling in the snow for a long time waiting for my riding partners to catch up, sometimes snow sticks to the knees...But like I said, that's being absolutely anal.
Final review on these pants before they're retired.
40+ riding days later and these pants are starting to really show their age. The right ankle is all torn up, and the knees are starting to look worn from so many times kneeling while waiting for my friends to catch up. The right pocket where I keep my keys while I ride is also starting to develop a hole from the keys poking through the material when I crash.
They're still plenty waterproof (they should be at 20,000mm rating). Just last week, I rode Beaver Creek in foggy, humid conditions with the wettest snow I've ever seen. It puked sloppy wet snow from 8am till I left at 2pm. My jacket (not waterproof) was soaked through by the end of the day, but the pants were bone dry and repelled water like Rosanne Barr repells men.
I've never worn anything besides a pair of shorts underneath these pants and have ridden them in temp extremes from 55 degrees to -36 with windchill, and I never had a day where I was too hot or too cold.
The ankle being all torn up was strange. The 2nd to last day I rode last year, I had a bunch of ice build up on the inside of my highback and it stuck to the ankle on my pants. So when I unstrapped my right foot to get on the lift (regular rider), it ripped a big chunk of pants material away with it. Rode 14 days since then and the hole just keeps getting bigger and bigger and...
Style wise, the pants aren't anything to rave about. Plain ol' black pants aren't anything special to look at.
Temperature Stability: 10/10
This is a good review. I just got a pair of Bonfire Radiant pants that are 20,000mm waterproof 15,000mm breathability. I'll give those a review as well once I get some decent time out on the slopes.
Even more of a review on these pants. So the pants I bought to replace the Section pants were too small and had to be returned. Only problem was that when I returned teh new pants, they didn't have my size in stock anymore...So the Section Black Label pants were used through the middle of May.
By the end of the 2008/2009 season, I had 65+ days in these pants. Toward the end of the season, I rode in 62 degree weather on a bluebird sunny day and still wasn't hot. My jacket was in the car and I was riding in short sleeves, but my legs were plenty cool with the thigh vents open.
Toward the end of the season, the pants really started to show their age/wear. Water would seep in through the knees and through the seat of the pants (Riding with wet knees and a soggy ass/boxers/shorts is no fun at all). The buttons that snapped the bottom of the legs together to keep em closed around boots fell off and the material on the butt was starting to fall apart.
Even though the pants started to fall apart, after 65+ days of hard, hard riding, I couldn't have asked for much more...Especially considering I paid $85 for em.
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