Review: Arc’Teryx Alpha SV Bib

Intensely durable, seriously smart. These bibs may be your best climbing partner yet

Here's a new way to divide the world: people who wear pants and those who wear bibs. Who wears bibs? Drooling infants, for one.  Mountaineers, for... oops, redundant. 

The Arc’Teryx Alpha SV bib is simply the best bib ever. The weatherproof Gore-Tex 3L Pro Shell construction is bomber, breathes like a panting labrador, and effortlessly sheds the elements. At a mere 22 ounces, it won’t weigh you down, and the fit is exquisite: a high cut with a Schoeller vest, inner waist drawcord, removable foam kneepads (so nice when putting a knee down to rest), zippers that don’t ride up under pack belts/straps, adjustable cuffs with lace hooks, instep patches, easily adjustable shoulder straps-- we’re talking the whole enchilada. The leg zippers don’t fully separate, but that’s OK, ‘cause you’ll be wearing these dawn-to-dusk—or  probably 24 hours a day--on expedition.

The design and placement of everything is perfect. A three-way, through-the-crotch zip allows you to do your duty without excessive exposure. The best part? The pockets. Two small inner pockets and two medium outer pockets all zip up to close, and—hallelujah!—they’re Napoleon-style. It’s hard to stress how convenient this pocket design is. It doesn’t interfere with pack straps, it’s easier to reach across than back, and you can sleep with all kinds of crap  and not worry about breaking stuff, unless you’re a stomach sleeper. They’re beautiful, man. Save up your pennies.

Hits: Great design with accessible pockets and functional crotch zip. Tailored fit, tough as nails and lightweight.

Misses: The only downside is the price. Tell your significant other it’s an investment, not a purchase.

MSRP: $499


Buy It($300 at AJ’s Sporting Goods)

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