Norrona Lyngen Windstopper Hybrid Review
Cons: Specific design, poor weather resistance, fragile materials
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Norrona Lyngen Windstopper Hybrid
|Price||$319.00 at Backcountry||$549.00 at Backcountry|
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|$298.95 at Backcountry|
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|$299.00 at Backcountry|
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|$299.00 at Backcountry|
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|Pros||Highly breathable, lightweight, great range of motion||Immaculate weather protection, excellent fit, fleecy lining||Good weather resistance, fits great, plenty of ventilation||Fashionable, carefully tailored, excellent weather protection||Warm, comfy, weather resistant|
|Cons||Specific design, poor weather resistance, fragile materials||Expensive, light on features||Shell pants provide little warmth, short on features, muted style||Mesh-backed vents, doesn’t have all the bells and whistles||Small vents, snug fit, racer style|
|Bottom Line||A lightweight softshell pant that is made for spring skiing and ski touring||Excellent ski pants in every regard, and you'll pay for it||Not the most stylish bibs, but they are very comfortable and keep weather out||Great ski pants for a variety of applications and a wide range of skiers and riders||If warmth is a primary concern, check out these ski pants|
|Rating Categories||Lyngen Windstopper Hybrid||Arc'teryx Sabre AR Pant||Outdoor Research Carbide Bib||Patagonia Powder Bowl Pants||Spyder Dare GTX|
|Weather Resistance (25%)|
|Fit And Comfort (25%)|
|Specs||Lyngen Windstopper...||Arc'teryx Sabre AR...||Outdoor Research...||Patagonia Powder...||Spyder Dare GTX|
|Main fabric||Gore Windstopper, 30D polyester||N80p-X Gore-Tex with Cordura Nylon 3L cuff fabric||100% nylon 40D||4.6-oz 150-denier 100% recycled polyester 2L||Polyester plain weave 2L|
|Insulation||None||Laminated fleecy lining||None||Hanging mesh lining||40 g Primaloft Silver Eco synthetic|
|Waterproofing||Gore-Tex Windstopper||N80p-X Gore-Tex (3-layer)||Pertex Shield 3L||Gore-Tex w/ DWR finish (2-layer)||Gore-Tex laminate and PFCecFree DWR (2-layer)|
|Waistline construction (elastic? snaps?)||Button zip fly||Snaps. Built-in elastic belt||Bibs||Snap/zipper fly with adjustable tabs||Snap/zipper fly with internal adjustment and removable suspenders|
|Weight (in pounds)||0.94 lbs||1.32 lbs||1.64 lbs||1.67 lbs||1.79 lbs|
|Weight (in grams)||426 g||599 g||744 g||756 g||812 g|
|# of Pockets||3||3||3||4||5|
|Vents?||Yes||Exterior thigh zips, no mesh||Exterior thigh||Exterior thigh zips, with mesh||Inner thigh zips, with mesh|
|Ski-specific features||Scuff guards, elastic powder cuffs, cuff zipper||Key/pass clip inside pocket, touring cuff, scuff guards||Bibs, power strap-compatible cuffs, beacon pocket, scuff guards||Scuff guards, elastic powder cuffs, attach to matching jacket's powder cuff||Scuff guards, elastic powder cuffs, cuff zipper|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Lyngen Hybrid has great breathability, as well as a slim, conforming fit that allows good mobility. It doesn't offer much in the ways of warmth, features, or wet weather protection.
Most people expect their ski pants to keep them dry, at a minimum. This pant doesn't do that, nor does it claim to. It is designed for warm and sunny days on the mountain, where precipitation and cold winds are not in the forecast. Norrona uses a softshell fabric with DWR coating to help water bead up on the fabric, which provides short-term waterproof qualities that will wear off before too long. To be clear, this pant is not waterproof, and the stretch panels on the thighs (where our legs see the most water on chairlift rides) are vulnerable to water. These pants do ok with cold winds, but they are too thin to offer much protection from that either. If you are a dedicated skier who goes out in all weather conditions, this is not a good pant choice.
Fit and Comfort
The Lyngen Hybrid features a skin-tight fit that may bother some users. However, we found the tailoring to be quite good, and since the fabric feels great against the skin, we were pleased with the overall comfort of this piece. The stretchy fabric is instrumental in keeping these pants feel very flexible, despite a very snug fit. Overall, we like the way they fit.
We must note that these pants run small, compared to the fits from American companies. Our tester is just a hair on the large side of Medium. He wore a size Large in these pants.
The Lyngen Hybrid pants are extremely well-ventilated and breathable. The fabric itself is thin, stretchy, and air-permeable, so your skin can shed heat and water vapor through the fabric very easily. Stretch panels on the outer thighs and back of the knees are even more breathable.
Aiding in ventilation, the long outer thigh vents open from butt to knee, without a mesh backing for maximum airflow. As such, we have no qualms with the breathability of the Lyngen. It's a great piece for those warm sunny days when the hike-to terrain opens up, and you want to beat all those other skiers who have to stop every 20 steps because they're too hot. These pants are also a great option for fair-weather backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering.
These pants are not designed to keep you warm. Rather, they are made for warm and sunny days on the mountain, where a base layer underneath this thin softshell will be enough to keep your legs warm. Unless you're a fair-weather skier in Lake Tahoe, this is probably too specific of a pant to use for everyday use. The Gore Infinium shell fabric is extremely thin, and the stretchy panels on the outer thigh and back of the knee are little more than mesh patches. Don't expect these pants to keep you warm, or to fit thick baselayer bottoms underneath the snug fit.
Going along with the minimalist, lightweight theme here, the Lyngen Hybrid is light on features. There are three pockets, two at the hips and one on the upper thigh of the right leg. The two hip pockets are rather small and won't fit the largest smartphones. The thigh pocket is big, but a little exposed for a phone. Furthermore, none of the pockets are waterproof. The pants have powder cuffs at the leg openings and a velcro adjustment system at the waist.
These pants have a unique style that is popular in Europe and Scandinavian ski resorts but doesn't dominate in North America. The fit is snug, while most pants have a neutral cut, and some have a baggy cut. These pants scream "Euro." There are two color options: bright lime green, or a classier navy blue.
While some are quick to criticize the Lyngen Hybrid as different, we see it in a different light. Many skiers will never want the snug fit that this pant features. However, if you like to look svelte, classy, and cultured, these pants could be for you. Get ready to turn heads, but in a good way. Probably.
These pants come at a relatively high price, considering how specifically they are designed. They are only useful on a handful of days at most mountains. So, we don't think they are of great value.
The Norrona Lyngen Windstopper Hybrid pants are specifically designed for the warmest and driest ski days. Don't expect them to keep you warm or dry in a mid-winter storm. If you are considering a second pant to supplement your highly weather-resistant pant that you wear throughout the winter, this is a great spring pant.
— Jeff Dobronyi