The Fuse Brigandine bib pants from The North Face are designed for the big mountain days. For the days when you get up early, grab your skins, axe and crampons and ride till it's dark outside. For the days when there’s a whole lot of powder on the mountain. For the days when you don’t check your phone all day.
The bib is part of the Steep Series collection; a range of products designed specifically for the backcountry. When a clothing line drops alongside a video series shot deep in the Saint Elias mountains - where Alaska meets British Columbia and the Yukon - you know that the gear is going to be serious, and with Ralph Backstrom, Hadley Hammer and Sam Anthamatten sporting the stuff in front of the camera, there can be no doubt that the Steep Series line can do everything it says on the label.
"The North Face don’t mess about. This stuff is backcountry armour...."
Like the highly exposed lines these guys are riding, there’s no room for error in the making of this kit. It has to be stuff that you can rely on no matter how hard it’s snowing, or how much spindrift the wind is whipping off the mountain.
The Fuse Brigandine bib is one of the first products to boast the North Face's latest innovation - fabric which applies FuseForm technology to a Gore-Tex membrane. In simple terms, it's technology that not only ensures you'll be staying dry but also guarantees impressive durability.
The bib is designed to fit comfortably but it's a good looking piece of kit as well, whether you wear it with a jacket on top or without. There's plenty of room to store your essential gear in the pockets, which are specially placed so that they're still accessible if you do choose to wear a coat on top, and the zero-hardware suspenders help reduce pack strap discomfort.
Vents have been placed exactly where you need them and the FuseForm fabric, which is tougher than normal, is used in the most common areas for wear and tear. Belt loops with clip integration can connect to the hem of compatible jackets, and stretch gaiters with boot hooks mean that no snow will get in.
The North Face never mess around when it comes to the mountains, and the Steep Series line is their most technical high performance gear. All of which means this is basically backcountry armour.
The North Face Fuse Brigandine Bib Pants