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Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear Review

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear Review

If you’ve attempted to teach kids a winter sport (or even just spend a significant amount of time playing outdoors in the snow), you know that outerwear can make or break the experience.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

There are few things more challenging than attempting to comfort a cold, wet kid. Especially this winter when most ski lodges are closed and your only warming shelter is your car, outerwear that can withstand the elements is so critical to everyone having a good day on the mountain.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

With this in mind, we put some key pieces of Obermeyer’s kids snow gear to a classic Pacific Northwest (wet) gear test. And we were not disappointed by the results!

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>>>Note: We found that there is a ton of Obermeyer on sale at Zappos!<<<

Obermeyer Kids Formation Jacket

Find the Obermeyer Formation Jacket directly from Obermeyer or at Amazon. It’s also on sale at Zappos!

Specs & Features

  • Fabric: HydroBlock® Pro 100% Polyester Plain Weave 2-Way Stretch
  • Insulation: 220gm Body; 180gm Sleeve; 80gm Hood
  • Removable hood w/ magic chain hood attachment
  • “I-Grow”™ Extended Wear System
  • Full-Motion™ articulation
  • Skier Critical™ seam sealing
  • Reflective logo, trim, and zipper pulls
  • Integrated mitten/glove clips
  • Adjustable water-resistant powder skirt

What We Love

Next level waterproofing

This is one of the most important qualities in snow gear for kids, because once they are wet it becomes exponentially more difficult to keep them warm.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

The Formation jacket utilizes Obermeyer’s beefy HydroBlock® Pro waterproofing technology and we have been so impressed with how it performs! Pacific Northwest snow is often wet and sloppy, and after hours of rolling around in the slush my son was still bone dry.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

Lots of pockets

This jacket has SO MANY pockets! We love the fact that there are both interior and exterior secure options for dedicated ski pass storage. The velcro closure pocket on the left sleeve makes it super easy for kids to pass through RFID lift access points.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

An additional interior stash pocket has ample space for handwarmers, granola bars, or whatever other small survival items you want to have handy for a full day on the slopes. Add in the zippered chest pocket and handwarmer pockets and your kid is set for on-the-go storage.

Excellent range of motion

The exterior fabric on this jacket is so soft and stretchy, especially considering how waterproof it is. Another key consideration for kids’ gear, since they definitely don’t want anything restricting their movement!

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

The fabric feels even softer than most softshell jackets, and has excellent stretch in all the critical areas to allow kids to move freely.

I-Grow extendability

When we initially tried the size 5 Formation jacket on our slender 5-year-old, the sleeves seemed a bit on the short side. And sure enough, the first few times he was out in it we had some issues with gapping between the cuff and his mittens.

With Obermeyer’s “I-Grow”™ Extended Wear System, this was a super easy fix! A few snips with the scissors and problem solved. A couple of the stitches closer to the seam were trickier to remove, but we were really happy with how this process worked.

Functional, adjustable powder skirt

The powder skirt on this jacket does an excellent job of keeping snow from sneaking up through the bottom hem. Another essential feature especially with kids who are just learning to ski or snowboard!

We also love that it’s adjustable – there are 3 simple snaps along the elastic hem that allow for a more snug fit on smaller-waisted kids.

What We Don’t Love

Zipper not waterproofed

This is definitely our biggest complaint with the Formation jacket – especially considering how impressed we are with waterproofing of the exterior fabric! The zipper itself is not waterproof, and the velcro flap covers less than half of the zipper length.

While the body of the jacket stayed incredibly dry in the wettest conditions, there was definitely moisture soaking through the zipper and saturating the lining. We didn’t have anything in the stash pocket at the time, but it was also pretty wet on the inside.

Tight collar

Even in super cold, blustery conditions our son did NOT want the collar zipped all the way up. We tried once, and received a lot of complaints about how uncomfortable it was on his chin.

We chose to just leave it unzipped at the top and put a neckwarmer underneath for a bit of a snow barrier, but that obviously doesn’t help with keeping moisture out. We haven’t ever had this issue with him before, so I assume it’s particular to this jacket.

No cinches on sleeve cuffs 

This seems like another questionable design decision for what’s touted as an all-weather jacket. The cuffs are not adjustable and there is no way to cinch them down to keep snow out.

Obermeyer did think to put stowable glove/mitten clip inside the cuff that could help with keeping mittens in place. But the clip didn’t work well with our son’s mittens and we definitely had some wrist gapping even after we made the growth extension.

Open exterior compass pocket

While a compass is obviously an important tool, this one doesn’t seem very practical as it stows in a tight exterior pocket with no closure.

All this pocket seems to do is collect snow, and the lining is not waterproof which is problematic. It’s also virtually impossible for a kid to handle the compass with mittens on, so it seems like this is a feature that the jacket would have been better without.

Obermeyer Bibs: Outer Limits

Find the Obermeyer Outer Limits Pants directly from Obermeyer or from Amazon.

Specs & Features

  • Fabric: 100% Polyester Micro Fleece, HydroBlock® Sport 100% Polyester Ottoman Weave
  • Insulation: 80gm
  • Available in wide range of sizes (down to size 1)
  • “I-Grow”™ Extended Wear System
  • Skier Critical™ seam sealing
  • Full-Motion™ articulation
  • Water-resistant powder cuffs with gripper elastic
  • Double-layer reinforcement abrasion resistant hems
  • Reinforced inseams

What We Love

Impressive waterproofing

We put these pants through some serious Pacific Northwest weather testing – heavy snow followed by a warm front and a big dump of rain. The Outer Limit pants were surprisingly impressive in several inches of slushy mess!

While the exterior fabric appeared to be saturated, my son’s base layers were completely dry underneath! Even after hours and hours of puddle stomping and literally kneeling in inches of melting snow and water.

Not restrictive

While the fabric on the Outer Limits pants is not quite as soft and stretchy as that on the Formation jacket, it still moves incredibly well. Full days of active snow play were absolutely no problem for our kiddo.

Built to last

Between the “I-Grow”™ seam (which provides an additional 2” of length at the bottom hem) and the adjustable shoulder straps, the Outer Limit pants are made with rapidly growing kids in mind.

In addition to the adjustability, the Outer Limits pants are made of highly durable exterior fabric that can withstand tough play. I have no doubt that these pants will live on for many more years and many more wearers, even though our kids play hard and are not gentle on gear.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

What We Don’t Love

Design of shoulder straps

It was pretty hard to find something we didn’t love about these pants, but the one thing that was slightly annoying was the design of the velcro shoulder straps.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

While it’s great to be able to adjust them for length, we found that the straps don’t lay flat very easily and tend to twist or bunch with a lot of movement. Not a huge deal, but can cause discomfort on long days.

Obermeyer Kids Gauntlet Mittens

Find Obermeyer Kids Gauntlet mittens directly from Obermeyer or at the following locations:

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

Specs & Features

  • Fabric: HydroBlock® Pro 100% Polyester Plain Weave 2-Way Stretch
  • Palm Fabric: Polyurethane Synthetic Leather
  • Insulation: 227gm Backhand; 170gm Palm
  • Over the cuff style
  • Adjustable cuffs with hook and loop tab
  • Zipper hand warmer pockets
  • Integrated nose wipe & clips
  • Fleece lined

What We Love

Impressive waterproofing

Once again, Obermeyer has hit a home run with their waterproofing. If your kids are anything like mine, they love nothing more than plunging their hands into a pile of fresh snow and eating it like it’s cotton candy.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

This can easily lead to super wet, cold hands. But the Gauntlet mittens withstood hours of preschooler snow eating without letting in an ounce of moisture.

Excellent dexterity

One of the most frustrating parts of winter play for kids is that they can’t use their hands very well while wearing mittens. It’s harder to grip things and move their fingers the way they want to, but nothing else keeps their hands warm enough.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

I was very impressed with how little complaining I heard about this from my 3.5-year-old once we put her in the Gauntlet mittens. She had no problem pulling sleds, packing snow balls, or building snow forts. For such a particular kid, this was a HUGE win.

Handwarmer pockets

This little feature is worth its weight in gold. It is so hard for anyone to recover from having cold hands, especially little people. My daughter is one who is perpetually complaining about her hands being cold.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

Placing handwarmers in the convenient zipper pocket on the back side of the Gauntlet mittens made all of our lives so much more pleasant! Her fingers stayed warm all day and we had zero complaints.

Easy on/off

Most of the kids’ mittens we’ve owned have long, awkward zipper closures. And while the zippers can be handy for guiding little fingers into place, they can also be a pain in the neck to get zipped when kids are wiggly.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

I couldn’t tell if it was the interior fleece fabric or simply the design of this mitten, but it was so easy to get them on and off! One less thing to wrestle with when getting kids geared up for the snow is a huge win.

What We Don’t Love

Cuff length

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

While we appreciate how the over-the-cuff style of the Gauntlet mittens makes them so easy to put on and take off, we wish they had just a bit more length. Even with the velcro cinched all the way, it seemed like snow managed to sneak in more than it generally does with mittens worn underneath the jacket cuff.

Bottom Line

All of the Obermeyer kids snow gear we tested performed incredibly well in wet, sloppy Pacific Northwest winter conditions. The waterproofing and dexterity are top notch, and the overall quality of the gear allows us to withstand long days outside even in cold, wet conditions.

Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear

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Obermeyer Kids Snow Gear Review

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