Need a jacket that combines top-end technical performance with authentic snowboarder steeze? Then this beauty from Burton may well be the model for you.

Founded by Jake Burton Carpenter in a garage in Vermont in 1977, Burton grew rapidly as snowboarding exploded in popularity throughout the 90s and 2000s, becoming the world’s largest snowboard company by a considerable way.

But although Burton ships more boards, boots and clothing each year than any other snowboard brand, the company is still privately owned - Jake and his wife Donna still run the show. This means it’s not beholden to shareholders, and has been able to grow in a managed way rather than always trying to maximise short-term profits. At the same time, Burton has consistently invested in snowboarding at all levels, supporting tiny grassroots events as well as international level competitions, in an effort to get everyone stoked on the sport.

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-4

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-4

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-2

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-2

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-5

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-5

The real secret to Burton’s success though, lies in the quality of the kit they produce. Nowhere is this more obvious than in their AK line (or [ak] as they style it), which includes their top-of-the-range outerwear. This AK Cyclic Jacket is built for the backcountry - its two-layer Gore-Tex fabric is completely waterproof but also highly breathable. Burton have added a moisture wicking lining on the inside to help draw water away from your body - great for if (or rather, when) you work up a sweat while skinning up.

The seams on this jacket are fully-taped, the zippers are waterproof and the hood, which has been remodelled for this season, is specially shaped to keep out the worst kinds of weather. Burton don’t publish weights for their gear, but this is lightweight - we had it at around 750g. Unlike many snowboard shells, which are made for people who spend a full day on the hill at most before retreating to their warm apartment, this is made to keep you warm and dry on lengthy backcountry missions. With the right layers underneath you could camp out in the snow for days on end.

There are plenty of pockets and headphone loops, so you’ve got more than enough places to stash backcountry kit and/or cliff bars. And if you’re an eco-conscious adventurer (which in this day and age, you really should be) you’ll be pleased to know that the jacket is BlueSign approved. This means it’s been manufactured in a sustainable way, using as few environmentally damaging processes and chemicals as possible.

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-6

burton-ak-cyclic-2l-jacket-review-best-winter-snowboard-jacket-2016-backcountry-6

Burton AK Cyclic 2L Jacket Stats:

The 100 Best Outdoor Products for Winter 2016 View them all

Shot on location in Chamonix