An adventure at any of your favorite ski vacation destinations will always be better when you and your family are properly dressed for the venue and the activities you plan to engage in. It’s not enough to bring the warmest clothes you own, clothing that’s too warm may actually do more harm than good and can make you feel cold instead of warm. You see, skiing requires a lot of movements and make you sweat. Moisture from sweat will eventually make you feel cold and uneasy. This is where careful planning and selection of wardrobe comes in to play.
If you’re planning a ski vacation for this winter, here are some considerations to keep in mind when deciding on what to pack (or what you should buy if new apparel is necessary):
Be conscious of the expected weather and how altitude will affect the temperature. For some it might be beneficial to have ski clothing that covers a wide range of temperatures and activity levels. What you are wearing when first leaving the lodge may be of little to no use once you get to the top of that mountain. Take note that steeps, powders, and moguls tend to be colder than many other parts of the ski resort. Higher altitudes are usually colder and temperatures are at least 5 degrees colder with every 1,000 feet of elevation gain. Summits at most western ski vacation resorts are often times 15 degrees colder than the base of the lift.
Go for wicking fabrics. Clothes with wicking materials keep moisture off your body rather than trapping it against your skin. As much as possible, avoid cotton clothes as these tend to trap moisture. Wear light to medium-weight zip turtlenecks and long thermal underwear beneath other layers of your ski attire.
Layer your clothes wisely. Make sure you have an insulating layer in between the wicking layer and moisture-repelling layer. Wool and fleece are examples of good insulators and are preferred by most skiers because these feel warm even when wet and does not trap moisture.
Be mindful of your extremities. Wear ski hats that cover the ears and can be secured properly in case of extreme weather. Use a fleece balaclava as a mask, scarf or under-hat layer and protect your hands with well-insulated gloves. Use glove liners under mittens when necessary and put on goggles to protect your eyes from extreme cold and possible injuries.
Keep your feet warm by wearing a good pair of ski sport socks preferably made from wool materials. Wool socks help prevent boot bruises and help you get a more precise boot-fit, enabling you to ski more accurately.
The start of ski season is closer than you think! By keeping these tips in mind as you ski-shop and prepare, that's one more way to make sure you have the best possible ski trip!