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  • LAYERING: KEEPING WARM AND LOOKING GOOD ON THE MOUNTAIN

    March 10, 2021 3 min read

    Fashion on the Fields, how to dress for warmth in the mountains.

    Will I be warm enough? It’s by far the most common question we are asked here at Auski, and for a good reason. There are so many options out there, different fabrics, waterproof ratings, down, synthetic, wicking fabrics, the possibilities are endless, and we know it can all feel a little daunting.

    Every person has different needs when it comes to keeping warm in alpine climates, the best way to ensure you’re warm enough is to learn how to layer appropriately and alter these layers to suit the day and environment.  

    BASE LAYER:

    A base layer, or thermal, should act as a second skin. Its primary purpose is to keep you dry! Nothing drops body temperature faster than moisture against the body, so these layers wick away the wetness and regulate body temperature to prevent heat loss.

    The best base layers are tight-fitting, lightweight and very breathable. Merino wool thermals, in particular, offer superior warmth and have natural odour preventing properties.

    MID LAYER:

    A few thin layers will keep you warmer than one thick layer. Remember this mantra; repeat it.

    Mid-layers are where you get to choose your own adventure. Their primary purpose is to add warmth, but they also can add style! By trapping air the mid-layer acts as an insulator to keep you nice and toasty, having a few thinner layers rather than one thick layer allows for more trapped air but also leaves more room for movement.

    Avoid cotton, it soaks up moisture and loses all its warmth as soon as it’s wet. Opt for natural fabrics such as down or wool, or their synthetic counterparts. These are thin, lightweight and breathable and they usually have wicking properties to keep that dreaded moisture away.

    If you really feel the cold, adding a puffer jacket is always a great way to add even more warmth without adding bulk.

    When shopping for a mid-layer, consider that you may be able to use it as an after-ski, or après jacket! This is the jacket that you wear to and from the bar for those after-ski hot chocolates… with or without schnapps!

    When layering up your bottom half, rarely is there a need for a mid-layer. Usually, with a base layer and a good outer layer, you’re all set!

    OUTER LAYER:

    The final layer in your ski ensemble is arguably the most important. The outer layer provides the waterproof, windproof and breathable element to your layering. Again, everyone has their personal preference when it comes to outer layers and making the choice, consider the layers you have already chosen.

    An insulated outer layer is thicker and has features to keep you warm, reducing the need for extra layers, while a shell is primarily to keep you protected from the elements and allows for more versatility with more layering options for warmer and colder days.

    Ensure you choose something that has waterproof and breathable properties, insulated jacket or shell, staying dry is by far the best way to keep warm. Waterproof ratings range from 5,000mm to 20,000mm+, the higher the rating, the more your outerwear is going to stand up to the elements. We recommend a rating of at least 10,000mm for your outerwear.

    A 10,000mm rating is great for skiers and snowboarders who spend their days in all weather conditions but If the weather turns too poor will head inside. Avid skiers and snowboarders may opt for a higher rating to ensure that when that weather does set in, getting wet isn’t going to ruin the powder day.

    The outer layer is the fun part, choose a style that you love, and that will make you stand out. There’s something out there for everyone so have a little fun with your choice.

    Click to read more about waterproof ratings, insulation and breathability in our complete guide.

    We know it’s a whole lot to remember, jump over to our ski essentials checklist for a printable version of what you’ll need on the hill.  Alternatively, give us a call in-store, and one of our experienced staff will walk you through it.

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