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What to wear while skiing?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by neminat View Post
    LAYERS! Make sure to have a base layer in there. It can be brutally cold out there.

    Gloves are an absolute must
    Face protection! the wind on your face can be brutal. Make sure you have something to cover as much of your face as possible.
    Buy snowbarding socks. They are wool and insulate very well. They were amazing!!
    snow pants / jacket.

    Dont forget to layer up... the last thing you want is to be freezing and have to buy all kinds of expensive ass gear at the shops.
    In WV odds are good it won’t be brutally cold. I’ve won my face mask one time in about 7 years. Also don’t wear snowboarding socks if you ski. The extra thick shins can make it tough to fit into ski boots. I bought a pair by accident assuming they were all the same. Waste of money.

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    • #17
      If you're on a budget Costco has their 32 degree base layers on sale for $6.99-$9.99. I'm a 40 short, 5'6, and find the medium fits nicely.


      Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk

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      • #18
        Thanks for all of the kind advice given so far! I'm going to see what I can find (hopefully on sale for the Holiday season) this weekend!

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        • #19
          Whatever you do, make sure you avoid having a gaper gap

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          • #20
            Originally posted by rd27 View Post
            Thanks for all of the kind advice given so far! I'm going to see what I can find (hopefully on sale for the Holiday season) this weekend!
            I'd consider checking with the people you're going with to see if they can lend you anything. If this is a family that frequently (or even not that frequently) goes on ski trips, there is a good chance that they'll have some spare gear to lend you. If this is the case, there's probably no need to buy specialized gear like ski socks, as someone else going will probably have another pair. The same goes for pants, jackets, etc. Your best bet for equipment is probably to rent skis, boots, poles, and a helmet, unless you get lucky and can borrow something that fits decently.

            Skiing can be an incredibly expensive sport/hobby and can feel inaccessible if you're not well off. I have no idea what this family is like, what the ski trip will be like, or what your financial situation is like, so feel free to completely ignore me here. But on the off chance that you don't plan on doing a ton of skiing in the near future and don't want to spend a ton of money on gear, here's what I would suggest.

            - Borrow everything you can. As I said earlier, ski families typically have extra stuff and will be happy to let you borrow it.
            - It doesn't need to be "for skiing." Layering enough clothing that is reasonably comfortable to move in will do. Before I owned proper ski pants, I wore nylon windpants with sweatpants and leggings underneath, and honestly it worked fine. For socks, just make sure it's wool, long enough to fit over the boots (over the calf), and warm enough that you'd be comfortable spending an extended period outside in them. For the upper half, you could wear a thermal long sleeve shirt (wool, thick cotton, or synthetic), a flannel shirt, a sweatshirt, and a raincoat. Or any combination of layers you have around - I used to do two long sleeved shirts under a sweatshirt and a completely unlined jacket. You'll want a thin (but warm) hat that covers your ears and decent gloves.
            - You can likely rent skis at the mountain, which is convenient and fine for a day or two. However, sometimes you can get better gear or a better deal at one of the shops nearby. If you're renting gear, ask around to see what places are good.
            - If you have to buy something, and you don't anticipate skiing a lot, get something that will be useful elsewhere in your life. Decent gloves, a warm hat, a pair of boot socks can all be great and used outside of skiing. If you need a jacket, get something versatile that you'll get lots of use out of.

            Hope this helps. For reference, I grew up skiing at one of the bigger mountains in Vermont. You may need fewer layers/accessories than I suggested if it is warmer - but that's the beauty of layering, you can always take some off!

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            • #21
              Originally posted by hockeysc23 View Post
              In WV odds are good it won’t be brutally cold. I’ve won my face mask one time in about 7 years. Also don’t wear snowboarding socks if you ski. The extra thick shins can make it tough to fit into ski boots. I bought a pair by accident assuming they were all the same. Waste of money.
              Yeah in my misspent youth I lived in Vail Colorado for an entire ski season and never once used a face mask. I did wear goggles, a stocking cap with ear flaps, a few different layers and wind proof shells top and bottom. This was pre-Sonny Bono so nobody wore helmets back then. I skied at least 3 days a week every week I was out there in all conditions. Well, I never skied in rain, because it never rained - it was never warm enough to rain. The snow was great. It did not get as brutally cold there as it does in some other places (Wyoming and Montana, Canada, New England on the wrong weekend). If it drops below zero Fahrenheit a face mask is probably a good idea but in the teens are warmer I don't personally think it's necessary.

              Goggles are a necessity. The folks you're going with probably have a spare pair. I still have mine from when I was in Vail tucked away somewhere.
              “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.” – Mark Twain

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              • #22
                Originally posted by rd27 View Post
                Hello again and thank you for the quick replies.

                This will be my first time skiing (I've been water-skiing before, but I'm sure it's different). From what I know so far, the trip will be in the mountains of West Virginia in January.

                What sorts of boots/shoes will I need for this?
                If you're going to Snowshoe, WV, then I have some recommendations for you. I've taken my family (wife and two teenagers) to Snowshoe once a year for the past 8 years, so obviously I really like it there. I know your question is about clothes for skiing, but you mention that you haven't skied before, so I want to put my two cents in and strongly suggest that you take ski lessons at the resort. They have excellent ski schools for kids and adults. Back when my wife and I took our first lessons at Snowshoe, they had a deal where we'd pay a one-time flat rate of like $75 and they'd give you unlimited adult lessons during the entire stay. And we needed all of it! But by the third day, we could handle the greens (bunny slopes). I think without lessons, you run the risk of hurting yourself (or others). Anyway, I don't think they still have that ski guarantee deal, but even so, taking a lesson or two will make the rest of the trip more enjoyable. Also, I should mention that Snowshoe has two separate ski areas, the main one (near Expedition station) and the older part called Silvercreek where a shuttle bus will take you (unless you're already staying in the Silvercreek area). If you're learning to ski, Silvercreek is easier. The bunny slopes over there are a bit wider and have less of an incline compared to the main ski location at Expedition. Plus, there's usually less people at Silvercreek, and they offer night skiiing until like 9 or 10 pm, which is neat. Oh yeah, one more tip for a beginner: when you ride up the ski lift to the top of the slope, motion to the control booth with a "thumbs down" signal, which they know means you want to slow down the lift as you approach. That should help you with getting off the lift without falling over. They have a few "high speed" lifts, and it can get a bit tricky getting off the lift when they're at full speed.

                Okay, back to clothes. Like others have said, if the family you're going with has ski clothes, or if you have friends nearby who will lend you stuff, then that's the first option. Snowshoe rents out helmets for something like $10 a day. Of course, they also rent out skis, snowboards, boots, etc., basically everything you need to ski. They sell goggles, gloves and glove warmers, and other things and generally the prices are fair. You won't get Black Friday deals, but they won't gouge you either. In January, assuming nothing out of the ordinary, it should hoover around 20-25 degrees during the day, but if you go night skiing, then it will drop quite a bit, so I recommend lots of layers. The first time we went, it was during a Christmas week and the temps we close to 5 degrees. After day 1, and frustrated with not yet knowing how to stand up on skis, we almost packed up and left mid-vacation! Other times we've gone, it's been 30-35 degrees, and with the sun out, we go away with a light jacket and ski pants/snow bibs.

                As for other recommendations: I'd recommend sunscreen. Yes, it's freezing out, but you don't realize you're exposing yourself to direct sunlight for 7-8 hours and before you know it you're sunburned! The resort condos/restaurants are located at the top of the mountain (unlike most ski resorts), so you will have to drive up a twisty road to get there, meaning having 4 wheel drive will help. Unless they get an unusual amount of snow, expect 50% or more of the snow to be machine made. It's not going to be powdery like out west, and if it melts during the day and then freezes over at night, expect the snow to be slick in the morning.

                Anyway, have fun! They have dedicated snow boarding parks and moguls for the more aggressive skiers, so if you stay on the main slopes, you should be surrounded by mostly avid skiers and families.

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                • #23
                  Some good advice here. I'll add...bring a different coat to go out at night. Your ski coat might get wet or damp during the day and you'll want to hang it up overnight so it'll be ready for the next day. So bring another coat that you'll be comfortable going out in apres ski.

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