Picking a Jacket for Skiing

Skiing is a type of recreational activity which goes back many years ago. It can be a bit of a danger sport, but it can  also be one of the most rewarding experiences one person can have. Just like other perilous sports, it requires the proper clothing and gear to protect the skier from injuries. One of the most important garments needed for  skiing is a  proper ski jacket. It keeps the user warm and dry during ski trips. That is why it is so important to pick the right ski jacket.

Picking a jacket for skiing is not like choosing a shirt from a pile of stuff. It is not as easy as it seems since you have to think about a lot of factors in choosing the right jacket for you. Just like shopping, it can be a fun experience to select your ski jacket. As you enter a store that sells outdoor garments  don’t just pick the most attractive ski jacket. You have to consider the temperature and the amount of snow that you will encounter during your ski trip. A thicker jacket may be advisable for colder days. If you want to be fashionable at the same time, a fur hood might be what you need 😉 Do remember that you can layer your clothing, to keep yourself insulated, but if you hot up, you can easily remove a layer or two.

Jackets with padding

Accidents during ski trips are inevitable. Look for a thick padding when picking a jacket for skiing. This might lend a little bit of  protection to you if & when you fall or trip on the slopes. Being outdoors during winter does not mean you won’t sweat. Wearing a thick jacket and being extremely mobile can make you perspire from all over your body, especially if you are a beginner.  That is why a breathable jacket is a good choice.

Your jacket must be adequately fit. If your jacket is too short, it will allow snow to get in from underneath. The ideal length of a jacket is just below the waistline of the skier. Some jackets have a powder skirt, that stops the snow going in under your jacket.  Choose a jacket that is not too tight because a tight jacket can prevent you from moving freely while doing your manoeuvres (and maybe jumps). A ski jacket must also be waterproof. You do not want to go home soaking wet like a drenched duckling.

Selecting a jacket

You have to be practical in picking a jacket for skiing. If you are flying with a low cost airline you should keep in mind as to the size of the jacket when it comes to packing. Focus on the features of a jacket that you need rather than its physical attributes. Side pockets are not necessary. A chest pocket may be okay if you like to bring your mobile phone or MP3 player /  wallet during your trip. Other features which are not always required when picking a jacket for skiing are powder skirts and zip covers. A powder skirt prevents snow from getting in your jacket from your waist. This can be a good addition only if you are planning to ski on deep snow or going off piste. Zip covers prevent snow and ice from building up in your zippers.  Although a trendy jacket looks better, your safety is still your priority.

We generally advice people to look at brand names, like North Face, Burton, Salomon, Oakley etc. These manufacturers have experience with designing jackets for skiing and snowboarding, and understand the levels of warmth versus breath-ability. Also named brands tend to be of higher quality, but might cost you more. Do think that this jacket should last you at least 3 seasons.

Picking a jacket for skiing is never an easy job. It requires some level of selection. The right ski jacket is essential for a fun and worthwhile ski experience, and will likely last you a few years. Comfort and security are the most important characteristics that you must settle for in a ski jacket. The right ski jacket can give you the best ski trip of your life.

2 thoughts on “Picking a Jacket for Skiing

  1. If you’re an economical skier and want ideas on cheaper brands of ski equipment consider “Sugar Mountain” cheap and practical. Better for a beginner than purchasing something from the North Face that you may never use again.

  2. Thanks for the tip Padraic ! I’ve always tended to go for the brands for things like pants or jackets and gone for no names on things like thermal underwear, socks , gloves etc.

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