Ski essentials

Ski essentials for a day on the slopes
Lip balm, sunscreen, googles... check, check check

Packing the ski essentials for a day or several days on the slopes is so important that I have a “note” saved on my phone to check before I leave home.  Until I finally created and saved the list, I would inevitably end up on the mountain with all of my gear except one or two highly necessary items (say, gloves. . . ).  To spare you that inconvenience, here is my list of 14 packing basics for a ski or snowboard trip, together with brands snowgrrl is psyched about:

  1.  Skis:  You can rent or buy (renting is less expensive in Denver, but easier at the base of whatever mountain you’re going to); we love the look of these Coalition Snow skis, made by women, for women.
  2. Goggles: At SIA, we demo’d the super cool Zeal Optics goggles with a display showing GPS and online functions including speed, distance, altitude, vert, temp, run count, and position.  Personally, I snagged the Protect Our Winters goggles because the goggles themselves are great and I felt good helping protect the environment while getting an essential piece of gear for skiing.
  3. Helmet: I currently have a “matte black” Smith helmet.  Please, get some helmet by some brand and Love Your Brain.
  4. Jacket  & pants: NILS is snowgrrl’s favorite favorite brand, combining style and functionality, and I love the Mariska jacket and Betty pants in long (long ski pants are so hard to find for us tall girls!)
  5. Compression socks: My legs get a little tired after so many runs, I have found compression socks to be a ski essential.  They help energize my legs for those 30,000 vertical feet days!
  6. Mittens or gloves:  I love love love my Swany mittens on super cold days.  They have a little zippered compartment where you can put a hand warmer!  For more temperate days, the Gordini Venture gloves (reviewed by SG Spring 2017) are comfy, lightweight, and cozy.
  7. Hand warmers: If you’re going up for more than a day, get a 10-pack.  You will be a hero amongst your frozen-fingered friends.
  8. Neck gator (or a turtleneck)!  We love the Colorado-made Phunkshun designs!
  9. Lip Balm: One of our honorary “SnowMen” tried out AllGood’s lip balm and sunscreen, and loved them.
  10. Sunscreen: Having tested numerous sunscreens, the verdict is that Snowgrrl loves Supergoop! We still think it needs a sexier name, though.  It provides natural SPF coverage with a bit of tint to cover up imperfections (not that you need it! You’re perfect!)
  11. Boots w/gripping soles for walking on icy surfaces: Check out these NAOT “Konini” boots!  Or get some good old Sorrels. I’ve had mine since high school!
  12. Wicking base layers: Kari Traa and Babool make great ones!
  13. Epic Pass: Your best value for multiple days of skiing at the awesome mountains that make up Vail Resorts’ collection.  Hope you got yours in time!
  14. Bikini & flip flops (for après ski!!): Must be hot tub ready after a challenging day on the slopes!