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Racer's Corner


I will stay warmest if I put on a lot of heavy clothes.

FALSE. The most important factor in staying warm is to have the correct type of fabric and to layer multiple garments properly. “Dress to Peel” is the axiom best describing what to do. You lose the majority of your body heat from your head and chest. So dressing like the Michelin Man with 2 pairs of cotton long-johns, jeans, and ski pants will not only restrict your movement, but have minimal impact on how best to stay warm. If you are not going to the North Pole – 2 layers on your legs are appropriate with 3 being the maximum depending on the fabric.

The best ski apparels will be constructed with multiple layers as shown in the figure. Modern technology has created synthetic fabrics that are light and purposeful. Make sure your main ski jacket is of high quality construction with well sewn seams and zippers. You can have fashionable buttons over a zipper, but if you only have buttons you will lose a lot of heat from the gap between buttons.

Helmets have been great for skier safety, but they have an added benefit in keeping you warm. Remember to augment your setup with a neck gator similar to what Dwayne is wearing in his photo above. A scarf is fashionable but less affective and a safety hazard around the lifts. Keep your neck gator in your jacket pocket and have it ready to put on if the weather changes on you. It may be one temperature in the parking lot or base lodge area and quite a different temperature at the top of the mountain. You don’t want to have to waste time going back to the car or condo.

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