It is always a dreadful experience getting to the mountain and realizing that you have forgotten something. I personally have a story that I regretfully will share. One time while staying in Salt Lake City, Alta received 18” of perfect Wasatch powder. Naturally, we were up and out the door early to fight the droves of other skiers hurrying up the canyon. We park, throw our boots on, and I realize that I had forgotten my jacket, back in the hotel room in town. Having to ski an incredible powder day in a jacket that I borrowed from the lost and found was a terrible experience. Don’t be me. Run through a ski trip checklist to ensure that you have all of your gear before you leave for a trip or anytime you get ready to hit the slopes.
- Skis/Snowboard: Having your own skis or snowboard will cut down on waiting in long rental lines on weekends and get you out on the slopes faster. Not to mention that if you are responsible for the tuning and maintenance they will get tuned more frequently and they will ride better. You will also be acquainted with the performance and limitations of your skis.
- Ski/Snowboard Boots: Having your own pair of ski boots or snowboard boots that fit you properly is one of the best things that you can invest your money in. Having comfortable feet is paramount to your skiing. Rental boots are designed to fit a genetic foot shape that is often too wide or too narrow for many feet.
- Ski Poles: Help you time your turns and move around the mountain.
- Helmet: A helmet is one of the single best ways to prevent a serious injury on the mountain
- Goggles: Not only do they keep your face warm, but more importantly they protect your eyes from wind, snow and harmful UV rays. Skiing in Sunglasses does not offer you this type of protection that goggles do.
- Extra Goggle Lens: Having multiple lenses for changing light conditions will help you see better on the mountain.
- Boot Heaters: One of the great luxuries you can have while skiing, especially when it is cold.
- Hand & Toe Warmers: If you don’t have boot heaters or heated gloves, these guys come in handy all the time for warm toes and hands. They also come in very handy if you are riding in cold conditions and do not want your phone battery to die too quickly. Keeping these in the same pocket as your phone keeps it warm.
- Backpack: Being able to have a place to shed a layer and keep water with you is a great way to be prepaid on the mountain. Having a place to keep snacks or extra anything will come in more handy than you realize.
- Water Bottle: Staying hydrated at elevation is the best way to combat altitude sickness.
- Boot Bag: Being able to get out of your boots at the end of the day provides you with the best bootgazam ever.
- Ski/Board Bag: Is great for not having sharp edges cut up the interior of your car.
For ski trips lasting more than a few days it helps to have multiple pairs of accessory items. These items are denoted by an *
- Ski Jacket
- Ski Pants
- Long Underwear* (Tops & Bottoms): Fresh Baselayers on a long ski trip are vastly underrated.
- Ski/Snowboard Socks: A fresh pair of ski or snowboard socks for each day on the mountain is a must
- Hat*: Keeping your head warm when you are not on the slopes with a helmet on is important
- Gloves/Mittens*: Different weight gloves for a range of temperatures is a great thing to have. Also if gloves get wet, being able to give them an extended drying time will help keep your hands warm.
- Glove Liners
- Glove Protectors: If you are going to be riding on a rope tow, this small investment can easily save an expensive pair of gloves.
- Neck Warmer: Seals in warmth.
- Balaclava/Face mask: Protects your face from cold, wind and snow, especially when it’s deep and you’re getting faceshots.
- Waterproof Boots/Shoes: A must have for walking to the day lodge. Keeping your feet and socks dry is essential to staying warm and comfortable on the mountain.
- Swimsuit: Nothing beats chilling in the hot tub with a beer after a day on the slopes.
- Insulator Jacket: Great for wearing around the village or if you need an extra layer when its cold.
Bonus Items (it’s always nice to have extras!)
- Helmet Camera/GoPro
- Boot Dryer
- Tune Kit
- Edge Sharpener
- Ski Harness for the kids
- Ski Lock
- Ziplock Bags
- Headphones/Helmet Audio Kit
- Phone Charger
- Snacks for the Slopes
- Ski Straps
- Extra Goggles