The Layering Game

riding chairlifts with kids

How to dress for the cold smoke.

Dressing for skiing isn’t easy. One minute you’re schlepping across the parking lot, dripping in sweat, and the next you’re freezing stiff on the chairlift. Winters in Montana are typically cold and dry, which means you’re unlikely to get wet from the outside, but rather from the inside. So the most important factor in layering is breathability. Synthetic fabrics, like polyester, are the best option, as they wick sweat away from your body. Wool is good, too, but more expensive. Avoid cotton while skiing, as it absorbs moisture and dries slowly. Be careful with down, which also traps moisture. Wear a down puffy as your outermost layer, where it’s farthest from your skin, not under a shell. Experiment with your layering system until you find what works best.