Ski touring can be particularly difficult. The hike up usually demands highly breathable products with good flexibility and venting options that will transport moisture and dry quickly. Time spent on the top will often call for warm and insulating pieces and the ride down could be both cold and warm with high demands on flexibility and movement. To simplify, we recommend our 4-layer system for optimal comfort the entire tour.
The baselayer is you next-to-skin products. Its primary function is to keep you dry, moving moisture from the skin through to the mid-layer.
We recommend our merino wool line as the base layer. The functional wool fabric is temperature regulating, highly breathable and will keep you warm even when wet. It consists of 89% fine merino wool, 17,5 microns thick, which provides a soft and comfortable feel. 11% polyamide makes the fabric more durable and quick drying. It is also natural resistance to microbial growth and reduces smell.
Mid-layer – keeps you warm and can easily be added/removed depending on temperature, weather, and activity level.
Both fleece and wool will serve well as a mid-layer and we suggest you select the thickness based on the outside temperature. However, we see a slight advantage in technical fleeces due to low weight, high flexibility, and great breathability. Start out a little colder than you may feel comfortable – a jacket that’s too warm will make you sweat (and get wet) early on. As ski touring can offer a great variety in both temperature and intensity, you can add several thin mid-layers to perfect your customization options.
Outer layer –protects you from the weather and ventilate out moisture and heat from your body.
With the purpose of protecting you from the weather, the outer layer should be a wind and waterproof shell product with high breathability and functional ventilation options to transport heat and moisture. Both Gore-Tex and dri products will offer these properties and your choice should be based on technical needs, fit and area(s) of use. These outer layers seldom provide any insulation themselves but being water and windproof, they make sure the mid-layer will give enough warmth. As you are heading towards aerobic climbs and (hopefully) awesome descends, you would need fully protective yet very flexible and lightweight products.
Insulation layer (outsider or under the outer layer) – keeps you warm and protects you from the cold – perfect for the peak or a lunch break.
This layer should consist of a light down jacket, a PrimaLoft jacket or a jacket with Polartec Alpha insulation: they’re all lightweight, very compressible and have a good warmth-to-weight ratio. By using this layer, you can use a thinner mid-layer and hopefully get less wet from sweat. Down is the most packable and gives best warmth-to-weight insulation. PrimaLoft insulates well also when wet and nearly match the warmth-to-weight-ratio of down. Polartec Alfa provides warmth when wet and highly breathable making it perform inside an outer layer and during a higher intensity activity level.
And don't forget your head, feet, and hands!