Head to Toe…What Your Child Needs to Wear for a Day on the Slopes

Posted in The Lists
by Kim-Marie on February 21, 2011

helmet (helmet)As a Snowmama to four little skiers with many years of experience dressing them, I’m often asked “What exactly should my children wear to the mountain?”  

Here’s my foolproof list for outfitting your little skier.  I have never had someone come off the slopes and tell me they were too cold to ski or too hot. If you drop them at ski school dressed in the gear listed, they will have a great day, and so will you.


A helmet, not only a good idea, but required for all skiers and boarders under 17 at Park City Mountain Resort.

balaclava (balaclava)A balaclava under the helmet. There are two types-- one with a gator attached and the other just for the head. You will find them in any ski shop.  For little skiers the full balaclava is the best, and warmest, option.  They might look like a character from Monty Python, but the comfort is more than worth it.

Goggles  Not just for sun, but for wind, snow and warmth, make sure you get a good fit.

goggles (goggles)NECK:   

Gator is a must, if they are not skiing with a full balaclava. It not only keeps their neck warm, but can be pulled up to cover their face on cold and windy days.

spyder-outfit (spyder-outfit)TOP:

First layer:  A wicking long john top.  Cotton can get wet if they sweat. Cotton also doesn’t provide the thermal protection to keep them warm.

Second layer:  A thin fleece, this should be mid-weight, not the kind of fleece you would wear as a jacket.

Third layer:  Ski sweater, something wool or a wool blend. If they are wearing a shell as their outer jacket this should be a light under jacket.

Top layer:  Ski jacket or shell. The beauty of a shell is that it can be worn without the under jacket for spring skiing.


First layer:  Wicking long john bottoms.

Second layer:  Fleece long john bottoms, thin sweats  can also work.

Top layer:  Ski pants.  For little skiers, bib  type pants ensure that no snow gets in during the inevitable fall.  However the most important thing is that they are waterproof.


socks (socks)One pair of moisture-wicking ski socks.  Use toe warmers on the top of their toes (not the bottom).  More than one pair of socks will make boots terribly uncomfortable.  

Boots:  Make sure the boots fit properly and the ONLY thing in the boots are feet and socks.  DO NOT tuck long johns in to the boots.  This will be very  uncomfortable as the day goes one.

boots (boots)

mittens (mittens)HANDS:   

Waterproof gloves or mittens. Mittens are often warmer as all of the fingers are together yet some children prefer gloves.  Many gloves now havezipper pouches on the outside of the gloves that can be used to tuck in hand warmers.  If your gloves don’t have these, just jam them in with their tiny fingers and they’ll be toasty and happy all day.


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The views expressed on Snowmamas are those of the individual authors, who are independent contractors of Copper Mountain Resort and Killiington Resort and may not be factually accurate. These views are not intended to reflect the opinions of Copper Mountain Resort, Killington Resort, its owners, its management or its employees. Snowmamas' will receive compensation for their participation as an author.